Cache County Sheriff’s Office
July 18, 2017
On July 3, 2017, Cache County Sheriff’s Office K9 service dog Endy died of heat exhaustion after being left unattended in a patrol vehicle. Endy’s handler contacted his division commander upon discovering the canine in his patrol truck. The handler was immediately placed on administrative leave as per Sheriff’s Office protocol. On being notified, Sheriff Chad Jensen requested two investigations--an independent investigation through the Northern Utah Critical Incident Task Force conducted by a third party, which is ongoing, and an administrative internal investigation through the Sheriff’s Office that is now complete.
The internal investigation identified that policy and procedures were not followed resulting in the tragic death of Endy. Administrative action has been taken concerning the findings including leave without pay and a job reassignment for the handler. “My administration has conducted a comprehensive review of our canine program including equipment, care, welfare, daily maintenance, and training. I believe our policies and procedures are sound. This incident was a result of human error and protocol violation.”
Jensen states all K9 patrol vehicles were proactively equipped with safety features for the canine while the handler was on duty and the vehicle was left running. Through our investigation surrounding the circumstances of Endy’s death, we are actively pursuing new technology wherein all K9 units will be equipped with end of shift warning systems. Handlers will be forced to manually shut down the security system and this system will give verbal warnings to the handler to remove the canine from the vehicle. If not manually shut down, the system will activate horns, lights, and sirens until the canine is removed safely.
“While this is a significant loss and setback to our K9 program, over time I am confident we will move forward with a stronger and more effective canine program that will continue to be an incredible asset and resource to our community. Endy was a great asset to our agency and the citizens of Cache County. He, along with our other canine Rokki, have been actively engaged in protecting the streets and communities throughout the valley. Our K9’s work in our jails and neighborhoods daily. The loss of Endy was unexpected and heartbreaking, and our officers mourn his loss. Endy was a beloved member of our organization and our community. The effects of his loss are felt throughout the Sheriff’s Office and law enforcement throughout Cache County,” said Jensen
“This is a case attributed to distraction with tragic consequences. Endy’s death serves as a devastating reminder to us all about the importance of eliminating distractions, maintaining a routine, and being vigilant about never leaving children or pets unattended in hot vehicles.”
The Northern Utah Critical Incident Task Force independent investigation is ongoing. Inquiries into their investigation should be made to the Cache County Attorney’s Office.
The Cache County Sheriff’s Office will be holding a memorial service at the Sheriff’s Complex honoring Endy, his service, and the legacy he leaves among law enforcement and residents across the valley. Interment will follow. The community is invited to attend, and details will be announced through our website www.cachesheriff.com
and on our Facebook page.