UNION, NJ – A Union police officer shot and killed a pit bull Tuesday when it charged at officers, according to police.

The incident began when, in response to reports of a loose and aggressive pit bull, Union Animal Control officers arrived at Shetland Drive on Tuesday afternoon. According to police, there have been ongoing problems at this residence involving the dog and several summonses have been issued in the past.

Officers were dispatched to the scene and upon arrival found the dog out of the house, acting aggressively and chasing the animal control officer and a local resident who was riding a bicycle on the street, police said. Unsuccessful attempts were made by the father of the dog’s owner and other family members to corral the pit bull, according to police.

While in the backyard of another home on Shetland Drive, police said tht the dog suddenly came charging at the officers through a row of bushes and, at that time, an officer fired one round, striking the pit bull in the head. The critically injured dog died after it was taken to a veterinarian by a family member. Summonses were issued to the owner of the dog, who police said was away at the time of the event.