WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – An officer who lost his K-9 partner almost nine months ago now has a new four-legged friend to patrol the streets with him.
It was March 18th of this year that Rooster, a K-9 officer with the Wichita Police Department was shot and killed in the line of duty.
He was the first, and to date, the only K-9 officer to be killed in WPD’s history.
This afternoon, Rooster’s former handler, Officer Daniel Gumm came to the Rooster K-9 Dog Park for the first time, since it was renamed following his death.
“This is only time I’ve been really ever, I’ve never been up here,” said Ofc. Gumm.
Ofc. Gumm says he has fond memories of his time spent with his old K-9 partner.
“I had him for about four years and we did a lot of stuff together,” said Ofc. Gumm.
Ofc Gumm says after the memorial service for rooster at the end of March, he traveled to Indiana to pick out his new K-9 partner at Vonch Liche Kennels.
He says a lot of things went into the selection process.
“There’s 14 tests that we have through our program that are pre-determined tests,” said Ofc. Gumm.
Ofc. Gumm says he ultimately settled on a two-year old Belgian Malinois, named Bane.
“We test for drug detection and what we call patrol work, apprehension side of work and he scored the best out of the, I think, 14 dogs that we looked at,” said Ofc. Gumm.
Ofc Gumm says K-9’s normally go through about 10 weeks of training to get ready to go out on the streets.
However, he says Bane was a fast learner, finishing a week ahead of schedule.
He says Bane learned plenty of things to help him be prepared.
“Drug detection, evidence, tracking, building searches, area searches,” said Ofc. Gumm.
Ofc Gumm says he and Bane have been working the streets together now since June.
He says Bane and Rooster are similar in that they are hard workers, but are totally different personality wise.
“Rooster was all work, all he knew was get up and go to work, he’d be disappointed if you came out not in uniform to let him out for a day, this guy is just happy to be alive and out bouncing around, he’s kind of a clown,” said Ofc. Gumm.
However, it’s that family bond that makes the relationship between this handler and K-9 so special.
“He’s got big shoes to fill, but yeah, he’s getting there,” said Ofc. Gumm.
While Bane did finish up training in June, Ofc. Gumm says he continues to train with Bane once a week.
The purpose being to replicate as much of what they would see out on the streets, to make sure bane is ready and prepared for any situation.