O’FALLON, MO – An O’Fallon, Missouri couple considered it an absolute emergency, their beloved Great Dane collapsed right in front of them. They called 911 for help. Now, they’re in trouble with police; still grieving the loss of their dog.
Rose and Randy Lakey are due in O’Fallon, Missouri Municipal Court next month. People may think that’s as it should be, they did call 911 for their dog Easter Sunday. But it wasn’t just any dog.
“She was on the front page of the Post-Dispatch,” Rose Lakey said.
The newspaper is framed along with a collage of several photos of her beloved dog, Oreo, a 4 year old harlequin – black and white spotted Great Dane.
The newspaper coverage came from Oreo`s appearance in the 2009 Soulard Pet Parade. Oreo wore a pink tutu.
She also got onto the field at Busch Stadium for a pooches in the park event.
“I sent Tony LaRussa a picture of her. He sent us tickets to take her down to the ball game,” Rose said. “[Losing her] it was the hardest thing I`ve ever been through .. It really was.”
“It was so fast and we were so upset, that all I could think of was to tell her we have to call for help,” Randy Lake said.
With a dog the size of Oreo, the Lakeys certainly needed help.
Oreo was like their third daughter, only bigger than their two grown girls; now in their 20`s and no longer living at home.
The Lakeys said Oreo stood 6`4? on her hind legs and weighed 140lbs.
“And she just collapsed and fell into the wall and down to the ground; nothing, I mean it was just so quick,” Rose said. “I tried to get my arms underneath her like you would if you were going to try to pick up a child. When I went to try to get her up off the ground, I could barely get her off the ground at all. When I did, her head and her legs and everything [were everywhere] …she was just out of it.”
They said an ambulance crew and police arrived within minutes of their 911 call. They said one ambulance worker made it clear there was a problem.
“She got into the middle of the room and she seen Oreo and she threw her hands up and said, `It`s a dog are you kidding me?` Then she turned and walked away. Then she started yelling out to the policeman, `it`s just a dog`.”
She said the other crew member brought oxygen for Oreo and helped load her into their car.
They got her to an emergency clinic, but it was too late.
It`d be hard enough to move on, with Oreo`s ashes all that remain of her. But the day after she died, police brought a summons for filing a false 911 report. Apparently Rose Lakey referred to both her dog and her daughters during the call.
“24 hours later, they give me a ticket, for asking for help,” Randy Lakey said.
“There was no sympathy at all. There was no understanding at all. He just acted like we planned all of this,” Rose said.
“You know, it was not intentional. We didn`t mislead anybody. We just needed help. There`s nothing false about that,” Randy said.
Police said a 911 recording showed Rose Lakey clearly said her “daughter” needed help. She didn`t deny it; it could have happened given her hysterical state. Still, she said she knows she said “dog” at the beginning of the call. The Lakeys hoped for a little more understanding from police.
They`ll likely face a fine.