A California cop left his K9 partner in their police cruiser during the brutal summer heat only to return from ‘patrolling at home’ when “Idol” the dog died from heat exhaustion.
He left the car idling in the summer sun, and eventually it shut off on its own.
That shut off the air conditioning.
It was 90 degrees outside.
An officer died in the line of duty, the perpetrator is known.
But Porterville Police haven’t released the name of the cop left the Belgian Malinois “Idol”, unattended for 90 minutes as he worked inside of his own home.
When the California cop returned to the vehicle the K9 had already suffered hypothermia from extreme heat with the windows rolled up and nothing could be done.
It’s unknown if the Porterville officer was legitimately assigned to work from his home at the time, nor how often the this practice is allowed at his department.
His department claims that the alarm failed to notify the officer of the patrol car’s engine turning off, which caused the air conditioner to turn off.
It wasn’t even connected.
We don’t know how long the engine was off prior to the officer noticing Idol’s condition either.
The incident occurred on June 20th, however the public in the valley town of 55,000 people about an hour’s drive north of Bakersfield was only notified about the incident on July 21st.
It raises further questions as to why the officer is still remains unnamed, and why did it take so long to release information about a public asset such as a K9 officer?
Citizens are regularly arrested for making physical contact with police K9s and one department – the infamously awful city of Pittsburgh whose law enforcement agencies are rightfully notorious for police brutality at major sporting events – investigated an Oakland Raiders professional football player for “taunting a police dog.”
The Allegheny Sheriff’s office was looking to charge that player, who barked back at a K9 in jest, while taking the field against the Pittsburgh Steelers because Pennsylvania has a law on the books about harass police K9s, which can leave citizens facing felony charges, simply for barking back.
Luckily, prosecutors had a better perspective and refused to bring charges over the incident.
It is a felony in most states to harm a police K9, even in self defense, and can be considered considered “battery against a law enforcement officer”.
Police K9 partners are granted the same protections as officers, however, if it is an officer who harms a K9, as we have seen previously, those cops are very likely to go unpunished, this Minnesota cop who was caught on video and prosecuted is the exception, not the norm.
Porterville police now say they’re looking obtain a “new, state-of-the-art-alarm system” for their K9 handlers, which will include the latest modern technology – a pager – to prevent any further incidents like this one.
Why don’t they just require police to bring their K9 partners inside once external temperatures soar rather than spend more taxpayer cash to protect the lives of their own dogs?