WESTERVILLE, Ohio (WCMH) – Sam, Officer Eric Joering’s K9 partner, will retire from the Westerville Division of Police and will have the option of living with Joering’s wife and children, according to the Fraternal Order of Police.
The FOP announced the news Tuesday afternoon.
At the next Westerville City Council meeting, Sam will officially be offered to Joering’s family. According to the FOP, the family is expected to say yes.
Sam was in the back of the cruiser when Officer Eric Joering and Officer Anthony Morelli were shot and killed early Saturday afternoon responding to a 911 hang-up call.
Sam’s original trainer, Mike Pennington, got him from the shooting scene that day. He says Sam was scared and shaken up.
Pennington says Sam is hurting. Despite his pain, he has traded in his K9 badge for the title of therapy dog, bringing comfort to Officer Joering’s children.
A public visitation for Joerig and Morelli will be held at St. Paul the Apostle Church on State Street in Westerville. The visitation starts at 10 a.m. Friday and will be followed by a funeral.
Both are open to the public.
Hundreds of police officers from around the state are expected to attend.