It was Wednesday December 18, 1996. It was also the K9 Details training day and Deputy Chris Rogers and K9 Agbar’s Friday. The focus of training that day was car retention. The scenario involved the handler calling out to a suspicious person and requesting him to come over the squad car. The handler had to get out and take hold of the drunk, stumbling, and falling down subject with the canine remaining in the patrol car. K9 Agbar performed well with one good correction on this night. Little did Deputy Rogers know this scenario would play out for real later in the evening and the suspect was far from drunk.
It was now 3:45 AM and 15 minutes until Deputy Rogers and K9 Agbar’s end of watch and extremely foggy. Deputy Rogers parked in the fog and noticed a suspicious person’s silhouette across the street in a fenced in area. Every time a car went by the subject ducked into the fog. Deputy Rogers went to contact the subject and lost him for a short time. The subject was located across the street where Deputy Rogers had first noticed him. He was now walking towards an open late night business and obviously trying to avoid Deputy Rogers.
Deputy Rogers stopped his car short of the 6’4” 260 pound subject and asked him to come over to the car. He refused. Deputy Rogers immediately noted the subject had an 800 MHz police scanner clipped to a vest and an ear piece in. With K9 Agbar protesting loudly, Deputy Rogers approached the subject and asked him to put his hands behind him. He complied but immediately started fighting as soon as Deputy Rogers took hold of him. Deputy Rogers now called K9 Agbar who jumped from the car. The suspect immediately gave up and Rogers ordered Agbar to a down position
Deputy Rogers again went to take hold of the suspect and again the fight was on. This time Rogers sent Agbar with no thought of calling him off. Agbar lunged at the suspect who caught Agbar with both hands around his neck. The suspect threw Agbar approximately 10 feet through the air. Deputy Rogers called for help but had his ear piece ripped from his ear and couldn’t tell if anyone had ever heard him.
The suspect was now back peddling as Rogers landed metal baton strikes one after the other. None of these strikes appeared to faze the suspect. Agbar immediately took hold of the suspect and was punched right between the eyes over and over. Agbar kept finding anything he could bite and did so. At one point the suspect started reaching inside his Army jacket and Agbar grabbed the arm and allowed Deputy Rogers to get some crucial baton strikes in. After several minutes of this and exhaustion setting in, Deputy Rogers realized he was in real trouble. While baton strikes to the head are usually frowned upon it became his only non-deadly option. Deputy Rogers landed 3-6 strikes to the suspects head just as he made it to an apartment complex and slammed the gate on Rogers arm. Rogers had now lost his baton and started to draw his gun. Agbar jumped on the suspect’s back and the suspect went down. At the same time, squad cars began arriving but drove past him in the heavy fog. The suspect had fallen unconscious. Rogers had just enough energy to handcuff the suspect before being overwhelmed with emotion and exhaustion.
The suspect was a wanted Parolee at Large. In his possession officers found a mask, pillow cases, zip ties (for handcuffing), mace, and a loaded .38 cal handgun in a shoulder holster. He was later sentenced to life in prison as a three striker.
Officers would later report that a doctor treating the suspect stated the suspect had dog bites everywhere except the bottom of his feet. Because the suspect was uncooperative, we will never know exactly what he was up to on that night. Deputy Rogers does know that if K9 Agbar hadn’t been there the incident would have surely ended in a shooting.
On February 17, 1998 the Sacramento Sheriffs Department recognized Agbars contribution and, in a normally human ceremony, awarded Agbar a Bronze Star for his valor.
Agbar retired in 2001 and lived the pampered life until his death in March of 2005.