One of the 's K9's attacked an officer in April, sending her to the hospital for surgery. Kristine Lydon, who was bitten during a call to a local apartment complex, faces a "long, arduous and challenging" recovery, according to Police Chief Paul Frazier.
It was the third recent incident of aggressive behavior among Braintree's police canines, and so Frazier announced in a press release on Wednesday that he had ended the deployment of three of the department's patrol dogs as of Monday, but left K9 Lucky to continue serving as a drug detector.
"There is a certain risk when deploying K9's, not only to our officers but to our citizens as well," Frazier said. "The inherent danger associated with their deployment far outweighs the benefit and as such I have made the decision to end their deployment."
On April 28, the day of the attack on Lydon, she reported to Skyline Drive, where two youths had been reported missing, Frazier said. Sergeant Michael Want located the youths and police were about to clear the call when K9 Kitt "escaped" from the rear of a cruiser, ran past his handler Officer William Cushing Jr. and attacked Lydon.
She was brought to Boston Medical Center and faces additional surgery in the future for her leg injury. "Kristine is a strong individual and will get through this," Frazier said.
In a separate incident, K9 Dargo attacked his handler and was euthanized when the department found he had a genetic impairment. Another dog, Yento, attacked his handler's son. No further information on those attacks were provided in the release. Frazier was unavailable for further comment on Wednesday afternoon.
"It's bad enough that one of our finest officers has become a victim to a K9 attack, but if this was a member of the general public, the Town could be sued," Frazier said. "I trust in the future that a very thorough independent review of the K9 program will be conducted before any decision is made to reinstate the program."