A paw-ty is the least he deserves.
The pooch that led authorities directly to the escaped Pennsylvania murder suspect who had been on the lam for nine days was honored Tuesday for her criminal sniffing skills.
Gov. John Shapiro bestowed a hefty bone and several tennis balls upon Tucker, the 6-year-old chocolate lab that alerted his owners last month to escaped inmate Michael Burham, who was hiding in their backyard.
Ron and Cindy Ecklund, who called in the fateful 911 call that landed Burham back behind bars, were also awarded a $10,000 reward.
“We’re just really grateful … You deserve every penny of it,” Shapiro told the couple, according to the local Post-Journal.
“He’s a hero,” the governor said of the pup.
Tucker ended a nine-day manhunt May 24 after he caught the scent of a stranger in his backyard.
The canine started incessantly barking into the woods on the Ecklund property and ignored the couple’s calls to return home.
After growing suspicious, the Ecklunds investigated the cause of Tucker’s stress, only to find a shirtless Burhma, who was wearing rolled-up pants that were clearly part of an orange prison outfit.
The Warren County Jail fugitive tried to tell the couple he had been camping in the woods, but the Ecklunds immediately clocked the alleged killer from the expansive coverage of his prison break and called 911.
Police tracked him as he moved through the woods, where he attempted to hide, but he was surrounded and taken into custody at around 5:50 p.m.
Burnham was being held on 26 counts related to arson, kidnapping and burglary when he escaped Warren County Jail on July 6 by rappelling from the facility’s roof using a rope he had fashioned by tying bedsheets together, according to an affidavit.
He is also under investigation for raping and killing the mother of his child in Jamestown, New York, according to police there. He also set the woman’s car on fire.
The state Attorney General’s office is now prosecuting the escape charges that Burham faces.
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