Fulton County’s retired bomb-sniffing Labrador was put to sleep yesterday morning at 11:00 a.m.
Retired K-9 Officer Mokey, a 12.5-year-old Labrador dog, was euthanized after a yearlong battle with severe arthritis and other illnesses that had left him unable to stand on his own.
Ret. Fulton County Sheriff’s Sgt. Kirk Markham, Mokey’s partner for 7 years, says the Labrador had a distinguished law enforcement career.
The brave Labrador responded to bomb threats, did security checks at big events including four Super Bowls, and assisted the U. S. Marshals during fugitive sweeps. Mokey even helped change the way police detectives in Atlanta conducted homicide investigations.
“Mokey rewrote the script on his own without even typing or knowing how to spell with his paws,” says Markham. “It’s just the way that he worked, and so many shell casings and other things that were related to homicides that he found that just blew the homicide commanders and the deputy chiefs and even the chiefs away.”
According to the retired officer, he didn’t believe it when K-9 school instructors told him that Mokey would also be able to sniff out ballistics. Then, he saw it for himself. During a casual conversation, he told an Atlanta homicide detective about Mokey’s talents. The detective said he would call them out to his next shooting scene to see what Mokey could do.
The chance came when an Atlanta Red Dog officer, Mark Cross, was shot to death. Mokey was called to the crime scene and confirmed to detectives that they had processed all the physical evidence there—gaining confidence in his ballistics-locating ability. The dog was later called out to investigate more similar crime scenes.
Markham says, Atlanta Police got K-9 officers of their own after seeing the expertise Mokey provided.
Mokey’s loving and gentle demeanor made him a popular character in Fulton County. He rode in an SUV which had his name on the side.
Mokey was originally raised to be a seeing-eye dog, but he proved too rambunctious for that job, so a career change was in order.
“I think he just said, ‘This is no fun. I’m a guy of action. I need to get into law enforcement work,’ and it suited him,” says Markham. “Bomb-detection work was the job for Mokey.”
The partners retired from the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office in 2011.
“They teach you in K-9 school to always trust your dog, and I did,” says Markham. “Mokey is the superstar. I feel that I was just his assistant, I was his chauffeur, I was the dummy with the leash. Because he did all the work.”
Markham received condolences from people as far away as the United Kingdom. On his final trip to the veterinarian’s clinic, several police dogs and their handlers lined up to give Mokey a salute for his many years of service.
Markham’s voice thickens as he remembers the first time he met the pooch.
“He was more than my partner,” says Sgt. Markham. “He was my best friend.”
Image and article source: WSB