A Sunriver-area man shot and killed a pit bull in self-defense Wednesday after the two people walking the dog trespassed on his property and started an argument, according to the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office.
The dog owner, 19-year-old Jessica Sunderman of La Pine, was charged with fourth-degree assault and second-degree criminal trespassing. Her companion, 23-year-old Dakota Pyatt, was also charged with second-degree trespassing.
Sgt. William Bailey said deputies were dispatched to a dispute involving gunfire around 7:30 p.m. at the 1400 block of S. Century Drive near Sunriver.
Deputies learned that Sunderman and Pyatt had left the area in a white pickup, heading toward Sunriver.
A Sunriver PD officer first spotted the truck at 7:41 pm on S. Century Dr. near milepost 13.
An Oregon State trooper and a DCSO deputy arrived shortly thereafter.
The pair was detained and authorities found a deceased pit bull in the truck.
During the subsequent investigation, deputies determined Pyatt and Sunderman had walked their pit bull near S. Century Drive.
During their walk, they were contacted by a property owner and told they were trespassing on private property.
Sunderman walked further onto the property to approach and argue with the woman who owned the property, Bailey said.
A physical altercation ensued soon after when Sunderman attacked the woman.
A second man on the property tried to intervene and Pyatt began arguing with him.
Bailey said during the dispute, Sunderman and Pyatt’s pit bull bit attacked the man, who was armed with a pistol and fired several rounds at the dog, killing it.
Sunderman and Pyatt collected their dog and left the area in their truck.
It was determined Pyatt and Sunderman were the primary aggressors and trespassed onto private property.
Deputies determined the male on the private property used his firearm in self-defense after being attacked by the pit bull.
Both Sunderman and Pyat were arrested by criminal citation and not taken to jail.
Alcohol is believed to be a contributing factor in this incident.
This investigation is ongoing and additional charges are being considered.