An Indiana police dog has died of heat stroke after being left in the back of a squad car by his handler on a hot summer day, WANE-TV (Ft. Wayne) is reporting.
Every summer is filled with dire warnings about the dangers of leaving children or pets unattended in the back of a car. It’s something you should never do, ever; but it’s especially not something you should do on a hot summer day. Nevertheless, those dire warnings are far too often accompanied by tragic stories of people failing to heed that advice. This is one of those stories.
Not much is known about Mojo, who used to be with the DeKalb County (Indiana) Sheriff’s Department; his age, breed, and his job within the police force have not been made public, as of this writing.
What is known is that Mojo’s last day on the job was on Thursday, July 6. That’s the day he and his handler, DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department School Resource Officer Courtney Fuller, left him alone in the back of his squad car for several hours. According to Weather Underground, the high temperature in nearby Ft. Wayne reached 82 degrees that afternoon.
Fuller’s supervisors say he (Fuller) became distracted by a “situation” with his newborn child and apparently forgot about the animal in the back of his squad car.
A sheriff’s deputy in DeKalb County was distracted by a situation with his newborn and forgot K-9 Mojo in his car: https://t.co/rTxSadEMDA
— WTHR.com (@WTHRcom) July 7, 2017
Later that evening, Fuller noticed that Mojo wasn’t in his kennel. He went out to his squad car and there, in the back, he found the animal, already dead of an apparent heat stroke.
Fuller reported the dead K9 to his supervisor; he (Fuller) has been placed on leave pending an investigation, as per procedure. Meanwhile, Mojo’s remains have been taken to a nearby hospital for necropsy.
In a statement, DeKalb County Sheriff Don Lauer called the dog’s death a “mistake.”
“The DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department regrets this tragic mistake and mourns the loss of one of its members.”
This is, unfortunately, not the first time a police officer has allegedly left an animal to die in a hot car. As the Inquisitr reported at the time, Sergeant Chad Holland, of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, was charged with a felony for allegedly leaving his K9 partner, “Totti,” to die in the back of a hot car following a training exercise. Holland was later found guilty of animal cruelty, according to Centre Daily Times, and ordered to spend two days in jail and pay a fine of $300.
Justice for Totti the police K9 killed in a hot car: https://t.co/OJqMkRIYNi
— Sophie Benger (@BeesWingedEyes) August 7, 2016
Do you believe Fuller should face criminal charges for allegedly leaving Mojo behind to die in a hot car? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
[Featured Image by Edwin Butter/Shutterstock]