Handler – Officer Dirk Hiltl.
Decorated police K9 dies; helped seize $3.7 million in illegal drugs
A decorated narcotics detector dog with the El Paso Police Department died last week. General Lee served the city of El Paso for eight years along with his partner, Officer Dirk Hiltl. Lee was one of the most effective narcotics dogs in the police department’s narcotics unit, the department said. He was honored twice by the Texas Narcotic Officer Association as Canine of the Year in 2010-2011 and 2014-2015. During his years of service, Lee helped seize 33,000 pounds of marijuana, 750 pounds of cocaine, 100 pounds of heroin, 50 pounds of methamphetamine. The drugs seizure had a street value of $3,750,000. Lee worked from 2007-2015, when he was retired from active service with the narcotics unit. Lee continued his partnership with Hiltl, who cared for him until his passing on Friday. “K-9 Lee was a joy to work with every day and that Lee made him the Canine Handler that he is today,” Hiltl said. The Police Department said that K-9 Lee will be missed by all.Earlier this year, narcotics K-9 Ringo also died. Ringo served the police department with his partner, Officer Vargas for more than ten years. Ringo was also a decorated narcotic detector K-9; He and Officer Vargas were recognized by the Texas Narcotic Officer Association as Officer of the Year. “Ringo was always excited to go to work,” Officer Vargas said in April, “He was the greatest work partner anybody could have, and was worth his weight in gold.”