Panel: N. Carolina trooper who kicked dog should get job back

RALEIGH — A former North Carolina Highway Patrol sergeant fired for kicking his police dog during training should get his job back, the State Personnel Commission has ruled in a decision obtained Friday.

The patrol failed to prove that Sgt. Charles L. Jones' actions amounted to personal misconduct, the commission said. Jones deserves back pay, it said.

The commission also ruled that the patrol lacked clear discipline standards for police dogs and found Jones' actions were consistent with patrol practices.

"Though disturbing, the treatment of [Jones'] animal does not rise to the level of 'abuse,' " the ruling reads, noting that even if it did, Wake County's animal ordinance specifically exempts police dogs.

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