BROOKSVILLE - The Hernando County Sheriff's office announced Friday that a new K-9 Deputy is joining the force.
K-9 Topper, a 19-month old German Shepherd, will be handled by Deputy Brandon Cox. Cox's partner, K-9 Ike, died suddenly in late May from an unexpected medical condition and emergency surgery. Ike was 4 1/2 years old.
Cox and his supervisors picked Topper out at Southern Coast K-9 in New Smyrna Beach. Topper was born in the Netherlands, and his $8,500 purchase price was covered by an anonymous donor in memory of G. Moran.
Deputies Cox and Topper will attend patrol school, and will need to be certified by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement before fielding calls in Hernando County.
In a press release, Sheriff Al Nienhuis said he was "humbled" by the donation.
"We are only as successful as the support we receive from our community," Nienhuis said. "The donor's generosity goes beyond our ability to keep the community safe. It is also a huge morale booster for my deputies, knowing they have that type of community support."