K9 dies when squad hit during traffic crash in Boone County

Driver has been charged with DUI

The death of a Boone County police dog has prompted one not-for-profit organization with Ogle County ties to seek donations for the sheriff’s department as a memorial to the K9.

On Dec. 27, Loki was secured in the kennel of the squad car while a Boone County Sheriff’s Deputy was conducting a traffic stop at 1:36 a.m. on Interstate 90 at Irene Road in Boone County.

A preliminary investigation released by the state police said the deputy was stopped on the right shoulder of Interstate 90 and was outside of his fully marked squad car with emergency lights activated, when the squad was struck from behind by a 2013 Lincoln Limousine driven by Vincent Millare, 53, of Crystal Lake.

The impact forced the squad car forward causing it to strike the rear of the vehicle the deputy had pulled over. Millare and the driver of the pulled-over vehicle, Patricia Wheeler, 50, were transported by ambulance to an area hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The Boone County deputy was uninjured, but Loki was transported to an emergency veterinary hospital for treatment and later died due to injuries sustained in the crash.

Millare was cited for driving while under the influence, failure to yield upon approaching a stationary authorized emergency vehicle (Scotts Law), improper lane usage, driving on the shoulder, failure to reduce speed to avoid an accident, and operating an uninsured motor vehicle.

The Jaimie Cox Foundation, a local non-profit that supports first responders in the northern Illinois region, posted this on social media after the death of Loki.

“Boone County Sheriff’s Office lost K-9 Loki early this morning after a senseless incident involving a suspected drunk driver. Our thoughts are with Boone County Sheriff’s Department and Loki’s handler. We will accept donations to this fundraiser (and the original post below) present them to the Boone County Sheriff’s Office along with a memorial piece for K9 Loki. For those who do not know, we are a local non-profit supporting first responders in the northern Illinois region.”

The Boone County Sheriff’s Office posted this message:

“On behalf of the Boone County Sheriff’s Office, we want to thank everyone for the outpouring of love and support to our department on the loss of our K9 Loki. The Sheriff’s Office has received a tremendous amount of requests to donate to our K9 program. There have also been several individuals and organizations accepting donations on behalf of our K9 program.

“We appreciate the good intentions, but please know the department may not be able to verify the legitimacy of every account. The Sheriff’s office is not soliciting donations. However, due to the overwhelming plea to donate, individuals may send donations directly to the Boone County Sheriff’s Office at 615 N. Main St. Belvidere, IL 61008.

“Please know 100% of the donations received on behalf of K9 Loki will go directly to our K9 program. Thank you again for your unbelievable amount of support.

Jaimie Cox, was a 30-year-old Rockford police officer who died in 2017 after a scuffle during a traffic stop.

His grandparents, the late Don and Joyce Cox, were Mt. Morris residents; his dad Jim grew up in town and graduated from Mt. Morris High School in 1977; and Cox lived in town for a few months while training for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources Conservation Police, where he worked before joining the Rockford department in 2016.

Cox was killed after stopping a pickup truck near East State Street and Dawn Avenue in Rockford. Police believe he scuffled with the driver, became entangled with the truck, and opened fire with his sidearm. The truck crashed into a tree about two blocks north of the stop.

Cox, who radioed for assistance during the incident, was taken to OSF Saint Anthony Medical Center where he was pronounced dead. An autopsy showed he died of blunt force trauma, said the Winnebago County coroner, who ruled his death a homicide.

The driver died of a gunshot wound and also suffered blunt force trauma, his autopsy revealed.

The squad car did not have a dashboard camera.

Earleen Hinton

Earleen oversees production and content of 9 community weeklies and has worked for Shaw Newspapers since 1985.