Deputy leaves K-9 in cruiser overnight: Dog dies, no charges filed

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Kela assisted with the Duplin County Sheriff’s Office and was highly-trained. (Images: WITN-TV via NDN)

DUPLIN COUNTY, N.C. — A highly-trained K-9 died after a sheriff’s deputy in North Carolina left the animal in his cruiser overnight.

The Duplin County sheriff says deputy Kevin Williams was on duty when he got a call that his child was sick and needed to be picked up from school.

Officials said Williams fed the dog when got home, but forgot to take “Kela” out of the cruiser.

The dog was found dead the next morning, according to authorities.

Kela was a Belgian Shepherd trained to track down people and narcotics.

The deputy was reassigned to courthouse bailiff.

The sheriff says the district attorney’s office did not bring charges against Williams because there was no criminal intent.

CNN contributed to this report.

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11 comments

  • Rosalie M. Heidlebaugh

    It’s sad I believe that is a person that was taught to serve justice . An problems better than people they act whatever is said .no question the guy should redeem and do time

  • Carol Cole

    Double standard…. If a person tried to attack or kill this dog they would have charged with capital murder, criminal intent or not. But this cop is simply transferred to another department and crime is swept under the rug….shame on the department and more shame on the district attorney….

  • Jewelyn

    What was the cause of death here? As a vet tech the report says overnight not mid day or heat related. As a working breed owner it is possible the k9 could have bloated ( GVD ) it is not uncommon for working dogs to bloat following feeding. Not enough details are given in this report as to the cause of death. Temperatures overnight in a vehicle should not have caused death so don’t place assumptions without facts that are missing.

    • Scott

      “Overnight” is misleading. Did he pick up his sick kid at night? No. The dog had been left through the afternoon and into the night. Use some common sense when you read. It didn’t happen at night, it happened in the heat of the day and wasn’t discovered until the next morning, hence the use of the misleading word “overnight.”

  • Miette g

    If you accidentally rear end someone and they die, they shouldn’t get charger because there was no criminal intent according to this logic. Intent or not he needs to learn a lesson.

  • jeffers

    No charges cause no criminal intent… hmmm how about negligence or how about … Fact is he’s LEO so laws don’t apply.. how bout “forgetting” a child in a car and ends up dying … hmmm that would face charges ..

  • Joy

    Jewelyn, I was wondering the same thing… how on earth did that poor dog die? As you said yourself, if it was during the day in extreme heat, I could understand it, but at night time? This is a sad case either way. I understand the officer had to pick up his sick child from school, but to have left this poor animal in the car and have it die and not even be punished for his negligence is tragic!

  • Sheldona Foutch

    Carol cole i couldnt have said it better myself, i someo e fights back or kicks or hits the dog when they are being attacked it is without fail assault on a officer/public servant but because a officer did this they move him to bailiff ?? A crime is a crime doesnt matter who u are teachers doctors attorneys religious leaders etc. Should all be tried equally and since he can not be judged by the dogs peers i think it should be a jury of dog owners who understand that ur dog is a part of ur family they depend on you the same as a child for food love shelter and safety!!

  • Jon Seroka

    NEGLIGENCE!! – http://www.law.cornell.edu/wex/negligence – by their definition this is the case. This K9 was the property of the county and is considered a Law Enforcement Officer, as such causing his death (be it on accident or on purpose) means the county has taken a lose of property and the loss of an officer, therefor the person that caused this lose has committed a crime and should be punished, not moved to a different department. If I, or anyone else, “accidentally” killed this K9 we would be charged, just because this human being wears a metal badge he is free from prosecution. This is absolutely outrageous!

  • Jackie

    So the police officer remembered to feed the Kela but not to let her out? How can you feed a dog in a car anyway? I would question whether he left the dog in the car other times, so figured this time would be okay too. The information provided is too vague.

  • Scott

    “Overnight” is misleading. Did he pick up his sick kid at night? No. The dog had been left through the afternoon and into the night. Use some common sense when you read. It didn’t happen at night, it happened in the heat of the day and wasn’t discovered until the next morning, hence the use of the misleading word “overnight.”

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