Senate Approves Nero’s Law

Senator DiDomenico is proud to co-sponsor and join his colleagues in passing S.2573, An Act allowing humane transportation of K9 partners, also known as Nero’s Law. This legislation ensures that law enforcement officers’ K-9 partners receive life-saving medical attention and transport if injured in the line of duty. First proposed by Senator Mark Montigny, this bill comes in response to the tragic events that took the life of New Bedford-native and Yarmouth Police K-9 Sergeant Sean Gannon and severely injured his K-9 partner, Nero.

In April 2018, Sergeant Gannon was shot and killed while serving a warrant in the Town of Barnstable. Despite the multiple empty ambulances on site, Nero had to be rushed to the animal hospital in the back of a police cruiser. Current Massachusetts law prohibits emergency medical personnel from treating and transporting animals. Fortunately, Nero survived his injuries, but the inability to transport him showed that reform was needed to honor working dogs who risk their lives every day to serve the Commonwealth.

A dog owner himself, Senator DiDomenico proudly co-sponsored Nero’s Law. “Like our law enforcement officers, police dogs are constantly in harm’s way. Police K-9s are valuable members of our police forces, so it is essential that they be treated as such and protected. I was proud to support this bill and I am pleased the Senate has taken action on this legislation this session.” Nero’s situation is not an isolated incident, seeing as other police K-9s throughout the Commonwealth have been injured or killed while on duty.

Nero’s Law authorizes emergency medical service personnel to provide emergency treatment and transport of K-9 partners. This includes basic first aid, CPR, and administering life-saving interventions such as naloxone.

Nero’s Law now advances to the Massachusetts House of Representatives for consideration.

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