Arizona Belgian Malinois Police Dog Bandit Dies in Hot Car, Police Probe in Process

How horrible for Bandit! Many Dogsters are upset about this story and barked it in, including Kipopo. Here's the rule -- don't leave living creatures...

Joy  |  Aug 17th 2007


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How horrible for Bandit! Many Dogsters are upset about this story and barked it in, including Kipopo.

Here’s the rule — don’t leave living creatures in hot cars! Ever!!!!

You would think that after years of preaching this message everyone would have learned it but I guess not. I was at a local Value City here in the St. Louis area. The temperatures were in the low 80’s and some idiot had locked two dogs, a boxer mix and a white mid-size terrier. in a silver Honda SUV. Yeah, the windows were cracked about two inches but by the time I saw the dogs they were in obvious distress. I immediately ran inside to get help. The Value City staff and manager immediately called the police. I stood at the front of the store making a loud scene about the dogs trying to find the car’s moronic owner. Most of the other customers were upset except for some backyard Husky and Boxer breeder who said it was okay to leave outside dogs in hot cars because they could take it!!! Talk about dangerously ignorant!

When the Crestwood police “girl” got there she seemed almost unconcerned and acted as if she were going to arrest me for complaining and making a scene. As I was calling the Humane Shelter to get additional help the owner snuck by and do you know, the police girl did absolutely nothing, not even giving her or him a warning!

Here’s hoping that Bandit’s death will teach some humans that hot cars and animals are a lethal mix.

Chandler police probe death of K-9 left in car almost 13 hours
Christian Richardson, Tribune

Chandler police are investigating whether the head of its K-9 unit, whose police dog died after being left unattended in a squad vehicle for almost 13 hours, violated any department policies.

Police are not conducting a criminal investigation because they believe Sgt. Tom Lovejoys actions on Saturday were at most negligent, police spokesman Sgt. Rick Griner said.

To be charged with animal cruelty under state law, someone must intentionally or recklessly leave an animal in a vehicle when injury or death likely would occur.

Lovejoy is still on duty and, if found to have violated policy, could face department punishment.

He discovered that the dog, a 5-year-old Belgian Malinois named Bandit, had died in his police sport utility vehicle parked outside his house about 10 p.m. Saturday.

Preliminary information indicates that Bandit succumbed to the extreme heat.

Its very tragic,” Griner said. The sergeant is very upset about this.”

Lovejoy had returned home at 9:15 a.m. Saturday after completing a three-hour parking enforcement detail in downtown Chandler. Lovejoy took Bandit in case he was called out to help in the investigation of the serial rapist.

Bandit was one of six police K-9s. He lived with Lovejoy and was trained to protect officers and to sniff out explosives. In 2007, Bandit and Lovejoy took fourth place at the Desert Dog Police K-9 Trials.

Lovejoy has been the supervisor of the K-9 unit for fourand-a-half years and has been a sergeant with the department for the last seven years.

On Saturday, the high temperature was 109 degrees, according to the National Weather Service. Ten minutes in 100-degree heat can raise the temperature to 140 degrees inside a vehicle, Chandler fire spokesman Dan Couch said.

Couch said the number of pets left in vehicles is far lower than the number of children left in vehicles. He estimated that there are incidents of unattended pets about two or three times each month in Chandler.

The major problem dogs face is that they dont sweat. Instead, they cool by panting, he said.

Animals are left in vehicles almost on a daily basis in Arizona as people go shopping or forget their pet, said Kim Noetzel, spokeswoman for the Arizona Humane Society.

She said the summer is never a good time to leave an animal in a vehicle because of the extreme heat, and she hopes the death of Bandit reminds people of that.

Aprille Hollis, spokeswoman for the Maricopa County Animal Care and Control, said, Its just too easy to forget about them.”

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