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No changes to Virginia Beach K-9 policy after dog attacks child

Posted at 6:06 PM, Apr 16, 2015
and last updated 2015-04-16 18:06:06-04

Virginia Beach, Va. – A man who told NewsChannel 3 he robbed a bank was in court today.

Police were searching for Joshua Allen last month, but the search resulted in an 11-year-old boy getting attacked by a police dog.

It happened at a hotel on Northampton Blvd. in Virginia Beach.

Allen told NewsChannel 3 during a jail house interview that he robbed a Wells Fargo Bank on Independence Blvd. because he was desperate.

"I know it was wrong but at the time, like I said, if you don`t have food, if you don`t have shelter, if you don`t have warmth for long enough, your mind starts thinking in different directions than you normally think," says Allen.

Allen told us he felt responsible for what happened. We checked in with Virginia Beach Police to ask about the incident.

They said the incident prompted internal affairs to get involved and look into what happened.

Police said it was a complete accident.

They said they have not changed their policies regarding the K-9 unit and that the dog involved in the attack is still a part of the K-9 unit.

NewsChannel 3 was told that risk management contacted the boy’s family and advised that they will cover the boy’s hospital bills. They will also cover any further medical attention.

Meanwhile, Allen appeared in front of a judge on Thursday. He waived his right to a primary hearing on the robbery charge.

The use of firearm charge was thrown out because there was no evidence he had a gun according to the Office of the Commonwealth Attorney.

Now the case will head to a grand jury in Circuit Court.

He is expected in court on June 22nd.

The boy was taken to the hospital and had to get several stitches.

From jail, Joshua Allen not only told NewsChannel 3 he robbed the bank, but said he was taking the blame for what happened to the boy.

“I feel responsible for that, and I feel as though if I didn’t do what I did, none of this would’ve happened,” says Allen.

Allen said after the robbery, he got a room at America’s Best Value Inn on Northampton Boulevard. Police came looking for him .

Virginia Beach Police Chief Jim Cevera called the incident an accident.  Officers were worried Allen was armed and violent — that’s the reason why there was a police dog.

“Because the dog was in what we call work mode. At that moment in time, that dog is going to work,” says Cevera.

Related:

Firearm charge dropped for man who admitted to robbing Virginia Beach bank

Admitted bank robber on Virginia Beach K9 attack: ‘I feel responsible’

Wells Fargo bank robbery suspect arrested in Virginia Beach hotel