Another K-9 handler resigns from GPD’s K-9 unit

Corporal Joshua Meurer and Ranger


GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Another Gainesville Police Department K-9 handler has resigned from the unit, leaving the unit with two handlers (and a policy stating that they cannot deploy their dogs). Corporal Joshua Meurer submitted his resignation from the unit on February 3, adding to the previous resignations of Sergeant Charles Owens and Corporal Rob Rogers.

The full letter can be read here.

In Meurer’s letter, he expressed gratitude for the opportunity to serve his community and be a part of the K-9 unit for the past five years, saying, “It’s been a dream of mine from the very beginning to run behind a dog. It is a passion of mine that I do not think will ever fade.”

He also wrote fondly of Ranger, the dog that apprehended Terrell Bradley in an incident that resulted in the loss of Bradley’s eye. Meurer wrote, “Watching Ranger grow, learn, progress, and become one of the best tracking canines was an experience that I cannot put into words.”

Meurer wrote that his decision was reached after “weeks of prayer” and discussion with mentors, and he based it on several factors. The first was the appointment of Acting Sergeant Dylan Hayes-Morrison as supervisor of the unit; Meurer wrote that Hayes-Morrison’s lack of experience led to concerns about whether handlers would be supported as long they acted within policy and law.

Meurer also expressed concern about Officer Jamie Hope, the unit’s new trainer, saying he “does not have the experience or knowledge” to represent officers in legal proceedings. Meurer wrote, “In my opinion, this feels like a ‘check in the box’ decision for one of the highest liability units in all of law enforcement. It is also concerning that several qualified former K9 trainers passed on the opportunity to be the unit trainer due to their own concerns.”

Meurer expressed disappointment in the lack of support from GPD following the Terrell Bradley apprehension: “It would have been easy to articulate to our neighbors and to the media that I acted professionally and within policy. However, I was placed on an island with no support while being dragged through the mud on social media. I feel that the press releases were written in a manner that cast doubt on my judgment, skills as a handler, and did more harm… Though Chief Scott had conversations supporting me behind closed doors, I feel that I was never supported in public and to the media. I fear that any future apprehensions will not be met with support.”

Meurer pointed out that he hoped his dedication to the job and department would not be questioned as a result of this decision because he has paid out of his own pocket over the years for a special diet for Ranger.

Meurer added that he would be willing to come back and serve in the K-9 unit if he felt he had the backing, support, and confidence of a qualified supervisor and trainer.

According to the letter, Meurer was told he could purchase Ranger for $1,000, and he intends to do that.

    • You’re a Republican, hating Rat. This is from a Democrat. Get rid of the terrifying dog’s. Do you have both of your eyes?

      • Believe me, you didn’t need to identify yourself as a democrat. . .

        I have both my eyes. . . In part because I don’t commit crimes that would require a canine officer to hunt me down when I stupidly run from police. Pretty simple, actually. When will we address the elephant in the room (e.g., it’s ONLY criminal behavior that leads to incidents like this). Mind boggling, really.

      • I’d rather get rid of idiots like you than the dogs. They are only “terrifying” to criminals.

        Do you have any brain cells? Rhetorical question there Betty, it’s clear to all of us you do not.

      • You know nothing about dogs or handlers. The most special dogs I’ve been around are retired K-9s. They are not vicious.

      • If Bradley would not have disregarded the officer, he might not have been injured. Over the law and the law enforcement.

      • I do know Josh and Ranger. They are very good at their jobs, professional, and love what they do. No one really knows whether the dog did this or a branch from the bush that Bradley was hiding in did it. Did it ever occure to anyone that if the dog “Ate his eye out” there would be some sort of bite marks on his face, but there weren’t any. These policemen and their K9 partners put their lives on the line EVERY SINGLE day with these career criminals for us….no thank you! This county/country is getting sketchier by the day putting criminals rights before law abiding residents and the policmen that still believe in protecting us. Get rid of all the guns, cops, and laws for criminals to abide by. You will soon realize the only people that will be running our society are the freakin criminals. SMH

        • The only people running our society now are criminals. They just don’t get in trouble for it.

          Something not qwhite right about it…

  • He is walking away from his dream job because a convicted felon decided to continue his criminal lifestyle that night! The City of Gainesville would rather let this happen instead of doing the right thing and supporting this officer publicly! SMDH I don’t know Meurer or Ranger, but they have my full support!!

    • So sad I hope he goes To another department other Alachua County it’s obvious GPD is trying to get rid of its department and the county is not far behind the woke movement is strong here

    • Yes walking away from a dream job because he knows he fcked up. That’s why he doesn’t get the support publicly! How many k9 officer apprehensions of a “criminal” turned out bad like this one ? 0 to 94993939829 arrest

      • if the POS did not run from the officers, he would still have both eyes. The officers were just doing their jobs. When are people going to be held responsible for their stupid actions and not awarded ghetto lottery awards?

  • It’s an absolute shame to have to read this but hats off to you Corporal Joshua Meurer & Ranger, thank you both for dedication and your service to this city.

  • As much as the lights are on for the homeless and criminals, the signs are up that Gainesville doesn’t want or appreciate it’s officers. The city will have to offer all kinds of incentives to bribe/lure officers here. Doubtful it will be the type that this same leadership just voted for themselves and their new charter officers though.
    Unfortunately, there’s bound to be more deaths in the city as a result of leadership’s woke policies.

    You can book that.

  • The downward spiral of the city of gainesville accelerates towards the black hole of total insanity, meanwhile the commissioners and their highly paid administrative minions their feel better about themselves than ever.

  • I will never understand the minds of people that can overlook an actual human life and put an animal before him. I’m not and I won’t blame this man for the gruesome act of this k9. But it will not be over looked or praised. K9s are not meant to attack suspects and should be only used to sniff out drugs. The only time I knew of it been ok for dogs to run men down were doing slavery times. Anybody that is ok with this concept is more than likely ok with the rules, regulations and concept that were being used during slavery.

    • Funny, history says otherwise. Dogs have been used in all sorts of capacity to include apprehensions long before slavery. That’s just the most recent emotional argument.

      Apprehension K9’s are used to apprehend. They are tools of a last resort and policies are written to avoid apprehensions whenever possible. Furthermore, they are used all over the world between other law enforcement and military units… units/agencies that don’t have the tie(s) to slavery that you want to make.

    • Dogs are primarily color blind but can distinguish blues & yellows from my understanding. They’re utilized to track by scent so that makes them invaluable. Just ask the people who are utilizing canines in the search for survivors in Turkey.
      That pretty much takes “they’re only used to apprehend black people,” out of the single use theory.

    • If the criminal would obey the law do as he was told and not run like a little bitch he is the dog would never had been turned out he would still have his eye you left wingers can blame everyone and thing but the person at fault the felon who had a gun he was not supposed to have and drugs that are against the law so please tell me again who is responsible for him losing his eye

      • You’re a little bitch, I hope somebody dog rip your eye out or better yet both eyes. That man a human just like me and you. Regardless of what he did. It Don’t matter what law he breaks. That same criminal could be saving your moma grandma or even kid from getting killed one day. So once again that handler and his retarded dog are to blame for his eye missing 🤷🏿‍♂️ lol

        • From your comment I can extrapolate that you are (A) a convicted felon, (B) fairly stupid, (C) still fairly stupid.

        • Hilarious!!!! Yeah, we should give this thug an award because he “might” potentially save my grandma. Either way, he’s going to do it looking like a pirate from here on out! Play stupid games win stupid prizes.

          • A least we will not have to worry about that officer or no other officer,releasing dogs on no one else.I really hope the other two officers resign as well.

        • Did you make it to high school JB? “I hope somebody dog rip your eye out” and “that man a human just like me and you?”

          And no, that man is NOT a human like me, I am not a criminal thus I don’t have to worry about the police.

          The one’s who might someday save your “moma aka momma or even kid one day” are the police and their K-9’s.

          I’d much rather see some nasty criminal lose an eye than see said nasty criminal hurt a policeman or a K-9.

        • What! I can’t see on but of sense in what you posted. Do you want to let your criminal friends have the key to the city??? WRONG!! So we just give him the right to keep committing crimes and pay him on the back and give him a shuck and jive for getting away with crime after crime.

    • Lol it’s funny because people aren’t supposed to break the laws either but they still do and that will never be overlooked or praised by me. If we lived in a society where human beings followed the rules then maybe we wouldn’t need to worry about using different measures apprehending them. You don’t want to get bit by a dog or are scared to do the time don’t commit the crime. Simple as that

      Andrew seems like a pretty white entitled name, I’d love to hear how slavery has affected your life.

      • Exactly. Anytime else the woke cry “rule of law” — except when their Most Gullible voters commit crimes. 👹🤡

    • Disagree entirely with your post k-9 are more acute then the handler in detection and their senses. Whoever you are you obviously don’t know much about a K-9 team. I would rather have a Shepard by my side then another officer. The K-9 won’t miss
      I patrolled for 4 years during war time in the Air Force. They just started the other type of detection areas for patrol dogs. We had sentry dogs and they were used for detection and attack we had no dope dogs or explosives etc just obey detect and attack. It wasn’t until 1970 that the K-9 was used for other uses. We had 1 man dogs that no one else could come near unless the dog was muzzled
      I can go on and on and teach you all about the dog team but u probably still wouldn’t get it
      This officer is right on by doing what he is doing. Our dog teams were praised by the military and our dogs were well rewarded
      I hope this officer finds another department that will appreciate his work with his dog
      They are special. Take what I have texted and take the time to learn

    • You are either part of the woke mob or have very little understanding of the use of K-9’s. Either way it’s sad.

    • And I will never understand the minds of people like you who make something like a criminal getting hurt while fleeing from police, an issue of valuing a dog more than a human.

      Clearly, you know absolutely nothing about what K-9 officers are “used for” and just “sniffing out drugs” is not it.

      Dogs have been used to apprehend criminals since Roman times oh ignorant one, and yeah, I’m fine with them being used to “run down” criminals now. Dogs only used to “run down men during slavery times” you are absurd.

      K-9’s do find criminals, they apprehend criminals and they are considered officers and I for one am thankful to them and their handlers.

  • This is all about p poor leadership at GPD. Keep the dogs and get them the support they need and get rid of the real problem here. It’s past time to change leadership and focus our resources on our city’s local issues. That change will have to start first at city hall… Fat chance, right Harvey?

  • Good riddance you POS! You allowed your dog to rip out an unarmed black man’s eye. You aren’t wanted around here and screw your blood thirsty mongrel. Ranger should have been put down and you should be in prison for racist behavior in this city. I can’t believe that you get to resign and walk away after the carnage you have left in this city. Do us all a favor and leave law enforcement, you are the reason I no longer respect the police.

    • Paul: loud angry racist criminal Blackman does not make you sound intelligent…don’t set the city on fire and start looting…you want to blame the police Chief & Sheriff?

      • Think about it we have a new law in place in the state of Florida about protesting and burning down buildings blocking roads looters 🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫🔫

  • This is so wrong!! An officer and K9 doing what they’re trained to do??? You only run from the law when you’re guilty of something!

  • JB, the man was NOT a “man” like me, you perhaps, he was a criminal who refused to obey the officer’s lawful commands because he didn’t want to go to jail (where he belongs, by the way). THAT’S why the dog had to be released and THAT’S why he unfortunately lost his eye in his apprehension – which is, I am certain, a risk he considered when he sprinted away from the traffic stop and refused MULTIPLE lawful commands to come out before the dog was released.

    • JB is just an ignorant racist. The criminal needs to take personal responsibility for his actions… “it don’t matter what law he breaks”?
      JB: you and your criminal friends should not break into my house and try to rob & kill me because I will defend myself…it’s my inalienable right…”Don’t do the crime because you may run out of time”…

  • Unless you worked for that department 28 years, you have no idea what goes on.
    Seen more than one good employee get it in the back from upper leadership to keep city hall happy.

  • Very sad and unfortunate. Our GPD is being dictated by a handful of woke Civic Media Center Antifa-BLM wannabes. You get what you voted for, District 1. No Publix or Golden Corral for you, sorry.

  • We need to remember that this is a small piece of the whole story. Acting Sgt. Hayes-Morrison has more experience with arrests than any of the recently resigned members of the K-9 unit combined. We should be supporting our LEOs as a whole, and encouraging them to keep doing the right things to serve and protect our community. Josh Murer is ONE person. Did anyone stop to consider the fact that this is a good thing for the department? Has anyone looked into the manipulative, and unethical things that the previous K9 sgt was known around the department?! The former k9 officers responsible for leaking information the the alachua chronicle are butt hurt and part of the previous regime’s manipulation.

    Now, Sgt. Hayes-Morrison has the opportunity to create a trained, cohesive K9 unit with officers that truly have our citizens best interest at heart. I have faith in him. look for the whole story people!

  • If only the law breakers obeyed the officers and the laws, a lot of the things that happen could be avoided. I feel for police officers, they are not supported by their superior’s .
    Good luck to this officer and his dog. I’m sure if he asked he would get help to buy his dog.
    Why have a unit if you can’t use the dogs?

  • This is a sad commentary for a unit that began in the 1960’s, and has located lost children and seniors as well as criminals.
    They are responsible for educating the public by way of their many demonstrations to the delight of those who were entertained by them. They way they have been treated is terrible.

    • We love the K9’s…man’s best friend …and thank you officers for
      Everything you do…god bless you and be safe.

    • Folks, Don is exactly correct. His background, qualifications and experience qualify him as an expert in this area of law enforcement.

  • I’m glad he is getting to purchase Ranger. K-9 officers have a hard job, and they are a deeply bonded partnership. I appreciate all the hard work that they do.

  • Good for you! Thank you for your years of service protecting Gainesville. It is no doubt sad that Gainesville is losing one of the great ones (as I know you from personal experience); however, given the direction the world is moving against law enforcement, this (and more) resignation is expected. Best of luck!!

  • The problem is too many people thinking, “That could be MY son.” WHY could it be your son? Why didn’t you do a better job of raising him? That’s what you should be asking yourselves instead of trying to take away law enforcement protection from decent people of all colors.

  • According to the article:

    > Meurer pointed out …he has paid out of his own pocket over the years for a special diet for Ranger.
    > …Meurer was told he could purchase Ranger for $1,000…

    So, city commissioners can illegally stuff their faces with catered supper breaks and jet around on foreign junkets while simultaneously walking out the door, all at tax and utility rate payer expense but, officers must pay out of their own pockets for special diet dog food and pay to purchase the dog when they leave the unit?

    Regardless of your position on the Terrell Bradley incident, GPD in general, and the K-9 unit in particular, I ask, “What’s wrong with this picture?”

    Furthermore, given the commissioners’ and charter officers excessive salaries the city can certainly fully reimburse Meurer for his out of pocket expenses and waive any fees for Ranger’s re-homing.

  • I am sure a close-by county of Alachua would be thankful for the law enforcement individual.

  • Real simple don’t run and hide from the police panic coward criminal lost that eye boy

  • Get Ranger and get out. Don’t look back…look forward to your next endeavor in the working world.

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