Memorial service set for fallen police canine

Rooster, the police canine killed in the line of duty on Saturday, will be honored during a memorial service set for 1 p.m. March 31 in Wichita City Hall, 455 N. Main.

The 30-minute service will be held in the building’s City Council chambers on the first floor. It’s open to the public and all first responders.

Rooster, who served with the Wichita Police Department for five years, died when he was shot in the shoulder and neck after his handler ordered him to stop a suspect from returning to a house in Lamplighter Mobile Home Park. Police Chief Gordon Ramsay said Monday that his handler did not know the suspect was armed at the time.

Erika Cepeda, police department administrative secretary planning the service, said the council chamber can hold 350 people. A nearby room can seat about 40. She said the service will be streamed live by a public information officer and will be shown on Channel 7.

Cepeda said authorities are looking into cremating Rooster’s remains because the service is more than 10 days away. It’s not known what will be done with the dog’s ashes.

Rooster is the first Wichita police canine killed in the line of duty. The death means the department’s K9 unit now has four dog/handler teams.

“They’re a very small group, but they’re very tight-knit,” said Cepeda.

“He was a hard working dog for his handler and the department. He did everything his handler asked of him. He will be missed,” police said in a news release.

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