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L.O.D. Deaths

1950's & Earlier LODD
1960's LODD
1970's LODD
1980's LODD
1990's LODD
2000 - 2009 LODD
2010 - Present

 

 

 

 

 

2010 - Present Tributes For Police And Military K9 Handlers

Note :  Some of these tributes are for police canine officers that were killed in the line of duty and some for officers that died while off duty. Also included are military canine handlers that were killed during wars.

             

    

Flashing star on both sides of officer name indicates both officer and K9 were killed in line of duty

 
Ed Lacrom
August 24, 2014 - Canton, Pennsylvania - Age 75
 

Ed Larcom, 75, of Canton, Pa., passed away at home on August 24, 2014 following a courageous battle with cancer. He enlisted in the U.S. army serving two years in Bamberg, Germany. He began his career as a police officer in 1980 when he attended his first PA Municipal Police Officer Training Academy. Ed and his K9 partner, Baron, were integral members of the Bradford County K9 Unit. He enjoyed spending many hours training and working with Baron and became a renowned fixture of the county's law enforcement community. In 2001, Ed retired from the career he loved. He continued working as head of the security department for athletic events at Canton High School. Ed became the Bradford County Chief Detective until 2007. He then served as a transport officer for the County Sherriff's Dept. and began a security position for TriCorp until his last retirement in 2012. Surviving are his beloved wife of nearly 45 years Leslie Ann; Lisa Bailey and seven children. his family suggests memorials in Ed's name be made to Guthrie Hospice at 421 Tomahawk Rd., Towanda, PA 18848.

 
Border Patrol Agent Javier Vega Jr. 
August 3, 2014 - La Feria, Texas - Age 36  
 

Border Patrol agent Javier Vega, Jr., was shot and killed on  8/3/14 at approximately 8:00 p.m. while fishing with  his two young children, a young friend and the agent’s parents in south Texas, north of Harlingen, when two men attempted to rob them, opening fire on Vega and his family. Vega was shot in the chest and killed and his father was shot in the hip. The two suspects were identified as Mexican nationals Gustavo Tijerina, 30, of La Villa, Texas, and Ismael Hernandez, 40, of Weslaco, Texas. The suspects have confessed to the crime and the two will ”face charges of capital murder, attempted capital murder, four counts of aggravated robbery and tampering with evidence.” Off-duty Border Patrol agent Javier Vega, Jr. begged his father to “keep shooting, dad,” while the agent’s mother picked up a rifle and shot at the fleeing suspects as well. The Hispanic suspects were apprehended five hours after the shooting, hiding in a shed behind the home of a man living in the area. The suspects had made several passes along the road by the water when they spotted the group, and approached the victims and told them to get on the ground. The suspects were surprised when they discovered that the off-duty agent and his father were armed. ”The Border Patrol agent apparently kept telling his dad to ‘keep firing, dad, keep shooting, dad’ at the suspects after he was already hit.” At some point, the agent’s mother “apparently picked up the AR-15 rifle and continued shooting at the suspects’ vehicle, hitting the windshield and other parts of the vehicle as the suspects fled.” Vega Jr. worked for the Border Patrol for six years and was a Marine Corp veteran. Hundreds attended his funeral and the U.S. flag, Border Patrol Flag and Marine Corps flag were displayed. Agent Vega was buried with full military honors. He is survived by his wife Paola, and sons, Javier Vega III, Jiovanni, and Jarod and his K9 Goldie. The family of Border Patrol Agent Javier Vega Jr. requests that donations be made to: Javier Vega Jr. Memorial Fund at Rio Bank, P.O. Box 4169, McAllen,Texas 78502 ( Routing Number 114915447/Account Number 4081153 ).

Both suspects Gustavo Tijerina, 30, of La Villa and Ismael Hernandez, 40, of Weslaco, Texas were arraigned on 8/5/14 inside the Willacy County jail library. At 12:45 p.m. the first suspect, Tijerina appeared before Judge Solis. As Tejerina was being walked out he asked if he could have a Bible from the Library. Hernandez was brought in approximately 1:10. After being told what he was being charged with he replied “I don’t understand why I’m being accused of so many things, he told the judge.They were ordered held without bail after being charged with capital murder of a peace officer, attempted murder four counts each of aggravated robbery and one count of tampering with evidence. Both had been arrested and deported numerous times and have been living in South Texas illegally. Tijerina was arrested at least four times for crossing into the U.S. illegally between 2007 and 2009, according to court records. Hernandez was arrested and deported at least twice. Tijerina also goes by the name of Tijerina Sandoval, pleaded guilty to entering the U.S. illegally on July 9, 2007. He was given a 30–day sentence with credit served and charged a $10 fee. Three months later on October 3, 2007 he was again found guilty of entering the country illegally and was sentenced to 60 days in jail and a $10 fee. A year later, on October 25, 2008, he again crossed into the U.S. and on November 18, 2008, he was given 90 days in jail and another $10 fee.  On December 15, 2009, Tijerina was indicted by a grand jury on charges of entering the U.S. illegally again. The indictment says he “had previously been denied admission, excluded, deported and removed and unlawfully was present in the United States having been found near Edinburg, Texas.” Court records say he had not obtained consent from the U.S. attorney general and the secretary of homeland security to reapply for admission into the U.S. A warrant for his arrest said he faced up to 20 years in prison and a fine up to $250,000. He was held without bond on January 26, 2010 and was given nine months in jail and fined $100.

 
 
RCMP Cpl. Ken Barker
July 11, 2014 -Winnipeg, Canada - Age 51
 

Cpl. Ken Barker, 51, committed suicide July 11, 2014. He began his career in 1987 in Nanaimo with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. In 1990 Ken and his wife Shari relocated to Winnipeg to be close to his mother when she became ill. At that time Ken chose another career path and served with the Winnipeg Fire Dept. from 1991 to 1994. In 1994, Ken returned to the RCMP and eventually fulfilled a lifelong dream of becoming a police dog handler. He retired in June of 2014 and had been on medical leave since October 2013. He worked with the Emergency Response Team and was awarded the Queens Jubilee Medal, the RCMP Long Service Medal and he received a Commissioners Commendation for Bravery. Ken suffered a long battle with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. He was one of the first police officers on the scene of the beheading of a young man aboard a Greyhound bus on a Manitoba highway in 2008. Ken Barker had separated from his wife three years earlier. Two women rescued Barker from a suicide attempt in May but committed suicide in July. He told his estranged wife Shari that the front door will be open and don’t go into the basement. Shari went there and the front door was open and she called for him and he didn’t respond. She knew not to go to the basement. She called then paramedics. Ken will forever be remembered by his wife Shari, daughter Kelly and son Sam and his predeceased police service dog Axa. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the Families of the RCMP for PTSD Awareness c/o rcmp-f.ca. or Little Warriors.

Officer Gary S. Knight
July 30, 2014 - Hermiston, Oregon - Age 61

Officer Gary S. Knight died on June 30, 2014 at his home in Hermiston, Oregon at the age of 61. He  attended Fresno Pacific University and the California Peace Officer Standards and Training Academy. Upon graduation he was employed by the Umatilla Tribal Police and later the City of Umatilla Police Department. During his career he was acknowledged for assisting other agencies with his K9 partner "Moose". In 2005 Gary was awarded the American Chief’s of Police "Hall of Fame" commendation medal and the law enforcement purple heart for injuries received in the line of duty while assisting with the arrest of a homicide suspect in 2001. He retired from the Umatilla Police Department with a medical retirement from those injuries. He continued to serve as a volunteer Evidence Technician for Stanfield Police Department. Gary is survived by his wife: Brenda S. Knight,  son: Travis J. Knight, Hermiston,  and daughter: Melody T. Simmons.

 
RCMP Const. Dave Ross
June 4, 2014 - Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada - Age 32
 

Const. Dave Ross,32, was shot and killed on 6/4/14 by a gunman identified as Justin Bourque, 24, who was wearing military camouflage and wore a brown headband and heavily armed carrying two military-style assault rifles with high capacity magazines, a bow and a knife. A manhunt for the shooter was launched and continued overnight and into 5 June. On 6 June, Bourque was found at 12:10 a.m. and taken into custody, ending the approximate 28-hour manhunt. The incident began at 7:20 p.m. when police received reports of a man in camouflage carrying two long guns and a crossbow. Openly carrying non-restricted firearms in Canada is legal provided they are unloaded during transportation. Bourque ambushed the responding officers with a shootout that left three RCMP officers killed, Const Ross who joined the force in 2007, Const. Fabrice Gevaudan,45, who joined the force in 2008 and Const. Doug Larche,40, who joined the force in 2002 and two other officers shot and hospitalized for non-life threatening injuries were Const. Darlene Goguen and Const. Eric Dubois. The shooter then fled the scene. Pinehurst Park area of Moncton was locked down while the search for the shooter was in progress; public buses were pulled from the streets, and all entrances to the affected area were sealed. Multiple sightings of the suspect, including by police, continued in the second day of the manhunt. Up to 300 police personnel were involved in the search. Pedestrians and motorists were asked to stay away from the area of the search and schools, government offices, stores, and businesses were closed. Residents were later instructed to lock their doors, leave their exterior lights on, and refrain from broadcasting police movements on social media sites. The next day, police surrounded an apartment building and were broadcasting a demand to exit over a public address system. More than a dozen armed officers surrounding the building and deployed a robot with a camera inside at approximately 3:00 p.m. Minutes later, they left the apartment complex after finding no sign of the suspect. The report that called police over to the building later turned out to be a false alarm. A police helicopter with thermal -imaging cameras was searching Moncton. At least two armored cars were borrowed by the mounted police to transport heavily armed tactical team members. On June 6, 2014, at 12:10 a.m. the suspect was arrested by the RCMP after being found in a yard on Mecca Drive. While being taken into custody, he reportedly told police, "I'm done." Const. Dave Ross's K9 attended the funeral service and cried next to his handler’s casket. The funeral service was carried live on TV from the Moncton Coliseum on 6/10/14. The Moncton Coliseum was filled to capacity with 7,000 attending. Because of the large crowds attending 10 more places were made available for people which were also filled to capacity adding another 7,000 which was not including the people who showed up along the streets for the funeral. His wife Rachael picked out the song "Ten Thousand Reasons" to be played at his service. Const Ross leaves behind his wife Rachael and their one-and-a-half-year-old son, Austin — and Rachael is six months pregnant. He also leaves behind his K9 "Danny".

On June 6, 2014, Justin Bourque made his first court appearance. Bourque faces three counts of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder in connection to the shooting deaths of three RCMP officers and the wounding of two more. Bourque will remain in custody until a July 3 court appearance. Justin Bourque had no previous criminal record.

 
Lt. Ray Carson
May 28, 2014 - North Bay, Canada - Age 78
 
 
One of the best known cops of his era, Ray Carson passed away peacefully at the North Bay Regional Health Centre on Wednesday May 28, at the age of 78 years. Carson retired from the Ontario Provincial Police as Staff Sargent after 32 years on the force. He was responsible for the Ontario Provincial Police K9 unit for many years and was the handler of Cloud 1, Cloud 2 and Cloud 3. Cloud II, a five-year-old German shepherd, is the only OPP dog ever killed in the line of duty. He was shot in 1975 when he was involved in the search for an escaped suspected murderer. The dog was first buried at the former OPP district headquarters in North Bay. However, his remains were exhumed, cremated and relocated to the OPP Museum in Orillia. Carson spent four years handling Cloud II. Together they captured 123 criminals that were running from the law. The two also appeared on the old CBC TV game show Front Page Challenge in 1974 .  He was the beloved husband of 55 years to Audrey Carson and leaves a son, Tony. Donations to the Ontario Parkinson`s Foundation in memory of Raymond.
 
 
Cpl. David Charles Foley
May 25, 2014 - Monroe, Michigan - Age 53
 

Cpl. David Foley, 53, died on 5/25/14 after suffering a heart attack and collapsing while attending church services in Livonia. Foley was with his family in church when he bowed his head to pray, quietly took two breaths and collapsed. Three nurses who were at the worship service immediately began CPR but those efforts failed to revive him. Cpl. Foley was a longtime K9 handler of the Monroe Police Department and a 24-year veteran of the force. He enlisted in the United States Army, serving honorably from 1980-1986, taking courses in correspondence and serving as a K-9 officer in the military police. He often brought his tracking dogs, Colonel and Justice, to Monroe County schools and organizations for demonstrations. Cpl. Foley, was especially proud recently since his son, Matt, joined the police department and just completed his three-month probation period and his dad was looking forward to working with his son at the same profession on the same department. He was preceded by the passing of his K9 partner, Colonel.  In addition to his son, Matt, Cpl. Foley leaves behind his wife, Brenda, his son Matt and two daughters, Melissa and Elizabeth and K-9 partner, Justice.

Const. Joseph Brian Prevett
May 7, 2014 - Gravenhurst, Ont - Age 50
 
 
Const Joseph Prevett, 50, died of a heart attack on 5/7/14 at 10:45 a.m. in the area of Loon Lake Road during a tracking training exercise in Gravenhurst. Const. Joseph Prevett was participating in a training course with Ontario Provincial Police along with his new police service dog Timber. Prevett was rushed to South Muskoka Memorial Hospital in Bracebridge in medical distress and unfortunately was pronounced dead a short time later. He first became a police officer in 1998, joining the Peel Regional Police. He made the move to Thunder Bay in 2003, and quickly took over the local K-9 unit. He was paired with K-9 officer Thunder, and the two served together as partners for eight years, before Thunder, who has since died, was retired late last year. Prevett's K9 Timber attended the service along with approximately twenty other police canines. Prevett leaves behind Joe leaves behind his wife Joanne (Znachor), daughter Lindsay (Chad), and his son Nick. Donations can be made to the Thunder Bay District Humane Society and the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre Foundation - Cardiac Care Unit.
 
Frederick C. Feil Jr.
April 16, 2014 - Upper Township, Pennsylvania - Age 82
 

Frederick C. Feil Jr., 82, Upper Township, died on 4/16/14 of heart failure at his home. He was with the Philadelphia Police Department from 1966 to 1976 and served as a canine officer and worked with a Doberman pinscher named Dutch and a German shepherd named Shep. He served as an Army tank gunner during the Korean conflict, earning a Purple Heart after being wounded in combat. Because of Mr. Feil's love of the sea, his ashes were scattered at sea, off Cape Hatteras. Besides his wife Margaret, Mr. Feil is survived by son Frederick J.C. Donations may be sent to the Seeing Eye Inc., 10 Washington Valley Rd., Morristown, N.J. 07960 or to www.seeingeye.org.

 
Officer Jason M. Crisp
March 12, 2014 - Burke County, North Carolina - Age 38
 
 

Officer Jason Crisp, 38, and his K9 partner Maros were killed on 3/12/14. The incident started to unfold when police went to a home on 5500 block of  Fish Hatchery Road around 8:45 a.m. for a welfare check because co-workers had not seen the lady and friends told police they hadn’t seen the couple for six days. When they entered they found husband and wife, Levi and Rhonda Whisnant shot dead. Police said they were dead for at least a day. Following the welfare check, the sheriff’s office named 38-year-old Troy David Whisnant, the son of the couple, as a person of interest. Whisnant was not at his parents’ home when investigators arrived, but the discovery of the homicides of his father and step mother was just beginning of wild series incidents in the search for the suspect. Police say he broke into a neighbor’s shed, stole weapons and stole a vehicle. Authorities discovered that the door of a neighboring house near the homicide had been kicked in. After searching the home, deputies discovered five firearms – a .22 revolver, .22 rifle, 12-guage pump shotgun, single-shot 12-guage and a .50 caliber muzzle load – were missing. A .32 pistol was taken from the outbuilding. Whisnant wrecked that vehicle and fled the scene, then stealing a second car. When police spotted him driving, Whisnant abandoned the second stolen car and ran into the woods. The suspect came across a U.S. Forestry Service officer Crisp as he ran and shot and killed the officer and his K9 Maros at  2:55 p.m. in an ambush with a 12-gauge shotgun. After killing his third victim Whisnant stole the officer’s  .45-caliber pistol and magazine and fled again. The manhunt concluded when an Avery County deputy and two troopers with North Carolina Highway Patrol found Whisnant. They exchanged gunfire. At least one bullet struck and killed Whisnant at 4:45p.m.  During the violent confrontation Whisnant shot himself in the head. He was also struck by one of the officer's bullets. Around 120 to 150 officers from the BCSO, McDowell, Avery and Caldwell County sheriff’s offices, as well as the FBI, SBI, Beach Mountain Police, Morganton Department of Public Safety, Avery County Sheriff’s Office, Caldwell County, State Highway Patrol, U.S. Forest Service assisted in the manhunt. Officer Jason Crisp worked for the U.S. Forestry Service for ten years and previously served as a McDowell County Sheriff deputy. Officer Crisp's dog Maros was hurt last fall while chasing a bad guy and had broken his leg and had just returned to service a couple weeks ago. K9 Maros was cremated and placed in the casket with Officer Crisp to be buried together. Surviving are his wife of 18 years, Amanda Dicks Crisp and two sons, Garett, 16, and Logan, 5. Memorials, to benefit their children, may be made to Amanda Crisp at the State Employees Credit Union, PO Box 8, Marion, NC 28752.

Whisnant had lengthy criminal history and had more than a dozen prior charges. In February of 1996 the then 20-year-old Whisnant strolled into Burke County Sheriff’s Department on February 11, 1996 and confessed to killing his best friend, William Shane Newton, the night before. Whisnant had been abusing substances, including alcohol, prescription and nonprescription drugs since he was 12 years old. Whisnant pleaded guilty 14 months later to voluntary manslaughter in Superior Court. He was given credit for the 14 months he spent in prison before the sentencing, and was incarcerated for another year. Whisnant continued to lead a life of crime, and was later convicted on the following charges between his April 1998 release and April of 2011: felony larceny over $1,000, possession of stolen goods, credit card theft, misdemeanor possession of schedule VI controlled substance, open container of alcohol after consuming, resisting an officer, assault on a public official and reckless driving. Whisnant was awaiting trial on charges of breaking and entering, hit and run, and several traffic violations.

 
Ralph "Lee" McCubbins Jr.
December 26, 2013 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 43
 
Ralph “Lee” McCubbins, Jr., 43, of Danville, VA died December 26, 2013 in Afghanistan while working for Pax Mondial contractors. Lee was shot in the back by a sniper while jogging with his dog at the compound. The sniper was caught and has been arrested. McCubbins had been performing subcontract work at the Kajaki Dam project in Afghanistan’s Helmand Province. He was there to provide security while a hydro turbine was being installed to provide electrical power to Afghanistan. Lee had signed a two-year contract and was scheduled to return to the U.S. on Jan. 15, 2013 for a 30-day vacation before heading back to Afghanistan. Lee worked for the Danville City Police Department from 1994 until 2009 where he was a member of the SWAT team and the K-9 Unit for 11 years and worked his way up to corporal. After leaving the police he then went to work in Afghanistan for Pax Mondial where he handled bomb sniffing dogs. Lee is survived by a 15 month old daughter, Victoria Logan McCubbins, who he adopted. He was predeceased by a newborn son, Justin Carter McCubbins, who died hours following his birth in 1997. Memorial donations can be made to Swansonville United Methodist Church Cemetery Fund at 16492 Franklin Turnpike, Dry Fork, VA 24549 or to Bachelors Hall Volunteer Fire Department at 1301 Berry Hill Road Danville VA 24541.
 
 
Jeremy Christopher Johnson
December 26, 2013 -Jacksonville, Florida - Age 34
 
 

Jeremy Christopher Johnson, age 34, died December 26, 2013 in his home at Jacksonville, FL. Jeremy completed 12 years of service as a Master at Arms, Force Protection Canine Handler, MA2, and achieved the rank of Chief Petty Officer. He was deployed to Iceland and later completed 2 tours in Iraq and 1 in Djibouti, Africa. Jeremy incurred physical conditions from his tours of duty, but the PTSD he dealt with produced the greater pain and suffering. He was discharged under the 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell' policy in May of 2007. On September 22, 2011, Johnson became one of the first DADT dischargees in the nation to publicly reenlist in the military, joining the U.S. Navy Reserves at the same rank and position he left. Jeremy volunteered with The 6th Branch in Baltimore City, MD, as a board member and primary team member on "Operation: Oliver", a veteran-sponsored community revitalization project. Jeremy Johnson joined the United States Navy in December of 1996 at the age of 19. After attending boot camp, he attended career training at Fort Meade, MD for training as a military journalist. Upon graduating in 1997, he went on to serve as a regional reporter in Japan for the military’s “Pacific Report” In 1999, he transferred to Italy to work for the Sixth Fleet Public Affairs staff aboard USS LaSalle. In 2001, Johnson was chosen to return to Fort Meade to teach television broadcasting to new troops at the military’s Defense Information School. He taught more than 400 Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Air Force personnel how to report from the frontlines though video, writing and editing. Johnson returned to duty overseas in 2004 with an assignment as program director at the U.S. Navy’s Odyssey 107.3FM in Crete, Greece. After 13 months there, Johnson moved to an assignment in Guam aboard submarine tender USS Frank Cable where he served as the assistant Public Affairs Officer for a crew of 1,200. While there, he actively brought the crew’s concerns to senior leadership and helped coordinate international coverage of the first multilateral submarine talks between Australia, Malaysia and the United States in Kuala Lumpur. In March of 2007, after 10 ½ years of service, Johnson revealed his sexual identity to his commanding officer and received an honorable discharge. He worked for Leon County Sheriffs Department in Tallahassee upon completion of his active duty in the Navy. He continued to serve his country in the Navy Reserves at Kings Bay, GA. During his Navy career, Jeremy Johnson rose to the rank of Petty Officer First Class (E6), and earned three Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, a Joint Commendation Medal, a Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, a Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, a National Defense Medal, a Rifle Marksmanship (Silver E) Medal, an Air Force Unit Excellence Award, a Battle "E" Ribbon, an Overseas Service Ribbon (1 silver star), a Sea Service Deployment Ribbon (2 bronze stars), and a Good Conduct medal with 2 bronze stars. He lived in Maryland and worked as a speech writer for US Naval Sea Systems Command in Washington DC. Jeremy is preceded in death by his Iraq war dog Amber. The family wants to support other soldiers like Jeremy that are suffering from the same post war conditions, this will be done by donating to the Wounded Warriors Project (CSRP) or Combat Stress Recovery Program.

 
David Leroy Zellers
December 11, 2013 -Texas- Age 63
 

David L. Zellers, 63, passed away Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2013. He proudly served our country in the United States Army in the Vietnam War and Afghanistan as a dog handler. In Vietnam, he was part of the 981st Sentry Dog Company. David served as a private contract dog handler later in life in Afghanistan. Survivors: His wife, Jane; daughters, Cassandra, Verity and Katherine; sons, Graham and Neil.
 

 
Officer Casey Kohlmeier
October 30, 2013 - Pontiac, Illinois - Age 29
 
 

Officer Casey Kohlmeier, 29, and his dog, Draco, were in a vehicle accident on 10/30/13. The accident was reported to state police at 9:38 p.m. Officer Kohlmeier's marked stationary patrol car was hit by another vehicle on Interstate 55 just north of Illinois 23 in Livingston County. Kohlmeier was in a median turnaround when his car was struck by a northbound vehicle. The pickup truck, driven by Jason C. Collins, 33, still was connected to the passenger side of Officer Kohlmeier’s SUV. State troopers arrived to find Kohlmeier, who was unconscious, being tended by officers from Pontiac police and the Livingston County Pro-Active Unit. Officer Kohlmeier was rushed to OSF St. James John W. Albrecht Medical Center in Pontiac where he died at 10:46 p.m.  Jason C. Collins was transferred to OSF Saint Francis Medical Center in Peoria and hospitalized. Officer Kohlmeier canine Draco, who was his partner for five years, died at the scene.  It was raining at the time of the crash. Collins told police he had been drinking at a Bloomington bar before the crash, and video surveillance footage from the bar showed Collins was there for five hours. His blood alcohol level exceeded the legal driving limit of 0.08 percent. The defendant claimed he fell asleep while driving and awoke just before the crash occurred. Officer Kohlmeier was a 6 year veteran with Pontiac police department. He served in the U.S. Air Force from 2002-2006 at Offut Air Force Base in Omaha, NE. While in the service, he was awarded the Air Force Commendation Medal, Air Force Training Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Air Force BMT Honor Graduate Ribbon, Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon with device, NCO Professional Military Education Ribbon, Air Force Good Conduct Medal, Meritorious Unit Award, and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal. He was Airman of the Year 2005. Kohlmeier was part of the Livingston County Pro-Active Unit, which is made up of several area police departments, and hoped to join the FBI. He had just received his pilot’s license this past year. He was a Board Member of the Boys & Girls Club of Livingston County and Illinois Police Benevolent and Protective Association. Thousands attended his service  along  with  dozens  of canine officers with their K9's. Songs played at his service were Eric Clapton’s “Tears in Heaven” and John Lennon’s “Imagine”.   Kohlmeier was not married and had no children. Donations may be made to the Boys and Girls Club of Livingston County or K9 Fund through the Pontiac Police Department.

Jason C. Collins, 33, of West Columbia, South Carolina, was arrested by Illinois State Police, who were investigating the crash, after he was discharged from the hospital on 11/31/13. On 11/1/13, Collins,  had bond set at $1 million by Livingston County Circuit Judge Jennifer Bauknecht. Collins was seen in a video arraignment from the Livingston County Jail, where he is being held. He is charged with two counts of aggravated driving under the influence of alcohol, each Class 2 felonies, punishable by three-to-14 years in prison on the aggravated DUI charge, the most serious of the charges with a limited opportunity for probation; one count of reckless homicide, a Class 3 felony, punishable by probation or a sentence of two-to-five years in prison; and two counts of driving under the influence, each Class A misdemeanors. He would be required to serve 85 percent of his sentence if he is convicted of any of the felony counts. Collins has a prior aggravated DUI in New Jersey in 2008, when he was driving under the influence and struck a pedestrian, causing severe bodily injury. He also has other charges on his record, including illegal transportation of alcohol and driving while his license was suspended. The State asked for bond to be set at $200,000 – ten percent of which would have to be paid for bail. Bauknecht took that under consideration, but chose to raise the bond to $1 million, which $100,000 would have to be posted for him to leave custody of the jail. She considered him a flight risk and added that, with the severity of the charges, the bond needed to be set higher. Livingston County Circuit Judge Jennifer Bauknecht heard his initial court appearance, but Collins has filed a preliminary motion for a reassignment of the judge. On Nov. 25 Jason Collins pleaded not guilty. A motion to reduce bond was denied by Livingston County Associate Court Judge Robert Travers on December 17, 2013. The trial has been delayed to 9 a.m. 3/17/14, with pretrial at 3:30 p.m. 2/3/14. At his last court appearance the pretrial date for August 11, 2014 was set for August 26, 2014 because both sides have not had time to prepare for a trial. On August 26, 2014 he pleaded guilty and will be sentenced October  15, 2014.
 

 
Sergeant Christopher L. Blackburn
October 12, 2013 - Bridgeton, New Jersey - Age 38
 

Sgt. Christopher L. Blackburn, 38, was traveling westbound on Centerton Road near Deerfield Road around 12:43 a.m. when for an unknown reason, lost control of the 2006 Ford Explorer he was driving, left the roadway and struck a utility pole. Blackburn was off duty and alone in the vehicle at the time of the crash. He was a 12-year decorated veteran of the Bridgeton Police Department. Blackburn was involved in a raid on a South Avenue house, that police had been investigating for suspected drug activity for a month. Three people were arrested without incident and police seized marijuana after executing a search warrant just a few hours before he was killed in his accident. Blackburn was decorated many times during his career. His honors included one Life Saving Medal, on K9 Medal, the Educational Achievement Medal, one Exceptional Duty Medal, three Unit Citation Medals, three Honorable Service Medals, the Firearm and Narcotic Enforcement Medals, and three Meritorious Service Medals. He also was also president of Policemen’s Benevolent Association Local 94A Superior Officers Association. He mourned the death of his K-9 partner Argos, who died this past March while in the line of duty.  He is survived by his fiance, longtime partner, Chasta  Collins Kott and his son Chris Jr.,13 years old. Chris was predeceased by an infant son, Chase, in 2007. He is also survived by his step-children, Vanessa Kott , Brooke, Britney and Tyler Kott.  Memorial contributions may be made to the Christopher Blackburn Education Fund, c/o Colonial Bank, Att.: Tonya Spindler, 85 W. Broad St., Bridgeton, NJ 08302.

 

 
Cst. Louis Beglaw
September 16, 2013 - West Vancouver, Canada - Age 50
 
 

Cst. Louis Beglaw, 50,  died after he was found in cardiac arrest  at the department's  headquarters on 9/16/13 while on duty. Cst. Beglaw joined the West Vancouver Police Department in  2003  after  a  military  career  that  culminated  with  service as the deputy commanding officer of the Royal Westminster  Regiment  of  the  Canadian  Army  Reserve. Before  that  he worked  with  Canada  Border  Service.  Cst. Beglaw was a  very dedicated  officer  who  went  through  very  extensive  training  to  became  a  police  service  dog handler in 2007. He is survived by his wife Sarah, their young son and daughter and his service dog Capone. 

 
Officer Paul V. Bodnar
August 30, 2013 - Monroeville, Pennsylvania - Age 45
 
Officer Paul V. Bodnar, 45, died on 8/30/13 from complications of Parkinson’s disease. He served with the Monroeville Police Department for nineteen years. Officer Bodnar had spent seven years on the police force with his K9 partner "Czak". Bodnar worked as a trainer with the Pennsylvania Police Work Dog Association. Paul and K9 Czak were members of the North American Police Work Dog Association. He is survived by his wife, Lisa Marie (Lisovich) Bodnar; two sons, Regis, 26, Matthew, 22, two daughters;  Samantha, 18,  and Sarah Bodnar, 17. Memorial contributions may be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research, Grand Central Station, P.O. Box 4777, New York, NY 10163-4777.
 
 
Officer Don Darby
August 13, 2013 - Glendale Heights, Illinois - Age 38
Canine  Officer  Don  Darby, 38,  died  on   8/13/13  from  stage  four  glioblastoma,  the  most  common  and  aggressive  type  of  brain  cancer  which  was diagnosed a year earlier. His police K9 "Lucky" spent many days by his  bedside at the  hospital giving him comfort with his family. Officer Darby was with the  Glendale Heights police force for fourteen years. Officer Darby is survived by his wife Amy, two sons, Caden 8 and Andrew 5 and his K9 partner "Lucky". Donations can be made through "Friends for Don Darby" C/O FBI 4343 Commerce Court, Lisle 60532.  

 

 
Officer Jason Ellis
May 25, 2013 - Nelson County, Kentucky - Age 33
 

Officer Jason Ellis, 33, was shot and killed on 5/25/13 on the 34 exit ramp of the Bluegrass Parkway in Nelson County, Kentucky. Ellis was in uniform and headed home from work in a “pool car” that was marked but not his assigned vehicle and not equipped to capture video or audio. Two vehicles had stopped behind him and sat there a few minutes and saw no action, the curiosity got them, they got out to see what was going on and that's when they found Officer Ellis on the side of the road. The first sign of trouble came when a woman’s voice began frantically calling for help on the officer’s police radio at 2:53 a.m. that an officer and had been fatally struck by a vehicle. “Officer down! Officer down! Emergency!,” the woman’s voice crackled across the radio as she told dispatchers she found the officer outside the car on the side of the exit ramp car at the BG parkway Bloomfield exit. The woman’s voice was followed by that of a man, who told dispatchers he was on his way home from work and drove up to find the police cruiser in the middle of the road with its emergency lights on and the officer was outside the cruiser and was not breathing the man told dispatchers. When Trooper Mike Garyantes arrived on the scene at approximately 3:16 a.m.,  and minutes after the Trooper's arrival, he discovered that it was not a motor vehicle crash and that the officer involved had been shot multiple times with a 12-gauge shotgun and killed  outside his cruiser with its lights on and 12 gauge shotgun shell casings in the road. His service weapon was still in its holster, suggesting Ellis was ambushed. Officer Ellis did not call dispatch center that he was out on a violator, a subject or assisting anyone on the ramp. At the time of the incident, Officer Ellis did not have his dog Figo with him. Police have said it was a  premeditated ambush and involved a high level of planning and calculation. Investigators believe that the debris was planted on the road to be used as bait for the ambush. The killer most likely left the debris on the road and then hid somewhere nearby to wait for someone to pick it up. It is still unknown whether the killer intended to shoot and kill the Kentucky officer, Jason Ellis, or simply the first person who was attracted by the debris on the road. Exit 34 ramp was a daily route for Ellis. Police believe that the location was "obviously not picked randomly." The killer is still at large and a reward of $6,000 was announced on 5/27/13 for information that leads to the arrest of a suspect, raised to $10,000 on 5/28/13, increased to $10,000. on 5/29/13 to $43,000 on 5/30/13 to $103,000, on 6/3/13 to $125,000 and on 6/5/13 to $150,000 and in August of 2013 raised to $185,000 making it the largest reward for information leading to an arrest of the killer of a canine officer. Ellis was a star baseball player at Cumberland College where he holds the records for hits, batting average, doubles, home runs, runs batted in and games played and went on to play for the Cincinnati Reds farm system after college. Ellis was a seven-year veteran of the Bardstown Police Department, and the only K-9 officer. Officer Ellis is the first officer tragedy for the Bardstown Police Department. During his time as a police officer he had numerous awards and commendations including Bardstown Police Officer of the Year in 2008 and also the Governor's Award for Impaired Driving Enforcement for 2007 and 2008. He is survived by his wife, Amy Phillips Ellis; two sons, Hunter Ellis, 7, and Parker Ellis, 6. K9 Fido will be retiring from police work and will live with Ellis’ wife and children. Officer Ellis's canine, Figo, attended the funeral service along with approximately two thousand people and approximately twenty canine teams. Donations can be made to Supporting Heroes. http://www.supportingheroes.org or donate to either the officer's family or the reward fund set up through the family and the Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 43: Make checks payable to Officer Jason Ellis Memorial Fund or the Officer Jason Ellis Reward Fund. Specify which fund. Checks can be sent in each fund's name to Chief Rick McCubbin, Bardstown Police Department, 212 Nelson County Plaza, Bardstown, Ky., 40004. Donations also can be made at any Muir Bank branch in Bardstown.

 
Cpl. David M. Sonka
May 4, 2013 - Farah Province, Afghanistan - Age 23
 
 

U.S. Marine, Cpl. David Sonka, 23, and his military K9 Flex, who was trying to save him were killed on 5/4/13 during a combat operation in Afghanistan's Farah province. Cpl. David Sonka and his dog, Flex, were killed during an insider attack. They were working with a unit that was training an Afghan National Army soldier when the Afghani man turned his weapon on the Marines. They were killed while waiting for a high-ranking U.S. officer to emerge from a meeting at an Afghan National Army base. A team of six Marines were escorting the high-ranking officer and two intelligence officers to a meeting at the Afghan Army base.  Cpl. Sonka was from Parker, Colorado. Also Staff Sgt. Eric Christian, 39, of Warwick, N.Y., also was killed in the incident. The two Marines were assigned to 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, Camp Lejeune, N.C. Sonka born in Aurora. He joined the Marines in August of 2008 and graduated recruit training in November 2008. During his service Sonka received numerous personal decorations, including a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal and a Combat Action Ribbon. Sonak attended military police school, and, once finished, began courses to become a Military Working Dog handler. Assigned to the III Marine Expeditionary Force K9 Section of the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in California from July 2009 to March 2012, Sonka was then deployed for Operation Enduring Freedom. Sonka was then assigned to Marine Special Operations Combat Support Battalion, Marine Special Operations Support Group at Camp Lejeune, N.C., where he completed Special Operations Training Course, and Multi-Purpose Canine Course Phase I and Phase II. From there, Sonka attached to 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion as a Multi-Purpose Canine Handler. Cpl. Sonka was serving his second deployment and had just arrived in Afghanistan a few weeks prior to being killed. He is survived by his wife Torey. Cpl Sonka was buried on 5/16/13 at Ft. Logan National Cemetery in Denver Colorado. Memorial donations suggested to Wounded Warrior Project or Feed the Dawgs Project, P.O. Box 533, Mentone, CA 92359-0533.

 
Correctional Officer Sergeant Gilbert Cortez
March 25, 2013 - Warner Springs, California - Age 46

Correctional Officer Sgt. Gilbert Cortez, 46, and his service dog, Mattie, were killed in a single car accident on 3/25/13 at 7:20 a.m. while on duty. K9 Mattie succumbed to her injuries at the scene of the crash. There were no other occupants of the vehicle when the crash occurred. Officer Cortez was leading a small caravan of five vehicles with a marked Ford Crown Victoria on State Route 79, east of Lake Henshaw, a half-mile south of San Felipe Road in the Warner Springs area. They were en route to inspect La Cima Fire Camp, an inmate-staffed back-country firefighting outpost in the Julian area where they were scheduled to search inmates for drugs and other contraband. His fellow officers who were following behind his vehicle said Cortez’s vehicle drifted to the right and he overcorrected and skidded out, overturned and rolled over side-to-side, coming to rest on its wheels after crossing the highway into a rock embankment. The officers who were following ran to the car and extricated him and performed CPR.  Medics took Cortez to a nearby fire station, where he died before he could be put into an emergency services helicopter for a flight to a trauma center. Cortez, a 23-year veteran of the state corrections agency, worked at California Rehabilitation Center in Riverside County and was part of its Southern Regional K-9 Unit. He started his career in 1990 at the California Institution for Men in Chino. A year later, he transferred to Calipatria State Prison and was assigned to the Investigative Services Unit. In 2001, he was transferred to the Norco prison to complete K-9 training. Mattie was a Belgian Malinois, donated by a private citizen in the San Diego area  and was certified to search for contraband and narcotics and partnered with Cortez since August 2011. His funeral was attended by hundreds on April 9, 2013. He is survived by his wife Nohema and two children, Andy and Marisa. 

 
 
Constable Osmaine Dean Gabourel
February 28, 2013 -Belmopan, Belize - Age 29

Osmaine Dean Gabourel died in a vehicle accident on 2/28/13 shortly after midnight just outside Punta Gorda on the main highway passing through Hopeville and Cattle Landing. The Police Canine Unit vehicle of Belmopan was heading in the direction out Punta Gorda. He was the only occupant and driver of the vehicle when it ran off the road and crashed into the concrete front section of the Southern Realty and Art gallery building. The police vehicle was extensively damaged while the badly injured police constable was found outside the vehicle on the building’s front floor concrete section which was also damaged by the impact of the vehicle leaving one of the entire front wheel torn off the vehicle and was left lodged against the building’s damaged metal design front door. Civilians who were at the scene of the accident shortly after rendered assistance and rushed seriously injured police constable to the Punta Gorda hospital where he succumbed to his injuries shortly after. Police Constable Gabourel was part of a team of four who were in Punta Gorda from the Canine Unit in Belmopan who along with two canine dogs were scheduled for a Career Day presentation that day at JC Technical High School.

 
Officer John Eric Clarke
February 25, 2013 - Lincoln, Nebraska - Age 43
 

Officer John Clarke, 43, died on 2/25/13 while off duty. Officer Clarke  finished working out on a machine at Snap Fitness, 5900 S. 85th St., around 11 a.m., sat down and fell over. A physical therapist rushed to give him CPR. Rescue workers took him to Saint Elizabeth Regional Medical Center where doctors pronounced him dead. Having joined the department in 1991, During his career, he served on the SWAT team, as a firearms instructor and head canine trainer. Clarke’s police dog, Beersie-Remo, will stay with another handler until the dog retires later this year, something that was scheduled before Clarke’s death. Clarke was a 21-year veteran and was was, serving as the handler for over 15 years and statewide certification trainer. Officer Clarke was a former lineman for the Husker football team. Clarke leaves behind his wife, Lisa, and their three children, daughters Chasye, Hope and son Colton. Memorials to Capitol City Christian Church, Special Olympics, and Clarke Children Education Fund, c/o Wells Fargo Bank.

 
 
Officer Kevin A. Tonn
January 15, 2013 - Galt, California - Age 35
 
 

Officer Kevin Tonn, 35, was shot and killed on 1/15/13 while responding to a possible burglary in progress on the 200 block of F Street in Galt around 11:18 a.m. Officers arrived on the scene at 11:25 a.m. and found that the door of a duplex had been kicked in.  While officers were interviewing neighbors, one of the witnesses pointed down the road to some train tracks, roughly a block away, which they thought may have been the burglary suspect shortly after 11:30 a.m. Tonn parked his patrol car along the tracks, left his canine partner, Yaro, a German shepherd, inside and tried to contact the man. Tonn attempted to approach the man, but the man became aggressive and an altercation between Tonn and the suspect ensued and he called for emergency back up at 11:34 a.m.  At some point during the struggle, the suspect pulled out a hand gun and shot Tonn once in the head and fired several shots at the second officer who responded to the burglary call. Two minutes later a second officer reported shots fired and an "officer down." The second officer, who was not hurt, was not able to return fire because of the position in which he had taken cover. Tonn also did not fire any shots. The first officer, Tonn, was transported to Kaiser Permanente South Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead. The shooter also died from a single self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head and was later identified as Humphrey Kenneth Gascon Jr., 30, of Galt. As it turned out in the investigation, Gascon, the person who shot Officer Tonn had nothing to do with the burglary and was later found out that the person that did the burglary was actually a family member of the one that reported the burglary. Before joining the Galt Police Department in September 2009, Tonn previously worked in New York as a firefighter and paramedic and then a fire inspector. Prior to that, he served in the military as a police officer in the U.S. Army. His canine partner Yaro was not injured in the incident. Officer Tonn had been with the department 3 1/2 years. He was not married and didn’t have children. It is the first line-of-duty death for the Galt Police Department. Thousands attended Officer Tonn's funeral including his K9 partner Yaro along with approximately a dozen other police K9 officers with their canines. Officer Tonn received full military honors and also a  five helicopter fly over at the service. A K9  trust fund has been set up in Tonn’s name at Premier West Bank, 9340 East Stockton Blvd., Elk Grove, CA 95624. The account number is 82804382.

Humphrey Kenneth Gascon Jr. had  only minor traffic infractions, but no felony arrests. Gascon could have been arrested for carrying a loaded firearm in public.Gascon had been arrested for driving under the influence in Nevada but had no history of violent crime.

 

 
Robert Wiley Seymore
December 3, 2012 - Holly Springs, North Carolina - Age 38
 
 

Robert Seymore 38, fatally shot his wife Amber Seymore, 38, in the head on 12/3/12 at approximately 9:00 a.m. and then turned the weapon on himself commiting suicide. Robert Seymore was a former Bay Area Rapid Transit police canine officer in California for 10 years. Amber had confronted her husband about his cheating.  Amber Seymore’s mother found the bodies of her daughter and son-in-law in their bedroom lying on the floor and ran outside calling 911 and flagging down a motorist driving by who was Matt Taylor heading to work. Amber Seymore's mother  pleaded Matt Taylor to go inside the home because her son-in-law, Robert Seymore, was not supposed to be there. She told him I think he shot her. So then he said who shot her? Where is he? Is he still in there? Does he still have a gun?"  Not knowing what he would see, he went inside the couple's home where he first found their two year old toddler as he was going up the stairs, she was coming out of the kitchen. As he made his way upstairs, he found the tragic murder suicide scene. At the time they were in the process of getting a divorce. The day after Thanksgiving, Mrs Amber Seymore called police to file a domestic violence complaint. She notified police that she had found out that her husband was cheating on her and that she planned to confront him about it, but feared for her safety. She said her husband and two of her children would soon be returning home. And she would be kicking him out of the house when he gets there. She asked for a police officer to park in the street outside the house for his return, as he did not know she had found out about the affair. She also told police there were a lot of guns in the house. Police sent an officer to the area, but did not hear from Mrs Seymore again that day. The Seymore's had moved from California to North Carolina and had been living in North Carina for eighteen months. Robert had served in the U.S. Air Force for four years. Robert and Amber Seymore had three young children, Robert Seymore, Alexandra Seymore, and Abigail Seymore. Two older children, ages 6 and 8, were in elementary school at the time of the shooting. Memorial contributions may be made to Seymore Children's Fund, c/o Hope Community Church, 821 Buck Jones Rd. Raleigh, NC 27606.
 

 
 
Officer Vidhur Jadoo
November 7, 2012 - Howick, South Africa - Age 30
 
 
Officer Vidhur Jadoo, 30, died on 11/7/12 after being shot in the head and leg and died on the way to the hospital after responding to a robbery in progress at approximately 2:00 a.m. at Midmar Dam, South Africa. Officer Livingston Mpangase, 44, another K9 officer who was also with him was shot in the face and is critical condition after the two K9 officers were ambushed. The pair received a complaint of armed robbery at a diesel outlet in Midmar Dam. On arrival they spoke to the victim, a security guard, who informed them that two unknown men produced assault rifles and robbed him of his cell phone, wallet, his torch and diesel. The security guard also said that they fired a shot and then fled in a vehicle. The two K9 Unit policemen had taken a statement from the victim and left the dam in the direction the security guard had told them, when they noticed the suspicious behavior of five occupants in a vehicle. The members then tried to get the car to pull over but they sped off. Jadoo and his partner followed the suspects through the streets of Howick, until the suspects eventually stopped their car in the middle of Midmar Road and lay in wait with the car shut off and lights out, armed with 9mm assault rifles, until the policemen caught up with them. When the police car approached the suspect’s car, they opened fire on the officers, wounding them both. Mpangase, who was the driver, had no time to reverse but managed to return fire. However, after firing one round, his gun jammed. Several spent AK-47, R5 and 9mm cartridges were found on the scene. The suspect’s vehicle was found abandoned in the area and was searched. A Taurus Brazil revolver, a sealed packet with four electronic detonators, and ten commercial explosives and a hammer were found inside the car which are generally used in ATM bombings, Officer Vidhur Jadoo, was stationed at the Mountain Rise K9 unit and joined the police force nine years ago and was with the dog unit for five years. Officer Vidhur Jadoo was given full military honors at his funeral 11/8/12. Officer Jadoo leaves behind his wife of three years, Ashreena Jadoo.
 
 
Officer Bradley M. Fox
September 13, 2012 - Plymouth Township, Pennsylvania - Age 34
 
 
 
Officer Brad Fox, 34, a Plymouth Township police officer, was shot in the head and killed at approximately 6:00 p.m. on 9/13/12 following a traffic stop. At approximately 5:16 p.m., officers from the Plymouth Township Police Department were investigating a three-car accident at 1215 East Ridge Pike in the Conshohocken section of Plymouth Township. At 5:42 p.m., while conducting traffic control at the accident scene, officers observed a silver, 2006 Infiniti SUV, traveling at a high rate of speed, passing stopped traffic in the opposing lane of traffic. Officer Bradley Fox and backup began to follow the Infiniti SUV from Ridge Pike onto southbound Conshohocken Road. While traveling on Conshohocken Road, the Infiniti struck a white Chrysler 300 Sedan and fled the scene. Upon arrival at the location of the hit and run, officers were informed by another motorist that the striking vehicle drove onto Ernest Station Road. Officer Fox followed the path of the striking vehicle and found it abandoned on Ernest Station Road. Within minutes, Officer Fox and his K-9 partner Nick began a foot pursuit and radioed for backup. Officer Fox and his K9 partner pursued the suspect into an industrial area alongside the Schuylkill River Trail. Responding officers located Officer Fox on the grass between the Schuylkill River trail and the train tracks above the trail. It was apparent he had suffered a gunshot wound to the head and they called for emergency medical backup. Officer Fox was taken to Montgomery Hospital where he died and was only about six hours away from celebrating his 35th birthday. Officer Fox’s K-9 partner Nick, Belgian Malinois, suffered a graze bullet wound and received veterinary care. Both were shot with a 9mm Beretta gun Officers responded from multiple jurisdictions and immediately began to establish a perimeter to secure the area and locate Officer Fox’s killer. With assistance of multiple police agencies and canine search teams, the killer was located. He had sustained two gunshot wounds to the chest and was deceased. Preliminary investigation revealed that the killer, Andrew Charles Thomas, age 44, abandoned the stolen car he was driving, fled from the officer and was hiding on the hill above the train tracks obscured by tall weeds. Crime scene evidence indicated he ambushed Officer Fox by firing at least four shots at the officer and his K-9 partner from an elevated vantage point where Officer Fox could not view him.  Fox became a K9 officer in 2012 and recently graduated from the Philadelphia K-9 Unit in March of 2012 and was a seven year veteran of the department. Officer Brad Fox had previously served  as a U.S. Marine SSgt. for ten years and completed two tours, 2003 in Iraq and 2005-2006 in Fallujah. He was awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Combat Action Ribbon, Navy Presidential Unit Citation, Selected Marine Corp Reserve (X3) Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Navy Sea Service Deployment Ribbon and The Armed Forces Reserve Medal. Officer Fox is the first Plymouth officer killed in the line of duty. Thousands attended his funeral along with his K9 partner "Nick".  Officer Fox was buried in his uniform and received full military honors. His K-9 partner Nick was retired on 11/12/12 and given to the Fox family. Fox is survived by his wife, Lynsay, 28, who is  three months pregnant with a second child and a five month old daughter Kadence. Lynsay gave birth to Brad Fox Jr. on March 25, 2013. Donations can be sent to: Fox Children's Fund: C/O of the Children's Fund, Continental Bank, 661 W. Germantown Pike, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19642.
 
Dr. Erica Williams conducted an autopsy of Officer Fox’s body. She found he suffered a single gunshot wound to the head; the manner of his death was homicide.   Dr. Erica Williams conducted an autopsy on Thomas’ body. She identified one direct contact wound to his chest and a second close contact wound to his chest. Dr. Erica Williams determined the cause of Thomas’ death was gunshot wounds to the chest; the manner of death was suicide. At the time of the incident, Thomas was on probation in Montgomery County after pleading guilty to a forgery charge on 5/22/2012. The forgery charge resulted from a 2005 incident in Upper Merion when he used $140.00 worth of counterfeit Acme gift certificates. After failing to appear for his original arraignment in 2005, the defendant had been a fugitive for seven years. Lower Merion Police successfully apprehended him on May 21, 2012 and he pleaded guilty the next day. Thomas is reported to have used up to 40 different aliases and social security numbers during his life and was the prime suspect in the disappearance of Maria C. Procopio of South Philadelphia. Procopio, 34, went missing in September of 1999 after leaving her shift at QVC in West Chester, Pa. Her body has never been found.

Michael J. Henry, 30, pleaded guilty on 3/12/13 of supplying the gun that was used in Fox’s slaying. Henry pleaded guilty to all 23 charges involving the illegal sale or transfer of firearms and lying on gun purchase applications that the guns he was buying were for himself and not anyone else. Montgomery County Judge Joseph A. Smyth,  accepted the plea. Henry allegedly purchased nine guns between April 2012 and July 2012  for Andrew Charles Thomas, including the Beretta 9 mm pistol that Thomas used to gun down Fox. Thomas would tell Henry what type of gun he wanted, give him cash to pay for the gun and, after the transaction was completed, give Henry $500 in cash for making the purchase.  Thomas was barred by law from purchasing the guns himself because he's a convicted felon. Henry was arrested on charges of the illegal sale or transfer of firearms and lying on gun-purchase applications that the guns he purchased were for himself and not anyone else. Henry, who has been held in the county prison in lieu of $1 million cash bail since his arrest Oct. 10, 2012. Henry told the judge he  has been treated at various mental health facilities for anxiety and depression. Police are calling on the public to aid investigators in trying to track down the remaining eight guns, including two rifles that Henry allegedly purchased for Thomas. The firearms that have not been recovered include: Colt .45 ACP, Colt .45 ACP Defender, Colt Mustang .380 ACP 7¾-inch Barrel, Beretta 92FS 9 mm pistol, Beretta 92FS INOX 9 mm pistol, Fabrique Nationale 57 5.7X28 pistol, Remington 750 30-06 rifle and a Stevens 200 Rifle 300 Winchester. On 8/15/13 Montgomery County Judge Joseph A. Smyth sentenced Michael J. Henry to 20 to 66 years behind bars for serving as the straw purchaser of the Beretta 9 mm pistol that was used in the slaying.

 
Officer Charles Nelson Armetta
September 8, 2012 - Baltimore City, Maryland - Age 29
 
 
Officer Charles Nelson Armetta, 29, of Joppa, was an officer for Aberdeen Police Department. He died while off duty when he fell off a raised portion of the interstate in Baltimore City. MDTA police received a call at 3:15 a.m. on 9/8/12 from someone that reported a person had fallen from northbound I-95 near exit 52 for Russell Street. Police arrived on scene at 3:17 a.m. and found Mr. Armetta in a wooded area beneath the highway. He had fallen approximately 47 feet. Mr. Armetta was with eight or nine friends and family members in a limousine-type bus and the bus had pulled over on I-95 near the off ramp. Mr. Armetta was pronounced dead on the scene by Baltimore medics at 3:42 a.m. The party bus was returning from a trip to Washington, D.C. Mr. Armetta was assigned to the departments recently reinstated police dog unit. His K9 partner Maverick, a 2-year-old German shepherd was recently shipped from Europe to Castle K-9 in Pennsylvania and had been training with the New Castle County Delaware Police Department. The two just graduated a 12 week program on July 12, 2012. He had been with the department since 2007. Approximately a dozen K9 handlers with their canines attended his funeral. He is survived by his wife, Heather Lauren Armetta and a daughter, Adrianna Caprice Armetta who was turning one-year-old in two more days.  Donations can be made to the Charles Armetta Memorial, C/O Harco Federal Credit Union, 1028 Middleton Rd, Aberdeen, MD 21001.
 
 
MA2 Michael John Brodsky
July 21, 2012 - Kandahar Province, Afghanistan - Age 33
 
 
 
Master of Arms 2nd Class Michael J. Brodsky, 33, from Florida, died 7/21/12 from wounds he received 7/7/12 in a blast from a “dismounted improvised explosive device in Kandahar Province, Afghanistan. He had lost both legs and was struggling to stay alive. Brodsky was flown to Landsthul, Germany where his mother and father were able to see him before he died. Brodsky, a U.S. Navy Military Dog Handler, was doing a tour of duty in the Kandahar Province of Afghanistan as part of Operation Enduring Freedom. Brodsky was on patrol in an undisclosed area when his unit came under fire on July 7. Brodsky reportedly rushed to a nearby truck to shelter his K9 partner, Jackson. As he returned to the fire fight, Brodsky stepped on a mine. Brodsky trained bomb-sniffing dogs for the Navy and had recently re-enlisted with the military branch for another six years. Brodsky had been assigned to the San Diego-based Navy Region Southwest Security Detachment since December 2010. He enlisted in 2001, the day after the World Trade Center was attacked, and served overseas in Sasebo, Japan and Bahrain. Brodsky was awarded the Purple Heart for his bravery on July 16th. Michael is survived by his daughter Natalia.
 
 
 
Cpl. Joshue R. Ashley
July 19, 2012 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 23
 

Cpl. Joshua R. Ashley, 24, of Rancho Cucamonga, California, was killed in Afghanistan on 7/19/12 by an IED during a night operation in Helmand Province. He was a Military Police officer with the II Marine Expeditionary Force, 2nd Law Enforcement Battalion, and was a dog handler for special operations. Ashley was with his military dog Sirius, a 4-year-old male German Shepherd when he was killed. Sirius survived the incident. Ashley enlisted in the Marines in 2008 after graduating from Etiwanda High School in 2007. Ashley was deployed to Okinawa, Japan, from 2009 to 2011, and was stationed at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina from 2011 to when he was deployed to Afghanistan in May of 2012. His awards include the Navy Achievement Medal, Navy Commendation ribbon, Meritorious Unit Commendation ribbon, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, and Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.

 
 
PC Steve Nigel Abbott
June 15, 2012 - Kimberley, England - Age 62
 

Steve Abbott, 62, died on Friday 15 June, at his Kimberley home, after a heart attack. He had served the Nottinghamshire Force for 40 years. He was commended a number of times and his experience as a dog handler and trainer was invaluable. He service was with full police honors and cremated. He is survived by his wife Mary.

 
 
Sgt. Robert Warren Crapse Sr.
June 15, 2012 - Bryan County, Georgia - Age 32
 

Sheriff's Deputy, Robert Crapse, 32, was killed at 2:15 a.m. on 6/15/12 in the northbound lanes of I-95 when a driver going the wrong way on Interstate 95 struck his cruiser head on. Sheriff's Deputy, Robert Crapse, who resided in Ellabell, had been working traffic control and was headed back to the north end of the county when the accident occurred and was not wearing his seat belt. The crash happened near mile marker 97 which is between the I-16 and Highway 204 exits. Crapse had his K9 “Seppe”, a Belgian Malinois, with him at the time of the accident and his K9 survived with just a scraps and bruises. The driver of the other car , 23-year-old Patricia Ann Collins, of Richmond Hill was driving a white Toyota Corolla  car . Crapse died at the scene. Collins, who was wearing a seat belt was airlifted to Memorial University Medical Center with life threatening injuries. Chatham Metro Police dispatch had actually received seven calls of a vehicle traveling the wrong way down the interstate just before the call came in about the deadly crash. Police put out a BOLLO in Chatham County, but that Crapse would not have heard it. Law Enforcement in Bryan County has access to Chatham dispatch, but would have to manual switch the radio to hear it. A second Bryan County Deputy pulled Deputy Crapse from his vehicle after the accident. He had been following him home after their shift. Crapse started his law enforcement career working at a detention center in 1999, when he was about 19 years old and then became a deputy in 2006. Crapse was promoted from Cpl. to Sgt. about two hours after his death. An estimated 800 people attended the funeral service. Canine Seppe will be retired and given to Crapse's family. Crapse leaves behind a wife of eleven years Ashli Crapse and three children, one son Robert Warren “Robby” Crapse, Jr. and two daughters Sarah Lynn and Natalie Faye Crapse. Ages of his children are 6,8, and 10. A fund to benefit the family of Bryan County Deputy Sheriff Robert Crapse has been set up at the Heritage Bank, 16 Railroad Street East, in Pembroke. The bank may be contacted at 912-653-2265. You can donate to the "Crapse Family Memorial Fund", account #41894833 at any Heritage Bank. 

Patricia Ann Collins’ blood-alcohol level was approaching twice the legal limit when the car she was driving the wrong way on Interstate 95 collided with Bryan County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Sgt. Bobby Crapse’s vehicle and killed him. A Traffic Crash Report  released on 7/17/12 showed that A blood sample taken from her at Memorial and tested by the GBI showed Collin’s blood-alcohol content was .139 after she arrived at the hospital. Driving with a blood alcohol content of .08 or more is considered driving under the influence in Georgia. On May 10, 2014,  Patricia Ann Collins, entered an open-ended guilty plea to charges stemming from the June 15, 2012, two-car crash that killed Bryan County sheriff’s Deputy Sgt. Robert Warren “Bobby” Crapse.  Collins on 4/29/14 entered a plea of guilty to vehicular homicide and DUI charges stemming from the two-car crash that killed Bryan County sheriff’s Deputy Sgt. Robert Warren “Bobby” Crapse. Chatham County Superior Court Judge Timothy R. Walmsley sentenced Patricia Ann Collins on 4/29/14 to 15 years in prison with 7 to serve for the 2012 traffic death of Bryan County sheriff’s Deputy Sgt. Robert Warren “Bobby” Crapse. Collins is to have no contact with the victim’s family and undergo continued evaluation for substance abuse. Collins’ blood alcohol level was a .138 and earlier had a registered .185 at the hospital. It is illegal to drive in Georgia with a blood alcohol level of 0.08 or greater.

 
MA2 Sean Brazas
May 30, 2012 - Panjwa'l, Afghanistan - Age 26
 

Sean Brazas, 26, U.S. Navy Master at Arms 2nd Class, died on May 30, 2012. Brazas arrived in Afghanistan on May 1, his birthday,  and was killed by a single bullet while helping a fellow serviceman into a helicopter during "combat operations in Panjwa'l, Afghanistan. Brazas's working dog and partner, Sicario, was reportedly treated for heat exhaustion that day but was not injured in the ambush attack. Originally he is from Greensboro, NC. In April, just before the pair deployed, Brazas and Sicario went through the Inter-Service Advance Skills K9 course, the three-week, Marine-run training program based out of Yuma Proving Ground in Yuma, AZ. Upon completion of the course the pair received high honors, claiming the Top Dog Award. Brazas was assigned to Naval Base Kitsap Security Detachment in Bremerton, Wash. Sean Brazas was buried June 19, 2012 at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia with approximately 150 in attendance.  Approximately fifteen Navy Military Working Dogs were at attendance at his funeral. Brazas is survived by his wife, Allie Marie Brazas, and their 13-month-old daughter, Addisen Jade Hasenwinkel, both of Bremerton, WA. The family requests that donations in his name be made to the Wounded Warrior Project.

 
Cpl. Keaton G. Coffey
May 24, 2012 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 22
 

CPL Keaton G. Coffey, 22, died on May 24, 2012 while conducting combat operations in Helmand Province, Afghanistan, his dog, Denny, survived. He was from Boring, Oregon. Keaton enlisted in the USMC in August of 2008. CPL Keaton G. Coffey was on his second tour of duty. He was assigned to 1st Law Enforcement Battalion, 1st Marine Headquarters Group, 1st Marine Expeditionary Force, where he was a working dog handler out of Camp Pendleton, Calif. On Nov. 19, 2011, Keaton proposed to his best friend and soul mate, Brittany Dygert. They were planning to be married on July 14, 2012. A bagpipe played Amazing Grace at his funeral on 6/4/12. and his service was with full military honors rendered by the U.S. Marine Corps at Willamette National Cemetery in Portland, Oregon.  The charities selected by the family are: the Fisher House for Families of the Fallen, the United States War Dogs Association, the Wounded Warrior Project or to the Keaton Coffey Scholarship Fund at Damascus Christian School.

 
 
Ofc. Richard Wayne Johnson
May 20, 2012 - Arp, Texas - Age 37
 

Officer Richard Wayne Johnson, 37, was killed in an off duty car crash on Interstate-20 near mile marker 628 at about 1:13 p.m. on 5/20/12. Johnson was the K-9 unit officer for the Arp Police Department for two years and he was the Arp Independent School District Resource Officer. At the time of the crash, Johnson was traveling west on the Interstate with his two daughters, ages 17 and 7, when he apparently lost control of the vehicle due to a blown tire, struck a median and veered into oncoming traffic and overturned. He was pronounced dead at the scene. He was not wearing a seatbelt. His daughters were uninjured in the crash. He is survived two daughters, Alyson and Nicole Johnson; two stepsons, Colton and Corey Vance. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to American State Bank of Arp, c/o of Alyson and Nicole Johnson, P.O. Box 100, Arp, 75750.

 
 
Sgt. Dick Alson Lee Jr.
April 26, 2012 -Ghanzi Province, Afghanistan - Age 31
 

Military canine handler, Sgt. Dick A. Lee Jr, 31, was killed on April 26, in Afghanistan along with his bomb-detecting dog, a German shepherd named Fibi . Sgt. Dick A. Lee Jr., had been in Afghanistan 23 days and was on his deployment's first mission. few weeks ago to handle dogs trained to sniff for explosives. He was killed when a vehicle he was riding in encountered an improvised explosive device. He was killed while serving in Ghanzi Province, Afghanistan. Also Staff Sgt. Brandon F. Eggleston died from injuries with Sgt. Dick A. Lee Jr. who was also in the vehicle when they struck an improvised explosive device. Lee, 31, had signed up for the Army during his senior year at Keystone Heights High, aiming at a career as a military policeman when he graduated in 2000. He was 12 years into his service, he planned to stay until he could retire, then find work as a police officer. Lee was assigned to the 95th Military Police Battalion, 18th Military Police Brigade, part of the 21st Theater Sustainment Command in Sembach, Germany. He is survived by his wife, Katherine G. Lee, and two sons, David and Joshua, in Germany and were from of Orange Park, Fla. Approximately five hundred people attended his service. Donations for the family may be made to the Sgt. Lee Memorial Fund established at Capital City Bank by the American Legion Keystone-Melrose Post 202.
 

 
Ofc. Scott Dietz
April 21, 2012 - Chicago, Illinois - Age 60
 

Scott Dietz, 60, died of a heart attack.  He was a retired police canine handler who worked in the 16th and 20th police districts. He later worked at O’Hare Airport with  his trusted bomb-sniffing dog Bart investigating unattended luggage and stalled vehicles. He was a dog handler at O’Hare until his retirement nearly two years ago. They were often called on to sweep Air Force One and VIP motorcades for explosives  for U.S. presidents and vice presidents, and kings and queens.  Other police K9 officers paid tribute to him by bringing their partners to Cooney’s Funeral Home. He and Bart, a yellow Labrador retriever, were inseparable and even retired together. So it was fitting that Bart stayed next to his master’s body at the funeral parlor. Mr. Dietz is also survived by his children, Christopher and Colleen.

 
Deputy Sheriff Brian E. Hayden
April 19, 2012 - Soper, Oklahoma - Age 47
 
 

Choctaw County Deputy Sheriff Brian Hayden, 47, was killed in a collision with another while both were responding to assist a third officer on 4/19/12. The crash occurred at about 9:30 p.m. on U.S. 70, 3.2 miles west of Soper. Hayden collided with Choctaw tribal police Officer Josiah Moore, 29. Hayden died as a result of injuries suffered in the crash, and was pronounced dead on arrival at Choctaw Memorial Hospital in Hugo. Moore was rushed to Medical Center of Plano (Texas). The two were separately responding to a call to assist a Choctaw County deputy with shots fired. Both were wearing seat belts and had lights and sirens activated. The collision occurred when Hayden turned left onto a county road and Moore's car struck his pickup's driver side door. Before going to work as a Deputy for the Choctaw County Sheriff’s Office for four months, in 1986, he joined the USAF and served out county for 20 years, retiring as a Master Sergeant in Security Forces. He did many tours overseas as well as personal security for 3 different US Presidents. During his military career, he also served as a reserve officer for Spencer, Oklahoma, Oklahoma County and Nicoma Park, Oklahoma. After his USAF retirement, he served full-time as the Nicoma Park K9 Officer. In December 2011, he moved closer to home and became the first K9 Deputy for Choctaw County, Oklahoma. Choctaw Deputy Bryan Hadyen spent his last moments in his patrol car with his K9 companion Sampson. K9 Sampson will continue to still serve Choctaw County. Nearly 400 people came together to honor a fallen man in uniform. Deputy Hayden was cremated and his organs donated. Deputy Hayden leaves behind his wife, Tabitha Hayden; his children, Jessica, Andrew, Hilly, James, Wyatt, Austin, Jacqualyne and Kelly and his K9 partner “Sampson”. A memorial fund has been established in Brian’s honor at the First Bank of Hugo where donations may be made. The address is First Bank of Hugo, Brian and Tabitha Hayden, 1501 E. Jackson, Hugo, OK 74743.

 
 
Sgt. Scott Tatrow
April 14, 2012 - Wayland, Michigan - Age 46
 

Sgt. Scott Tatrow, 46, with the Allegan County Sheriff's Department died unexpectedly after being rushed from his Wayland home by ambulance to Metropolitan Hospital with a very high temperature of 107 degrees on 4/14/12. He was pronounced dead at the hospital at 1:15 a.m. Tatrow was a decorated and skilled officer who served as a K9 Dog handler, Tactical Team (SWAT) member, Michigan Sheriff's Association Mission Team Investigator and was part of the original Allegan County Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard. His work was also recognized with many awards including a 2003 letter of Commendation for Law Enforcement Service, a 2004 letter of appreciation for years of service to the Tactical Team, a 2007 letter of Commendation for Law Enforcement Service, and 2009 Allegan County Sheriff's Office Certificate of Professional Excellence. Sgt. Tatrow was a handler for K9 Jock, a Belgian Malinois, who earned the reputation as being one of the top narcotic detector dogs in the nation. Tatrow had recently returned from a trip. After he was taken to the hospital, firefighters went to Tatrow's home dressed in HazMat gear to remove clothing and other items to have them checked amid concerns that an infection may have contributed to his death.  An autopsy performed showed that he died from E. coli stemming from a urinary tract infection. Sgt.Tatrow was a 19-year veteran of the sheriff's office, joining the staff March 22, 1993.  Tatrow is survived by his wife Lynn of 22 years and two children, Dekota Tatrow and Jessica Lambright. Memorial Contributions may be made to "Thin Blue Line" of Michigan.

 
LCpl Abraham Tarwoe
April 12, 2012 - Helmand, Afghanistan - Age 25
 
 
Lance Corpral Abraham Tarwoe was killed on 4/12/12 in Afghanistan. His K9, Yeager, survived. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 9th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C. At the age of seven he and his family left Liberia to escape the civil war there and made his home in Providence, Rhode Island. Lance Corpral Abraham Tarwoe joined the Marines in June of 2009. He leaves behind his wife, Juah Kelly, and their 18-month-old son, Avant. His body was flown on May 5 to his county where he was born in Liberia, for burial. Lance Corpral Abraham Tarwoe received the Purple Heart.
 
 
Deputy Jim St. Pierre
March 24, 2012 - Tarin Kowt, Afghanistan - Age 51
 

Deputy Jim St Pierre died of a heart attack on the morning of 3/24/12 in Tarin Kowt in southern Afghanistan. He worked for the Pasco Sheriff's Department in Florida and had worked with a few K9 partners. He worked with his first K9 “Bullet” in 1986 and both responded   to an emergency situation at a house to calm Herman Hendrix, a 62-year-old man who had a lengthy criminal record. He was drunk and threatening violence. He pointed a shotgun at deputies and ran behind a shed. St. Pierre unleashed Bullet, an 80-pound German shepherd. St. Pierre, then 26 and in only his third year on the job, heard another blast. He expected Hendrix had shot his dog, and suddenly the gunman came around the corner of the shed. St. Pierre, ordered the man to drop the gun. When Hendrix refused, the deputy St. Pierre shot six times from 15 feet. Hendrix died at the scene. K9 Bullet sustained a minor pellet wound. In September 1993, he and his second canine partner, Puma, tracked a man wanted in New Port Richey in two stabbings. The man lunged at them with a razor-blade knife, slashing both. Puma's days as a police dog were done, though he continued to live with the St. Pierres. He was hired by American K-9 Detection Services to work with dogs trained to root out narcotics. He is survived by his ex wife Tina and children, Angie, Timmy and Kalah. St. Pierre was returning to Florida in 56 days.

 
 
Officer Jerome "Jerry" Larson
January 24, 2012 - Duluth, Minnesota  - Age 68
 

Jerome "Jerry" Larson, 68, died on January 24, 2012, at home after a battle with cancer. He served in the Army, 101st Airborne Division, where he earned both Airborne and Ranger tabs. He had spent much of his life handling and training police dogs, and serving as a mentor to the next generation of handlers. In 1976 he took the initiative to acquire and train 2-year-old German Shepherd, Joe, and talked the department into adding him to the force.  Larson and Joe worked some memorable cases in their five-or-so years together on the Duluth police force.  In 1981, after Joe started to slow down, Larson retired his K-9 partner. He founded the Police K-9 Association for Duluth and became the first K-9 Officer in Duluth history. He was thoroughly respected throughout the county for his knowledge, skill, and experience working with police K-9s. Many of the K-9s he trained became nationally known for their excellent work within Police K-9 Association. After Larson retired from the force in 1990, he still trained and mentored other dogs and handlers. In 1992, Larson was brought out of retirement to conduct the training for his police department. Many said some techniques Larson taught back then were ahead of their time, and picked up by other departments years later. He is survived by a daughter, Wanda, and two sons, Jerry and Scott. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent in his name to the Duluth Police K-9 Fund, Attn: Gordon Ramsay, at 211 W. 1st. St., Duluth MN, 55802.

 
Sgt. Mark Patrick Day
December 22, 2011 - Renton, Washington  - Age 62
 

Retired Renton Police Sergeant Mark Day, 62, died on December 22, 2011, following a fifteen year battle with cancer. At age 38, he made the decision to pursue a career in law enforcement. Sergeant Day graduated first in class overall in 1987 from the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission, Law Enforcement Academy, and joined the Renton Police Department later that year. Sergeant Day worked for the Renton Police for 23 years, retiring October 31, 2010. During his career Sergeant Day rose through the ranks, eventually becoming an Acting Commander and ultimately a Sergeant in the Investigations Division. Sergeant Day was selected by the Renton Police Department as the Employee of the Quarter twice: first in 1997, and again in 2008. In 1990 Sergeant Day was awarded a position on the Canine Unit, and was assigned a German Shepherd puppy named Buck as part of the City’s “Puppy Program.” K9 Officer Buck partnered with Sergeant Day until 1997, when the Buck retired from the police force to live out his days with the Day family. Sergeant Day went on to lead and train the Renton Police Department Canine Teams, ultimately becoming a Master Canine Trainer in 2001. The dynamic duo of Day and Buck arrested over 200 suspects including a person who kidnapped a four-year-old and two homicide suspects, one in Tukwila another in Seattle. Buck passed away on July 9, 2001 also from cancer. A book was written about Day and Buck both dealing with cancer at the same time, with the animal dying in his arms. Ted Koppel, formerly of ABC-TV's "Nightline," interviewed him after learning that Day was going to have another of his tracking dogs blessed at his Catholic church, which stirred some national controversy. Sergeant Day graduated from Renton High School in 1968. While at Renton, Day was student body president his senior year, chosen for the high school All-American Football Team in 1967, and was captain of the football and track teams in both 1967 and 1968.  He earned a full athletic scholarship to the University of Washington and played with Stanford's Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Jim Plunkett. Sergeant Day is survived by his wife of over 40 years, Marcia Day; his three grown children: Natalie , Kyle , and Aaron.

 
Officer Darren Kunz
December 17, 2011 - Fergus Fall, Minnesota  - Age 40
 

Darren Kunz, 40, of Fergus Falls, Minnesota, passed away on 2/17/11 under the care of Lakeland Hospice at Sheridan House after nearly a year long battle with lung and brain cancer. Darren attended Alexandria Technical College, graduating with top honors from the Law Enforcement Program in 1997. After school, Darren worked part time for the Pelican Rapids Police Department and later the Fergus Falls Police Department. A short time later, Darren went to work for the Otter Tail County Sheriff’s Department full time. Darren was a SWAT Team member and instrumental in bringing in the departments first narcotics-only canine, closing several cases and winning numerous awards. Darren won a Meritorious Service Award from the Chiefs of Police for his part in dealing with a chainsaw-wielding suspect. Darren is survived by his wife, Beth, his daughter Elizabeth, 2, step daughters, Nichelle, 16, and Chelsea,10, step son, Nathan, 14, and his beloved K9, Nijka. Anyone wishing to contribute can send donations to: Beth Kunz, 514 West Laurel, Fergus Falls, MN 56537.

 
Corporal Rohan "Roti" Richardson
December 6, 2011 - Antigua - Age ?

Corporal Rohan Richardson, of the Royal Police Force, died on December 6, 2011 at Mount St John’s Medical Centre  after suddenly falling ill.  Richardson was found when Richardson’s fiancée and  live-in companion, also a member of the force, was trying to get a hold of him but was unable to do so. The woman had  forgotten her cell phone at home and wanted him to deliver it to her. After calling his phone for some time without answer, the female officer asked her daughter to go to the house to check on the police corporal. It was at this time that Richardson was found in the bathroom by his stepdaughter lying on the bathroom floor conscious at the time but unable to communicate. He might have fallen and hit his head. Emergency Medical Service (EMS) was summoned to the scene. He was rushed to Mount St John’s Medical Centre, where he was later pronounced dead. Corporal Richardson headed the Canine Unit since its establishment over three years ago.

 
Officer Kevin Weber
November 3, 2011 - Fort Wayne, Indiana - Age 55
 
 
 
 
Kevin Weber died on November 3, 2011 from  glioblastoma, a type of brain cancer that he was diagnosed with in April and went out on medical leave. He served his country in the US Navy and was employed at the Baer Field Airport Department of Safety, the Allen County Police Department, and was a police officer for the Fort Wayne Police Department for 31 years, 24 of his years on the department were spent as a K-9 officer. Weber graduated from K-9 training in 1987 and became a trainer in 1994. Kevin was a nationally accredited Master Trainer, certified by the North American Police Work Dog Association, and had the privalege of training police work dogs and handlers throughout the country for the past 17 years. Weber’s first dog, Zak, became the first certified narcotic-detection dog for Fort Wayne police. Another of his dogs, Badge, was cross-trained to track people and detect bombs and drugs.  He is survived by his daughter, Megan, 21; sons, Matt, 19 and Kevin Jr, 13; and former wife and mother of the children, Stacey. Donations can be made to Visiting Nurse & Hospice Home, Cancer Services or the Fallen Hero Fund.
 
 
Officer Derek Kotecki
October 12, 2011 - Lower Burrell, Pennsylvania - Age 40
 

Officer Derek Kotecki, 40, was shot and killed in on 10/12/11 at approximately 7:00 p.m. while responding to a Dairy Queen to arrest Charlie Arthur Post, 33, who was wanted for an incident that occurred earlier on October 2nd on charges including attempted homicide and aggravated assault for allegedly firing several shots at his boss, Terry Janosky, 44, a New Kensington building contractor. Janosky told police he had a dispute with Post and agreed to meet him in a motel parking lot, only to have Post scream and open fire when he arrived. Janosky was not hurt. There were three bullet holes on the driver's side of Janosky's truck from a large caliber handgun, including one right above the driver's side window. Police recovered 12 shell casings at the scene. Police knew that Post was dangerous and a Lower Burrell detective had reached Post by cell phone after the Oct. 2 incident and tried to convince Post to turn himself in. When Police learned he was at the Dairy Queen on 10/12/11 several officers were converging on the scene to make the arrest and Kotecki was among the first to arrive at the Dairy Queen which is located on on Greensburg Road, near the Plum/Lower Burrell border. Post saw the officers approaching and he stepped out of a Jeep he was driving and opened fire. Kotecki was only ten minutes into his shift when he was felled by the gunfire. Officer Kotecti died from gunshot wounds to the head, left arm and abdomen. Witnesses said Post lay in the rear of the Jeep holding a pistol, and as Kotecki got out of his SUV with Odin, Post fired the gun through the closed back window, shattering it. Post tried to escape, but came to a fence that he could not scale. He turned back toward the police officers and shot himself. At the same instant, the officers fired at Post. Post died from gunshot wounds to the head, chest and abdomen. Kotecki was an 18-year veteran with the Lower Burrell Police Department and was the department's K-9 officer. Officer Kotecki's first K9 Benny retired and died and was replaced by Odin, Kotecki's K9 partner at the time of his death.  Kotecki's K-9 had to be muzzled after the shooting and led away because the animal would not leave the slain officer's body. Officer Kotecki studied criminal justice at Mercyhurst College in Erie. In 1992, just before joining Lower Burrell's force, he worked as an officer in Ocean City, Md. A horse-drawn carriage carried Officer Kotecki's body to the church for the service. Officer Kotecki's funeral was attended by approximately four thousand people and about fifty K9 officer's attended with their K9'S. A gray hearse with Kotecki's body was led into the cemetery  with a riderless horse. The empty saddle and glossy riding boots facing rearward in the stirrups is a traditional military honor. Seven officers used ceremonial shotguns to fire three times each for the 21-gun salute. Moments later, a state police helicopter flew low over the cemetery to pay respects. A combined bagpipe and drum corps performed "Amazing Grace." A little bit later, a flight of white doves was released. Officer Kotecki's K9 Odin was retired and given to Kotecki's family. Kotecki is survived by his wife, Julie J. Nash Kotecki and two sons, Nicholas Bert Kotecki,13, and Alexander Bert Kotecki,11 and his K9 partner "Odin". A fund has been set up for the Kotecki family in honor of our fallen Police Officer Derek Kotecki at the following: S&T Bank, 4251 Old William Penn Highway, Murrysville, PA  15668 or Derek Kotecki Memorial Fund, C/O Fraternal Order of Police, Allegheny Valley Lodge #39. Make checks payable to: Derek Kotecki Memorial Fund.

Police agencies across the Alle-Kiski Valley -- including New Kensington, Lower Burrell, Allegheny Township, Harrison, Springdale Township, Indiana Township, Tarentum and Plum -- have charged Charles Post with a slew of minor offenses over the past 17 years, including numerous incidents of traffic violations, disorderly conduct and harassment. Of the 50 different incidents, here are some examples:

• Oct. 2011: New Kensington police charged Post with attempted homicide, aggravated assault, theft, reckless endangerment and other charges.

• Dec. 2010: Lower Burrell police charged Post with possession of drug paraphernalia and six summary driving citations. All charges except for paraphernalia and driving with suspended license were withdrawn. He failed to appear for a guilty plea before Judge John Blahovec on Oct. 7, 2011.

• March 2002: Lower Burrell charged Post with aggravated assault, simple assault, reckless endangerment and disorderly conduct. An arrest warrant issued in 2005 because he tested positive for opiates and cocaine, a violation of his parole or bail.

• Oct. 2001: Lower Burrell police -- Kotecki -- cited Post for criminal mischief. He was found not guilty.

• Aug. 1999: Leechburg charged Post with driving under the influence, driving with a suspended license and another traffic citation. He pleaded guilty to drunken driving, while the other charges were withdrawn.

• Aug. 1999: Lower Burrell police cited Post for a traffic violation.

• April 1997: Lower Burrell charged Post with drunken driving and a summary count of buying alcohol as a minor.

 
 
Staff Sgt. Christopher Diaz
September 28, 2011 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 27
 
 
Staff Sgt. Christopher Diaz, 27, was killed on September 28 after being wounded while rushing to the aid of a comrade who had been shot when he was killed by an IED during combat operations in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. As a working dog handler he achieved almost unparalleled professional success, including being selected to attend an advanced training program for several months in Israel. After completing the course, Diaz was one of only a handful of dog handlers in the Corps to have the qualifications he possessed. His skill and professionalism lead to him being chosen to support reconnaissance and special forces in some of the most dangerous places in Afghanistan. During his eight years of loyal service he did one tour in Iraq, one tour in Israel, and one tour in Afghanistan. This was his first deployment to Afghanistan. He deployed in May to Afghanistan and was due to return in late December. His awards include the Combat Action Ribbon, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, Global War On Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Navy And Marine Corps Overseas Service Ribbon, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War On Terrorism Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, Certificate Of Commendation ( Individual Award ) Letter Of Appreciation and Purple Heart. He is survived by his family a young daughter, Mia E. Davis and young son, Jeremy C. Diaz. and K9 partner "Dino". His Funeral was held in El Paso, Texas on 10/10/11 and more than one thousand people attended his funeral. He was buried at  Fort Bliss National Cemetery with full military honors. The fallen Marine's father, asked the military if his family could adopt Dino but, military officials initially denied the request, saying Dino, who specialized in finding explosives, was too young. However the request was granted to the  family's request on 5/29/14. The Diaz family officially adopted Dino in a ceremony held at Camp Pendleton on 6/7/14.
 
 
Sgt. Mycal Lee Prince
September 15, 2011 - Laghman Province, Afghanistan - Age 28
 
 
Sergeant Mycal L. Prince of Minco, Oklahoma was killed in Laghman Province in Afghanistan on September 15, 2011 from injuries sustained during an insurgent attack. His unit was fired upon by insurgents using rocket-propelled grenades and small arms fire. Prince was a member of Company A, 1st Battalion, 179th Infantry Regiment, 45th Brigade Combat Team in the Oklahoma National Guard, which is based out of Edmond and headquartered in Stillwater. His unit was deployed to Afghanistan in March of 2011. He joined the Guard five days after his 17th birthday and served over ten years. He deployed to assist the people of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and went to Iraq in 2008.  Mycal worked for Rush Springs Police Department for three years  then worked for Minco Police Department as a K9 officer with his K9 partner  "Bayca" for the past two years before being deployed to Afghanistan. While with the Minco Police Department, Officer Prince and K9 Bayca helped with drug interdiction. The military presented seven awards to Sgt. Prince's family, including a purple heart. Prince leaves behind his wife Surana Smith Mycal and two young daughters, Raelynn and Mycaela. Sergeant Mycal was buried on 9/26/11 at Bradley Cemetery in Bradley Oklahoma. First National Bank and Trust has set up a fund to help the family. Donations can be made in the Prince family name.   
 
 
Officer Thokozani Patrick Ngcobo
August 9, 2011 - Ladysmith, South Africa - Age 47
 
 
Officer Thokozani Ngcobo, of Ladysmith South Africa was shot and killed on 8/9/11 in his vehicle at 7:00 p.m. by gunmen when he arrived home in his drive-way .  Ngcobo had been a dedicated member of the Ladysmith K9 unit for 15 years and served as a police officer for 24 years. After Officer Ngcobo was shot the suspects ran off. Ngcobo was taken to hospital by his neighbor and pronounced dead on arrival. He died as a result of multiple bullet wounds. Ngcobo had just arrived home in his police uniform from work but had taken his protective vest off.  He was expected to give evidence at the trial of six men, including an ex-colleague charged with a money-in-transit robbery in October 2009 in which three people were killed. Ngcobo had reportedly declined to enter a witness protection program. He leaves a wife and two children. The ones accused of the heist facing trial in the high court are Jerody Mthimunye (34), Philemon Nhleko (38), Ewat Ndubuko, Zikethela Sokhela (30), Mandla Maloi (37) and former Ladysmith police sergeant Siyabonga Nkwanyana (39).  No arrests have been made at this stage and police are still investigating.  He is survived by his wife and two children. A reward of R25 000 ( $ 3,279 US dollars ) was offered on 3/15/2012  for any information that leads to the capture of those who assassinated him.
 
 
Navy Seal John Douangdara
August 6, 2011 - Wardak Province, Afghanistan,  - Age 26
 
 
 
Navy Seal, Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist) John Douangdara, 26, of South Sioux City, Neb. a dog handler, was killed on 8/6/11 along with his  K9 Bart. They were in a Chinook helicopter and had rushed to the mountainous area to help a US army ranger unit under fire from insurgents. The team of reinforcements had completed the mission, subduing the attackers who had the rangers pinned down, and were departing in their Chinook helicopter when the aircraft was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade. The brave American troops Killed In Action were brought back to the U.S. on August 10, 2011 and embraced by the families and President Obama. He was a very dedicated K9 handler and  participated in many training seminars held around the U.S. He enlisted in the United States Navy in February 2003. After graduating Recruit Training Command, Great Lakes, Ill., in April 2003, he reported to his initial service school training at Norfolk. Upon completion of his initial training, he reported to Naval Air Station Sigonella Security Detachment, Sicily in June 2003. In August 2006, he reported to Public/Ordnance Safety Security Force, New London, Groton, Conn. He then reported to his East Coast based SEAL Team in January 2008. He was the lead dog handler for the elite Seal Team Six, the same elite unit that killed Osama bin Laden. Petty Officer Douangdara’s awards include the Bronze Star with “V” device, Joint Service Commendation Medal with “V” Device, Army Commendation Medal, Presidential Unit Citation, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, Overseas Service Ribbon (3), Rifle Marksmanship Medal, and the Pistol Marksmanship Medal. John Douangdara was buried at Arlington National Cemetery on 8/26/11. A John Douangdara Memorial Statue, a bronze half life-sized statue of him and his combat dog Bart was sculpted by Susan Bahary and was unveiled on Memorial Day 5/27/13 at the fifty five acre Siouxland Freedom Park in South Sioux City, Nebraska. Memorial donations may be sent to John Douangdara Memorial Fund at the Siouxland Federal Credit Union, 3000 Plaza Drive, South Sioux City, NE 68776.

Other Navy Seals killed in the Chinook helicopter with him were Petty Officer 1st Class Derek C. Benson, 28, of Angwin, Calif., Chief Petty Officer Brian R. Bill, 31, of Stamford, Conn., Petty Officer 1st Class (Parachutist) Christopher G. Campbell, 36, of Jacksonville, N.C., Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist) Jared W. Day, 28, of Taylorsville, Utah, Chief Petty Officer John W. Faas, 31, of Minneapolis, Minn., Chief Petty Officer Kevin A. Houston, 35, of West Hyannisport, Mass., Lt. Cmdr. Jonas B. Kelsall,  32, of Shreveport, La., Master Chief Petty Officer Lou J. Langlais, 44, of Santa Barbara, Calif., Chief Petty Officer Matt D. Mason, 37, of Kansas City, Mo., Chief Petty Officer Stephen M. Mills, 35, of Fort Worth, Texas, Petty Officer 1st Class Jesse D. Pittman, 27, of Ukiah, Calif., Senior Chief Petty Officer Tommy A. Ratzlaff, 34, of Green Forest, Ark., Chief Petty Officer Robert J. Reeves, 32, of Shreveport, La., Chief Petty Officer Heath M. Robinson, 34, of Detroit, Mich., Petty Officer 2nd Class Nick P. Spehar, 24, of Saint Paul, Minn., Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist) Michael J. Strange, 25, of Philadelphia, Pa., Petty Officer 1st Class (Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist) Jon T. Tumilson, 35, of Rockford, Iowa , Petty Officer 1st Class Arron C. Vaughn, 30, of Stuart, Fla., and Petty Officer 1st Class Jason R. Workman, 32, of Blanding, Utah. Members of the Army killed in the Chinook helicopter were Sgt. Alexander J. Bennett, 24, of Tacoma, Wash, Chief Warrant Officer David R. Carter, 47, of Centennial, Colo, Spc. Spencer C. Duncan, 21, of Olathe, Kan., Patrick D. Hamburger, 30, of Lincoln, Neb., Chief Warrant Officer Bryan J. Nichols, 31, of Hays, Kan. Members of the Air Force killed in the were Tech. Sgt. John W. Brown, 33, of Tallahassee, Fla., Staff Sgt. Andy W. Harvell, 26, of Long Beach, Calif., and  Tech. Sgt. Dan I. Zerbe, 28, of York, Pa. Members of the Navy EOD killed in the Chinook helicopter were Chief Petty Officer (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist/Diver) Nick H. Null, 30, of Washington, W.Va. , and Senior Chief Petty Officer (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist) Kraig M. Vickers, 36, of Kokomo, Hawaii.
 
 
Officer Roy Sims
August 5, 2011 - Montgomery, Ohio - Age 51
 

Officer Roy Sims, 51, was struck and killed on a motorcycle on 8/5/11 while escorting a hearse during a funeral. He was off duty and on private detail at the time. At 11:39 a.m. Officer Sims had just cleared an intersection and was accelerating to get to the front of the line of cars when the hearse make a right turn and hit Ofc. Sims’ Police motorcycle  at Gate of Heaven Cemetery entrance on Montgomery Road. The impact threw Officer Sims  27 feet and his head struck a curb, sustaining significant head trauma.  Sims was alert and talking to rescue workers immediately after the accident.   He was transported by ground to Bethesda North Hospital. And was pronounced dead around 3 p.m. Roy worked for the Covington Police Department beginning Sept. 22, 1988 where he was a K9 Handler through Sept. 1, 2008, retiring as a Sergeant. He then started work as an  Officer for the Northern Kentucky University Police Department . Sims' personnel file was filled with commendations and letters of appreciation for his service in both the military and in law enforcement. He served in the United States Armed Forces and was a Gulf War Veteran. When his K9 partner "Cliff" died after working with him for seven years, Officer Sims laid his canine officer pins on the dog's coffin at the memorial service for Cliff.  Sergeant Sims final act of service to his community was to donate his tissue and organs in the hopes of improving or extending the life of another. He was a Schutzhund Trainer  Officer Sims is survived by his wife, Lori Brockell Sims, twin sons Matthew and Daniel, Ryan, Cory and daughter Emily Sims. . A fund made to Roy Sims Memorial Fund has been set up through the Bank of Kentucky.

 
Trooper Fred Guthrie Jr.
August 1, 2011 - Holt County, Missouri - Age 46
 
 
Trooper Fred Guthrie, 46, drowned on 8/1/11 while on duty in the area of Route 118 and Route 111 in Holt County Missouri. Trooper Guthrie was on river flood patrol duty at the time. He was last seen having lunch with other troopers at 1:00p.m. on 8/1/11. At 3:00 p.m. his work vehicle was found with the engine running with the drivers door open and with boat still attached to a trailer and Trooper Guthrie could not be located. His K9 partner “Reed”, a German Shepherd and five year veteran of the patrol was found dead in the water on 8/2/11 at 6:25 p.m. The K9 was recovered about 100 yards away from where Trooper Guthrie’s vehicle was found. No one saw Trooper Guthrie enter the water so it is not known why he entered the water. Trooper Guthrie had been in law enforcement for seventeen years. On August 27, 2008, Officer Guthrie was presented with The Medal of Valor by Gov. Matt Blunt. Trooper Guthrie was presented the award for saving a woman on June 22, 2007 from drowning in Smithville Lake. The award is presented to public safety officers who have exhibited exceptional courage, extraordinary decisiveness and presence of mind, and unusual swiftness of action, regardless of his or her personal safety, in the attempt to save or protect human life.  This act is deemed to be above and beyond the call of duty. Trooper Fred Guthrie's body was never recovered. He is survived by his wife and three children ages 14 to 20 years old.  Donations can be made in care of the Guthrie Family Fund, Bank of Weston, P.O. Box 8, Weston, Missouri, 64098.

A judge legally declared him dead in September of 2011. At a funeral service on Dec. 14, 2011, a casket was buried that held memorabilia of the trooper, as well as the cremated remains of K9 Reed. Officers  carried baskets filled with yellow tennis balls into the church. Guthrie had used tennis balls to train Reed. After the service, many of the law enforcement officers joined a procession that traveled nearly 80 miles to the Knob Noster Cemetery in Knob Noster. The procession, led by police motorcycles with emergency lights flashing, included Guthrie’s truck and boat.  

The body of Trooper Fred Guthrie Jr. was found January 12, 2012 , approximately 2:00 p.m. in a brush pile near the spot where the remains of his canine partner, Reed, were found. Guthrie's body was found about 200 to 300 yards from where he disappeared over five months earlier. Trooper Guthrie was unearthed from “several feet” of sand by a crew from Hill Brothers Construction, a company that had been contracted by the Missouri Department of Transportation to rebuild the highway and fill a four-acre gap in Missouri Highway 111 with silt from nearly 44,000 acres of flooded farmland.

 
Sgt.  Christopher M. Wrinkle
July 31, 2011 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 29
 
Sgt. Christopher M. Wrinkle, 29, of Dallastown, Pa., died July 31 while supporting combat operations in Helmand Province, Afghanistan. Wrinkle was assigned to 2nd Marine Special Operations Battalion, Marine Special Operations Regiment, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command, Camp Lejeune, N.C. He died while trying to save his military working dog Tosca, who died in the fire that swept through his barracks and also killed two other Marines, Staff Sgt. Patrick R. Dolphin, 29, of Holly Ridge, North Carolina and  Sgt. Dennis E. Kancler, 26, of Brecksville, Ohio. K9 Tosca's ashes were in the church next to Sgt. Wrinkle and were buried together. Sgt. Wrinkle spent almost ten years serving with the U.S. Marine Corps Special Operations Command based at Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina.  Wrinkle had been awarded two purple hearts, Combat Action Ribbon, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Global War On Terrorism Service Medal and Sea Service.  Contributions can be made  to the Sgt. Christopher M. Wrinkle and Tosca Memorial Fund care of Metro Bank. The funds will benefit the Courtyard of Honor at Dallastown High School and the U.S. War Dog Association.
 
 
Deputy Bryan Phillip Gross
July 28, 2011 - Douglas, Wyoming - Age 29
 

Deputy Bryan P. Gross, 29, died while on duty on 7/28/11, three days before his 30th birthday, after responding to an emergency call about a person being swept away in the North Platte River. He drowned while participating in an effort to rescue a juvenile female who had been reported struggling in the river about 5 p.m. The 14 year old girl was in town for a 4-H fair. She was distraught with her boyfriend, and she jumped in the river. The girl entered the waterway near the Douglas Yellowstone Bridge, which joins both sides of Douglas, 50 miles east of Casper. Gross had entered into the river from one side while several others swam in from the other. After the girl was rescued about a mile downstream by Douglas Police Officer Jeremiah Owens along with two citizens, Keith Thompson, 19, and Lane Morgan, 16, from the river. Then upon a personnel check with those involved in the rescue, some concern was raised after Deputy Gross failed to report in and a search was started to locate him forty five minutes later. His vehicle was located on Pearson Street near the river, and his vest, boots, shirt and duty belt were located a short distance away near the river. The girl after being rescued  was taken to Memorial Hospital and remained   hospitalized. The North Platte River was higher than normal following heavy snows last winter and the river was running at 6,620 cubic feet per second at a nearby gauging station. The flow averages only 2,110 cfs on the same date over the past 60 years. People with expertise participating in the search and utilizing everything at their disposal were divers, people on jet skis, other water craft, along with planes, National Guard helicopter,  a Black Hawk helicopter from Francis E. Warren Air Force Base, teams of cadaver dogs,  and about fifty law enforcement that walked along the river. Deputies remained stationed on two bridges during night time and used searchlights powered by generators to maintain a watch on the river. Deputy Gross's K9 partner "Gus" was also used in the search to try and find his handler. Deputy Gross's body was recovered from the waters of the North Platte River in Douglas approximately 66 hours later by divers on 7/31/11 at 11:20 a.m. between the I-25 Bridge site and Anderson Dairy Bridge, 1.5 miles downstream from where he  was last seen entering the river. Deputy Bryan Gross is being hailed as a hero for attempting to save the girl from the high-flowing North Platte River in the town of Douglas. Deputy Gross had worked at the police department as a drug officer, handling a narcotic canine. Gross had been with the Converse County Sheriff's Office for approximately three months. Prior to joining the sheriff's office, he had been a member of the Douglas Police Department.  His K9 partner was "Gus". Deputy Gross is survived by his wife, Amy Spruiell Gross who he married 27 days earlier. Donations to the family of the fallen deputy can be made at the Converse County Bank, 322 Walnut Street, Douglas, 82633

 
Officer Brent Daniel Long
July 11, 2011 - Terre Haute, Indiana - Age 34
 
 
Officer Brent Long and his K9 partner Shadow were both shot on 7/11/11 in Terre Haute, Indiana while serving a warrant issued by a Sullivan County judge to Shaun M. Seeley, 33, at a home on 1812 north 8th Street after Seeley missed a court appointment. Originally officers arrived at the home at 2:00 p.m.  to arrest Seeley but no one answered the door. In looking for Seeley, U.S. Marshal Greg Snider and ISP Sgt. Chris Effner found three stolen all-terrain vehicles behind the residence. A check of those ATVs revealed that one had been hot-wired, another had a false vehicle identification number and another one had been reported stolen and the vehicles were confiscated from the scene. Approximately 3:15 p.m.,  police received a telephone call that Seeley was at the residence, so they returned to serve the warrant. At 3:27 p.m. officers arrived back at the home and knocked for a while and heard footsteps and scuffling noises inside the residence. The house was equipped with video surveillance cameras that would have allowed the home's occupants to watch approaching officers. Heather Elkins and Utterback came to the door. Both denied that Seeley was inside. Police entered the apartment and found three other people inside. All five people were taken out of the residence and asked if Seeley was inside. All five people were shown a color photo of Seeley and all denied knowing him, or that he was inside the apartment. Long and his dog, Shadow, were the first to enter the gunman's home ahead of five other officers as a team of state and local police and a deputy federal marshal were going to serve Seeley an arrest warrant for violating probation and receiving stolen property.  When Officer Long and his K-9 partner Shadow went into the apartment to look for Seeley, Officer Long's K9 partner "Shadow"  indicated that someone was possibly inside a closet. Trooper Jason Schoffstall was with Long, and said the dog indicated on the bedroom closet door a second time. Long went inside the closet and attempted to remove a board or false wall at the rear of the closet and according to Schoffstall that is when Seeley open fire with a 9mm, blue steel, semi-automatic handgun striking Officer Long and his canine partner "Shadow". Long was backing out of the closet during an exchange of gunfire, and Schoffstall exited the bedroom to seek cover. Officer Scott Marshall entered the bedroom, and immediately faced Seeley, who was pointing a gun at him from five to six feet away. Marshall saw Long on the floor with his head toward the bedroom door and his feet toward the closet. Marshall reported that gunfire was exchanged and all police inside the apartment exited to a position of cover. They were repelled from the building by more gunfire and when they made final entry into the apartment to remove Long, police found Seeley in the living room of the residence, dead with multiple gunshot wounds to his lower torso and one gunshot wound to the head and was pronounced dead at the scene. Officer Long was taken to Union Hospital in Terre Haute and was airlifted to Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis and died. Officer Long was wearing his vest at the time but died from two gun shot wounds to the head. Officer Long's K9 partner "Shadow" was shot in the face and rushed to North Heritage Trails Veterinarian Clinic in Terre Haute but due to the damage to his jaw, he was later transported to a clinic at Purdue University and survived and was later released from the veterinary hospital on 7/15/11. Officer Long donated his organs so other people will have a chance to live. Long has been an officer with the department for six years.  He's worked as a K9 officer for the past three years, as well as with the swat team. Officer Brent Long's wife, Danielle, is a dispatcher for Vigo County and was sending crews for Terre Haute police the afternoon her husband was shot. Officer Long received several commendations in his career, including two Grand Cordon Medals, an Honorable Service Medal, a Unit Citation Medal, a Good Conduct Medal and the Medal of Honor. Just two days prior to his passing, Officer Brent Long won the department's Officer of the Month award for June for being one of two officers who stopped a car on the interstate and took a man into custody that was wanted for murder,  made a huge drug bust in which 6 and a half pounds of cocaine was found and also among a group of officers who convinced a man to put down a knife that was being held against the woman's neck.  Before Officer Long was killed he had a tattoo of his K9 partner "Shadow" that he had placed on his back and was often heard saying Shadow would always have his back. K9 Shadow attended his partner's service and funeral. K9 Shadow will be retired and will live with the Long family. Officer Long's funeral was attended by approximately twenty-five hundred people and over one hundred police K9's, each of them walking passed the flag draped casket. Carnations, with a dot of red, signifying the officer's bloodshed were placed on Officer Long's casket, as they said their last goodbyes. Officer Long was buried at Mount Pleasant Cemetery on 7/18/11. "Brent D. Long Memorial Way" is the first street in Terre Haute to be named after a fallen officer. At a special ceremony in honor of Officer Brent Long, Officer Long's wife, Danielle, was escorted into his patrol car unit 208 and spoke over his radio, saying "Baker 208 10-42" signifying Officer Brent Long has ended his final shift with the Terre Haute Police Department.  He is survived by his wife Danielle Bailey Long, 11-year-old daughter Ashley, and 10-month-old son Levi. Donations can be sent to the Brent Long Family Fund at any First Financial Bank location. Those wishing to support "Shadow" may send donations to the Terre Haute Police Department K-9 program.
 
Shaun M. Seeley who was shot and killed at the scene was released from the Indiana Department of Correction in February 2010 after serving five years of a 12-year sentence for dealing methamphetamine. That conviction came in September 2005 in Vigo County. Prior to that, he was sentenced to one year in prison on a theft conviction out of Greene County. His first conviction came from a notorious Vigo County murder case In 1998, Seeley was convicted of assisting a criminal. In this case, Seeley helped Billy Burns dismember the murdered body of Robert Philips. Burns shot Phillips during a drug deal gone bad. Burns used Seeley's gun, and Seeley offered up a relative's property to dispose of Philips's body. While Burns got a 55 year prison sentence, Seeley received only 4 years and did only two years in prison. Seeley had been arrested in Clay County in June 2010 for resisting law enforcement. He was found at a location where federal agents were serving warrants in a federal drug investigation. He also had an active court case in Sullivan County for receiving stolen auto parts and being a  habitual offender. That Sullivan County case was filed in September 2010 after Seeley was found to be in possession of a stolen pickup truck. The habitual offender information stated Seeley had prior convictions for assisting a criminal, dealing methamphetamine and theft. If convicted of being a habitual offender, he could have received several additional years in prison.
 
Three days after the shooting on 7/15/11, Indiana arrested seven people in connection to the crime scene that led to the deaths of Terre Haute Police Officer Brent Long and shooting suspect Shaun Seeley. Those arrests and pending charges are Heather M. Elkins, 22 (Wife of Shaun Seeley) – Maintaining a common nuisance, receiving stolen property, all class-D felonies resisting arrest,  possession of paraphernalia, and false informing, all class-A misdemeanors. Police  found that Elkins had received text messages from Seeley, indicating that she was in contact with the fugitive and that she knew he was inside the house. Heather Elkins has a criminal history that includes pending cases for possession of methamphetamine, paraphernalia, disorderly conduct, driving while intoxicated, driving without a license, theft, resisting arrest and visiting a common nuisance. She had been released from jail on pre- trial  release.  (Elkins has several charges pending for another case in Vigo County.) Bond: $65,000. - Jesse E. Padgett II, 20 (Cousin of Heather Elkins) – Assisting a criminal, receiving stolen property, resisting law enforcement, all class-D felonies, resisting law enforcement and false informing, class-A misdemeanors, and visiting a common nuisance, a class-B misdemeanor. Bond: $40,000. - Brandy Smith (Jesse Padgett's girlfriend): visiting a common nuisance  - Charles J. Elkins, 23, (Brother of Heather Elkins) – Assisting a criminal, receiving stolen property, resisting law enforcement, all class-D felonies, visiting a common nuisance and resisting law enforcement, both class-A misdemeanors. Charles Elkins has a criminal history that includes a conviction for auto theft, as well as arrests for resisting law enforcement and possession of methamphetamine in Division 5 court.  Bond: $40,000. - Roberta J. Utterback, 51, (Shaun Seeley's cousin) Assisting a criminal, possession of a controlled substance, resisting law enforcement, all class-D felonies, resisting law enforcement, class-A misdemeanor, and visiting a common nuisance, a class-B misdemeanor. Utterback has criminal cases pending in Division 5 Court for possession of a controlled substance, criminal mischief and driving under the influence of a controlled substance. (Utterback has several charges pending for another case in Vigo County.) Bond: $70,000. - Virginia D. Torres, 23, (Charles Elkins' girlfriend)  Assisting a criminal, resisting law enforcement, both class-D felonies, false informing and resisting law enforcement, both class-A misdemeanors, and visiting a common nuisance, a class-B misdemeanor. Bond: $40,000. - Luke Green (Friend of suspects): possession of methamphetamine.  Reports say police found Charles Elkins, Jesse Padgett, and Virginia Torres inside the home. They also denied knowing that Seeley was at the home and armed. Following the gun fire, police again asked Heather Elkins, Charles Elkins, Padgett, Utterback, and Torres if they knew of Seeley’s presence in the home. They denied knowing he was there and armed. On 7/15/11, Heather Elkins and Jesse Padgett made official statements to the Indiana State Police and Elkins admitted to having lied to police about knowing of Seeley’s whereabouts when she was asked at the scene. Padgett also admitted to having known Seeley was hidden in the bedroom closet when police entered the home. Padgett said he was aware that Seeley had taken a firearm from the side of the bed. Padgett told investigators he saw Seeley with a gun inside the apartment, and that Padgett said he was scared that Seeley would do something dangerous.  Based on Padgett’s reports, Elkins then told the rest of the people in the house to remain quiet and “not say a thing.” Padgett also admitted that he was aware of a recent semi-automatic firearm that was purchased by Seeley from someone in the neighborhood. Virgina Torres also made a statement to the Indiana State Police. Her statement coincided with Padgett’s statement. She also reported pandemonium ensued after Elkins emerged telling the others to remain quiet with police outside. Torres told investigators that Seeley searched for an item, allegedly the handgun, before going into the bedroom with Padgett and Charles Elkins prior to police entering the residence.  Investigation into the residence after the crimes revealed a white powder substance that Elkins and Padgett reported to be methamphetamine, as well as paraphernalia including pipes and scales. Scott Griffy,40, sold gunman Shaun Seeley a 9 mm handgun even though he knew Seeley was a convicted felon. Prosecutors said it was illegal for Griffy even to possess a handgun because of his own criminal record. Prosecutors said Griffy could face up to 10 years in prison and be fined $250,000 on each of three federal firearms counts — unlawful sale of a firearm to a prohibited person, unlawful possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and unlawful possession of ammunition by a convicted felon. A federal judge accepted guilty pleas from two of the seven people charged in the death of Terre Haute Officer Brent Long on 12/13/11. Griffy pleaded guilty to illegally posessing and illegally selling that gun. Padgett pleaded guilty to making a false material statement to police the day they tried to serve the warrant. Griffy told police he brokered a gun deal between Brad Keller, 48, and Seeley for 3.5 grams of methamphetamine.
 
 
 
Deputy Sheriff Kyle David Pagerly
June 29, 2011 - Albany Township, Pennsylvania - Age 28
 
 
Deputy Kyle Pagerly, 28, was shot and killed on 6/29/11 while trying to serve a warrant in Albany Township in Pennsylvania. The incident started at approximately 6:30 p.m. when state police, U.S. marshals and Berks County sheriff's deputies serving as marshals went to the Pine Swamp Road address to arrest Matthew Connor on charges of burglary, criminal trespass, violations related to the sale of firearms, terroristic threats, simple assault and recklessly endangering another person. The charges were related to an incident two days earlier at two homes in the first block on Pine Swamp Road for threatening his father, his sister, girlfriend and a family friend visiting the home by firing several rounds from two different handguns into the ground in front of them and telling them "yeah you better run,".  Two days before the shootout, Connor had said he wouldn't go down quietly. At one point, Connor put a revolver to his mouth acting as if he was going to shoot himself in front of his family. Upset that he ran out of ammunition from a revolver and a handgun, Connor went back into the family's house and retrieved a bulletproof vest and a shotgun, which he fired several times before heading into the woods. He has threatened in the past to want to provoke the police so they would shoot him, suicide by cop.  Connor's father, Maurice, is a retired Cherry Hill, N.J., police officer. Matthew Connor ran out of the back of the house and into the woods while his girlfriend was talking to police.  With authorities following him into the woods. As Canine Deputy, Kyle Pagerly, a Berks County sheriff's K-9 member moved up over a rise in the terrain, Connor rose up in complete camouflage including his face had a camouflage mask, his hands in camouflage gloves, and he was armed with two guns, two knives, and large capacity magazines with an AK-47. Authorities told him to drop the weapon and when he didn't, gunfire was exchanged  killing Connor and mortally wounding Pagerly. After Pagerly was shot, Jynx grabbed his partner's pants leg and tried to pull him to safety. Deputy Kyle Pagerly, who was wearing a vest was shot several times with at least one bullet the penetrated the vest, was pronounced dead at 8:44 p.m. at Lehigh Valley Hospital after being airlifted to the Salisbury Township facility. Matthew Connor, 25, of the first block of Pine Swamp Road, was killed at the scene.   After the shooting Matthew Connor's father gave police a suicide note left by his son. Pagerly served in the Army in Kosovo (2002) and Iraq (2003 and 2004). He was a military police officer. He joined the sheriff's department in 2006, according to the website. The K-9 Corps was formed in 2008. He also was a lieutenant in the Spring Township Fire Department. His K9 German Shepherd partner “Jynx” was not injured. Pagerly's badge number, 27, was permanently retired and K9 Jynx was retired from the force officially on 7/28/11 and given to the family. Jynx  retired from the force with full benefits. His medical care, grooming, boarding and food have all been donated for the rest of his life. In the days after Pagerly's death, Jynx would upend the clothes hamper, root out his T-shirts and sleep with them. Thousands attended Pagerly's funeral. Hundreds of K9 officers and their dogs also gathered for the service. Pagerly's  K9 Jynx, sat with the fallen deputy's family in the front row at the Sovereign Center for the service.  K9 Jynx was presented with the Berks County Sheriff Department's Medal of Honor for his lifesaving efforts on the night of the shooting. The Berks County Sheriff's Department honor guard conducted a 21-gun salute and the playing of Taps. Approximately three thousand people attended Pagerly's service. Kyle Pagerly is survived by his wife, Alecia Anne (Bird), whom he married December 12, 2007.  who is three months pregnant. Contributions may be made to the Kyle Pagerly Memorial Fund or the Berks County Sheriff's Department Honor Guard Fund., Attn: Sheriff's Dept, 633 Court St., Reading, PA 19601.

Maurice Connor, 72, and Jared Engleman, 28, who were accused of facilitating the death of a Berks County sheriff's deputy Kyle Pagerly, ended in October of 2013 with mistrials for both in Berks County. Pretrial publicity forced the cases to be moved to another venue. Jurors will be selected for the trials again for both  on March 4, 2014 and Senior Judge John Uhler will preside over both cases in the Northampton County Courthouse. The trials will run back to back. Berks County officials charged the two men for allegedly helping Matthew Connor acquire the assault rifle he used to fatally wound Berks County Sheriff's Deputy Kyle Pagerly. Authorities believe Maurice Connor gave his 25-year-old son, Matthew Connor a handgun and $200 to buy a rifle. Engleman of Shoemakersville, Pa., allegedly sold Matthew Connor the AK-47 he used to kill Pagerly.

During Maurice Connor's trial on March 4, 2014, after the trooper's testimony, the trial went on a two-hour break. After it reconvened Maurice Connor was willing to accept a no-contest plea bargain. Maurice Connor's plea agreement was to a charge of providing a firearm to a felon. By not contesting the allegation, he acknowledged that prosecutors could prove it beyond a reasonable doubt and treated the same as a guilty plea when the defendant is sentenced. In return for the deal, prosecutors agreed to drop additional charges, including illegal possession of a firearm and conspiracy to illegally possess a firearm, among others. York County Senior Judge John Uhler delayed sentencing until a pre-sentence report can be completed on Maurice Connor's background.

 
Sgt. Brett Patrick Benton
June 4, 2011 - Laghman Province, Afghanistan - Age 37
 
Sgt Brett Benton was killed on 6/4/11 near Alingar District, Laghman Province, Afghanistan. He was working with DynCorp Technical Services, a defense contractor, and  had only been in Afghanistan for three weeks when a improvised explosive device detonated near his vehicle killing him. He went to Afghanistan to train Afghan police officers.  Brett Benton had served with Kenton County Police Department for 10 years and had started their K9 program. Sgt. Brett Benton after graduating from high school, went to the National Guard, and then while he was still in the Guard he worked at the state police post in Richmond as a dispatcher and then he worked for the Nicholasville Police Department, and then he went on to the Kenton County Police Department. His K9 partner was "Tommy". He is survived by his wife of nine years, Bethany Foster Benton.  Donations are suggested to the Kentucky Fallen Officers Trust at www.klemf.org or Kentucky Special Olympics Torch Run at www.kytorchrun.org.
 
 
Officer Jefferson "Jeff" Patrick Gerald Taylor
June 3, 2011 - Kansas City, Missouri - Age 31
 
 
Officer Jefferson “Jeff” Taylor, 31, was struck by lightning on 5/23/11, while helping people from the Joplin tornado disaster. Jeff and another Officer were returning to their base camp on their ATVs when lightning struck the ground between two Officers, rendering them both injured, though the second officer was able to return to work. Shortly after, emergency workers on scene were able to perform successful CPR efforts. Officer Taylor died at St. John’s Hospital on 6/3/11 at  9:25 a.m. He had undergone successful skin graft surgery and was being treated for other complications related to injuries he suffered in that incident when he died. Taylor is the first officer in the history of Riverside Police Department to die in the line of duty. He began his law enforcement career in Webb City, then served on Platte County Sheriff Department, before his current post with Riverside Department of Public Safety. He joined the Riverside Police Department in 2005 and was named Officer of the Year in 2008. While departing this world he was still able to save five more people.  His liver and kidneys are being donated to those waiting and three more lives will be spared due to Jeff's generosity. Approximately 1,000 people attended his funeral. Survivors include his wife, Kelly and sons, Caden , Cameron and his K9 "Flash". An account has been established in honor of Officer Taylor to assist his family with expenses: Taylor Benefit Account, K.C. Police Credit Union, 2800 East 14th Street, Kansas City, MO 64127.
 
 
Sgt.  Aaron J. Blasjo
May 29, 2011 - Wardak Province, Afghanistan - Age 25
 
Army Sgt. Aaron J. Blasjo, 25, of Riverside, Calif., and his Military Working Dog, Hunter, assigned to the 3rd Special Forces Group, Fort Bragg, N.C.; both died May 29 in Wardak province, Afghanistan, of wounds sustained when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device while on patrol in a Humvee. There were also two other Green Berets  in the vehicle that were killed along with Sgt. Blasjo, Captain Joseph Schultz,36, of Port Angeles, Washington and Sgt. Martin R. Apolinar, 28, of Glendale, Arizona . Sgt. Blasjo entered the Army in July 2004 and was selected for the elite Green Berets after extensive testing and training in 2006 . After completing basic training and Airborne School at Fort Benning, Ga., Blasjo was assigned to 1st Special Warfare Training Group (Airborne) where he completed the Special Forces Qualification Course in December 2006 as a Special Forces communications sergeant. Upon completion of SFQC, he was assigned to Group Support Battalion, 3rd Special Forces Group (Airborne), headquartered at Fort Bragg, N.C. Blasjo had deployed three times to Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. His military education includes: Basic Infantry Course, Warrior Leader's Course, Advance Leader's Course, Basic Airborne Course, Advanced Pistol Marksmanship, SOC AM General Driving Course, Special Forces Qualification's Course, Special Forces Communication Sergeant's Course, and Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape Course. Blasjo's military awards and decorations include the Bronze Star Medal, Purple Heart; Army Commendation Medal; Army Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Army Service Ribbon, NATO Medal; Special Forces Tab; Combat Infantryman Badge; Parachutists Badge. He was laid to rest in North Carolina at Riverside National Cemetery. He is survived by wife Crystal, and son Talon, eight weeks old. On May 1, 2011, Aaron Blasjo left for a nine-month deployment to Afghanistan when his son Talon was only 5 weeks old.
 
 
LCpl.  Peter J. Clore
May 28, 2011 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 23
 

Lance Corporal Peter J. Clore, 23, of New Philadelphia, Ohio, was killed by enemy small arms fire on May 28 while serving in Afghanistan. He was a certified Explosives Detector Dog Handler, a position that put him ahead of his unit as they made their patrol. Clore and his Military Working Dog, Duke, were leading a unit in seeking out improvised explosive devices when he was shot by small-arms fire. His Military Working Dog, Duke, survived. He enlisting in the U.S. Marine Corps in 2008. He was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Lejeune, N.C. His first deployment came in 2009 as part of the 22nd Military Expedition Unit, Detachment A. In January, 2010, Peter was deployed to Haiti to assist in providing earthquake relief. Later in the year, he became a certified dog handler for the Marine Corps, preparing for the deployment to Afghanistan in March of 2011. Memorial contributions be made to the Peter Clore Memorial Fund in care of Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 139 Third Street NE, New Philadelphia, OH 44663.

 
Trooper Shaft Sidney Hunter
 
May 21, 2011 - Maryland - Age 39

Maryland State Trooper, Shaft S. Hunter, 39, died in the line of duty when his police car slammed into a tractor-trailer on Interstate 95 at 2:40 a.m. while pursuing a speeding motorcyclist. The patrol car hit the rear of the tractor trailer and then traveled down the side of the trailer, coming to rest near the front of the trailer. The accident happened on I-95 South near the entrance of a rest stop south of route 32 in Howard County. Hunter was pronounced dead at the scene. The truck driver, Albert Sandino, 46, of California was not injured in the crash. He had been parked for about 15 minutes as he checked for directions. Sandino was pulling a trailer of household bleach from Aberdeen, Md., to Virginia. The motorcyclist, who was described as wearing a white helmet, has not been located. Hunter was wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash. Hunter joined the state police 11 years ago, after a stint with the Marines. The state police recruited him out of the Marine Corps. He was elected president of the 114th Trooper Candidate Class and spoke at his academy class graduation in June 2000. He went on to become Trooper of the Year, and worked with a task force that played a key role in catching the D.C. snipers. Hunter did moonlighting as a security guard at restaurants, stores and movie theaters to provide for his six children. Hunter was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut and graduated from St. Joseph's in 1990. Hunter, then a starting defensive back and running back, on Cadets teams that won back-to-back state titles in 1989 and `90, when he was a junior and senior. He held a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice from St. Augustine College in Raleigh, North Carolina. After college, he joined the United States Marine Corps, where he served from 1994 to 2000. He was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps with the rank of captain.. When his police dog, Bear, was recently retired from the force and Hunter took it home to live with his family. Hunter’s casket was carried to its final resting place by U.S. Marines. A traditional police burial was held for Trooper Hunter which included bagpipe players, a gun salute and an honor guard presentation at the Fallen Heroes Memorial section of the Timonium cemetery.   His German Sheppard, Bear, was brought to the funeral as well. Bear, 8, retired from police duty in 2009.   His children were ages 4 to 19.  All donations will be used to provide for the education of Hunter's six children. To donate to The Hunter  Children's Scholarship Fund donations can be sent to any M&T Bank branch in Maryland or can be mailed to M&T Bank, 207 Bowie Road, MD 20707.

 
Capt. John Albert Struk
April 19, 2011 - Warren, Maine - Age 67
 

Captain John Albert “Cal” Struk, Maine State Prison-retired, 67, died April 19, 2011, at his home following an extended illness, his loving family. For more than 23 years, he served as a corrections officer at Maine State Prison, retiring as a captain in 2003. He was a founding member and team leader for the MSP K9 Unit. While serving that unit his most special dog was his partner, Mac, a bloodhound who specialized in mantracking/search and rescue. He served several years with the U.S. Air Force Reserves. He is survived by his wife, Joy Ellen Mansfield Struk and three daughters, Jennifer S. Struk, Teresa M. Fish, and Karen E. Struk. Honors were rendered by the Maine State Prison Honor Guard. Memorial donations may be made to the American Cancer Society, New England Division Inc., 1 Bowdoin Mill Island, Suite 300, Topsham, ME 04086; or the Humane Society of Knox County, P.O. Box 1294, Rockland, ME 04841.

 
Sgt. Ian Jones
March 2, 2011 - West Mercia, England - Age 53
 

Sergeant Ian Jones, 53, a member of West Mercia Police’s Dog Section, died suddenly from heart problems on March 2, 2011.  Sgt. Jones had been a member of the force for 25 years. He is survived by his wife Carol and five children, Sam, Mark, Hannah, Jodie and Zoe. Sgt.  Sgt Jones’ two police dogs – Dig, a general purpose dog who retired years ago but stayed with the family and Bertie, a drug dog who he helped train from a puppy – were at the funeral.

 
Lance Corporal Liam Richard Tasker
March 1, 2011 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan  - Age 26
 

Lance Corporal Liam Tasker, 26, from Kirkcaldy in Scotland, was killed in the Afghanistan War by a snipers bullet in Helmand Province on 3/1/11 and his springer spaniel Theo died a few hours afterwards from a seizure, some say from a broken heart. The inseparable pair worked together searching for hidden bombs and weapons. L/Cpl Tasker, of the 1st Military Working Dog Regiment, was on patrol with Theo when he was engaged in a fire fight and was struck and killed instantly. He joined the army in 2001 and was originally a vehicle mechanic in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers then transferred to follow his passion for dogs in the Royal Army Vetinary Corps in 2007 where he became a star trainer. In 2010, he was posted to 104 Military Working Dog Squadron, St Georges Barracks, North Luffenham, Rutland, part of the 1st Military Working Dog Regiment. He deployed to Afghanistan on September 8, 2010 as an Arms and Explosives Search dog handler and was attached to 1st Battalion Irish Guards on 19 February 2011.  Lance Corporal Tasker and K9 Theo had been in Afghanistan for almost six months, uncovering roadside bombs and weapons in a dusty, dangerous daily routine.  He and his dog had more operational finds than any individual team has had in Afghanistan to date and he saved many lives as a result of this. Twenty two-month-old Theo had discovered a record-breaking 14 secret caches in five months. The ministry said then that Theo had been so successful, finding 14 hidden bombs and weapons caches, that his tour of duty had been extended by a month.  During the funeral route the mourners threw red, yellow and white roses onto the roof of the hearse which contained the coffin draped in a Union Jack. Many, from across the country, took along their dogs and lined the streets to pay their special respects to the army handler. The ashes of his Springer spaniel had been returned to RAF Lyneham in Wiltshire on the same flight from Afghanistan. Theo's ashes were not included in the cortege. A dozen dog handlers from police and prison forces around the country were among the crowds who also lined the streets. Theo's ashes are to be presented to L/Cpl Tasker's family at a later date during a private ceremony. Theo was the sixth British military dog killed in Iraq or Afghanistan since 2001. Theo was awarded the PDSA Dickin Medal known as the animals' Victoria Cross, at Wellington Barracks, London. The award is the highest accolade any animal can receive in recognition of devotion to duty in saving human life while serving in military conflict. It was established by the veterinary charity's founder, Maria Dickin, in 1943. L/Cpl Tasker’s father mentioned that his son Liam had been due to leave Afghanistan soon and was worried about being separated from K9 Theo but said now he doesn’t have to worry about that anymore, they will always be together. L/Cpl. Tasker is survived by his his mother Jane Duffy, his father Ian Tasker, his brother Ian, and his two sisters Laura and Nicola and his fiancee Leah Walters, age 33.

 
Cpl. Joseph "Marc" Matthews
February 16, 2011 - Hinesville, Georgia - Age 50
 
 

Cpl. Joseph "Marc" Matthews, 50, of Hinesville  passed away on Feb. 16, 2011, at Candler Hospital after a short illness. After graduation, he joined the United States Army where he would serve 21 years as a military police officer. Marc was a kennel master and K-9 handler. After his retirement in 1999, he worked for the U.S. Marshal Services at the federal courthouse in Savannah before joining the Hinesville Police Department in 2001. During his time of employment with the Hinesville Police Department he also worked as an officer, was promoted to the rank of corporal and was a K-9 handler. He is survived by his wife of 25 years, Mi Suk Matthews, daughter, Ashley Matthews, son William Matthews and his faithful K-9 partner, Brad. Remembrances may be made to Hinesville Korean Full Gospel Church, 758 Tupelo Trail, Hinesville, GA. 31313 or First United Methodist Church of Hinesville, 203 N. Main St., Hinesville, GA 31313.
 

Col. Greg Guy Malloy
February 2, 2011 - Bonifay, Florida - Age 44
 

Col. Greg Malloy, 44, of DeFuniak Springs, a Florida corrections officer, was shot and killed on 2/2/11 while assisting in a manhunt. Malloy was working as part of the Holmes Correctional Institution's K-9 tracking team, which was assisting the Holmes County Sheriff's Office in the search for Wade Andrew Williams, an ex convict. Williams, 35, was wanted in the double homicide of his parents, Bruce and Sharon Williams in their Cottondale home in Florida. Both parents were killed on 1/26/11. A warrant had also been issued for Wade Williams for his arrest on a charge of grand theft auto. Wade Williams then fled to the Choctawhatchee River Management Area where he burned his father’s truck.  Williams subsequently camped in the management area evading arrest until confronted by a hunter, Thomas Crews, at approximately 8:00 a.m. when he came upon Wade Williams laying out some laundry at a  camp site.  When Thomas Crews encountered a man meeting Williams’ description and started talking to him. Wade Williams said he was going to kill him and fired eight shots from a .22-caliber rifle in Thomas Crews direction and Thomas Crews took cover behind a tree and returned on shot from his .30-06 rifle but missed. Wade Williams than ran off into the woods. Thomas Crews suffered a minor chest wound from shrapnel. Thomas Crews then called 911 and notified police of the incident and about  20 minutes later approximately 40 officers and a helicopter were searching for Wade Williams in the wooded area with a  nearly impassable swamp near a river. Thomas Crews helped police in a search for Williams because he was familiar with the area. After approximately one hour the tracking team encountered gun fire and Col. Greg Malloy and Wade Williams were both shot during the exchange of gunfire. Wade Williams was killed and Malloy was loaded on to a boat, then transported to a landing where a medical helicopter was waiting. Malloy, was airlifted to Fort Walton Beach Medical Center, where he later died. A second K9 officer, Arthur Teal,  was also wounded by a bullet that grazed him and was taken by ambulance for treatment. The hunt for Wade Williams had taken searchers to Alabama and Georgia, and multiple agencies were involved in the manhunt. Malloy started working at the Holmes County Correctional Institution in Bonifay for the Florida Department of Corrections in 1988 when he was 22 years old. He spent 19 years in Oka-loosa County. He also worked for the Washington Correctional Institution, now called the Northwest Florida Reception Center, and the To-moka Correctional Institution in Volusia County. He was promoted to colonel, the highest corrections officer designation, in Holmes County on July 23, 2010. Approximately fifteen hundred people attended the funeral and at the grave site bagpipes were played and a 21 gun salute was given. Col. Malloy leaves behind his wife Donna Sue Malloy and a 12 year old daughter, Payton Sue Malloy. Holmes Correctional Institute has set up a memorial fund for Colonel Malloy’s daughter and memorials may be made in Colonel Malloy’s memory to Holmes Correctional Institute, 3142 Thomas Drive, Bonifay, Florida 32425.

Wade Andrew Williams, who was shot and killed on 2/2/11, previously had a record and had been released from the Tallahassee Work Release Center in August 2009. He was sentenced to three years in prison after being convicted of several burglary and grand theft charges in 2005 and 2006.

 
PC John Burke
January 27, 2011 - East Lothian, Scotland - Age 41
 
 
Police Constable John Burke, 41, from Musselburgh, East Lothian, was found dead on 1/28/11 by a person taking a walk. He had served with Lothian and Borders Police force for 22 years. PC Burke was found in the Cowpits area of Musselburgh - a quiet part of the town which is surrounded by fields. John Burke received a posthumous bravery award in March of 2011 for an incident that happened in 2010 and will also receive a long service and good conduct medal at the ceremony in Edinburgh.  An investigation is on going under the mysterious circumstances of his death. He leaves two children, ages 12 and 16.
 
 
Officer Jeffrey Adam Yaslowitz
January 24, 2011 - St. Petersburg, Florida - Age 39
 
 
Officer Jeffrey A. Yaslowitz 39, was shot and killed on 1/24/11 in St. Petersburg, Florida. Officer Yaslowitz, who was going in on a shift he normally does not work, filling in for an injured officer who had broken his finger, had just started his shift and volunteered to assist at the scene where a warrant was being served on fugitive Hydra Lacy Jr., 39, at 6:58 a.m. on an aggravated battery charge. When the officers arrived at the house Christine Lacy told the officers that Lacy was in the attic and might have a gun. They had been looking for Lacy for weeks and had been to the house before on 3700 block of 28th Avenue South in St. Petersburg and immediately called for back up at 7:07 a.m. Also there to serve the warrant was Sgt. Tom Baitinger, 48, a fouteen year veteran, who had been working with St. Petersburg police since 1996. After attempting to talk the man out of the attic Officer Yaslowitz and Deputy U.S. Marshal Scott Ley made entry into the attic. At 7:29 a.m., the first gunshots rang out  and were immediately shot. Officer Yaslowitz had left his K9 partner "Ace"  in his SUV. Another officer was able to pull the deputy marshal from the attic but was unable to reach Officer Yaslowitz. The suspect then fired from the attic, striking Sergeant Baitinger who providing cover from the main level. Sgt. Tom Baitinger  was  shot and killed in the house along with Officer Yaslowitz . Also Deputy U.S. Marshal Scott Ley, 45, a twenty one year veteran, was shot twice and survived. One bullet was stopped by Ley's vest but a second bullet struck penetrating his lower abdomen. A standoff lasted for hours and a gun firefight which resulted in over two hundred shots being fired.   After the gunfight, authorities had tried to force the gunman out with tear gas at 8:57 a.m. and by cutting off the home's electricity and water. Earlier, police used a vehicle to punch a hole in the wall to get to one of the officers who later died. The home is situated in a middle-class neighborhood on the south side of St. Petersburg and was destroyed in the shooting incident. A Department of Homeland Security armored tactical vehicle parked nearby, and a  police tank was also trained on the home.   Dr Steven Epstein was at the scene and immediately attended to Officer Yaslowitz and accompanied him to the hospital in the ambulance at 9:25 a.m.  Officer Yaslowitz and Sergeant Baitinger were both transported to Bayfront Medical Center  where they were pronounced dead. Autopsy reports show Officer Yaslowitz was shot twice in the head with a 9MM Taurus belonging to Lacy. Baitinger was shot in his chest just above his vest traveling downwards into his torso and also a wound to his lower right back where the bullet struck his protective vest. Baitinger was shot with a 4O/10MM having been fired from Officer Yaslowitz's .40 caliber Glock. Lacy was found dead in the home hours after the shoot out at about 2:00 p.m. amid the rubble of the home where he made his last stand. Lacy, the suspect was shot in the left chest, right leg, right buttocks, hip, right middle finger and three times to his arm / forearm. It is estimated lacy fired approximately 29 rounds before he died. Officer Jeffrey A. Yaslowitz, 39, began his law enforcement career with the St. Petersburg Police Department on April 19, 1999. Yaslowitz was one of 12 K9 officers on the St. Petersburg Police force. He had previously graduated from St. Petersburg Police Canine Academy with his K9 dog Shadow and worked with his canine partner "Ace" for the last two years who was then given to the Yaslowitz family. At the church service "Amazing Grace" , "My Chains Are Gone" and "There Will Be A Day" were sung. Yaslowitz's and Baitinger's police vehicles were parked hood to hood, wreathes on each. Officer Yaslowitz's K9 Ace attended the service. At the funeral a bugler played taps, bag pipes played Amazing Grace, there was an honor guard and a color guard, twenty-eight horses and riders line up outside the church, including two riderless horses with empty saddles, 21 gun salute, white doves were released, and seven helicopters flew overhead in a V-shape. The U.S. Coast Guard helicopter trailed off, symbolizing the lost officers. Approximately 10,000 people were on hand to pay their respects at his funeral. Officer Yaslowitz is survived by his wife of seventeen years,  Lorraine, son Caleb, 12; daughter Haylie, 8; and son Calen, 5; and K-9 partner "Ace". Anyone wishing to donate funds to the two families can send contributions to: Suncoast Law Enforcement Charities, Inc. 14141 46th Street North, Suite 1205 Clearwater, Florida 33762  Tel.727-532-1722.

Hydra Lacy had a long record that includes convictions for armed robbery and sexual battery. At age 17, Hydra Lacy Jr. was sentenced to four years for grand theft auto, attempted murder, aggravated assault and resisting arrest with violence. He served two years. Seven months after his release, he was arrested for kidnapping, aggravated child abuse, sexual battery with a weapon or force and battery on a law enforcement officer. A 16-year-old High School student told police she and Hydra Lacy dated briefly in 1991, but she broke it off. A few months later, she said, Lacy grabbed her outside her apartment one night, forced her into his car, then hit and raped her repeatedly. That earned him a 15-year prison sentence. He was released in 2001 after serving nine. He was listed as a sex offender with the state and had failed to register in December of 2010 with the Pinellas County Sheriff's Department as required. Deputies had been looking for him since then, and the sheriff's and police departments had issued bulletins on 1/21/11 for authorities to be on the lookout for Lacy. He was convicted of a car jacking in Jefferson County near Tallahassee when he was just 17 years old. He did time in 1990's after being convicted of aggravated assault, grand theft and resisting arrest with violence in Pinellas county just after his 18th birthday.  Lacy was sent back to state prison less than seven months after he got out, and this time he'd spend nine years in prison before being released . In 1992 he was convicted of sexual battery, false imprisonment of a child under 13 and again violence against law enforcement . He was granted a conditional release from state prison March 4, 2001. According to the Florida Department of Corrections, he violated the terms of his conditional release and returned to prison May 29, 2008. But the Parole Commission released him less than a week later. His conditional release supervision ended in November of 2008. In June 2009, he was back in court in Pinellas County and charged with aggravated domestic battery for beating his wife Christine Lacy, and false imprisonment. He admitted attacking his wife with two swords. Her injuries included being stabbed in the face and leg, a broken nose, two black eyes, cuts and bruises on the back of her head.  He broke several liquor bottles over the victim's head and was out of work for about six weeks. Lacy was ordered to have no contact with his wife, but he ignored the order and called his wife from jail at least 15 times. He bonded out of jail but skipped a court date on November 1, 2010. The court sent an electronic warrant for his arrest to the sheriff the next day, court records show. Given his record, a conviction could have sent him back to prison.  Hydra Lacy's brother, Jeff Lacy, is a professional boxing champion.

 
Sgt. Zainah Caye Creamer
January 12, 2011 - Kandahar Province, Afghanistan - Age 28  
 

Sgt. Zainah Caye Creamer, 28, of Texarkana, Arkansas was killed on 1/12/11 at approximately 0500 hours while serving in Kandahar province, Afghanistan. Sgt. Creamer is the first  female war-dog handler that has been killed in action in any U.S. war. She suffered wounds when insurgents attacked her unit with an improvised explosive device. Sgt. Creamer and the dog were doing their job, carrying out "a route and building clearance mission" when the blast occurred. Creamer, who was single, was assigned to the 212th Military Police Detachment, Headquarters Battalion at Fort Belvoir. Sgt. Creamer had been in the Army for six years and three months and had been assigned to the 212th since October of 2009. This was her third deployment and her first as a Military Working Dog handler.  Creamer and her canine partner, Jofa, left for Afghanistan on Oct. 26, 2010. They were attached to the 2nd Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment when the incident occurred. K9 Jofa was not injured in the attack and the family of Sgt. Creamer plan to adopt K9 Jofa. Sgt. Creamer received several awards and decorations during her 6-years of service. These include the Iraq Campaign Medal with Bronze Service Star, the Afghanistan Service Medal with Bronze Service Star, the Global War on Terrorism Medal, the Combat Action Badge, the Expert Rifle Badge, the Army Commendation Medal, and the Army Achievement Medal.  At the memorial ceremony, the US government  conferred on Creamer the Bronze Star Medal, the Purple Heart Medal, the NATO Medal, and the Meritorious Service Medal. Sgt. Zainah Creamer was buried in the Philippines where her mother lives on 2/4/11.  

 
 
Lance Cpl. William “Billy” H. Crouse IV
December 21, 2010 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 22

Lance Cpl. William “Billy” H. Crouse IV, 22, and his K-9 officer, Cane, were killed on 12/21/10 in Afghanistan. Crouse,  and his K9 partner "Cane" were killed by an improvised explosive device while on patrol. At the scene of the blast Crouse was conscious enough to ask for his bomb dog, Cane, to be transported with him on the helicopter but  they  could not save K9 Cane. Crouse died at a hospital from cardiac arrest after being taken there from the field. It was Crouse's first tour of duty; he had been in Afghanistan for only six weeks when the blast occurred, and it was Cane's third tour of duty. The two were in Helmand province and assigned to 1st Battalion, 10th Marine Regiment, 2nd Marine Division, II Marine Expeditionary Force based at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina. He joined the Marine Corps in November 2007 and was promoted to lance corporal August 1, 2008. He was born in Angola, Indiana and later moved to Fort Wayne, Indiana, and then to Clinton, South Carolina, in the mid 1990's with his family. He earned the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and was posthumously awarded a purple heart for his service. His funeral was held on 12/29/10  with  a burial in Covington Memorial Gardens with full military honors rendered by the U.S. Marine Corps. Memorial Donations may be made to: the Arthritis Foundation, Fairview Missionary Church, Stroh Church of Christ, the Wounded Warrior Project or the Save the Children Organization.   

 
Chief Tommy Taylor Summerville 
December 9, 2010 - Eutaw, Alabama - Age 56
 

Eutaw  Police Chief Tommy Summerville, 56, died from complications during heart surgery on 12/9/10 at St. Vincent’s Hospital in Birmingham. He had been on the force for the past 33 years. He joined the Eutaw Police Force in 1977. He was certified as an NRA Police Firearms Instructor, and he was chosen as an "Outstanding Young Man of America" in 1986. In March 1998, Tommy was named Assistant Chief of Police. In March 2000, he was certified by the Alabama Canine Law Enforcement Training Center and became the narcotics dog handler. In September 2007, Tommy became the Chief of Police. He was the department's first K-9 officer and for several years he and his K-9 partner "Rain" visited many schools and gave demonstrations to the students. He was a dog handler before he made chief and kept on as a dog handler because that is what he loved doing. He is survived by his wife, Gloria Leavelle Summerville and his son, James Lowery Summerville. The family requests that donations be made to the city of Eutaw earmarked to purchase a new narcotics dog.

Pfc. Colton Wesley Rusk 
December 6, 2010 - Helmand province, Afghanistan - Age 20
         
         
         
 Pfc. Colton W. Rusk, 20, of Orange Grove, Texas, died Dec. 6 while conducting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan.  He was assigned to the 3rd Battalion, 5th Marine Regiment, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force, Camp Pendleton, Calif. He was fatally shot while searching with his K9 Eli, a black Labrador retriever,  along with six other Marines in the attack. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps on November 2, 2009 and was serving his first combat deployment where he was serving as a K-9 handler. He was chosen to be sent to South Carolina to American K-9 Interdiction to train for Improvised Explosive Device Detector dog handler.   Certified on 6-18-10.  It was here that he and Eli became a team. He along with Eli left for Afghanistan on his 20th birthday 9-23-10.  His awards include, the Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and Afghanistan Campaign Medal. Pfc. Colton Rusk was buried on 12/18/10 at Orange Grove Cemetery in Texas where approximately one thousand mourners paid their respects. In lieu of flowers  the family has requested donation be made to the Colton Rusk Memorial, C/O Value Bank Texas, P.O. Box 4956, Corpus Christi, Texas 78469. In an unofficial ceremony in February of 2011 at Lackland Air Force Base, Eli was  adopted to the Rusk family in Orange Grove, Texas, to live out his life in peace.

Sgt. Roderick Dalton 
November 16, 2010 - Syracuse, New York - Age 45
 

Sgt. Roderick Dalton, 45, died unexpectedly at Community General Hospital  on 11/16/10 after a short illness. was one of the commanding officers of the department's K-9 Unit. Sgt Dalton served the Syracuse Police Department for the last 22 years.  He leaves behind his K9 partner Niko. Memorial contributions in memory of Rod may be made to Syracuse Police department P.B.A., 511 S. State Street, Syracuse, NY 13202.

Sgt. John Jeffrey Gates 
October 10, 2010 - Cicero, New York - Age 64

Sgt. John Jeffrey Gates, 64, of Cicero, NY, died at home on 10/10/10. He was recognized as one of the state's founding fathers of modern police dog training. He was renowned for helping the state develop its canine training and certification and also for helping to create the canine units for the Syracuse police and other agencies. In the early 1980s, Gates became handler for Central New York's first police dog, Shamus, Gates trained more than 200 dogs in his career and traveled to Europe to study the dogs in their natural environment. He also helped train police dogs in the Czech Republic and Israel, as well as across the United States. Dogs that Gates trained assisted in the seizure of millions of dollars in drug money and the arrest of hundreds of criminals. Sgt. Jeff Gates, is 32-year member of the Onondaga County Sheriff's Office and retired from there in 2006.  John was an Air Force veteran, serving during the Vietnam War. Gates' ashes was spread along the canine training course in Camillus, and the dogs and their handlers  passed by to offer tribute. Sgt. John Gates is survived by his wife, Donna (Sobello) Gates; two sons, Christopher (Toni) Gates and Matthew (Jeanna).

Staff Sgt. Brian Michael Carragher
September 18, 2010 - California City, California - Age 29
 
 

Staff Sgt. Brian Michael Carragher, 29, was shot to death with a 9mm semi-automatic on 9/18/10 shortly after 5:30 p.m. in front of his California City home in the 8900 block of Walpole Avenue as he tried to tell a man to leave his home.  Carragher was found bleeding severely in the street and was airlifted to Antelope Valley Hospital and pronounced dead there about an hour later. Carragher was shot at five times and struck four times.  Staff Sgt. Brian Carragher was shot three times in the back and once in the back of his upper right arm. The suspect, 26-year-old Timothy Aaron Atkins had pulled a gun from his pickup truck, shot Carragher and then fled the scene. Officers later found his vehicle in the 20300 block of 87th Street and arrested him without incident. Atkins ex-girlfriend, Brooke Youngo, was renting space in Carragher's home along with her new boyfriend, Matthew Pearman. Pearman was a security officer at Edwards Air Force Base. Atkins drove over to the home to speak with Youngo and he brought a gun with him in case he wanted to shoot Pearman. Carragher was at a local motorcycle shop with his girlfriend, MIchelle Jones, at the time Atkins came to his home. Pearman answered the door and told Atkins he could talk with Youngo, but he had to go across the street to do so. Atkins and Youngo went near Atkins' pickup and talked. Pearman went to the motorcycle shop to tell Carragher what was going on. Carragher returned home and began talking to Atkins, telling him to leave. That's when Atkins reached in the truck and fired at Carragher. He joined the Air Force in 2003 to become a K-9 officer. Carragher was a military working dog handler assigned to the 95th Security Forces Squadron and stationed at Edwards Air Force Base and had just returned home from his second tour in Iraq on August 1, 2010. Atkins also recently returned to California City after serving two tours in the Army in Iraq. Carragher and his wife, Jackie, bought the home on Walpole Drive around October 2009. Brian Carragher had filed for divorce on 9/16/10. He is survived by his wife of six years, Jackie, and twin four-year-old daughters Maddison and Hayley.  He is also survived by his military working dog, Eddy. "Because of his age, Eddy was soon to be retired and Sgt Carragher was going to adopt him. Donations can be made out for his daughters' college fund. Send Donations made out to Hayley and Maddison Carragher at Summit National Bank, P.O. BOX 395, Baggs, WY 82321.

Timothy Aaron Atkins was arrested on 9/18/10 and held without bail and charged with 1st degree murder.  Atkins made his first court appearance on 9/21/10 for arraignment for the shooting death of Air Force Staff Sergeant Brian Carragher and was delayed until 9/29/10 and ordered held in jail on $1.5 million bail. On his court appearance on 9/29/10 Atkins pleaded not guilty and being represented by attorney Richard Terry . Further hearings were set Nov. 22 & 23, 2010. with  Atkins remaining in custody in lieu of posting $1.5 million bail. In March of 2012, Atkins pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter, and a first-degree murder charge was dismissed. Atkins got credit for 679 days - 591 days for time served and 88 days for good behavior - as part of his six year sentence.

Sgt. Thomas Moore "T.A." Alexander  
September 11, 2010 - Rayville, Louisiana - Age 57
 

Sergeant Thomas Alexander was shot and killed on 9/11/10 while responding to a burglary in progress in Richland Parish. A woman had called 911 at 9:04 p.m. to report the sound of breaking glass. Sergeant Alexander, who was the closest officer to the location, despite the call coming from outside of the city limit responded at 9:15 p.m. Sergeant Alexander was the first officer to arrive at the scene and checked on the victim and entered the building without backup. Three suspects were hidden inside and ambushed Sergeant Alexander and opened fire as he conducted the search and approached a closet. Sgt. Alexander was shot numerous times and pronounced dead at the scene. Responding deputies heard the shots as they arrived on the scene and took one of the suspects, Robert J. Walker, who was hiding under a bed, into custody inside the home. The two other suspects, Anthony D. Oatis was arrested two hours later in Richland Parish and Richard L. Long was arrested the next day in Monroe were apprehended a short time later. He received many commendations and certificates of appreciation for his outstanding and dedicated service. Sergeant Alexander had served with the Rayville Police Department for 13 years and had previously served with the Richland Parish Sheriff's Office for seven years. He is survived by his wife Mary Louise Alexander, and four daughters, Deborah Jackson (Willie), TaShekia V. Alexander, Amelia Alexander, and LaDeanna Davis along with his K9 partner "Stef". His son, Thomas Cherdale Alexander, preceded him in death. Over one thousand people attended Sergeant Thomas Alexander's funeral. 

Robert J. Walker, 52, of Rayville and Anthony D. Oatis, 30, and Richard L. Long, 33, both of Monroe, were arrested and indicted on first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder charges and conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary, and aggravated burglary on 9/13/10 and are currently being held without bond. All three had previous records, Long has been arrested several times in Ouachita Parish on charges ranging from forgery to second-degree battery. Oatis has been arrested in Ouachita Parish on similar criminal charges as Walker and Long. On 10/20/10 Anthony D. Oatis entered his plea of not guilty. On 6/15/11 Robert Walker pled guilty in Fifth District Court to Second Degree Murder on the condition to cooperate in the prosecution of the pending cases against the alleged shooter Richard Long and co-defendant Anthony Oatis. Second Degree Murder carries life imprisonment without parole, probation or suspension of sentence. Bond was set for all three and are being held on $1.25 million bond.

Sgt. Brigham Scott Strole 
September 1, 2010 - Lakeville, Minnesota - Age 46

 

Sgt. Brigham Strole was killed after being thrown from his motorcycle while off duty at about 9 p.m. on 9/1/10 which happened one block from his home. There were no other vehicles involved and investigators think he might have hit the curb or a pot hole in the road. Strole was ejected from the motorcycle and airlifted to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, where he died. The accident, which happened on Jordan Court just south of the intersection with Jonquil Avenue. Strole was not wearing a helmet. He was as a K-9 officer for seven years. He and his canine partner Blue were considered one of the top teams in the country, at one point ranked 13th nationally. Strole also served as a member of the SWAT team, as an instructor for firearms and defensive tactics, and as a field training officer. Sgt. Strole was a 20-year officer of the Lakeville Police Department and received numerous commendations and awards during his career. Strole leaves behind two teenage sons, Jacob and Jenna Strole and their mother, Lynn Strole. Memorials may be sent to the Sgt. Brigham Strole Memorial Fund, c/o M&I Bank, 17636 Kenwood Trail, Lakeville, MN 55044.

 
Maj. Paul A. Egli 
August 31, 2010 - Fort Stewart, Georgia  - Age 54
 
 
Paul Egli died 8/31/10 in his Fort Stewart, Georgia  apartment building 9727, after medical services received a 911 call.  Maj. Egli was to retire in just two weeks from the U.S. Army. Paul served proudly on the Franklin TN Police Department for 10 years from 1994-2004 where he was a K-9 officer with his partner Kahn. Winning awards at the National level, they were also recognized by the FBI for assisting in the capture of six escapees from Alabama known at the time as "The Alabama 6" in 2001. The duo was involved in the apprehension of several felons. Paul was selected as an assistant professor of military science in the ROTC Program at the University of Hawaii.  Egli was a major with the U.S. Army, and a military police officer. Egli joined the Army in 1981. He deployed twice, first in support of Desert Shield/Desert Storm and most recently to Operation Iraqi Freedom and was last assigned to Fort Stewart, Ga. Paul was buried with full military honors. Donations may be made to any of the following charities that meant a lot to Egli: Seeing Eye Dog Organization; The American Heart Association; St Jude Children's Hospital. He is survived by his wife, Vicky Egli; children, Jon-Thomas Egli, Emma Egli, Katie Egli, and Erin Dolezal.

Sgt. James Roger Ide V 
August 29, 2010 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 32
 
Sgt. James R. Ide V , 32, from DeSoto Missouri, was killed in Afghanistan on August 29, 2010. He was a canine handler of a Belgian Malinois bomb-sniffing dog named Daphne and was working with her at the time of his death when he his unit was attacked by small-arms fire and shot in the head in Afghanistan's volatile Helmand province. Ide was certified to train the dogs and other dog handlers. Ide joined the Army after graduating from DeSoto High in 1997.  He was assigned to the 230th Military Police Company, 95th Military Police Battalion, 18th Military Police Brigade, 21st Theater Sustainment Command, Sembach, Germany. He had previously served a tour of duty in Korea and two tours in Iraq. Ide's wife, Mandy, and two children, Trinity, 7, and James VI, 16 months, live in Germany. Memorial donations may be made to the James R. Ide Living Trust, 2839 Meyer Road, Festus, MO 63028. Memorials preferred to: (1.) Eagle Bank, 680 South Mill,Festus, MO 63028 or The James R. Ide V Children's Trust, 2839 Meyer Road, Festus, MO 63028 (2.) Calvary Chapel, C/O Pastor David Ball, PSC 2 Box R7664, APO, AE 09012. (3.) Arise Medical Missions, P.O. Box 3331, Lynchburg, VA 24503, www.arise.ms/home.html. (4.) K-LOVE Christian Radio, P.O. Box 2098, Omaha, NE 68103-2098, www.klove.com, (5.) The Voice of the Martyrs, P.O. Box 443, Bartlesville, OK 74005, www.persecution.com,  (6.) Support Dogs, Inc., 11645 Lilburn Park Rd, St. Louis, MO 63146, http://supportdogs.org,

Cpl. Max W. Donahue 
August 7, 2010 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 23
 
   
 
 
Cpl Max W. Donahue 23, died Aug. 7 of wounds received Aug. 4 in Helmand province, Afghanistan. He was from Highlands Ranch, Colo.; assigned to I Marine Expeditionary Force Headquarters Group,  Camp Pendleton, California. He was a working dog handler who enlisted in the Marine Corps in July 17, 2006. He previously served two tours in Iraq. His Awards and Decorations include the Purple Heart, Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign, two Iraq Campaign Medals, the Global War on Terrorisiom Service Medal, NATO ISAF Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, and a Certificate of Commendation. When Donahue joined  he was assigned K9 Fenji. Cpl. Donahue worked with K9 Fenji none stop before our deployment to make sure she was ready and he also was partnered with K9 "Paco".

Lance Cpl. Jeffrey R. Standfest 
June 16, 2010 - Helmand Province, Afghanistan - Age 23

Jeff Standfest, 23, of China Township in St. Clair, Michigan, died while supporting combat operations in Helmand province, Afghanistan on June 16, 2010. He was killed by an IED. Jeff Standfest was deployed in April for his first tour of duty. Standfest, recently returned to duty after suffering a concussion in an explosion in an incident that killed his bomb sniffing K9 in May of 2010. He had returned to duty with a new K9 in which he was killed in this incident. Jeff Standfest was a canine handler and a combat engineer. Standfest was assigned to 3rd Combat Engineer Battalion, 3rd Marine Division, III Marine Expeditionary Force, based at Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, Calif. Standfest had been awarded the Purple Heart, Combat Action Ribbon, National Defense Service Medal, Afghanistan Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal and the NATO Medal. The Corporal had enlisted in the Marine Corps in October 2008. He is the son of Detective Timothy Standfest, of the Clinton Township police who is a 25-year law enforcement veteran specializing in fraud investigations.

 
 Flyveroverkonstabel Martin Kristiansen  
June 13, 2010 - Afghanistan - Age 33
 

Flyveroverkonstabel Martin Kristiansen, 33, was killed on 6/13/10 and four other Danish soldiers with him were wounded when their M113G3 APC tank was hit by an IED in the region of Forward Patrol Post Budwan. All the soldiers were immediately evacuated by helicopter to the field hospital at Camp Bastion. Martin Kristiansen was declared dead on arrival. Flyveroverkonstabel Martin Kristiansen of the Royal Danish Air Forcewas posted to Afghanistan as a dog handler by the Engineers Regiment, based in Skive. His dog Loke was with him at the time of the attack and was also killed.

 
 
Darren Smith 
June 7, 2010 - Afghanistan - Age 26
 

Darren Smith, 26, a K-9 handler was killed along with his K9 Herbie, a 3 1/2 year old Collie Cross, by a road side bomb in Afghanistan while on patrol for his country of Australia on June 7, 2010. His friend, Jacob Moerland, 21, found the explosive device and sounded a warning. He then called up his friend Darren Smith along with his K9 partner Herbie.  As they approached the device, it detonated. A Taliban insurgent had detonated the device by remote control.  Both Darren Smith and Jacob Moerland were from the 2nd Combat Engineer Regiment. This was their first deployment for both soldiers. They were on a routine foot patrol in the remote Mirabad Valley. It was just before lunchtime when an improvised explosive device, or IED, detonated. Darren Smith was killed at the time of the explosion and Jacob Moerland  received emergency first aid from his patrol mates and was subsequently, aero-medical evacuated to a nearby International Security Assistance Force hospital. It took just 38 minutes for a US medivac chopper to get the Moerland to the Dutch-run and Australian-staffed field hospital at Camp Holland in Tarin Kowt where he died from his wounds. Smith's military career commenced as part of the Army Reserve enlisting November 29, 2001 and completing Recruit training in January 2002, serving as part of 3rd Field Squadron, South Australia.  Smith went on to complete his Combat Engineer suite of courses in 2004 and become part of the Australian Regular Army where he was posted to 1st Combat Engineer Regiment in Oct 2004. He completed a number of driver courses up to heavy vehicle and Armored Personnel Carrier.  He successfully completed his Explosive Detection Dog Handler course in December 2006. He completed his Junior Leader Course in November 2008. Smith was posted to 2 CER in January 2009.  He deployed in March 2010. As part of his tour he has been awarded the Australian Active Service Medal with Clasp International Campaign against Terrorism, NATO Service Medal and the Afghanistan Campaign Medal. He also has received his Return from Active Service Badge.  Smith has also been awarded the Australian Defense Medal. In recognition of the bond between the pair, Herbie was cremated in Afghanistan and his ashes returned to Smith's widow, Angela. Smith leaves behind his wife Angela and a 2-1/2 yr old son - Mason who live in Brisbane, Australia.

Sgt. Gert Johannes Du Toit 
June 6, 2010 - Johannesburg, South Africa - Age 32
 
 
Sergeant Gert Du Toit, 32,  an officer of the Joburg  K9 Unit for the past six years, was shot and killed on June 6, 2010, while chasing a group of 15 men who had staged a cash-in-transit heist. The group of robbers - in five cars - struck the Coin truck and its back-up vehicle between 07:00 and 08:00 on the N1 South between the Maraisburg and Nasrec off-ramps. The robbers used two vehicles to force the coin vehicle from the road and then grabbed the bags of cash.  One of the cars, a cream Mercedes bashed into the Coin security vehicle escorting a cash-in-transit van, while a white bakkie and silver BMW pelted the van with bullets before it stopped. The robbers then attacked and shot both coin security guards. The robbers then deserted the two cars and fled the scene in two black Porsche Cayennes to get away. The police spotted them driving on Old Potchefstroom Road in the direction of Soweto and took chase. The suspects opened fire on the police during the chase, hitting Officer Kefwa in the hand. They then raced to Protea South in Soweto, where a gun battle broke out and Du Toit was fatally wounded when he was shot on his left side under his armpit and his body found lying just outside the police vehicle. Du Toit's wife, Alicia, also a police officer  was on duty at the temporary control room set up at the old Brixton flying squad's radio room for the purposes of the World Cup. The shooting took place a short distance from Soccer City. Alicia listened to the events unfolding on the police radio. The robbers fled with an undisclosed amount of cash. Four of the 15 suspects were arrested at the scene. Eight firearms, including an AK-47, three R5, two R4 assault rifles used by SA Police Force members that are used by the defence force were recovered. The police seized three vehicles and eight firearms, which include an AK-47, R4 and R5 assault rifles and a pistol. It was found the BMW was hijacked earlier, the owner made to strip down to his underpants and told to run away into the bushes. Some of the suspects are police  from the Sharpeville and Sebokeng police stations and one arrested was a former employee of the Coin Security. Du Toit is survived by his wife Alicia and their six- year-old stepdaughter Caitlan. 

Officer Bill Evans  
May 20, 2010 - West Memphis, Arkansas - Age 38
 

Officer Bill Evans, 38,  was shot and killed on May 20, 2010 in West Memphis, Arkansas during a traffic stop while "running drug interdiction" on Interstate 40. The events started when Evans stopped a white 1994 Plymouth Voyager minivan with Ohio plates at 11:36 a.m. traveling eastbound on I-40 at Airport Road and then exited the Interstate onto an off-ramp near College Avenue. Sgt. Brandon Paudert, 39, a back up officer arrived on the scene within moments of the traffic stop. The suspects in the white mini van exited the vehicle with AK 47 assault rifles and shot canine officer Bill Evans and his back up officer Sgt. Brandon Paudert. During the shooting canine officer Bill Evan's partner, K9 "Kilo", was in Evan's vehicle. Paudert, the son of West Memphis' police chief, died at the scene and Evans died at a hospital shortly after. Both officers were wearing their vests. The suspects, Jerry Kane, 45, and his son, Joseph Kane, 16, then drove off in the white mini van. About 90 minutes later, a minivan that had been seen leaving the shooting site was spotted in a parking lot of a nearby Wal-Mart. There, it was approached by Crittenden County Sheriff Dick Busby and Chief Enforcement Officer W.A. Wren, who were traveling in the same vehicle. Both officers were wounded in a gun battle initiated by the suspects. Sheriff Dick Busby was shot in the arm and Chief Enforcement Officer W.A. Wren was shot in the abdomen and air lifted to Regional Medical Center at Memphis, where they were in critical condition. Officer  Michael Neal, a Arkansas Fish and Game wildlife officer in his state truck, had rammed the suspect vehicle, preventing an exit of the suspects who were then shot and killed. Neal's bravery likely put a stop to a hail of gunfire that had already wounded Crittenden County Sheriff Dick Busby and his deputy chief, W.A. Wren.  The Kane's family dog "valor" who was in the white van with them was shot eight times died 3 days later. Services for the both officers were held at Lehr Arena four hours apart from each other. Officer Evans K9 partner "Kilo" attended the service along with thousands who paid their respect. Officer Evans was with West Memphis Police Department for nine years. Evans, a 38-year-old father of two who was engaged to be married. Donations can be made to Bill Evans & Brandon Paudert at Suntrust bank or Wachovia Bank.

Jerry Kane had a long history with police and recently complained about being busted at a "Nazi checkpoint" near Carrizozo, N.M., where court records show he spent three days in jail before posting a $1,500 bond on charges of driving without a license and concealing his identity. Warnings were given to officers on July 21, 2004, about Kane, saying he might be dangerous to law enforcement.  Kane had complained in July 2004 about being sentenced to six days of community service for driving with an expired license plate and no seat belt, saying the judge had tried to "enslave" him.  Kane added that he was a "free man" and asked for $100,000 per day in gold or silver.

Sheriff Deputy Ian Michael Deutch
April 26, 2010 - Pahrump, Nevada - Age 27

Sheriff Deputy Ian Michael Deutch, 27, was shot and killed 4/26/10 in a casino parking lot in Nevada. Ian Deutch was driving with a field training officer when they responded after gunfire was first reported at a home a short distance from Terrible's Lakeside Casino & RV Park in Pahrump, Nevada. Sabrina Hepler had called 911 at 3:41 p.m. from her vehicle who told dispatchers that she was in a car and her boyfriend James Lacy Chaffin, 30, was in a pickup, following her and firing at her. She told dispatchers that she was going to the casino to escape him. Dispatchers told her not to do that because she would be heading away from sheriff's deputies who were going to try to pull Chaffin's truck over. She chose to park her vehicle and flee inside the casino anyway, with Chaffin following her. A short time later, Chaffin went back outside the casino, got into his vehicle and began driving around the parking lot. As Deutch and his field training officer were pulling up to the scene, they saw a parked, empty pickup in the parking lot with a white car pulling up in front of them. Because the girlfriend told dispatchers that Chaffin was driving a pickup and that she was driving a car, they got out of their department-issued pickup to look for the suspect inside the casino. But Chaffin was in the car, and in less than two seconds, he fired at least 11 rounds from an SKS Soviet 7.62x39mm caliber  semi-automatic rifle, which had a 30-round clip, striking Deutch five times piercing his body armor as he was just getting out of the driver's side -- three times in the chest and once each in the knee and pelvic area.  When the shooting happened both men were less than twelve feet apart from one another. Surveillance video of the incident showed there was little that could have been done to protect Deutch.  The shooting that killed Deutch was an unprovoked attack. Deputy Doug McKillips, 45, a seven-year department veteran, was with Deutch responding  in a marked sheriff's department pickup truck and escaped injury. A third deputy, Deputy Tom Klenczar, 39, a six-year veteran of the department arrived in a patrol vehicle and shot Chaffin four times in the back as Chaffin shot at Deutch killing the gunman at the scene. James Lacy Chaffin's girlfriend was not injured.  Deutch was flown by medical helicopter to University Medical Center in Las Vegas, where he underwent surgery but died approximately 9:00 p.m.  The whole disturbance began after Chaffin's ex-girlfriend,  refused to talk with Chaffin about the status of their relationship. She had been temporarily staying with a friend and his wife. About 3:30 p.m. she drove to the friends house on Cajon Lane, a block from the casino, to pick up the rest of her belongings. She was about to move to Arizona to stay with different friends,  A "calm, reasonable" Chaffin was waiting for Sabrina in her friends living room. Chaffin was under the impression that his girlfriend was willing to talk. When she refused, Chaffin took her keys and purse and refused to let her leave until she agreed to discuss their situation. He wanted to split everything down the middle because they had been together 12 years. She didn't want to give him a straight answer about if it was over or not, and started yelling and screaming getting Chaffin upset. She finally called police and fled in a co-worker's vehicle. An enraged Chaffin pursued her with a handgun, shooting out a tire and firing multiple shots through the vehicle's back window. A friend  tried to calm Chaffin but it was too late and Chaffin followed her to the casino. Deutch a staff sergeant and squad leader was a meritorious service medal winner and among 752 soldiers with the 1st Squadron, 221st Calvary who had just returned home 2 days earlier from Afghanistan identifying Taliban targets for artillery strikes outside combat outpost Nagil. Ian Deutch was a  ten-year veteran of the Nevada Army National Guard. Sheriff Deputy Ian Deutch joined the department as a patrol deputy on April 12, 2004 and six months later, he was transferred to the K-9 detail and was a canine officer until he was killed. Sheriff Deputy Ian Deutch  was one of Nye County's 108 sworn deputies to cover more than 18,000 square miles. He was assigned to K-9 Patrol with his faithful partner. About 1,000 people attended the memorial service. Deutch's flag-draped coffin was carried in the back of a pickup from the Nye County Sheriff's Office. "Taps" was played by a pair of buglers, riflemen on the roof of the church fired a 21-gun salute, a five-piece police band played "Amazing Grace" on bagpipes and drums, and a police dispatcher went on the radio to broadcast that "K9-3," Deutch's call sign, was at the "end of watch."  K9 Chico attended the service of his handler and was given to Deputy Ian Deutch's family . Deputy Ian Deutch was cremated after the service.  Sheriff Deputy Deutch  left behind a wife, Vicky; a 5-year-old daughter, Savonya; and an 18-year-old stepson, Jonathan and his K9 partner "Chico". Ian and Vicky wed in March 2009, shortly before his deployment to Afghanistan. A memorial fund has also been set up under Deutch’s name at Nevada State Bank, 1301 S. Highway 160, under the account No. 0258040427.

Officer James Franklin Carter Jr.  
April 20, 2010 - Butts County, Georgia - Age 35
 
 
Canine officer Jimmy Carter Jr. was killed in an automobile accident on April 20, 2010 at approximately 9:00 p.m. while en route to work in his own vehicle, a Ford Ranger pickup truck . The crash happened  in Butts County along Keys Ferry Road. Investigators said he traveled off a small rut at the edge of the roadway then came back on the roadway, and then went back to the shoulder. He over-corrected, and the truck rotated around, went off the road sideways and struck a tree broadside with the passenger side door. It was raining and the road was wet at the time of the accident.  Officer Carter was not wearing a seat belt and was killed on impact. Officer Carter served his country in the Army for eight years. He served eleven years with the Henry County Police Department. Officer Carter' leaves behind his two children, Audrey Rose Carter, James F. "Jay" Carter III, ages 6 and 7 and his K9 Blaze.  
 
 
Sgt. Sean Steven Cuccaro 
April 1, 2010 - Sebastopol, California - Age 45
 
 

Sgt. Sean Cuccaro, 45, died on 4/1/10.  Just two days after learning of cancer in his liver, Cuccaro was hospitalized March 26, and his condition deteriorated quickly. Cuccaro joined the Sebastopol Police Department on Jan. 31, 1984, when he was appointed a control aide, and on April 5 that same year, was appointed as a reserve officer taking on his first shift on April 26. He was promoted to dispatcher in July the following year, and finally entered the Police Academy January 1988. Upon his graduation in April, he was appointed a full-time officer. On Nov. 1, 2003, he was promoted to Corporal, and on Oct. 1, 2006, promoted to sergeant, a position he held until his retirement on Aug. 1, 2008 due to a back injury. He served with the Sebastopol Police Department for 25 years and received his Associates Degree in Law Enforcement at Santa Rosa Junior College. During his tenure with the SPD, Cuccaro also served as the K-9 officer with his partners Ike and Raydar. In 1994, Cuccaro was honored, as Sonoma County's Police Officer of the Year for rescuing a Sebastopol resident from a burning building. Approximately one thousand people attended his funeral along with 10 K9 units. He is survived by daughters Amanda Cuccaro and Ashley Cuccaro as well as his service canine, Raydar. Contributions to the Sonoma County Chapter of the American Cancer Society, 1451 Guerneville Road, Suite 220, Santa Rosa, CA, 95403, or to charity are requested.

Cpl. Clovis Wayne "J.R." Searcy
March 6, 2010 - Monroe, Louisiana - Age 33
 

Cpl. J.R. Searcy, 33, was finishing his 12 hour day shift  around 6 p.m. on  3/4/10  when he  arrived at the scene to back up another deputy . Searcy, who was off duty at the time, responded to a call .  He just finished his shift, but went out to assist a fellow deputy. He was responding to a call about a reported aggravated assault on Browning Road near Louisiana 34 in southwestern Ouachita Parish.  It was reported that a suspect, Michael Tanner, 26,  had tried to run people over with his vehicle. When the deputies arrived, they confronted the suspect standing outside of his vehicle. Corporal Searcy had his Taser in his hand, and ordered the suspect to put his hands up who was approximately 15 yards away. As the suspect raised his hands, he suddenly pulled  a .40 caliber handgun that he had concealed in the small of his back, and opened fire, striking Corporal Searcy twice.  Cpl. Searcy didn't have a chance to pull his weapon from his holster. The second deputy returned fire, killing the suspect. Corporal Searcy was taken to St. Francis Medical Center. One bullet went through the brain, and the other was lodged at the base of his brain. His spinal cord was severed. The bullet went in through the armhole of Searcy's bulletproof vest, and ricocheted through the top of his spinal cord. A brain scan conducted two days later found no activity and was pronounced dead around 10:40 p.m., two days later on 3/6/10. Searcy's family was making arrangements with the Louisiana Organ Procurement Agency to allow the deputy to become an organ donor, and so the life support apparatus had remained on. Corporal Searcy had served  with  the Ouachita Parish  Sheriff's Office for eight years. He also served in the United States Air Force 4 years as a military police officer. He was also a successful business owner of C&K Searcy Enterprises, a lawn care business. Approximately 4,000 attended his funeral. Honor guards from Monroe, West Monroe, Louisiana State Police and the Sheriff's Office will participate in the funeral. Kilpatrick Funeral Home donated its services and the burial plot for Searcy. Mulhearn Funeral Home also offered to provide services. Forty K-9 officers and their dogs from various law enforcement agencies lined the cemetery road leading to the grave. The State Police Color Guard conducted a 21-gun salute for Searcy at the cemetery. Horse-mounted officers and K-9 officers were stationed at the cemetery. The U.S. Secret Service contacted President Barack Obama's office to get a letter from the president to present to Searcy's family. "J.R." has worked with the Secret Service when dignitaries came to town.   He is survived by  his  wife, Kerry, of nine years and  three  children, a son Justin, a daughter Maegan and step son Nicholas Lambert.  Donations to the Family of Corporal Searcy can be made at any Progressive Bank at any of the following locations, Monroe: 1411 North 19th Street or 1398 Lamy Lane, West Monroe: 3421 Cypress Street or 701 Trenton Street.,  Winnsboro: 301 Fair Avenue or Bossier: 2600 Beene Blvd with Account Number 4022289.

Michael Tanner has a lengthy record with the sheriff's office. The departments in Monroe and West Monroe had dealings with him many times. He has been arrested more than ten times.  His arrests include anything from drug possession to simple assault. Sept. 19, 2001 - Careless operation of a vehicle, May 30, 2002 - Speeding, June 19, 2002- Drug possession, June 21, 2002 - Careless operation of a vehicle, Dec. 12, 2002 - Illegal deer hunting, discharge of firearms, Oct. 17, 2003 - Following too closely, Jan. 14, 2004 - Reckless operation of a vehicle, June 23, 2004 - Drug possession, June 16, 2005 -  Speeding, July 12, 2006 - Obstructing the view of the driver, June 15, 2006 - Expired license plate, Nov. 8, 2006 - Failure to register, Nov. 29, 2006 - Driving while intoxicated, Feb. 13, 2008 - Criminal trespassing, Nov. 10, 2008 - Driving without proper equipment on vehicle, Nov. 13, 2008 - Illegal passing, June 14, 2009 - Disturbing the peace, Nov. 23, 2009 - Stop sign and yield sign, and Dec. 21, 2009 - Domestic abuse battery.  In December of 2009 Tanner was arrested for domestic abuse against his girlfriend.  She alleged he grabbed her throat and threatened to hit her. His court date on the domestic abuse battery charge was scheduled for March 30, 2010. In 2006, he was arrested for another domestic abuse charge against another girlfriend. In June of 2009 Ouachita Parish deputies picked Tanner up for aggravated assault with a knife, against his father. The two had an argument ending with Tanner pulling a knife on his father.  After initially entering a plea of innocent and failing to appear at one of the court dates, Tanner pleaded guilty to the charge. He paid a fine and courts costs totaling $296.

Capt. Carrie Neff
March 5, 2010 - Los Angeles, California - Age 54
 
 

Captain Carrie Henger Neff, 54, died on March 5, 2010 at 1:30 a.m. after a 4 & 1/2 year battle with ovarian cancer, which was service-related. On May 18, 2010, the Los Angeles County Fire Department honored her and her K-9 partner, Sprocket, on what would would have been both of their birthdays. Carrie Henger Neff was the first woman in the LA County Fire Department's Honor Guard. Her first K-9 partner was Spanner and was certified in accelerant detection and was a duel purpose dog. At the time Spanner  was the only one that they  were aware of in the United States that could actually do both and be accepted as an expert in court for arson. After the death of Spanner, Carrie chose Sprocket as her new canine partner. She also worked with Doc, her search and rescue dog, and partner in California Task Force 2. At the end of his career, Sprocket was also diagnosed with cancer, a tumor in his spleen, which caused severe pain and her husband Bob made the difficult decision to put Sprocket down just a week after Carried died. Carrie was a pioneer, helping to develop the LA County Fire Department's K9 program and served 18 years. Carrie's love for animals was a constant throughout her life. Before going into the fire service, she trained many animals for movies and television shows. When Carrie went into the fire service, she learned what a key element the service dogs play for arson and search and rescue, which was a perfect way for her to use her two passions. She dedicated her career to the development of service dog programs within the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Carrie's last deployment was with her search dog Doc at Hurricane Katrina in 2005. When teams were being deployed to Haiti in January, Carrie was retired, but saw her vision become a reality when the dogs from L.A. County Fire Department, along with other departments, were able to locate human life beneath the rubble. Carrie was a past director of the Canine Accelerant Detection Association and trained with them for many years. She also was a member of the North American Police Work Dog Association. She  also  was honored as WeTIP's Fire Investigator of the Year. Carrie and Bob had celebrated their first wedding anniversary just a few weeks before on Feb. 14, 2010. Carrie chose to be cremated. Carrie is survived by her husband, Bob Neff, also a fellow Captain that retired from the City of Riverside Fire Department. Donations can be made to the Humane Society of Moab Valley.

Ret. Officer Claude "Hal" Rawlinson
February 21, 2010 - Tulsa, Oklahoma, - Age 75
 

Rawlinson, who retired from the Tulsa Police Department as a sergeant in 1981. He died February 21, 2010, at the age of 75.  In  the 1960s, his first K9 partner, "Doc". patrolled together as part of the Tulsa Police Department's new K-9 unit. Rawlinson, launched the unit with another officer in 1962. He served in the Marines during the Korean War. Rawlinson began his career with the Tulsa Police Department in 1961. He received K-9 training in Kansas City, Mo., the next year Rawlinson worked with Doc for years until the dog was diagnosed with brain cancer. In 1966, while Rawlinson was off duty, he "missed death by the skin of his thumb," He was working at a laundry he owned when he heard a traffic accident outside. He went out and saw a man fleeing into a nearby gas station. Rawlinson and an on-duty deputy sheriff followed him into the station's restroom, where the man shoved a German Luger into Rawlinson's stomach. As the man tried to pull the trigger, the web of skin between Rawlinson's thumb and index finger prevented the gun's hammer from firing. He was named Officer of the Month for his bravery. After 20 years of service, Rawlinson retired from the Police Department at age 46 as a sergeant. His wife, Joyce Eudy , died in 1991.  He is survived by three daughters, Rise Bennett, Dana Hardy, and Aubrey Hill; two sons, Randy Rawlinson  and Doug Rawlinson.

 
Officer David Strong
January 19, 2010 - Genesee Township, Michigan- Age 42
 

Officer Strong passed away at his residence on January 19, 2010.  Officer Strong was with the Genesee police for ten years. He was a U.S. Air Force veteran. Surviving are children Hailee, Chance and Christian and their mother, Debra, and his K9 partner Rex.

 
 
Officer Charlie Dallas
January 18, 2010 - Lakeland, Florida, - Age 56
 

Officer Charlie Dallas, 56, a twenty year veteran of the Lakeland Police Department died on 1/18/10 in a two-vehicle collision at 4:20 p.m.  on U.S. 27 and Jackson Street, just south of Lake Wales after his SUV Ford Explorer  overturned and was declared dead at the scene. According to the Florida Highway Patrol the accident happened when Federico Vasquez, 23, of Sebring was driving a 2006 Pontiac G6 south on U.S. 27 and swerved left to avoid hitting a 1989 Ford station wagon, driven by Sharon Kolbinskie, 54, of Lake Wales, who was crossing the road at Jackson Street. Vasquez crossed the median and into Dallas' path. The left side of Vasquez's car struck the left side of Dallas' 2008 Ford Explorer and Dallas lost control of the SUV and it rolled over, throwing him out. Vasquez and his passenger, Katie Boyette, were not injured. Polk County emergency workers called for a helicopter, but by the time it arrived, Dallas had died. Dallas, at the time was working an off-duty detail for Lakeland Regional Medical Center and was not wearing a seat belt. Dallas' passenger, Karyn Spencer, 33, of Lakeland was taken to Lake Wales Regional Medical Center for unknown injuries. Spencer was a Lakeland Regional Medical Center employee accompanying Dallas on a patient transfer. The two were on their way back to Lakeland in the Lakeland Regional Medical Center vehicle. The others involved in the crash were wearing seat belts. Charges in the crash are pending. Officer Charlie Dallas, had been named the department's Officer of the Year in 1996 and 2000.  He was a canine handler for nineteen years and handled 3 dogs in his career and even kept his last dog, Dinx, after he retired. Officer Dallas and his K9 Dynx won top 4-man team honors in the USPCA Region One trials held in Pensacola in 2008 which made it the third year in a row the Lakeland Police Department K-9 Unit claimed the top 4-man team award. Others that comprised the team were Officer Ted Sealey (K-9 Bodo), Officer Jeff Barrett (K-9 Beno), and Officer Rob Manrow (K-9 Bask). The team competed against approximately 50 other teams to win the award. Officer Dallas and K9 Dynx came in 6th in the top 10 individual standings that year. Dallas received the department's Medal of Valor for his actions while catching two murder suspects in 1999. He also received an award after a double murder in 2008 in which  police tracked down the shooting suspect, who was pointing a short-barrel shotgun to his head and threatening to kill himself. Dallas persuaded the suspect to put down the gun and the man was taken into custody. Officer Dallas had planned to retire in a couple of months He is survived by his wife Elaine and their sons Dustin and Justin. The Dallas family is asking that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the K-9 unit of Lakeland Police Department.

Officer Kedar Alexander
January 18, 2010 - Curepe, Trinidad - Age 23

Kedar Alexander, 23, who was employed with K-9 Security Services, was murdered approximately 3.30 p.m. in Curepe.  Security Officer Alexander was on duty at the Jackpot Club Casino when six people ran into the entrance of the casino and one of the men shot him in the head twice killing him instantly before he had a chance to react according to witnesses. The bandits then took Alexander's  Glock 9 mm pistol valued $4,500  , a magazine and 17 live rounds of ammunition valued $150 from his body and entered the casino. Once they were in the casino they  robbed  patrons  and physically assaulted a number of people in there at the time. The accused robbed Paul Gonzales, Camella Ash, Judy John and Oswald John of thousands of dollars worth in cash, jewelry, cellphones, ATM cards  and personal items.  The suspects stole $151,000 cash from the casino’s manager, Billy John, of $151,000, and the casino's a CCTV computer monitor valued $65,000 and  a quantity of video surveillance equipment, including televisions and closed circuit cameras.

Two part-time exotic dancers were among the four people who appeared before Tunapuna Magistrate Ramraj Harripersad and charged with the murder of a security canine officer Kedar Alexander. They were also charged with robbery with aggravation and physically assaulting a number of people who were in the casino. The two women, Kelly-Ann "Foxy" Shortte, 25, and Asha "Shordy" Lee, 16, are from Upper Bushe Street, San Juan, while the men are Anthony "Bussa" Contrera, 26, of Straker Lane, Tunapuna, and Ricardo "Grizzley" Constance, 27, of Mt D'or Road, Champs Fleurs. Magistrate Harripersad remanded the accused into custody and the matter was adjourned to February 8.

Officer Michael McLaughlin
January 10, 2010 - Foster City, California - Age 48
 

Officer McLaughlin passed away of natural causes unexpectedly at his home while sleeping on January 10, 2010.  Officer McLaughlin was a 21-year veteran of the Foster City Police Department. Mike was a well respected member of the Department and well known throughout the State for his experience and expertise with police service dogs. Officer McLaughlin joined the Foster City Police Department in 1989 after serving five years in the United States Army.  He graduated as the "Top Student" from the San Francisco Police Department Academy in May, 1989.  During his career, Mike received numerous commendations and accolades from the public. In April 2006, Mike was credited with saving the life of a 25 year-old man by administering CPR.  In March 2008, he was one of three officers who rescued an intoxicated driver who had driven her car into the Foster City lagoon.  This life saving action was recognized in 2009 by the Peninsula Council of Lions Clubs, when Officer McLaughlin received their Heroism Award. Officer McLaughlin served as a canine officer for 16 years, starting in 1993 and had five different service dogs during his career.  He competed locally and internationally with his canine partners and regularly took high honors during annual canine trials held in the local area. McLaughlin's passion for dogs sent him to Europe several times, landed him on the cable TV program "MythBusters". Around 1993 he started working closely with Witmer-Tyson Imports in Menlo Park, a kennel and import business that provides police dogs and training to 40 law enforcement agencies in the Bay Area. McLaughlin helped train dogs and officers, but he also spent a lot of his spare time at the company's headquarters. In 2007, he also ended up on camera, when an episode of "MythBusters" was staged at the Witmer-Tyson Kennels. During his appearance, McLaughlin brought out a fierce German shepherd named Eewan, who was used to test whether it is possible to effectively distract a guard dog. Over the 16 years he was involved with the kennel, McLaughlin took part in the training of nearly 250 dogs and their handlers. He also got heavily involved in the Menlo Park Schutzhund Club. McLaughlin did well in trials and ended up on a U.S. team that competed in an international police dog competition in Germany in 1998 and also competed in Austria. McLaughlin was known to demanded a lot out of his trainees in the name of quality and safety. He was a well respected canine handler in the community  and trained and worked with police canine handler teams from around northern California.  Mike was well known locally for his community presentations with his various service dogs.  He taught at the Citizens Police Academy and participated in canine demonstrations at Foster City community events, schools, youth groups and was a regular invitee to public canine presentations in several other local communities. Mike's son, Michael Jr. is picking up where his father left off and is a trainer at the Witmer-Tyson Kennels.  Mike is survived by his wife Kathy, sons Mike Jr. and Chris, and daughter Kim age 14. The Foster City Police Officers' Association has established the McLaughlin Family Trust at Merrill Lynch.  Donations can be made by calling 925-945-4882.

Cpl. James Szuba
January 9, 2010 - Mishawaka, Indiana - Age 42
 
 
Mishawaka Police Cpl. James Szuba, 42, and his K-9 partner, Ricky, were killed in a traffic accident on 1/9/10 while on duty at approximately 9:20 p.m.  Cpl. Szuba and the 8 year old K-9 unit dog Ricky were both pronounced dead on the scene. The accident occurred on Byrkit Street just south of McKinley Avenue. Captain Tim Spencer was in an unmarked car and saw an SUV, GMC Yukon,  going 51 in a 30 zone on Fir Road. He turned his lights and sirens on to pull him over. He reported the suspect took off. After a high-speed chase, the suspect hit a fire hydrant but kept going. Spencer then called for backup. Szuba was providing backup for Spencer when the suspect crossed the intersection at the same time as Szuba.  The suspect had swerved around a vehicle parked at the stoplight at McKinley Highway when he hit the oncoming squad car of Corporal Szuba and Ricky. The driver of that vehicle, Shawn Devine, 31, of Mishawaka, was taken to a local hospital for treatment of his injuries. When Officer John Minier with the Humane Society arrived on the scene K9 "Ricky" was taking his last breath. Szuba joined the Mishawaka Police Department on Feb. 26, 2002. Cpl. Szuba was a ILEA firearms instructor and the armor for the Mishawaka Police Department and served eight years with them. K9 "Ricky" was cremated on 1/11/10. and was next to Cpl Szuba during the service and later was decided by the family to keep K9 Ricky's ashes at their home. Thousands attended their service and 150 K9 officers with their K9 partners also attended the service. Pipes & Drums, bagpipe group, along with a color guard and a riderless horse accompanied the hearse into the cemetery as the K-9 officers all saluted. All of the officers in attendance wore upside down white carnations, each with a red dot. The white was to symbolize purity and service and the red dot symbolized the blood Szuba and K9 Ricky shed. At the end of the cemetery service, all officers placed their white carnations, on the cremains of Ricky and the casket of Cpl. Szuba. Szuba is survived by a wife, Debbie, and two children, Joshua James Szuba , who turned 22 two days after his fathers death, and Stephanie Elizabeth Szuba, who is 18. Memorial contributions can be made to two funds, the Cpl. Jim Szuba/Canine Ricky Canine Fund, or the Heroes Section Southlawn Cemetery Fund. The address to send contributions to either fund is the same: Policeman's Federal Credit Union, 1130 S. Main St., South Bend, IN 46601.  

Shawn Devine has been in the police system many times. Devine was first convicted in 1997 when he was 18 years old for violating his learner's permit and disregarding a stop sign. In the course of 13 years, Devine was arrested for six more driving offenses, five of which ended in convictions and four of which were related to alcohol. In a 2002 incident in Mishawaka, Devine smashed into a woman's parked car near the 200 block of East Stanley and drove off. Mishawaka police caught up with the man at a 7-Eleven store where Devine failed multiple roadside sobriety tests and officers also found four unopened cans of "Icehouse" lying on the floorboard of Devine's car. Devine pleaded guilty to driving while intoxicated in the case, in exchange for two other counts being dismissed. He was given one year of probation, ordered to pay restitution and ordered to undergo a substance abuse program, which he successfully completed. Devine also had drunken driving convictions in 2005 and 2006 and a driving-while-suspended infraction in 2007. In the 2006 case, Devine was charged with two Class C misdemeanors along with two Class D felonies for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated after a prior conviction and operation of a vehicle with more than 0.08 percent alcohol concentration after a prior conviction. As part of a plea agreement, Devine pleaded guilty to the first D felony count and the three other counts were dismissed. St. Joseph Superior Judge Jerome Frese then sentenced Devine to a one-year suspended sentence and one year of probation. Devine also was ordered to serve three 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. shifts at the county jail. The 2006 case was the only infraction considered as a felony in Devine's driving history. Police documents from Devine's 2006 arrest say Devine has never had a valid Indiana license and dispatch data showed repeated suspensions and prior convictions on only an expired ID card. On July 20, 2009, in Michigan, a drug informant notified Niles City Police Department he was arrested for the delivery of marijuana at the Wal-Mart, 2107 S. 11th St. When a female driver of the silver SUV in which Devine and another male were riding pulled into the Wal-Mart parking lot about 7:30 p.m. on July 20, 2009, three Niles city police officers (two undercover) were waiting for them. After Devine and the woman went inside the store and returned five minutes later with no shopping bags in their hands, they got into the SUV. Police made a traffic stop on the vehicle and asked, in separate interviews, why the three were at the Wal-Mart, according to police. "All three gave conflicting information as to why they were there," said court records. Police asked the woman driver and Devine if they could search the vehicle and they said yes, but they added that the vehicle didn't belong to them. In a twist of irony, a police dog with a Niles officer discovered marijuana in the back of Devine's vehicle. Police found 10 1-pound bags of marijuana in a camouflage bag. When the three were arrested both Devine and his male friend blamed the other for why they had marijuana in the SUV, court records revealed. Devine was sentenced on Oct. 19 after a plea agreement to two days in jail with credit for two days served. He also was placed on probation for 18 months with several conditions. He was convicted in October and placed on probation, but could face four years for violation of probation. According to the probation terms, Devine was prohibited from drinking and from being away from his Mishawaka house between the hours of 9 p.m. and 6 a.m., according to Berrien County Drug Court records. Devine could break his curfew but his probation officer needed to be advised. Devine also had to undergo random alcohol and drug testing and his probation terms for alcohol was zero tolerance.

For this accident with Cpl Szuba, Devine faces five charges including: operating while intoxicated and causing the death of another person, two counts of operating with a controlled substance and causing death to another person, resisting law enforcement and a habitual substance offender. Devine's blood alcohol level was at .239 percent at time of the crash, nearly three times the legal limit. The legal limit is .08. Devine faces up to 31 years in prison. On 1/14/10 Devine was transferred from the hospital to the St. Joseph County jail. On 1/15/10, just after a few hours after the service started for Cpl. Szuba, Devine appeared in court for the first time in a wheelchair and was rolled in by deputies into a jail room to be arraigned before a judge via video conference.  A preliminary plea of not guilty was entered for Devine.  Devine’s next court date will be on 1/21/10 in front of St. Joseph Superior Court Judge Jane Woodward Miller and has a $100,000 bond.  A judge set Devine's trial date for May 10, 2010. On his plea deadline date of March 30, 2010 he pleaded guilty to seven felony counts. Count 1, causing a death - Operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated (alcohol) Count 2, causing a death - Operating a vehicle while under the influence of a Schedule 1 controlled substance (cocaine) Count 3, causing a death - Operating a vehicle while under the influence of a Schedule 2 controlled substance (Vicodin) Count 4, causing a death while resisting law enforcement ,Count 5, he pleaded guilty to being a habitual substance abuse offender (this allows the court to impose an additional sentence) Count 6, possession of cocaine Count 7,  possession of controlled substance (Vicodin) The plea agreement says Devine will spend at least 20 years but no more than 37 years in prison. Devine had a long record of drunk driving offenses. Because of that he was also charged with being a habitual controlled substance offender. It allows the court to impose an extra 3 to 8 years in prison. On May 14, 2010 Judge Jane Woodward Miller sentenced Shawn Devine to thirty one years in prison.

Also because of this tragedy causing the death of a police dog while driving drunk could not be prosecuted as a separate crime before this accident. In March of 2010, Ricky's Law was passed, making it a Class D felony to be an impaired driver who causes a police animal's death. In Indiana, it was already a Class D felony to "knowingly or intentionally" injure a law-enforcement animal and cause its death, but state law did not provide for a criminal charge when the animal's death is caused by impaired driving. The law now makes it possible for a Class D felony charge to be filed against impaired drivers who cause such an animal's death. A Class D felony conviction carries a potential sentence of six months to three years in prison. It also raises the penalty for drivers who cause the death of an officer while fleeing police from a Class B felony to a Class A felony. Those convicted of a Class A felony face prison sentences of 20 years to 50 years. This law will serve as a tribute and recognize the sacrifice and honor the memory of Officer Szuba, along with his trained K-9 partner. The Senate approved this by a vote of 36-14, and the House voted 67-28 in favor of it.

On 12/6/10 Cpl. James Szuba’s  wife testified at a hearing before St. Joseph Superior Court Judge David Chapleau and is seeking up to $5 million in damages in a wrongful death lawsuit filed against David Devine.

 

Sgt. Brett Meredith
January 2, 2010 - New South Wales, Australia - Age 39
 
 
                      
Sergeant Meredith, 39, was in a night club on January 1, 2010, while off duty  in Katherine and tried to stop a fight on New Years Day.  Sergeant Meredith was punched once in the head after which he fell hitting his head hard on the ground and was knocked unconscious and suffered severe head injuries. He never regained consciousness. He was at Club 23 with friends, including another off-duty officer, Kevin Carr, and when a fight broke out and the pair intervened. Two men are in custody over the incident, in which Constable Carr received minor injuries. Sergeant Meredith's  wife Amee, a decorated police officer, was on duty near by and rushed to her husband's side as he was taken to Katherine hospital and placed in an induced coma, and was then medi-vacced at about 7.45am on New Year's Day to Royal Darwin Hospital where he underwent surgery for a fractured skull and swelling to the brain. At 5:00 p.m. the following day a decision was made to take him off life support when Doctors told Amee Meredith that Brett had a 1 per cent chance of survival and the best scenario for him was that he would not be aware of his surroundings. Sergeant Meredith then passed away at 5:08 p.m. The security-camera footage based on what was seen shows they were not prepared for the attack and there is no way Sergeant Meredith was an instigator. Breath samples taken from Sgt Meredith at the hospital after the incident revealed a blood alcohol reading of 0.20 per cent. Sergeant Meredith joined the NSW police in 1990, working in the State Protection Group Dog Unit. He was awarded the NSW Police Medal in 2004 and the National Police Medal in 2006. In 2000, he was given a citation for his role in the arrest of a violent offender and in 2006 was given a certificate of merit for his part in arresting armed offenders during a robbery. In 2005 he became a dog handler and specialised in explosives' detection. In late 2007, the couple sold their house at Bargo, in the NSW southern highlands and moved to the Territory, seeking a safer home for their children, Samuel, 6, Jordy, 4, and Abbey, 2. Sgt Meredith is also father to Brad, 9, and Lily, 7, from a previous marriage. Over one thousand attended his service and a private ceremony was held for his cremation. A slow-moving riderless horse marked the beginning of the funeral for Brett Meredith. The horse bore a saddle with a pair of empty boots reversed in the stirrups, representing a fallen leader looking back on his troops for the last time, as it made its way to the Cathedral. A trust fund has been set up to help the family of fallen policeman Brett Meredith. Deposits can be made electronically to: NT Police Association Inc. ATF Brett Meredith, BSB: 805-005, Account No: 5116830. People in NT and SA can also make donations at any branch of the Police Credit Union. For more information or if problems are faced, contact Julie Colbert at the association's office on (08) 8981 8840.

Both Michael Simon Martyn and Aaron James Vale have been both charged in the incident that happened on New Years Day. Michael Simon Martyn, 38, a builder's laborer, has been charged with one count of manslaughter over the officer's death and magistrate Melanie Little remanded Mr Martyn in custody until January 13.  Aaron James Vale, 28, appeared in the Darwin Magistrates Court charged with assault on a police officer  and causing harm,  for assaulting Const Carr. He's accused of punching Const Carr as he tried to assist his unconscious friend. Magistrate Daynor Trigg refused bail for Vale and adjourned the matter until January 14. 2010.

On 1/14/10 Aaron James Vale, 28, appeared in the Darwin Magistrates Court and will have to live at his grandmother's  house and not drink alcohol or go to any licensed venues. Mr. Vale's mother Kerry Vale had to put down a $1,000 cash security for Mr. Vale's release. Vale pleaded guilty to an aggravated assault of Constable Kevin Carr and on June 1, 2010 Aaron James Vale was sentenced in Katherine Magistrates Court  to seven months in prison , but it was suspended on the 14 days he had already served. Vale's seven-month sentence was suspended on the conditions that he be under supervision for 12 months, and not drink alcohol or enter licensed premises for six months.

When Michael Simon Martyn appeared in the Darwin Magistrates Court court on 1/13/10 the court heard how he extensive criminal history spanning the NT, NSW and South Australia. Martyn's lawyer, Glen Dooley, told the court. it was possible a self-defence case would be raised. He told the court the incident had started when Martyn brushed past Sgt Meredith at Club 23. Mr Dooley said the security guards who removed Martyn from the scene gave statements claiming that Martyn shook their hands and apologised for his behaviour as he left the club to go home. He was later arrested by police. Constable Kevin Carr, who was celebrating New Year's Eve with Sgt Meredith, described Sgt Meredith as intoxicated but not "staggering drunk". Mr Dooley asked that his client be granted bail to reside with his young family in Adelaide.  Sgt O'Neill said SA police did not have the power to arrest Martyn if he breached the conditions of his bail agreement. He said granting Martyn bail to reside in NT would also pose problems, due to concerns he may try to interfere with witnesses. Previously convicted of multiple charges relating to assaulting police, aggravated assault and the deprivation of liberty, the court heard police in NSW describe Martyn as a "standover man" who intimidated witnesses. Magistrate Sue Oliver ordered a bail assessment report and adjourned the matter until January 19, 2010. On January 19, 2010 Martyn was granted bail on his birthday on the condition he did not associate with anyone on a list of hundreds of potential witnesses. He will have to report to police every day, is not allowed to buy or consume alcohol, is not allowed to leave the Darwin area, and has a curfew between 8pm and 6am. Martyn will appear before the court again on February 9, 2010. At his February 9, 2010 court appearance his restrictions were made less. Before he had to report to the police on a daily basis but now only has to report into police on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday and is allowed to go fishing. On May 11, 2010, Michael Simon Martyn's committal hearing started with fifty witnesses to be called. On June 16, 2011, Michael Simon Martyn. Was found guilty of manslaughter. A Supreme Court jury of 5 women and seven men returned a guilty verdict in two hours. On June 16, 2011, Michael Simon Martyn, 40, was found guilty of manslaughter. A Supreme Court jury of 5 women and seven men returned a guilty verdict in two hours. Martyn was  sentenced by Judge Peter Barr  July 20, 2011 to three years and eight months in jail, with a non-parole period of one year and 10 months, for the manslaughter of Sergeant Brett Meredith, 39.

 

 

 

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