Mississippi K9 officer dies after officer-involved shooting. Community mourns loss of ‘true hero.’

Published 6:31 am Thursday, February 22, 2024

The Mississippi K9 officer who was shot during an officer-involved shooting Wednesday has died.

The Mississippi Department of Public Safety reported about the loss on social media:

“Today, we mourn the loss of Luca, a K-9 with the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Department, who was killed in the line of duty during an officer-involved shooting incident,” the post said. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to his handler and the entire department during this time. Luca was a true hero, and his bravery and service will never be forgotten.”
In a press release, the Desoto County Sheriff’s Office also reported about the loss and the events surrounding the officer-involved shooting:

“The Desoto County Sheriff’s Office regrets to inform the public of an unfortunate officer-involved shooting incident that occurred earlier today. Our officers were involved in a traffic stop where the suspect fired upon them, resulting in the tragic mortal wounding of one of our esteemed K9s. During the incident, our officers, in line with their training and duty to protect public safety, responded swiftly, returning fire to eliminate the imminent threat posed by the suspect.

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I want to be clear:

In this profession, any loss of life is tragic.

Our officers did not make this decision.

The suspect made this decision by being non-compliant, firing at our officers, and fatally wounding our K9.

We remain steadfast in our commitment to protecting our citizens. This commitment is unwavering!

We extend our deepest condolences to the handlers and all members of our K9 unit as we mourn the loss of our loyal and dedicated K9 Luca. Our thoughts are with the entire law enforcement community during this difficult time.

The appropriate authorities are investigating the incident, and we are fully cooperating with their inquiries to ensure transparency and accountability. We appreciate the understanding and support of the community as we navigate through this challenging period.”