ELMORE, Ala. (WIAT) — A memorial service honoring the life and service of Alabama Department of Corrections K-9 Jake was held Tuesday at the ADOC Staton Complex in Elmore.
Jake, a 5-year-old Belgian Malinois, died last week after becoming ill following exposure to a synthetic drug known as “flakka” during a contraband search at the Staton Correction Facility.
Sgt. Quinton Jones was Jake’s partner, a bond he described as unbreakable until the end.
“That bond was very special,” Jones said. “I spent more time talking about my problems to him than my wife.”
Jones said that although Jake couldn’t answer back, they had a deep understanding of each other.
“By spending so much time together, we became one,” he said. “He knows what I was thinking and I knew what he was thinking.”
ADOC Commissioner Jeff Dunn spoke during Jake’s memorial about the important work the K-9 officers do. He added that unlike a lot of K-9s, Jake had a playful side that everyone enjoyed. However, Jake was also a fierce officer.
“He has a reputation among our inmate population of being effective and being fearsome and so the inmate recognized that,” Dunn said.
Jake is the first K-9 to die in the line of duty within the Alabama Department of Corrections. The circumstances surrounding Jake’s death are still being investigated.
Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.