Officer uses K-9 partner to comfort distraught girl

Officer Sean Cronin knew exactly what would cheer a girl up after her mother's car broke down

By PoliceOne Staff

WEST MELBOURNE, Fla. —A West Melbourne police officer and his K-9 partner are being commended for comforting a mother and her young daughter after finding their vehicle broken down on the side of a busy highway.

Officer Sean Cronin approached the vehicle and found Serena Debesa and her 7-year-old daughter Elina both visibly upset, according to My News 13.

"I was just thinking ‘How am I going to get to work? How am I going to survive?’" Serena said.

Cronin watched Elina, who lives with Down syndrome, and came up with an idea to turn her spirits around. He asked Serena if her daughter liked dogs, then went to retrieve Echo, his 2-year-old K-9 partner.

"I let Elina pet her, and in the next minute or so my partner, who I can't even get to roll over, is on her back, all fours up, just trying to get love," recalled Officer Cronin.

Police later escorted Elina and her mother home safely.

Echo and Elina reunited in January, weeks after their first meeting, when Cronin invited the little girl to the station to see her new friend.

Cronin will receive a commendation from his department for his acts at an upcoming ceremony, according to the report.

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