K-9 Huk Returns to Hospital to Thank the Staff

The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office honored two organizations Friday — thanking them for helping K-9 Huk, who was shot in the line of duty in July.

Back on July 22nd JSO units were dispatched to a call of gunshots in the area of Commonwealth Avenue and Division Street. A JSO officer observed a vehicle matching a description of the suspect vehicle, and while attempting to contact with the people inside the vehicle, there was an exchange of gunfire on West 45th Street.

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The suspect vehicle fled the area, and the chase was on. The chase ended in a crash at the intersection of Busch Drive at Zoo Parkway, with the suspects’ vehicle coming to a stop at the zoo fence line. Officers gave commands for the three suspects inside the vehicle to surrender, but they did not comply.

JSO decided to employ K-9 Huk into the vehicle. At least one of the suspects fired a weapon at Huk, striking him. Five officers returned fire and extracted Huk to safety. The one remaining suspect who was still living thought it would be a good idea to refuse to come out and a standoff ensued. The suspect who was in the vehicle finally surrendered and was transported for injuries related to the crash, not gunfire.

SWAT officers cleared the vehicle and confirmed the remaining two suspects in the vehicle were dead.

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At this point JSO had two dead suspects and no human officers injured, but Huk was shot in his neck, hind, and wrist. Huk’s Handler Officer Chet Plaugher helped load Huk into the helicopter and first responders flew him across Duval County to the emergency vets at First Coast Veterinary Specialists in Jax Beach.

Three months later Huk is doing well with his recovery. Huk arrived at the ceremony with a cast on his leg.

JSO honored Irondog K9 International and First Coast Veterinary Specialists with a “greatest appreciation” award for saving Huck’s life.

“It’s been such an honor and privilege to work with Huck and the K-9 handlers. It’s been amazing to witness their bond,” Dr. Sydney Davis, a First Coast Veterinary Specialist, said. “Huk wouldn’t be here tonight if it weren’t for us caring for him day and night.”

Huk’s Handler Chet Plaugher said Huk’s recovery is going well. He’ll be in a cast and splint a little while longer, another surgery, and then more rehabilitation.


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