MIDLOTHIAN, Ill., Jan. 16 (UPI) -- A police chief in the Chicago suburbs apologized for a recorded conversation in which he suggested killing his department's police dog.
Midlothian Police Chief Harold Kaufman was recorded talking to a police dispatcher in nearby Oak Forest about what to do with the department's dog, Biko, after his handler resigned.
"Our K-9 officer just came in and quit on me, so now I'm going to be stuck with either going and shooting the dog and killing it or finding somewhere to put it," Kaufman said in the recording, which was posted to YouTube by a resident.
Kaufman apologized Wednesday at a meeting of the Midlothian village board.
"My statement about shooting Biko was admittedly inappropriate and unprofessional," Kaufman said in his apology, which was also posted to YouTube. "I assure you that at no time did I actually intend to shoot Biko or harm him in any way."
"As the head of the police department I recognize that I need to accept responsibility for my actions and move forward accordingly," he said.
Jon Ryczek, the department's former K-9 officer, said he does not believe the chief's apology was sincere.
"It was forced, he didn't even stand up, look anyone in the eye and address them," Ryczek told NBC Chicago. "It's a shame for the residents who have to deal with that."
Ryczek told the Orland Park Patch he had offered to purchase Biko from the department when he resigned, but Kaufman refused and two officers took the Belgian Malinois from his home on Christmas Eve.
Kaufman said Biko is still with the department and is working with a new handler.