The officer went inside for a gathering at police headquarters, leaving Okay-9 Ike within the automobile with the engine on. After the assembly, he discovered the automobile not operating.
Editor’s be aware: The above video is from a June 2020 newscast
MARICOPA, Ariz.— The Maricopa Police Division stated it concluded an inside investigation into the new automobile loss of life of police Okay-9 Ike in June of final 12 months and the division has issued a 20-hour unpaid suspension to Ike’s handler.
“We’re deeply saddened by the road of responsibility loss of life of Okay-9 Officer Ike,” Maricopa Police Chief Jim Hughes stated in a press release. “This was a preventable loss of life and we’re taking corrective motion to make sure this by no means occurs once more.”
Ike died in June of last year when, in line with an Arizona Division of Public Security report obtained by the Related Press, he suffered heatstroke after being left in his Maricopa PD Okay-9 automobile, whereas his handler went into the division for a gathering.
Maricopa police Officer Craig Curry left Ike inside his patrol automobile with the engine operating whereas he went into police headquarters for a gathering, however when he returned over an hour and a half later, he discovered that his automobile had turned off.
Ike was in a kennel at the back of the automobile panting closely. The excessive temperature that day was about 108 levels.
Ike was euthanized the next day.
The Pinal County Lawyer’s Workplace reviewed the DPS investigative report and located that Officer Curry “didn’t commit any act that warrants legal prosecution.”
Based on the Maricopa PD inside investigation report, Officer Curry was interviewed by the division in September. Officer Curry possessed a Okay-9 warmth alarm that will detect and alert him if the automobile turned unreasonably sizzling for a police canine, however he had left the gadget within the automobile when he left for his assembly.
Curry stated he didn’t have the pager on him as a result of he was making an attempt out a brand new physique digital camera that took up area on his vest.
Curry stated in his interview that the Okay-9 warmth alarm system had deficiencies. A 2016 memo from one other Okay-9 handler stated the pager was ineffective and never sometimes carried by handlers.
“Whereas the system comes with a ‘pager’ the pager itself is ineffective and infrequently works appropriately or in any respect,” the 2016 memo learn, in line with the Maricopa PD report. “My pager doesn’t even inform me when the alarm goes off. Due to this fact the pagers should not used or carried by the handlers.”
A earlier request for funding to improve the warmth detection system had beforehand been accepted by the division however was by no means adopted via on.
Nevertheless, Officer Curry didn’t blame an absence of supervision as a possible issue for this incident, in line with the report.
The report from Maricopa PD stated it appeared that the one potential rationalization for this incident was for a number of failures of separate programs, the automobile engine stalling and the Okay-9 warmth alarm system concurrently failing.
Whatever the technical failures with the automobile, the operations guide for Maricopa PD handlers says handlers ought to verify their Okay-9’s each half-hour or much less when the temperature exterior the automobile is 75 levels or extra.
If the skin temperature is above 85 levels, all makes an attempt are to be made to forestall the canine from being left unattended within the automobile.
The report from Maricopa PD says Officer Curry is the senior Okay-9 handler at Maricopa PD, with over eight years of Okay-9 dealing with expertise.
The Maricopa PD stated there isn’t any proof to dispute Officer Curry confirmed an excessive amount of love and devotion for Okay-9 Ike. One other officer interviewed within the Maricopa PD report stated Ike was household to Officer Curry.
The report additionally says there isn’t any direct proof as to why the automobile was not operating when Officer Curry walked out of police headquarters or why the warmth alarm system didn’t perform correctly.
The Maricopa Police Division famous the next modifications are underway concerning Okay-9’s and their handlers:
- Yearly formal written evaluation of Okay-9 applications mission, wants and insurance policies as they relate to offering the most effective neighborhood service whereas using the MPD Okay-9 program.
- Quarterly Okay-9 written report back to the Operations Commander on actions, wants or issues inside the program.
- Accountability measures might be reviewed and up to date repeatedly.
- Month-to-month automobile inspections by Okay-9 Handler’s Supervisor and report back to Lieutenant inside 5 days of car inspection. Handlers (like all officers) are nonetheless required to examine their autos day by day to make sure performance and provide of correct tools.
- The police division has additionally reviewed the present utilization of the Okay-9 Officers and has decided one Okay-9 Officer (Officer Gomez and Okay-9 companion Murphy) must be enough for the division. Beforehand, the division had two Okay-9 Officers. This might be reviewed yearly by the division.