Kelly Makiha is a senior reporter at the Rotorua Daily Post

Kawerau police dog honoured on wall of remembrance

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A police dog drowned in a river by an offender he was chasing is one of 24 dogs killed in the line of duty honoured by New Zealand Police. A Wall of Remembrance was unveiled today at the New Zealand Police Dog Training Centre in Upper Hutt by Deputy Commissioner Viv Rickard and former police dog handler and Associate Justice Minister Mark Mitchell.

The wall includes individual plaques displaying each dog's name, the date they were killed and their handler's name.

Kawerau police dog Valour, who was killed on February 8, 1998, is among the dogs on the remembrance wall.

The 6-year-old dog was held under the water and drowned by a 21-year-old man he was chasing, forcing his handler Constable Bruce McLeod to beg for his dog's life.

Valour, the 20th police dog killed in the line of duty in New Zealand, was only three weeks out from his retirement when he died in the Tarawera River, near Kawerau.

The man he was chasing was charged with killing, wounding, injuring or maiming a police dog.

- Rotorua Daily Post

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