Veterans honor LPD K-9 injured in line of duty - FOX34 Lubbock

Veterans honor LPD K-9 injured in line of duty

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

A Lubbock Police Department K-9 was shot twice trying to stop a criminal last August.

On Friday, the Lubbock Veterans of Foreign Wars honored him and his partner with a special ceremony.

"It makes me very happy that people are willing to recognize the hard work Max has put in to becoming, in my opinion, one of the best K-9's I could've ever asked to work," Corporal Brock Gruner, Max's handler, said.

On Aug. 20, 2019, Cpl. Gruner and Max were chasing an armed culprit down an alley in Central Lubbock, when he opened fire on them.

"We ended in a backyard, as we entered the backyard, the suspect turned and fired multiple rounds, striking Max due to Max being in front of me," Gruner said.

Max was hit twice, in his left paw and in the right flank, but he gave police time to catch the suspect.

Benny Guerrero, the VFW commander, said they wanted to thank Max and Gruner for their sacrifice, and it takes a team to accomplish the mission.

"His actions that day saved the life of our police officer and the life of the criminal," Guerrero said. "I mean, that dog saved two lives that day, and we are so grateful for Corporal Gruner in employing that dog when he had to do it."

Since then, Max has been at home with Gruner recovering. His vet believes the injury to his paw has healed as much as it will.

"He still has a slight limp as he walks around," Gruner said. "At times, it's a little bit less noticeable due to his high energy, but when he's at home and he's in the backyard just walking around normal without any excitement you can see he has a little bit of a limp."

It is still unclear whether Max will be able to return to work, Gruner said, but he hopes they will have a final decision soon.

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