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Sheriff’s Office Mourns Loss of K-9 Verro

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Sheriff’s Office MournsK-9 Verro

(Paulding County, GA)  It iswith a  very heavy heart that we announce thepassing of one of our law enforcement canines, K-9Verro.  K-9 Verro was an eight year old BelgianMalinois who was handled by Corporal BrandonKilgore.  K-9 Verro and Corporal Kilgore had beenpartners for over seven years while working together inPaulding County. 
K-9 Verro was a dual purpose lawenforcement canine and was an exceptional member of thePaulding County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit.

On Friday July 19, 2019 atapproximately 12:03 PM Deputies responded to a domesticdispute at 14 Trotters Way Dallas, Georgia 30132(Saddlebrook Farms Subdivision).  Prior to theirarrival, the male suspect from the domestic dispute leftthe scene on foot.  When responding Deputiesarrived in the area, they located a  male matchingthe suspects description in a silver passenger car stillinside the neighborhood.  When they initiated atraffic stop on the vehicle, the passenger, who waslater confirmed to be the suspect from the domesticdispute, ran from them. 


 

As more Deputiesresponded to the scene to assist, the male suspectcontinued to jump over fences and run through yards inan attempt to get away.  A short time later,Corporal Kilgore arrived on scene and observed the malesuspect running in the area of Brooks Road and TrottersWay.  Corporal Kilgore quickly stopped his patrolvehicle and gave chase on foot.  Handlers aretrained on specific rules regarding the deployment oftheir K-9 partners.  At the time Corporal Kilgorearrived, the departmental criteria to deploy the dog hadnot been met, so he did not release K-9 Verro.

 

K-9 Verro was thekind of working dog that any handler would dreamof.  He had a high drive to fight crime and wasrelentless in his work ethic.  Anyone that knew K-9Verro knew how attached and protective he was of hishandler, Corporal Kilgore.  When Corporal Kilgoreleft his patrol vehicle chasing someone, K-9 Verrowanted to be with him as the two were inseparable. 


 

A series oftragic, almost unbelievable events followed.  K-9Verro was able to squeeze through the partially openkennel door that separates his vehicle kennel from thedrivers compartment which allowed him to crawl into thefront of the SUV.  Standard practice when lookingfor a suspect fleeing on foot would be to have yourvehicle windows partially or completely down so you canlisten for the suspect.  The front drivers sidewindow of the patrol vehicle, a 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe,was partially down.  K-9 Verro was able to inch hisway out of the vehicle in an attempt to assist hishandler.   


As the chaotic scene unfolded, noDeputies were aware K-9 Verro was out of hisvehicle.  Had Corporal Kilgore known K-9 Verro wasloose, he would have advised the other Deputies to stopthe foot pursuit and taken command of K-9 Verro. Shortly after K-9 Verro exited his vehicle, heobserved a Deputy sprinting away from him.  In theabsense of his handlers direction, K-9 Verro could notdifferentiate between Deputy and suspect.  K-9Verro apprehended the Deputy by grabbing the back of hisleg and followed his training by biting and holdinguntil he was commanded to release.  The Deputy, whohad been bitten from behind while running, had no ideathe dog was actually a law enforcement canine. Unable to remove the dog from his leg, the Deputyfollowed his training, drew his service weapon and shotand killed K-9 Verro.

 

It wasn’t until a short time laterthat other Deputies realized that the deceased animalwas K-9 Verro.  Unfortunately, it was too late forK-9 Verro and he passed away on the scene.  A shorttime later the male suspect was taken into custody byother Deputies in the area.  The Deputy who wasbitten has some injuries as a result of the apprehensionbut will heal with time. 

 

This has been a devastating incident that has shaken ouroffice to its core.  Sheriff Gary Gulledge remarked,“Being a former K-9 handler, I know how special the bondis between a handler and his dog.  The emotionalgrief everyone is going through, including the Deputy whowas bitten, has been overwhelming.  Please keepCorporal Kilgore, his family, the K-9 Unit, our injuredDeputy, and the Sheriff’s Office in your prayers as we allgo through this difficult time.” 
 
 
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OK, I have been keeping my opinions to myself for pc reasons (especially on the new PCom). Both of these officers (the handler and the shooter) are incompetent. Before you ban me listen to my view. The handler should have been experienced enough to never leave an opening for the K-9 to escape (open kennel, open window?). The officer who shot him is incompetent and not the sharpest knife in the drawer. From his perspective, I am on site, I have seen the K-9 many times, I know the K-9 is on site (even though I don't know he is deployed), I am tackled by a black Belgian Malinois, I am going from zero to full panic mode in 1/10th of a second, after all there has been a huge increase in Malinois ownership and attacks in the last few months (not),I am not that sharp so I shoot and kill valuable county asset. Seriously is this the kind of decision making we have at the highest level of public service we have in this county? JMO.

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OK, I have been keeping my opinions to myself for pc reasons (especially on the new PCom). Both of these officers (the handler and the shooter) are incompetent. Before you ban me listen to my view. The handler should have been experienced enough to never leave an opening for the K-9 to escape (open kennel, open window?). The officer who shot him is incompetent and not the sharpest knife in the drawer. From his perspective, I am on site, I have seen the K-9 many times, I know the K-9 is on site (even though I don't know he is deployed), I am tackled by a black Belgian Malinois, I am going from zero to full panic mode in 1/10th of a second, after all there has been a huge increase in Malinois ownership and attacks in the last few months (not),I am not that sharp so I shoot and kill valuable county asset. Seriously is this the kind of decision making we have at the highest level of public service we have in this county? JMO.

Why would someone ban you for this? You are not the only one to think this. It is tragic and hindsight is 20/20 there were clearly mistakes made by people that should follow protocol to the letter. I don't see Gary patting anyone on the back saying it will be ok son. There is nothing wrong with your level of concern either. This was bad, really bad.

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