Denver police officer docked vacation day after horse dies from neglect

Posted at 3:00 PM, Jan 09, 2017

DENVER -- The death of a police horse earned one Denver Police Department Mounted Unit officer one docked day of vacation. 

That's the punishment handed down in a departmental order of disciplinary action to Officer Joseph Teeter, who had been partnered with police horse MC Hammer before the horse had to be put down.

In the letter, police say Teeter finished an assignment with MC Hammer, then put the horse back in its stall, leaving to go complete paperwork. 

Amid the paperwork, the document said Teeter forgot to check on MC Hammer, forgetting to give him food and water. When officers checked on MC Hammer 16 hours later, they attempted to help the horse with both food and water, but it developed stomach pain.

The officers took MC Hammer to the Littleton Equine Medical Center, which explained the horse developed colic, leading to the horse's eventual euthanasia.

Police said Teeter expressed genuine remorse for the horse's death. Coupled with that, and the fact that Teeter hadn't had any other departmental violations, Teeter's only punishment is a docked vacation day.

Despite the punishment, Teeter will remain with the mounted unit. It's not yet known if he's been partnered with a new horse. 


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