Yarmouth K9 Nero, headed home after surgery. (Yarmouth Police Department)
BOSTON (WBZ-AM) — A new bill on Beacon Hill would allow police dogs injured in the line of duty to get the same medical response as any other, human officer.
State Rep. Will Crocker of Barnstable has introduced Nero's Bill, named after the K9 who was shot last year in the line of duty—during the incident that claimed the life of Nero's handler, Yarmouth Police Sgt. Sean Gannon.
Rep. Crocker says that, under current law, medical responders on the scene weren't allowed to treat Nero. He had to wait for a special handler to arrive.
"There was no one available to remove Nero," Rep. Crocker said. "He was injured, he had been shot in the jaw, and there was no one to be able to remove him and take him out of the house and treat him, because of the way the law exists now."
But under the proposed bill, K9s would get the same emergency treatment as their officer-handler.
"They are treated, as far as the police officer is concerned, with the same amount of respect that a human officer is treated, and when they're injured, they get the best treatment they can possibly get," Rep. Crocker said. "And they feel that their K9 officer should get that as well, and I agree with that 100 percent."
Crocker said the bill has the support of the Yarmouth Police Department.
WBZ NewsRadio's Shari Small ( @ShariSmallNews ) reports