Mayor Theaker dog

Mansfield Mayor Tim Theaker suffered five broken ribs on Thursday when he lost his balance and fell during a police K-9 biting demonstration.

MANSFIELD -- Mansfield Mayor Tim Theaker suffered five broken ribs on Thursday while participating in a police K-9 "bite" demonstration.

Theaker pre dog

A Mansfield police officer prepares Mansfield Mayor Tim Theaker before a police K-9 dog bite demonstration on Thursday.

The 66-year-old mayor was at the city's K-9 Training Facility, 2125 Lexington-Ontario Road, during a ceremony to thank Lowe's Home Improvement of Ontario for its donation of supplies and staff time to remodel many areas of the facility.

Safety Service Director Lori Cope said Friday that the mayor agreed to participate during one of the three K-9 demonstrations for the Lowe's employees and other city leaders.

"He has done it before (at a DARE ceremony) and so he felt comfortable doing it again," Cope said.

theaker dog

Mansfield Police Department K-9 Merkel bites on the "sleeve" worn by Mayor Tim Theaker during a demonstration on Thursday.

K-9 officer Jake Rietschlin and his partner, Mekel, also participated in the demonstration. After Theaker donned the "bite sleeve," Rietschlin released the dog and it grabbed into the sleeve. As the dog did its work, the mayor was dragged to the ground in an area that included a concrete sidewalk.

"He was taken to the (OhioHealth Mansfield Hospital) emergency room and learned he had five broken ribs in his back area," Cope said.

Cope said Theaker issued strong support for the police office and his K-9 partner.

"The mayor said the K-9 was demonstrating exactly what he was supposed to do. He feels even more comfortable now that the dog has demonstrated its ability to do what it gets 'paid' to do," Cope said.

theaker stumbles

Mansfield Mayor Tim Theaker stumbles during a police K-9 biting demonstration on Thursday.

Cope said the mayor also wanted to again thank Lowe's for its donations, which led to improvements of the K-9 facility's agility training course, main building and the shed.

Other demonstrations on Thursday include a K-9 running the agility course and another performing drug-sniffing exercises around two cars.

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City editor. 30-year plus journalist. Husband. Father of 3 grown sons and also a proud grandpa. Prior military journalist in U.S. Navy, Ohio Air National Guard. -- Favorite quote: "Where were you when the page was blank?"