Minnesota police say they were in fear for their lives when they released an attack dog on an unarmed 82-year-old grandmother on her own property, mistaking her for a burglar.

After all, Coon Rapids police say the woman escalated the situation by turning off her flashlight when they confronted her early one morning as she was working inside her family’s backyard shed.

The woman did not speak English so she had no idea who the people were outside the shed barking orders while holding growling dogs.

So she chose to turn off her flashlight and remain quiet, hoping the people would just go away.

According to Fox 9:

Police say a combination of factors, including her lack of response, led them to believe they had cornered a burglar.

“[The officer] announced his presence and the person, who was carrying a flashlight, turned the flashlight off,” said Chief Wise. “To him, he interpreted that as the person in the shed reacted to my presence negatively, which enhanced the officer’s suspicion.”

Police documents claim officers tried for another ten minutes to get the person to come out. When they did not, they sent in the K-9.

Moments after the bite, squad car video shows the grandmother scared and confused in the back of car.
“I can only imagine what she’s thinking, ‘How did this happen?’ I’m sure is in her mind,” said Chief Wise. “They knew this was something other than a burglary as soon as they saw her.”

The Coon Rapids Police Department is hoping the dash cam video will clear up details of the incident, as unsubstantiated claims by social media users have flooded their feed and prompted a flurry of hate mail from around the country.

We are working on obtaining the full video as Fox 9 edited it down significantly.