Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department, K9 Riggs, who returned to active duty after recovering from a gunshot wound sustained in the line of duty, and K9 deputy Terry Tifft were honored during of the Kenosha County Board of Directors meeting on Tuesday evening.
Riggs and Tifft, who have been a team since 2014, received a certificate of recognition and a standing ovation during the reunion. The certificate, signed by Kenosha County Director Jim Kreuser and County Board Chairman John O’Day was presented by Vice President Monica Yuhas “in recognition and appreciation for their hard work. and their courage in the exercise of their functions ”.
“We are proud of their accomplishments and grateful for the work they do to promote public safety in Kenosha County,” said Yuhas.
On the morning of October 21, Tifft responded with Riggs and other agents at the Benson Corners convenience store and gas station in Bristol to attempt to locate a suspect involved in a Chicago double homicide. The suspect allegedly drove a stolen vehicle matching the description of a to the location.
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When the suspect fled on foot from the scene, Tifft released Riggs in pursuit. The man, Allen Brown, 33, of Countryside, Ill., Shot Riggs in the head after the dog tackled Brown to the ground. Brown was then shot and wounded by MPs.
Riggs, an 8-year-old German Shepherd, was first transported to Harris Pet Hospital in Paddock Lake and then transferred to the Veterinary Specialty Center in Buffalo Grove, Ill. For further treatment.
Veterinarian Jennifer Herring said the bullet entered Riggs’ forehead and passed through the muscle along his skull, exiting through the back of his head. The bullet path was visible through the muscle and there were bruises to the brain, Herring said.
Riggs was released from the veterinary hospital on Sunday, October 24, and was greeted at his home by dozens of canine agents and their police dogs, as well as Kenosha MPs, local first responders and family members.
“After a miraculous recovery, Riggs underwent a post-injury assessment and was deemed fit to return to duty, which he did on November 29,” Yuhas said. “Riggs and Deputy Tifft have shown remarkable resilience and bravery during this dangerous ordeal, which has demonstrated the potential for harm that all of our law enforcement officers face every day they are are in service.
Tifft said Riggs suffered no neurological damage and that the kennel that worked with the K9 agents had subjected him to various assessments.
“They made sure he could still do a narcotics test, and we had to do a bit of work around the shots to make sure he wasn’t nervous or shy,” Tifft said. “He did it all with flying colors, so he’s back to full service.”
Since returning, Tifft said Riggs’ presence in the patrol car had already helped resolve a non-compliance issue.
“He heard the dog bark and decided to comply,” Tifft said of the suspect.
IN PHOTOS: K-9 hero Riggs released from vet hospital