Category Archives: K9

Pasco Sheriff’s K9 Track

This is video that the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office released of K9 Deputy Jim Hall and K9 Chris apprehending a hit-and-run crash suspect.  The 49 second snippet above does not do the track justice.  Click on the link below to WFLA and watch 8 minutes of the chase.  It gets good around 3:45 in the video.  Jimmy’s a good guy and was supervising his old K9 Unit when I was supervising mine, so we shared some training exercises.  Ahhh, watching his new dog work reminds me of the good old days… Body cam video shows K9 tracking down suspect in Pasco Randall

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Last 9/11 SAR Dog Passes

K9 Bretagne (said Brittany) was deployed to Ground Zero in 2001.  She was overcome by old age and health problems this week and was put to sleep.  She was the last known 9/11 search and rescue dog.  Owner/handler Denise Corliss walked her through an honor guard of Cy-Fair firefighters in Harris, Texas.  Bretagne served as a SAR Task Force 1 dog and later with local fire departments.  Thanks for your service, Bretagne. Randall

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Police K9 Dog Deaths Already High in 2016

Update:  Omaha K9 killed 1/25/2016.  The year 2016 is not starting out well for police K9 dogs in the U.S.  Since the beginning of January, three four K9’s have already been killed by hostile gunfire.  In all of 2015, a total of four working dogs died by gunfire, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.  Of the 26 K9’s killed in 2015, one was poisoned and one was stabbed, in addition to the others who died from shootings or accidental causes.  The average number of police dogs shot to death during the last decade was 3.2 annually. Sometimes we take for granted the indispensable role these trained animals play in law … Continue reading

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Indian River Sheriff’s Office OIS

Indian River County Sheriff’s Deputy Christopher Lester pulled over this suspect, who was riding a tagless scooter, at oh-three-hundred.  After appearing to be minimally cooperative, the convicted felon sucker punched Lester, then took a revolver from the small of his back and shot the deputy.  Dep. Lester returned fire and chased the suspect on foot.  In the audio, you can hear the difference between the badguy’s .357 and Dep. Lester’s .45. IRCSO K9 Falko found the suspect, who had two of Dep. Lester’s bullets in his gut, hiding at a packing plant.  Dep. Lester is in stable condition with a gunshot wound to the leg.  The suspect, who had done … Continue reading

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St. Petersburg Police K9 Officer Passes

Longtime St. Petersburg Police K9 Handler James Olson passed away in his home last week.  He was 48 years old.  Jimmy, as he was known by those of us who worked with him, was a consummate police officer, K9 handler, son, and father. It was my privilege to have spent time down at the Compound with Jimmy and the great guys at SPPD K9.  I trained my second and third dogs down there and I was a better handler for the experience. Ofc. Olson’s funeral was today and I was honored to accompany my K9 Unit.  About forty dog teams attended and,

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K9 Dog Finds Child Porn

Animal conquers the electronic!  A K9 dog was responsible for taking down former Subway spokesman and future prisoner Jared Fogle. When authorities served a federal search warrant on Fogle’s residence last month, they were unable to find key evidence in a hand search by agents.  The dog saved the day. Search warrants allow the named law enforcement officers to examine any location which might contain the evidence specified in the affidavit.  In child pornography investigations, evidence can be secreted on devices as large as a server or as small as a micro SD card, which means it could be hidden in an infinite number of

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Two Hialeah K9 Dogs Die in Vehicle

This one really hurts.  A Hialeah Police K9 handler ended his shift Wednesday morning (after an OT search for a missing person), went into his Davie house, and left his two K9 partners in the vehicle.  By evening, both dogs had expired.  The officer was a seven-year handler and 13-year cop.  He was given both a Belgian Malinois and a bloodhound because he was a proficient handler.  How could this happen? Apparently, when the handler went into his house, he turned off the engine of his assigned Ford SUV.  With the vehicle not running, his heat alarm supposedly went inactive.  I do not understand a system designed like this because … Continue reading

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Police K9 Handlers and Dog Control

A Coconut Creek Police Department K9 dog has been retired from the force after biting two innocent persons, one an officer.  Four-year-old K9 Renzo had only been on the job a year and a half at the time of his dismissal.  The circumstances of the bites, as widely reported in the media, shine a light on the subjects of a handler’s judgment and his control of his police dog in public. I am commenting only on the scenarios as documented, not the persons involved, who will not be named here.  In the first instance, November 26, 2014, the K9 team was tracking a home invasion suspect around 12 a.m.  The … Continue reading

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Dogs Win on K9 Fight Night!

As a former police dog handler, last Wednesday’s White House intruder incident made me both proud and angry.  K9 Hurricane and K9 Jordan performed their duties well.  The suspect, whom I won’t name out of thorough disdain, pissed me off with his disrespectful stunt. In the widely shown video, Jordan takes a pretty hard front kick to the head from the suspect.  Hurricane is punched repeatedly.  The dogs stay in the fight until the Secret Service uniforms arrive.  This fast-paced perimeter protection is perfect for the dogs’ talents. The speed, tenaciousness, and ferocity of the Belgian Malinois make them ideal as security assets for open areas such as the White … Continue reading

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Florida K9 Dog Killed in the Line of Duty

A St. John’s County Sheriff’s Office K9 dog was killed in the line of duty early Tuesday morning, presumably drowned by a suspect.  K9 Deputy Farrah Ashe and her partner Baron were in pursuit of Brandon Bernard Allison, who fled from a disturbance, when the dog team came to a fence. Dep. Ashe hoisted Baron over the obstacle and Baron continued without her while she scaled the fence. As Dep. Ashe tried to catch up with the dog, she heard shouting ahead in the darkness.  Dep. Ashe found K9 Baron dead in the shallow water of a swampy area.  Allison was gone and a manhunt ensued.  Allison turned himself in … Continue reading

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K9 Team Fired Upon

This incident from Pinellas Park, FL gave me chills and reminded me of the 2006 shooting death of Polk County Deputy Matt Williams and K9 DiOGi. Tracking desperate criminals, and since they are on the run–they are desperate, is very dangerous work.  Anyone who has been on the non-dog end of the leash in the dark knows this. K9 teams in my day worked alone.  Nowadays, the dogs and handlers are often joined by a second trained handler as a back-up.  I have worked as the trailing officer and have been there to assist in arrests.  It is a sound tactic. I am glad the Pinellas Park K9 team won … Continue reading

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The Future of Police Narcotics Dogs and Marijuana

Supporters of legalized medical marijuana will have their opportunity in November to let the voters decide on whether medical marijuana will be available to patients.  The controversial ballot initiative was approved by the Florida Supreme Court.  Four legislative bills have been introduced which deal with defining, authorizing, and regulating medicinal cannabis and its infrastructure.  How will all of this affect law enforcement?  Not much…for now. Most recently, though, in Colorado and Washington State, decriminalization of recreational marijuana has changed the way police narcotics detector dogs go about their business.  The obvious issue is whether a narcotics dog’s alert still constitutes probable cause to perform a warrantless search of a vehicle … Continue reading

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K9 Hijinx

Okay, M@ reminded me of a story.  Back when I was in K9, when things were “in black and white” as a snarky friend once observed, a handler from a nearby agency told me about something that happened to him one night. It seems that at this particular department, they found a novel use for the K9 teams.  During narcotic buys-busts, a handler and dog would be hidden in the trunk of the undercover car.  When the narc dicks up front had completed a drug deal, they would give a short honk on the horn and, Surprise!, the K9 team would pop out to apprehend any runners.  Sounds fun, right? … Continue reading

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Miami Gardens K9 Dies in Line of Duty

Miami Gardens Police K9 Max lost his life following an accident while searching a building on September 12.  K9 Ofc. Chris Bezio was deploying Max through a window on a burglary call when broken glass fell on the dog.  K9 Max was rushed to the Hollywood Animal Hospital, but he died from complications of his injury. K9 Max was a five year old German Shepherd Dog and had been partnered with Bezio for four years.  Max was a dual purpose K9, trained for patrol and as an explosives detector dog.  A funeral was held yesterday for the fallen dog.  Over a hundred officers and K9 teams were in attendance. According … Continue reading

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Back on the Street with the K9’s

After a few weeks of getting reacquainted with the K9 Unit’s handlers and dogs, I am back in the swing. Cleaning up a year’s worth of administrative backlog, I un-assed myself from the desk and hit the street. Last night, I ran lights and siren to a foot chase involving one of the shift officers. He had interrupted a mobile check cashing scheme at a cash advance place. The felonious utterer took flight. The officer lost the bad guy in a…wait for it…mobile home park (Welcome to Florida). The K9 had just deployed and I had a visual, so I exited the CVPI and tagged along. Sometimes a near zero … Continue reading

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