CLARKSTOWN, N.Y. -- After only a year in retirement, K-9 King, the longtime partner of Clarkstown Police Officer Bob Reilly, died Thursday, according to the Clarkstown Police Department.
"This morning we recognize and honor the service “King”, retired in 2016 after eight years of exemplary service to the Department and to the Town of Clarkstown," said Officer Peter Walker.
King was an 11-year-old German Shepherd born in the Czech Republic. He was named in the memory of Sean King, son of Dr. Richard King of Valley Cottage, Walker said.
Trained as a “dual purpose” K-9, to detect narcotics, article searches and tracking, during his years of service, King contributed to the department’s daily effort to keep the community safe and keep illegal drugs off the streets of Clarkstown, he added.
During his years of service the popular dog located large amounts of narcotics, assisted in countless arrests, located firearms, recovered evidence and located missing persons. He also received SWAT training and was deployed with the Department’s Critical Incident Response Team serving to clear buildings and search for dangerous suspects, Walker said.
King was also credited with locating several violent felons with notable achievement in his 2009 apprehension of Eric Lau, the convicted murderer of resident Jami Erlich.
He was also credited with successfully tracking and locating a missing elderly male with dementia who disappeared on a winter night when the temperature was below freezing.
"King was also especially popular with our children when he would perform K9 demonstrations at schools, various community groups and at the Clarkstown Recreation Summer Camps," Walker said.
King, who lived with the Reilly family after he retired, was a true member of their family.
"We extend our sympathy to Bob and his family," he said. "And, to King, well-done lad and we honor your service and mourn your passing."