NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A K-9 officer with the Norfolk Police Department has been named for CNN’s Anderson Cooper.
Norfolk police officer Ryan McNiff told 10 On Your Side’s Laura Caso that K-9 AC is not just his partner, but also his best friend.
“I wanted to do something to pay respects to Anderson for what he did for us and I wanted to thank him and name the dog after him,” said officer McNiff.
The longtime CNN anchor has a strong connection to Hampton Roads police stemming from events in January.
Cooper donated more than $100,000 to Spike’s K9 Fund, a nonprofit based out of Virginia Beach, following the death of K-9 Krijger. Krijger was shot and killed by Keith Richardson following a hours-long standoff with police.
Since then, K-9 officers with police departments across Hampton Roads have received protective ballistic vests.
“We like to think that Krijger is continuing to work even in his passing by giving all these dogs vests and keeping them safer out on the streets,” McNiff said. “This dog amazes me. I probably spend more time with him than I do my own family. We get to come here everyday and work and train with our best friends.”
The duo has been working together for six months — tracking suspects, searching buildings after break-ins or locating a missing child.
They spent four months in training and the two train each and every day.