Havoc at fire scene in Big Oak Flat

By Austen Thibault, The Union Democrat June 11, 2013 11:30 am

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office released more information about an altercation which resulted in a dog’s death and a man being zapped with a Taser early Sunday morning.

The incident occurred during the fire that burned a trailer in Big Oak Flat. 

Deputy Jeff Gempler responded to a call for a fire about 12:45 a.m. on Black Road, and arrived before the dispatched firefighters, according to a statement from the Sheriff’s Office.

He found some outbuildings on fire and trees on fire above a house. He helped an elderly woman escape.

When he returned to check the area, he heard a couple of “pops,” but could not identify them due to the din of arriving fire equipment, radio traffic and fire.

Gempler heard a scream, ran to the sound and saw a woman dragging a wounded dog.

An off-duty Sheriff’s deputy — whose name was unavailable this morning — approached Gempler and said that he shot the dog because it was acting aggressively and charged the deputy as he was standing with an older couple. 

Gempler tried to explain the situation to the woman who owned the dog, and a man came out of a nearby house acting aggressively, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The man ran at the deputies and one of them shot him with a Taser in response.

The man was identified as Robert Bostic, 29, of the 11000 block of Black Road. He  was arrested and booked on charges of allegedly obstructing a police officer.

He was freed from jail Sunday on his own recognizance.