'Pretty Special Dog': Kan. Deputy Handler Remembers Slain K-9

Nov. 30, 2023
"I spent more time with that dog than I did with my kids for the last year," said the handler for Bane, a Sedgwick County sheriff's K-9 who was killed trying to apprehend a suspect earlier this month.

By Eduardo Castillo

Source The Wichita Eagle

About 10 police cruisers with officers and their K-9s standing in front lined up on Wednesday at the entrance of the Sedgwick County Extension Office for the memorial service for fallen Sedgwick County Sheriff's Office K-9 Bane.

Among the dozens of law enforcement officers at the service were members of the Sedgwick County Sheriff's Office, Wichita Police Department, Lenexa Police Department, Halstead Police Department, Sumner County Sheriff's Office and the Caldwell Police Department.

"Bane did a wonderful job working for us. I cannot explain enough how much Bane did for this community," said Sedgwick County Sheriff Jeff Easter. "From the amount of drugs he seized, the tracking that he did, the deputy protection stuff that he did. . . it is amazing what those K-9's do and how much they can help us."

Bane was killed in the line of duty on Nov. 16 in east Wichita after being strangled to death by a 24-year-old Wichita man who ran away from police and into a large storm drain, the Eagle previously reported.

Bane previously worked for the Wichita Police Department under late officer Daniel Gumm, who died of cancer last year. Gumm's family attended the memorial service on Wednesday.

Bane joins WPD K-9 Rooster, who was killed in the line of duty in March 2017. Gumm was the handler for both dogs.

"It brings up bad memories for the Wichita Police Department because of what they lost in both Rooster and Bane," Easter said. "We're here to honor all of them, including Daniel Gumm, today, who started Bane's journey."

Thousands of hours together

Bane transitioned to the sheriff's office in 2022 and worked alongside Deputy Tyler Brooks for over a year. Brooks shared memories he made with his partner in that short time and having to explain to his children about the incident.

"It's been a difficult two weeks," Brooks said.

"[I was] very sad, then very angry, and then very sad again and trying to process things with my kids and relate to them on why Bane didn't get to come home," Brooks said. "There's a lot of questions that they have and don't understand the answers to right now."

A video that played at the memorial showed clips and still photos of Brooks and Bane conducting drug sniffing exercises, Bane playing with Brooks' kids, candid photos of Bane and photos with his former handler, Gumm.

Brooks, who spent thousands of training hours with Bane and formed a special bond with him, called him a "pretty special dog."

"I spent more time with that dog than I did with my kids for the last year," Brooks said. "Constantly. He lives with me, he rides with me all the time, so I truly spent as much if not more time with that dog than I did with my own family. It's going to be really hard to replace that."

During his career, which started in 2017, Bane was deployed 583 times and seized 88 1/2 pounds of marijuana, 58 1/2 pounds of methamphetamine, half a pound of fentanyl, 37 grams of cocaine, 43 grams of heroin, 30 firearms and $16,339 in U.S. currency, the sheriff's office said.

He also apprehended 127 suspects.

Brooks said Bane was always ready to work, often doing spins in his kennel from getting excited, but he remembers his partner more for his playful side.

"His favorite thing in the world was putting on his vest and getting ready for work as soon as he saw that side door open," Brooks said. "Affectionately I would call him a knucklehead all the time because he would just crash through everything . . . if something could be knocked over, he would knock it over."


(c)2023 The Wichita Eagle (Wichita, Kan.)

Visit The Wichita Eagle (Wichita, Kan.) at www.kansas.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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