BOSTON (CBS) — A bill that allows first responders to provide emergency medical care to injured police K-9s was unanimously passed by the Massachusetts State Senate on Wednesday.
The bill, which has been dubbed “Nero’s Law”, was filed by State Senator Mark Montigny after the deadly shooting of Yarmouth Police Sergeant Sean Gannon. In 2018, the 32-year-old Yarmouth police officer was killed when he and other officers were serving an arrest warrant at a Barnstable home.
Thomas Latanowich was later found guilty of second-degree murder in the shooting.
His K-9, Nero, was also shot, but under state law, first responders could not treat Nero at the scene. He had to be driven to a vet. The bill would change the law so that K-9s injured in the line of duty would receive on-site medical care.
The bill now advances to the Massachusetts House of Representatives.
“K-9 officers protect the men and women in law enforcement as well as the community at-large,” Montigny said in a statement Wednesday. “These animals endure extreme danger from gun violence, narcotics, and even explosive materials. Allowing our emergency personnel to provide basic treatment and transport is a commonsense measure that honors their contributions across the Commonwealth.”
The Senate unanimously passed “Nero’s Law” in a 38-0 vote.