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K9 Cezar
Birth: unknown
Death: Sep. 11, 2007
Joplin
Jasper County
Missouri, USA

September 11, 2007

Joplin Police Dog Dies After Being Shot In Chase

Injuries to Cezar Prove Fatal

By Debby Woodin

dwoodin@joplinglobe.com

A police dog shot in the head early Tuesday by a robbery suspect ultimately died, a Joplin police officer said.

Officer Travis Walthall, supervisor of the Joplin Police Department's K-9 unit, said by telephone Tuesday afternoon that the dog, Cezar, was expected to survive the gunshot wound unless complications arise.

Lt. Geoff Jones said Tuesday night that the department had been informed by Mark Storey, the Joplin veterinarian for the department's police dogs, that Cezar had died.

"The bullet that hit Cezar struck him above the right eye, slightly to the left of his right eye," Walthall said. "It did not penetrate the skull although it did fracture it in a couple of places."

The officer who works with Cezar, Gabe Allen, was off duty and unavailable Tuesday after the shooting to talk about the ordeal or about Cezar's work record, said Jones.

Jones said Cezar was nearly 8 years old and had been with the department since 2001. Jones said he did not have Cezar's records immediately available to say how many apprehensions the dog had made or other details about the dog's background.

Walthall was attending a canine training session. He was at the session with another of the department's four officers who work with police dogs. Walthall said they were notified by telephone at 4 a.m. Tuesday of the shooting.

"We were both actually sick to our stomachs," Walthall said of his and his co-worker's reaction to learning that Cezar had been wounded. "We work together so much, there's obviously an unbelievable bond between an officer and dog."

He said the bullet that struck the dog fragmented.

Storey declined to speak to reporters Tuesday afternoon because he was tending the dog, which was described as being in a semi-conscious condition, Jones said.

Walthall, who is training a new dog after retiring his canine partner of six years, Max, said the JPD dogs are trained to bite and hold rather than bark and hold a suspect.

Cezar is among about 450 police dogs at work in the state of Missouri, said Gary Smith, a retired Raytown police officer who is president of the Missouri Police Canine Association.

Smith said Tuesday afternoon that even if Cezar survived, he likely would be sidelined by the injuries, but he did what police dogs are trained to do. "I'm saddened they're going to lose a member of the department in the dog, but it probably would have been an officer" shot if not for the dog.

"That's one of the main reasons to have dogs," he said. "I can replace a dog. I can't replace a father or a brother or a mother. It sounds to me this dog did his job for the handler."

Jones said he does not remember another JPD dog being injured in the line of the duty, although one of the department's dogs died of heat exhaustion when it was left in a police cruiser about 15 years ago.

Smith said that is the most common cause of K-9 deaths. "We lose more due to heat than we do line-of-duty injury or death," Smith said.



Update:

A police dog shot in the head early Tuesday by a robbery suspect ultimately died, a Joplin police officer said. Officer Travis Walthall, supervisor of the Joplin Police Department's K-9 unit, said by telephone Tuesday afternoon that the dog, Cezar, was expected to survive the gunshot wound unless complications arise. Lt. Geoff Jones said Tuesday night that the department had been informed by Mark Storey, the Joplin veterinarian for the department's police dogs, that Cezar had died. "The bullet that hit Cezar struck him above the right eye, slightly to the left of his right eye," Walthall said. "It did not penetrate the skull although it did fracture it in a couple of places."

The officer who works with Cezar, Gabe Allen, was off duty and unavailable Tuesday after the shooting to talk about the ordeal or about Cezar's work record, said Jones. Jones said Cezar was nearly 8 years old and had been with the department since 2001. Jones said he did not have Cezar's records immediately available to say how many apprehensions the dog had made or other details about the dog's background.

Walthall was attending a canine training session. He was at the session with another of the department's four officers who work with police dogs. Walthall said they were notified by telephone at 4 a.m. Tuesday of the shooting. "We were both actually sick to our stomachs," Walthall said of his and his co-worker's reaction to learning that Cezar had been wounded. "We work together so much, there's obviously an unbelievable bond between an officer and dog." He said the bullet that struck the dog fragmented.

Storey declined to speak to reporters Tuesday afternoon because he was tending the dog, which was described as being in a semi-conscious condition, Jones said. Walthall, who is training a new dog after retiring his canine partner of six years, Max, said the JPD dogs are trained to bite and hold rather than bark and hold a suspect. Cezar is among about 450 police dogs at work in the state of Missouri, said Gary Smith, a retired Raytown police officer who is president of the Missouri Police Canine Association. Smith said Tuesday afternoon that even if Cezar survived, he likely would be sidelined by the injuries, but he did what police dogs are trained to do. "I'm saddened they're going to lose a member of the department in the dog, but it probably would have been an officer" shot if not for the dog. "That's one of the main reasons to have dogs," he said. "I can replace a dog. I can't replace a father or a brother or a mother. It sounds to me this dog did his job for the handler."


"We lose more due to heat than we do line-of-duty injury or death," Smith said. The Joplin Police Department has three other police dogs: Ricky, Ikar and Bullit. Bullit is in training to replace Max, a dog that was retired from service about two weeks ago at the age of 10. Max is to be kept by his handler, Officer Travis Walthall.




UPDATE:

Officer recalls Joplin police dog's final moments on duty - 10/7/07 - Missouri


Joplin police officer Gabe Allen said he had no idea what he and his K-9 partner Cezar were in for when they responded to an emergency call in the early morning hours of Sept. 11 at Buffalo Wild Wings. "The call came in, 'Unknown trouble at Buffalo Wild Wings, get the cops here now,'" recalled Allen, an eight-year veteran of the police force. Allen and Cezar were the first to arrive on the scene. They took a position to observe the front of the store. "As I'm standing there with my dog I saw a guy take off across the parking lot to Target," he said. "That's when it occurred to me that this is a robbery."

Unsure if the suspect was armed, Allen said he yelled for him to stop, and gave chase up Geneva Avenue with Cezar on a leash. When the suspect refused to stop a second time, and instead ran across Seventh Street, Cezar was unleashed. "When I released the dog, I slowed down a little bit, which is what we do," he said. "We let the dog make the apprehension, take the fight out of the suspect a little bit." As Cezar was about to apprehend the suspect, Allen heard two gunshots ring out. One round struck the dog in the head, stopping him in his tracks. "It's hard to put it in words," Allen said of his reaction to seeing his partner and friend of six years go down. "I wanted to take a shot and defend myself, but the house was the backdrop so I couldn't take the shot." Instead, Allen said he took the dog to cover and tried to keep his eyes open for the suspect, who had fled behind a house. "I was just talking to him, 'I love you. You're a
good boy,'" he said.

Cezar was taken to Academy Animal Hospital in Joplin, where he underwent surgery, but died that night.

Police eventually apprehended a suspect, Paul C. White, 22, of Joplin. White was charged with three counts of first-degree robbery, three counts of armed-criminal action, and a single count of killing a police dog. Two of the robbery charges stem from similar robberies that took place in August at two local Taco Bell restaurants. White has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Cezar and Allen were both awarded the Medal of Valor for their actions. Cezar was also awarded the Medal of Honor for having lost his life in the line of duty, and inducted as an honorary member of the Joplin Lodge of Fraternal Order of Police.

About 300 people and at least 100 members of area law enforcement and firefighting agencies, including more than a half-dozen police and search dogs, attended the memorial service for Cezar last month. The officers and agencies represented came from as far away as Warrensburg and Fayetteville, Ark. Eleven-year-old Ashlynn Tyler, who attended the memorial service with her mother, said she had met Cezar a couple of times and was sad about his death. "He seemed like a really nice dog," said Tyler, who has five dogs of her own. "I wouldn't be able to get another dog because I'd miss the other one so much." Joplin resident Debbie Powell said she had met Allen and Cezar at the Emancipation Day Celebration in Joplin several years ago and was shocked to hear what happened. "He was just a loving dog; he'd lick you on the face," Powell said. "And Gabe's the type of officer that you don't mind talking to." During their six years together, Allen and Cezar made more than 500 arrests, including more than 100 narcotics arrests. They also confiscated more than 270 pounds of marijuana, 432 grams of methamphetamine and 76 grams of cocaine. While he was not afraid to chase after "bad guys," Allen recalled the only thing Cezar seemed to be afraid of was rain.
"He was like a cat in the rain," he said. "If it was raining, I'd get out and open the door, and he'd look at me like I was stupid, like 'I'm not getting out there.'" Considered "a part of the family," Allen said Cezar's death has been just as hard on his wife and two kids. The dog lived with the family. "At home, the kids played with him and threw the ball with him just as much as I did." But knowing that "he died doing what he needed to do" has eased some of the pain, Allen said. "He loved to apprehend criminals. He loved to be there by my side," he said. "And when he was given that command to go, it's not like a person where there's second thoughts or anything like that. He just goes."

STATS:
Car Searches 1431
Building searches for narcotics: 65
Narcotics finds: 805
Building searches: 127
Tracks: 138
Suspects located on tracks: 32
Marijuana seized: 131,079.5g (270.27 lbs.)
Meth seized 432.96g (just under a lb.)
Power cocaine: 51.01g (almost 2 oz.)
Persons apprehended by force: 10
Total time out of the car working: 27,623 Minutes (460.38 Hrs.)


submitted by Jim Cortina, Dir. CPWDA & Officer Gabe Allen
Began training in Elkart, IN with Faus K9 8/27/01
First day on the job with Cezar 9/29/01



UPDATE: May, 2009

Police-dog shooter sentenced to 14 years for robbery
A Joplin man was assessed a 14-year sentence for armed criminal action after he pleaded guilty to threatening workers at a local restaurant during a hold-up in 2007. Paul C. White, 24, also received an 11-year sentence for robbery in connection to an aborted hold-up at Buffalo Wild Wings in Joplin in September of 2007. Jasper County Circuit Judge David Mouton ruled that the sentences be served concurrently.
White previously pleaded guilty earlier this year to killing Cezar, a Joplin police K-9 officer, after he attempted to flee the restaurant on foot. He received a four-year sentence on that charge. He will get credit for time served and that sentence will also be served concurrently. As part of a plea agreement, prosecutors dropped two additional counts of first-degree robbery and armed criminal action against White for robberies at local Taco Bell restaurants.






 
 
Burial:
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Created by: Elizabeth Clark
Record added: Sep 03, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 75920201
K9 Cezar
Added by: Elizabeth Clark
 
 
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- Rosie♥Mooch
 Added: Sep. 11, 2014
In Honor And Memory Of Cezar ♥.....
- Steve
 Added: Sep. 11, 2014

- Alice Morton
 Added: Sep. 11, 2014
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