The drama unfolded just at about 7 p.m. when officers responded to 911 calls reporting an assault at a skateboard park in the 1300 block of Civic Field Way, said Lt. Rick Sucee of the Bellingham police.
Witnesses told police they had seen a male suspect strike a 16-year-old boy in the back of the head with such force that it knocked his helmet off.
As the first officer arrived on the scene he spoke to the suspect. As he did, the suspect's pit bull attacked the officer.
Other officers arrived on scene and struggled with the suspect as well as the pit bull. During the commotion, the pit bull bit three officers, Sucee said.
Officers stunned the dog with a Taser, but it had no effect. At that point, officers opened fire at the pit bull, killing it.
All three officers were treated at St. Joseph's Hospital and released. One of the officers will most likely be on light duty while his wounds heal, Sucee said.
The suspect, later identified as Joel Votion, 27, was booked into the Whatcom County Jail on suspicion of obstructing an officer.