RIP Dexter: Gloucestershire officers mourn loss of heroic police dog
HEROIC police dog Dexter has chased his last criminal through the streets of Gloucestershire.
The German Shepherd was responsible for countless operations to apprehend wanted offenders, often sustaining injuries in the process. He died on Sunday.
Dexter was one of 16 handler and dog teams based at Bamfurlong, near Staverton, who respond to incidents all over the county.
They are often at the front line of some of the most dangerous situations encountered by police.
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After a 20-minute chase in 2004, brave Dexter needed stitches after his muzzle was slashed open by a criminal armed with an eight-inch kitchen knife involved in an attempted High Street robbery in Cheltenham.
Dexter sank his teeth into the fugitive's arm before officers made the arrest but suffered a deep gash to his nose.
He was back on duty days later. The man was sentenced to three years in prison.
In the same year, Dexter was praised for helping his handler PC Mark Duncton apprehend two assailants who fled from a stolen vehicle crashed in Staverton.
PC Duncton described Dexter as 'worth his weight in gold' following the incident and the pair developed a strong bond during their police career together.
PC Duncton accepted the National Police Dog Operational Action of the Year Award 2004 on Dexter's behalf at a ceremony in Strathclyde.
Without Dexter's keen sense of smell and dogged determination, many arrests would not have been made.
His eight-year police career was commended on Twitter by Gloucestershire Police Chief Constable Mick Matthews.
He said: "So saddened to hear that retired Glos Police Dog 'Dexter' passed away – a recipient of Gold People's Dispensary for Sick Animals (PDSA) animal gallantry award- RIP Dexter."