‘Our hearts are broken’: Tennessee K-9 officer dies days after being shot in line of duty

National / World

LA VERGNE, Tenn. (WKRN) — K-9 officer Sjaak has died after being shot earlier this week, the La Vergne Police Department said Wednesday.

Sjaak suffered three gunshot wounds Tuesday when 39-year-old Javon Brice opened fire on officer Justin Darby’s patrol car, according to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. Darby was not injured.

The suspected gunman was later found dead in his car at an apartment complex after a police chase, investigators said. He had suffered at least one gunshot wound.

Sjaak underwent surgery Wednesday but did not survive.

“Our hearts are broken,” Interim La Vergne Police Chief Chip Davis said in a statement Wednesday. “Our K9s are members of the LPD family. Sjaak was an amazing and loyal dog. We ask everyone to keep Officer Darby, his family, and all of the La Vergne officers in your thoughts and prayers as we deal with this loss.”

Sjaak had worked with the La Vergne Police Department since 2014. A small memorial was set up outside of the police department early Thursday morning.

The shooting is still under investigation.

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