An FBI dog killed by New York spree shooting suspect Kurt Myers was on only his second mission after finishing its training last month, law enforcement officials said.
Police were using the dog to help flush out Myers after he had holed up in a row of abandoned businesses in the upstate New York village of Herkimer on Thursday. Police were moving in on Myers in the building’s basement when he shot and killed the FBI dog, prompting police to return fire and kill him.
The FBI dog was a 2-year-old Czech German Shepherd named Ape. He had just joined the FBI on February 25 after finishing a four-month tactical course.
As he was killed, Ape helped police put an end to a manhunt that stretched nearly 24 hours. Police said on Wednesday morning Myers torched his apartment in the nearby village of Mohawk then went on to kill four people in two separate shooting incidents.
Myers first went to a barbershop, coolly asking if the barber remembered him before opening fire on employees and customers with a shotgun, killing two and injuring four others.
Mary Hornett, whose brother John Seymore was shot in the attack at the barbershop, said Seymore was shocked at the attack.
“He just said that the guys were in the barbershop and this guy comes in and he says, `Hi John, do you remember me?’ and my brother said, `Yes, Kurt, how are you?’ and then he just started shooting,” Hornett said.
As police searched for the New York spree shooting suspect, nearby colleges and schools went on lockdown and police warned residents to stay inside their homes.
“Everybody’s on lockdown, all the schools, the college, the village,” said Amanda Viscomi, acting clerk-treasurer in Herkimer during the manhunt for Kurt Myers. “It’s very, very scary.”
Police said Myers was lying in ambush for officers when he killed the FBI dog.
“He was waiting for us,” said Trooper Jack Keller. “He kills the dog. They hear shots fired. Our teams returned fire and the suspect gets shot.”
Police said the body of the FBI dog will be taken to Quantico, Virginia for a memorial at the FBI Academy. Ape’s name will also be added to a memorial wall.