Matthew Mack, a fugitive, recently killed K-9 Frankie while trying to run from police, according to a Facebook post from the Massachusetts State Police.

The police state in the post that "Frankie is the first Massachusetts State Police canine killed in the line of duty."

If you're like me, you're already intensely tearing up because devastating news surrounding animals tends to do that to most of us.  K-9 Frankie has captured pornography suspects as well as been in the line of fire before with dangerous criminals.

This time, his bravery claimed his life.

Frankie was a decorated veteran with the Massachusetts State Police, doing what he's trained to do: protect. His handler, Sergeant David Stucenski, wasn't injured physically, according to police, but emotionally, and those devastating scars of losing a best friend and partner aren't going anywhere.

Frankie was shot and killed in Fitchburg, the police stated in the post, about 45 minutes southwest of Nashua, New Hampshire, north of Worcester.

Massachusetts State Police via Facebook
Massachusetts State Police via Facebook

There was a stand-off with Mack, a 38-year-old fugitive with firearms offenses and warrants involving a shooting from July 21 in Fitchburg, police reported.

According to the Facebook post:

Sergeant Stucenski and K9 Frankie, who are assigned to the STOP Team, approached the area where MACK was observed. During the attempt to apprehend him, MACK fired multiple shots toward team members and struck Frankie. The suspect then retreated back into the residence.  STOP Team members immediately picked up Frankie and evacuated him from the scene to an ambulance, at which point he was transported to Wachusett Animal Hospital in Westminster, where he was pronounced deceased.
Mack, according to police, eventually shot and killed himself.
Police go on to share their tribute to Frankie in the post:
Frankie was a Belgian Malinois, turning 11 next month, and a member of the department for nine years.  Frankie had every trait we seek in a good law enforcement officer, canine or human: intelligence, immense courage, and dedication to protecting the public. He was as loyal a partner as any Trooper ever had.  He was a beloved member of the Massachusetts State Police family and the Stucenski family. He was, as much as any human of the member of the Department, one of us and part of us.  When one of our K9s pass – until today, never in the line of duty – our K9 handlers have a saying. “Free Time.” It means that these brave dogs who work so hard to protect the rest of us have earned their eternal peace.  Free time and Godspeed, Frankie.
Frankie and Stucenski were awarded the Medal of Valor for Acts of Bravery for capturing a hit-and-run suspect who opened fire at the pair in Springfield, Massachusetts, according to police.
Massachusetts state police also reported that they were also honored as part of the Tactical Operations Team for catching an armed child pornography suspect in West Springfield, just to name a few incredible acts.
Here's the full comment from the Massachusetts State Police Facebook page.

RIP Frankie, and THANK YOU for keeping us safe.

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