SAVANNAH, GA (November 9, 2012) Metro Police said goodbye to one of their own Thursday as retired police canine Laika was given her final ride in a Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police squad car.
Laika, a Belgian Malinois, retired with her partner APO Chris Amedee in December 2011 after serving five years with the police department. She lived with Amedee’s family as he served in Iraq guiding a bomb dog.
Amedee’s wife and several members of the SCMPD canine unit were with her Thursday and Amedee was talking to her via computer from Iraq as she was put to rest. At 8 years of age, her quality of life had deteriorated.
Sgt. Gregory Ernst of the canine unit provided her final ride soon afterward.
“Police dogs build a special bond with members of a police department because they eventually work with all members performing duties that keep officers from harm’s way,” said Metro Chief Willie Lovett. “The fact that they ask nothing in return is not lost of their fellow officers. Laika earned the respect and appreciation of this entire department and many departments that work with us.”
One of Laika’s most notable missions occurred in 2008. A suspect on a cross-country crime spree committed an armed robbery in Southside Savannah. The suspect, weapon in hand, fled into a wooded area near Skidaway Road and Bonnabella. Patrol, SWAT and canine teams surrounded the area and Amedee, Laika, and SWAT discovered the suspect in bushes.
He dropped the weapon when Laika clamped on his arm and the arrest was made without further incident. Police credit Laika’s actions for averting injuries to anyone.
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