Facility dog Avery II joins the Summit County Prosecutor's Office
Joe McGee, newsnet5.com
12:52 PM, Aug 26, 2013
2:54 PM, Aug 27, 2013
AKRON, Ohio - The Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh introduced a new member of her staff.
Avery II is a 2-year-old Labrador-Golden Retriever mix. Avery is a specially trained facility dog. He will be used to help victims and witnesses with stress relief and fear through his calming presence.
According to the prosecutor's office, Avery will work with all ages but especially with children. He can be present at interviews and even sit at their feet while testifying in court.
"The criminal justice system can cause what is known as 'secondary victimization' to people who have already been traumatized. Children and people with disabilities can be especially fearful of talking about a traumatic situation in front of a courtroom full of strangers," Walsh said.
Melanie Hart is Avery's primary handler and Jean Johnson is the backup handler.