Man convicted in slaying of western Pennsylvania police dog faces trial in 2013 home invasion

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PITTSBURGH — A man sentenced to prison in the stabbing death of a police dog will be going to trial in a separate home invasion case.

Twenty-two-year-old John Rush of Stowe Township is charged in Allegheny County with robbery, burglary, aggravated assault and conspiracy in the December 2013 case.

He declined a plea agreement Monday although Common Pleas Judge Jill Rangos described the sentence as "well below" standard sentencing guidelines. It would been consecutive to the 17- to 44-year term imposed last week in the death of K-9 officer Rocco.

Authorities said Rush stabbed the dog and wounded two officers trying to arrest him in January 2014 on warrants for probation violation and failure to register as a sex offender. Rush said he stabbed the animal in self-defense.

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