Former Morehead City police officer wins fight to bring his K-9 home

Morehead City Police Department K-9 Officer Knox (Morehead City Police Department)

MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. — After protest, Morehead City finally caved and agreed that K-9 Knox could retire early to head home with his recently-resigned handler, Officer Justin Berry of the Morehead City Police Department.

After about eight years as the Belgian Malanois’s handler, Berry resigned from his post at the police department last week for a job at another department, according to the Carteret County News-Times.

Despite Berry’s requests and offer to pay to keep the police dog, Capt. Tim Guthrie remained resolute that the dog would serve out one more year before retirement, Carteret County News-Times reports.

That is, until Monday morning.

“The town has decided to retire police K-9 officer Knox early from service allowing him to become a part of the Berry family,” said City Manager Ryan Eggleston in a statement on behalf of Morehead City.

The city manager said the decision came after receiving feedback from local community members, which may be an understatement.

In a change.org petition, thousands of people voiced their support for reuniting Berry and Knox.

By Monday, the petition reached more than 14,000 signatures.

The petition reads, “Belgian Malanois’ are described as Velcro dogs as they are 1000% loyal to their human, and there is only one. This dog is not a uniform you can wash and pass on.”

Eggleston also wished Berry luck in his next career opportunity and the best to Knox in his retirement.