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Injured Wake Forest K-9 recovering at home

Posted April 15, 2011

— A Wake Forest police canine that was injured three weeks ago while pursuing a probation absconder has been released from a veterinary hospital and is recuperating at home, officials said Friday.

Marcus Antwan Richardson fled from officers trying to serve him with outstanding warrants on March 24. A K-9 handler released his dog, Maverick, to search for Richardson, and another officer coming to help struck the dog with his patrol car.

Maverick's handler, Wake Forrest Officer D. Hess was just a few feet away. 

"He wasn't expected to make it," Hess said. 

Hess said Maverick had collapsed lungs, three fractured ribs, a fractured pelvis and spine and a brain injury. 

The 9-year-old Belgian Malinois had emergency surgery at North Carolina State University's College of Veterinary Medicine.

Doctors placed Maverick in a sling that supports his weight and is designed to enable him to stand. Officials said the dog is able to eat and drink on his own.

Over the next several weeks, Maverick is scheduled to undergo extensive rehabilitation with a canine orthopedic specialist that will eventually allow him to stand and walk without support, officials said.

Injured Wake Forest K-9 recovering at home Injured Wake Forest K-9 recovering at home

Maverick has been a member of the Wake Forest Police Department since 2004. In 2009, Maverick helped in seizing more than $21,000 dollars in drug money on a traffic stop.

Hess said he believes Maverick will work again before the dog's scheduled retirement in October. 

Bracelets with Maverick's name are being given out in exchange for donations to offset the dog's medical costs. Bracelets can be obtained by emailing Hess at dhess@wakeforestnc.gov.

Richardson, 21, of 1405 Old Knight Road in Knightdale, was charged with felony assault on a police animal, resisting a public officer and second-degree trespassing. He was also served with outstanding warrants for a probation violation and charges of misdemeanor larceny, second-degree trespassing, failure to appear in court and two counts of resisting a public officer.


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  • twocentsworth Apr 18, 2011

    godnessgracious2 - I absolutely love it when someone who is obviously as uneducated about this subject as you are tries to convince others that they know what they are talking about. It's laughable! Perhaps you should take some time to do research on the laws surrounding K9 officers before you comment! And to top it all off, you then further reveal your ignorance by throwing in a racial comment! I guess what they say is true..."you can't fix stupid"!

  • Call It Like I See It Apr 18, 2011

    Wow... Guess I'm emotionally immature because I would do anything for my dogs, no hesitation... my dogs are just like my babies and considered to be members of the family. I saw a dog on the side of the highway yesterday and cried for 20minutes because he wouldn't come to the car and I had to leave him there. To me saying your an animal "lover" yet unwilling to pray for one or consider it a vital member of your family seems to be a contradiction. Anyways... the topic is this police dog, its just nice to hear he will recover and has a loving family to support him through out everything, so sad this had to happen and i'm sure that other officer felt alot of remorse.

  • godnessgracious2 Apr 15, 2011

    So if I ran over the K9 it would still be the fleeing suspect's fault, and I would not be charged with anything?

  • gagal Apr 15, 2011

    This was not a dog. This is and alway's will be a officer of the law. If you run he will be turned out. If anything happens to the K-9 office you are at fault. Look it up.

  • ccs1920 Apr 15, 2011

    godnessgracious2/ Run and you might be in for a surprise. I hope so anyway.

  • mrlee34 Apr 15, 2011

    NC Reader, I am an animal lover. However, I will not pray for an animal. Sorry but it does bother me how some people seem to treat there pets like humans. I have two cats but they will never get treated like they are my children. I know of marriages that have failed because of one of the people spent more time with their dogs than their significant other. To me it shows emotional immaturity when someone is treats animals like they are people.

  • godnessgracious2 Apr 15, 2011

    it was the handlers fault, the dog should have never been released for such a small time criminal. Why should this kid have a felony because a cop ran over a dog? Didn't they try to say the crook hit the dog at first. If you let your K-9 loose on a roadway you better have a good reason. From what I can see there was not a good enough reason. Failure to appear on a petty theft case wouldn't get a dog released on me, but that must be because I'm white. Glad the dog will recover anyway.

  • NC Reader Apr 15, 2011

    mrlee -- And why not? I don't believe the life of a dog is as valuable as the life of a person (most people anyway), but I see nothing wrong in praying for the life of an injured one.

  • mrlee34 Apr 15, 2011

    @ Desiderata..... Prayers for a dog? Really????

  • CarolinianByChoice Apr 15, 2011

    From previous article reported on March 25: "Police said that Richardson can be held responsible for the dog's injury because the animal was being used in a search for him after he had fled police."

    Glad Maverick is getting better and will be rehabilitated, hope he gets to enjoy retirement with his handler.