NC police officer resigns after slamming K-9 dog into patrol car
“Officer James Hampton was K-9 Zuul’s handler, and was the officer depicted in the video engaging in inappropriate discipline of Zuul,” said Salisbury police
A North Carolina officer has resigned after a video of him abusing an animal has surfaced.
Former Salisbury police officer James Hampton of North Carolina was recorded slamming a K-9 police dog into a patrol car. On Wednesday, a news release revealed he was up for termination after an external investigation was conducted but he was ultimately allowed to resign, per The Charlotte Observer.
“Officer James Hampton was K-9 Zuul’s handler, and was the officer depicted in the video engaging in inappropriate discipline of Zuul,” said Salisbury police, per the release. Salisbury is about 45 minutes northeast of Charlotte.
“The police department’s review determined that Officer Hampton had acted in a manner entirely inconsistent with his K-9 training and had violated police department policy.”
In a Facebook post, officers confirmed the dog who goes by K-9 Officer Zuul was checked out by a veterinarian and is fine.
Fox 46 first published the video back in March. It features the dog jumping out of the vehicle when a man identified as Hampton yells at it. The dog lays down but then the former officer grabs a leash and places it around the dog’s neck. He picks up the dog by the leash and is seen slamming him into a patrol car before putting him in the back seat.
“While we understand the calls for the officer’s immediate termination, city employees are afforded due process which ensures fairness for everyone involved and which can take time,” said the department.
Additionally, someone in the video can be heard saying, “We’re good, no witnesses.”
Salisbury Police Chief Jerry Stokes told reporters at a March 2 conference, “Canine training tactics and corrective measures can sometimes be alarming out of context.”
U.S. ISS decided the officer’s behavior was inappropriate and recommended that he be terminated. The officer was ultimately able to resign.
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