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  1. #1
    Pedro56's Avatar
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    Police dog shot, killed by officer during search

    By Charles Thomas

    August 4, 2006 (last updated 4:11 p.m.) - A Cicero police officer shot and killed a Countryside Police Department dog while searching for a suspect around 4 a.m. on Cicero's North Side.

    Police said Cicero officers were chasing an armed suspect into Berwyn when they called the Countryside Police Department's K-9 Unit for help.
    Once officers tracked down and surrounded the suspect, the dog, called Dago, was released. Instead of going after the suspect, Dago latched on to a Cicero police officer.

    The officer was holding a gun. It went off during the struggle and Dago was struck by a bullet.

    "Apparently what happened is [the dog] went around the side of the vehicle. And somewhere when the handler went around the vehicle [the dog] was shot by another officer," said Tim Swanson, the Countryside police chief.

    Cicero police say the animal ignored the suspect and bit into the arm of one of their officers whose gun discharged accidentally at first, then intentionally a second time hitting the dog twice.

    Countryside Police Chief Tim Swanson insists the dog was trained to attack only after being ordered to do so by his handler.

    " If the dog went after the officer, that's still unsure at this point," said Swanson.

    The German shepherd was being treated at the Berwyn Animal Hospital, where he died later Friday.

    Members of the Countryside police department spent most of the morning waiting outside the animal hospital while the four-year-old police dog was treated for two gunshot wounds.

    "We had a team of doctors and technicians work on him for several hours. And unfortunately he passed later this morning," said Barbara Hanek, Veterinarian.

    Friday afternoon, a Cicero spokesman repeated his police department's contention that the Countryside canine officer lost control of his animal.

    Dan Proft said, "there is at least another Cicero officer who will corroborate the wounded officer's story as well as another corroborating story from the suspect who was hiding."

    Meanwhile, a mourning bunting was hung at the Countryside city hall Friday afternoon and a memorial service is planned for Dago, the police dog who died overnight in the line of duty.

    The handler, officer Joseph DiGangi has been unavailable for comment.

    The Cicero officer who was bitten and fired his weapon was treated and released from Oak Park hospital.

    His duty status is not changed.

    Countryside police are waiting for a full, detailed explanation of what happened. They want to know what events led to the death of their department's only police dog.
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  2. #2
    Lazy Fed's Avatar
    Lazy Fed is offline Curmudgeon
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    That sucks for both departments

  3. #3
    conalabu is offline Grasshopper
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    Jeez. No win on that one at all.
    And Shepards we shall be,
    for thee, My Lord, for thee,
    Power hath descended forth from Thy hand,
    That our feet may swiftly carry out Thy Command.
    So we shall flow a river forth to Thee
    And teeming with souls will it ever be.
    In Nomine Patris, Et Filli, Et Spiritus Sancti.

  4. #4
    bird1's Avatar
    bird1 is offline Corporal
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    those cicero cops r jerks. from the story it sounds like the handler wasn't far away. if the dog clamped on to the cicero officer wouldn't the handler of heard the officer yell out. im not trying to monday morning quaterback this thing but damm u dont shoot a police dog k-9 cops out there little help on this please!!!! what should u do if the police dog goes after an officer???
    " The hardest thing about disarming an armed suspect is not slipping on your own shit "

    Michael P. Gordon E.O.W 08 Aug 2004




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  5. #5
    CopsRCool302 Guest
    Sad! strange things happen. I agree with you bird1...

  6. #6
    TXCOP's Avatar
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    I don't give a damn if it is a K9. If it latches onto me, the dog's getting shot and the handler's getting a boot up his ass.

  7. #7
    121Traffic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXCOP
    I don't give a damn if it is a K9. If it latches onto me, the dog's getting shot and the handler's getting a boot up his ass.
    Agreed. Sorry the dog has to die, but I would rather the dog take a couple rounds than my arm be out of commission for a couple of weeks, or worse yet have permanent nerve damage.

    My department would feel the same...I hope.
    "If anything worthwhile comes of this tragedy, it should be the realization by every citizen that often the only thing that stands between them and losing everything they hold dear... is the man wearing a badge." -- Ronald Reagan, in the wake of the deaths of 4 CHP troopers in the Newhall Incident, 1970

    The opinions given in my posts DO NOT reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only, thereby releasing my agency of any liability, or involvement in anything posted under the username "121Traffic" on O/R.

  8. #8
    Pedro56's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXCOP
    I don't give a damn if it is a K9. If it latches onto me, the dog's getting shot and the handler's getting a boot up his ass.
    Well...if the dog actually bit the criminal, i mean cop then he should have shot it. Handler and other coppers on scene said the dog never bit him.
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  9. #9
    TXCOP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro56
    Well...if the dog actually bit the criminal, i mean cop then he should have shot it. Handler and other coppers on scene said the dog never bit him.
    Well, that'd be a different matter. But, am I missing something here? Wasn't the officer treated for a DOG BITE?

  10. #10
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro56
    The Cicero officer who was bitten and fired his weapon was treated and released from Oak Park hospital.
    Ditto others, if a dog with an 800 lb bite clamps on to me, it's bye, bye puppy dog. I'll be damned if I'm going to risk permanent injury (e.g. nerve damage) because some handler released his dog prematurely. Cicero cops might be assholes, but if the dog bit him, I don't blame him a bit.

    The handler is responsible for the actions of the dog, sorry he lost it, but maybe the next one he'll be more careful before it releases it.
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

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  11. #11
    refusetostop's Avatar
    refusetostop is offline Special Operations
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    If the Dog Bites the Dog Dies!!
    Obedience of the law is demanded; not asked as a favor.
    Theodore Roosevelt

  12. #12
    Pedro56's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TXCOP
    Well, that'd be a different matter. But, am I missing something here? Wasn't the officer treated for a DOG BITE?
    Allegedly, I know what the paper says, but.....they wanted to send an evidence tech over to take pictures of the wound after the fact and Cicero denied them. They wouldn't even let brass see them, and they still don't have any pictures of the wound that were requested, yada yada yada. So it is a very cloudy situation. Just out of curiousity though does anyone here think that something couldn't be covered up? or that false info could be passed out to the press? We all know how reliable the press is 99% of the times right?
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    A Good Friend will bail you out of jail, but a true friend will be sitting next to you in the cell saying, "That was Awesome."

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  13. #13
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pedro56
    Just out of curiousity though does anyone here think that something couldn't be covered up? or that false info could be passed out to the press? We all know how reliable the press is 99% of the times right?
    As a rule though, it's pretty hard for cops to keep their mouths shut. So conspiracies involving police depts are pretty rare unless it's a criminal investigation. And I've learned the hard way even then that you need to limit who knows. I had a wiretap going on a homicide once that got leaked to the press. I have no idea why some dipshit cop needed to do that.

    I agree that it's pretty strange they refuse to cooperate totally like that though.

    If he shot the dog out of meanness, that's a different story. If it were me, I'd have the DA subpoena the officer and hospital records on the pretext of investigating the handler.
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

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  14. #14
    Falcata is offline UK police officer
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    Your posts are cold and to the point...Retdetsgt...I'll say that....but I often find myself agreeing with you....
    'The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil,
    but because of those who look on and do nothing.'

  15. #15
    Retdetsgt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Falcata
    Your posts are cold and to the point...Retdetsgt...I'll say that....but I often find myself agreeing with you....
    Heh, heh, thanks. I had a Lt once tell me that I had an abrasive personality just because I told him that since he outranked me I do his silly fucking fool's errand..... I have no idea what he meant by that.....
    When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)

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