HARDEMAN COUNTY, TN (WMC) - A K-9 service dog was found dead in his kennel after being left in a hot car. His handler now faces animal cruelty charges.
According to the report from Hardeman County, the handler, Officer Robert Strickland, with Hardeman County Correctional Facility, said he went to an off-site training for work Tuesday. When he arrived at the site of the training, Family Restaurant, he was met with a complaint about employee parking.
Strickland said he accidentally turned off the car's engine with the windows rolled up and his K-9, Kilo, in the car's kennel.
He didn't check on the dog for a couple hours, but when he did, the dog was unresponsive and not breathing. Strickland began CPR on his dog, but the dog died.
Hardeman County Correctional Facility is a privately operated medium security facility run by Corrections Corporation of America. It has a maximum bed capacity of 2,016. Under the leadership of Warden Grady Perry, the facility had three K-9 service dogs until this death.
Officials said the cost of the dog is estimated to be $5,000.
Strickland is charged with cruelty to animals. Strickland is currently on paid administrative leave from the prison.
Strickland is also a member of the Tennessee Army National Guard.