Crime - Sacto 911

Sheriff’s K-9 Eros, injured in January by Placer County spree shooter, dies of cancer

Here’s Placer County sheriff’s tribute to K9 Eros who died

The Placer County Sheriff’s Office announced the death of K-9 Eros on June 6, 2019. In the recent months, Eros was diagnosed with aggressive prostate cancer.
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The Placer County Sheriff’s Office announced the death of K-9 Eros on June 6, 2019. In the recent months, Eros was diagnosed with aggressive prostate cancer.

A K-9 who was shot in January trying to apprehend a homicide suspect near Roseville has died after a battle with cancer, the Placer County Sheriff’s Office said Friday.

Eros, a German shepherd with seven years on the force in Placer County, died Thursday after battling aggressive prostate cancer for several months, the sheriff’s office said in a news release.

“The wonderful veterinary teams at VCA Loomis Basin and UC Davis Veterinary Hospital worked extremely hard to diagnose Eros and to provide him with the best health care available,” the news release said.

Eros was injured in the line of duty Jan. 15, when a suspect who had crashed his vehicle after an apparent series of rampage shootings across south Placer County opened fire when contacted by sheriff’s deputies, authorities said at the time.

The suspect – identified by the sheriff’s office as Stanley Stepanski III, 48, of Florence, Montana – was fatally shot by officers in that confrontation, along Interstate 80 near the Highway 65 interchange.

Eros was hit by gunfire and sustained non-life-threatening injuries to his hindquarters in that incident. He made a full recovery and returned to duty in March.

The alleged spree shootings by the suspect killed a 93-year-old woman and injured one other victim.

Eros died in the presence of his handler, Deputy Kevin Thompson, Thompson’s wife and other sheriff’s K-9 units and loved ones, according to Friday’s news release.

The dog started law enforcement work with the Stockton Police Department before joining Thompson and the Placer County Sheriff’s Office in 2012, the news release said.

Eros and Thompson, the senior K-9 team in Placer County, won multiple first-place awards for narcotics detection and patrol scenarios in Western States Police K-9 Association trial circuit events, the sheriff’s office said.

“Good boy, Eros,” Friday’s news release ends. “Good Boy.”

Eros, the K-9 injured in January during a shooting rampage in south Placer County that left a 93-year-old woman dead, has recovered and returned to duty with the Placer County Sheriff’s Office, deputies announced.

Placer County K9 Eros received an award and a gift for his bravery from the Loomis City Council on Feb. 13, 2019. The K9 was shot and injured in Placer County shootings in January.

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Michael McGough anchors The Sacramento Bee’s breaking news reporting team, covering public safety and other local stories. A Sacramento native and lifelong capital resident, he interned at The Bee while attending Sacramento State, where he earned a degree in journalism.

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