NJ Cop Harasses Disabled Vet for Having Service Dog on Boardwalk
By Jerry A. Kane
A North Wildwood, New Jersey, cop issued a summons and then summarily booted a disabled American veteran, his wife, and his service dog from the 26th street boardwalk.
“I expected to get more respect from him because of the jobs that we both have to do.”—Jared Goering, disabled U.S. Army veteran
Jared Goering, who served 19 years on active duty in the U.S. Army including two tours in Afghanistan and one in Iraq, was harassed by one of Chris Christie’s finest and ordered to get off the boardwalk for having his 3-year-old service dog, Gator, (short for Navigator) by his side.
“He mockingly asked if all veterans get service dogs.”—Sally Goering, Jared’s wife
In 2009 while serving in Afghanistan, Goering’s vehicle hit two IEDs (improvised explosive devices) within 36 hours, and now he needs Gator to walk and to go up and down stairs.
“[H]is dog is medically necessary and he is a service dog.”— Sally Goering
The Goerings said they showed the officer Gator’s service identification, but the cop went ahead and issued the summons and ordered them from the boardwalk anyway.
“We want the public to be aware that there are different types of disabilities and different types of service dogs – and police officers need to be educated about this.”— Sally Goering
Although no charges are pending, police officials insist that additional circumstances surround the case. North Wildwood Mayor Bill Henfey says the incident is being investigated, and a formal apology will be issued, if appropriate.
“Just like any veteran with disabilities with a service dog, to come back and be harassed and shown no respect, it upset me – it really bothered me. I was up most of the night thinking about it.”—Jared Goering
For more on the story, see “Disabled veteran kicked off boardwalk because of service dog.”