Kansas City police plan to send a retiring colleague out to pasture Wednesday morning.
Like many officers, this department member has helped arrest bad guys and recover illegal guns in his career. He even got punched in the face while trying to break up a large fight.
But this department member is a 17-year-old Quarter horse named Sergeant Major.
He’s leaving the department because of an injury he suffered in 2011 while helping officers with a car check in Westport. He stepped off the curb in a way that tore ligaments and tendons in his ankle. Despite rest and treatment, he never fully recovered.
The department’s veterinarian decided Sergeant Major was no longer up to the rigors of police work after six years of duty. He will return to the pasture of the owner who donated him to the police department.
Sergeant Major was the go-to horse for training new mounted patrol officers and for the department’s youth riding program, according to a department press release. He is the longest-serving horse to retire since the Mounted Patrol program started up again in 2006.
“He taught us all how to be a police officer on a horse,” Officer Chad Fenwick said in the release. “Everybody loves him.”