JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Missouri flags will fly at half-mast in honor of Kansas City Police Officer James Muhlbauer and K9 Officer Champ.
On Wednesday, February 22, Governor Mike Parson ordered the lowering of flags in all government buildings in Cass, Clay, Jackson and Platte counties.
Muhlbauer and Champ worked in all four counties served by the Kansas City, Missouri Police Department.
“Officer James Muhlbauer dedicated his life to protecting Kansas City residents and for 20 years excelled in his chosen profession, putting community service at the forefront of everything he did,” Governor Parson said . “Over the past year, Agent Muhlbauer and K-9 Champ have worked as inseparable partners and guardians of the community. They died meaninglessly, but we will always remember their contributions to the betterment of Kansas City and Missouri.”
Muhlbauer and Champ will be honored and remembered during a visit, procession and funeral on Wednesday. Parson says he plans to participate.
The couple died on duty last week when a speeding driver ran a red light and struck the officers’ police vehicle, according to court documents. The accident occurred near Truman Road and Benton Boulevard.
Champ died at the scene. Mulhbauer died of his injuries in a hospital.
That crash caused a second collision with a pedestrian that killed 52-year-old Jesse Eckes.
Jerron Allen Lightfoot, 18, of Tonganoxie, Kansas, is charged with two counts of first-degree manslaughter in the incident.
Lightfoot posted bond two days after the crash. He is expected to be back in court on February 27th.