BREAKING: Retired Officer Matthew Hickey tells WTAP News he is rejecting the offer to serve as an auxiliary member of the Marietta Police Department. Marietta Police says they are trying to figure out a solution for K9 Ajax.
A retired cop, who spent more than three decades on the Marietta, Ohio police force, will get to keep his former K-9 partner.
When Matthew Hickey retired from the force, his understanding was that he could purchase his police dog, Ajax, for $3,500. But because the dog was city property, and could work for another six years – Ajax had to be sold to the highest bidder at auction, under Ohio law. See the original story here.
The Marietta city council voted to allow Hickey to keep and care for Ajax, only until an auction date could be set.
That’s when Corey Orr decided to step in to try and get the community to come together and grant this retired officer his wish. Orr established a Go Fund Me page to raise enough money to buy the dog at auction.
“I expected a few thousand (dollars in donations) but nothing like this,” Orr said. In just three days time, the page raised $45,000. At the same time, the city’s Facebook page was “flooded with comments in favor of letting Hickey keep the K-9.”
So, the police department and Hickey finally worked something out. Hickey has been appointed as an auxiliary officer, allowing him to keep Ajax. Any excess money from the donations will go to charities and organizations that work with police dogs.
Hickey told CNN he wanted to retire and become a “hermit” after so many years of working the graveyard shift and becoming jaded. But he says after receiving such overwhelming support from the community– he is a changed man.