Slain Toronto police dog Bingo mourned by fellow officers across Ontario
Published July 26, 2023 at 2:45 pm
Police services across Ontario are mourning one of their own today after Police Service Dog (PSD) Bingo was killed in the line of duty last night.
According to the Special Investigations Unit, Toronto Police arrived at a home on Dixon Rd. to arrest a murder suspect 8 p.m. on July 25. The suspect emerged from the house and fired at responding officers. He then fled the home westward about half a block toward Kingview Blvd. on the Etobicoke border.
PSD Bingo. a German Shepherd and handler Sgt. Brandon Smith were brought in to track down the suspect and flushed him out of a backyard on Kingsview Blvd. The suspect opened fire again, the SIU alleged, and fatally struck Bingo.
Another officer then shot the suspect, who has since been taken to hospital with a serious gunshot wound. Since the man was seriously injured and a police weapon fired, the SIU was called in to investigate. They’ve since identified one officer as subject to the investigation and nine other witness officers. The shooting remains under investigation.
Toronto Police Chief Myron Demkiw released a statement the following day about Bingo’s death, calling it “senseless and tragic.” He expressed his condolences to Smith and stressed the unique bond between service dog and handler, “They work together for many weeks during their training and the dogs become part of officers’ immediate families.”
Bingo, one of our K9s, was killed in the line of duty by gunfire tonight. Thank you for keeping our members safe and thank you for your service. My deepest condolences to his partner and to all of our @TPSK9 unit. pic.twitter.com/zQFOrMfIVS
— Chief Myron Demkiw (@TPSMyronDemkiw) July 26, 2023
Additionally, Demkiw said Bingo and his fellow K-9 dogs provided valuable service to police, “They provide an additional resource to our members to help keep communities safe, whether it is tracking a suspect, apprehending violent suspects or tracking and locating evidence, some of which is incredibly dangerous. There are a multitude of reasons we have police dogs and multiple benefits that come from our Police Dog Services Unit.”
Demkiw was joined by Superintendent Colin Greenaway, Smith and Bingo’s commanding officer and head of the Police Service Dog Unit. He called Bingo’s death a “terrible loss,” saying “It was unnecessary and absolutely heartbreaking for the handler and the entire Service.”
The Board mourns the line-of-duty death of Police Service dog Bingo, who was tragically killed last night responding to a call with his handler, Sgt. Brandon Smith. We honour his great loyalty & dedication and his ultimate sacrifice in the name of public safety. #RIPBingo 💙💙💙 pic.twitter.com/4UbL6IDRWr
— Toronto Police Services Board (@TPSBoard) July 26, 2023
Bingo had only been on duty for a little more than six months. He joined Toronto police last July and was immediately paired with Smith. Bingo and Smith worked together in training for 16 weeks before Bingo was ready to officially join the service last December.
However, in that brief time, Bingo and Smith caught numerous potentially dangerous suspects including a burglary suspect near Leslie St. and Lawrence Ave. in May and an armed man in the woods a few days later.
Bingo’s death has echoed across the Ontario police community. Peel Regional Polcie Chief Nishan Duraiappah, who called Bingo’s loss a “reminder of the sacrifices police dogs make to serve and protect our communities.”
On behalf of PRP, I extend my deepest condolences to Bingo’s partner, the @TPSK9 unit and all individuals that knew him. An important reminder of the sacrifices that service dogs make to serve and protect our communities.#K9 @TorontoPolice https://t.co/A4LOSFcCLa
— Chief Nishan Duraiappah (@ChiefNish) July 26, 2023
“You ran into danger without hesitation as you have done so many times before. No one knew what was at the other end of the track. Without a doubt, your actions saved lives. Your work will never be forgotten,” wrote the Hamilton Police K-9 Unit.
You answered the call.
You ran into danger without hesitation as you have done so many times before. No one knew what was at the other end of the track. Without a doubt, your actions saved lives. Your work will never be forgotten. Deepest condolences from @HPSCanine pic.twitter.com/2QDdpzDsJE
— Hamilton Police K-9 (@HPSCanine) July 26, 2023
Durham Regional Police Chief Peter Moreira, a former Toronto officer, wrote, “On behalf of the members of Durham police and the Durham K-9 Unit, I extend my deepest condolences to Toronto police & Toronto police K-9 on the death of PSD Bingo.”
On behalf of the members of @DRPS & @DRPS_K9 I extend my deepest condolences to @TorontoPolice & @TPSK9 on the death of Police Service Dog (PSD) BINGO. Let us not forget that BINGO & all PSDs become integral members of the handler's family and they too share in this grief. pic.twitter.com/WFH3T35F4I
— Peter Moreira (@Chief_Moreira) July 26, 2023
Halton Police Deputy Chief Jeff Hill wrote, “We offer our deepest condolences to your members and Bingo’s partner. We know the bond between a handler and PSD is special and unique and this must be crushing.”
Niagara Police joined in to saying thier thoughts are with Smith and the Toronto K-9 unit.
The Niagara Regional Police Service sends our condolences to the @TorontoPolice and @TPSK9
Unit on the loss of PSD Bingo, who was killed in the line of duty last night. Our thoughts are with his handler and colleagues in this difficult time. #RIPBingo pic.twitter.com/baRKWQApbE
— NRPS (@NiagRegPolice) July 26, 2023
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