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In Loving Memory of
Police canine facility is safe, officials declare Tests on soil, groundwater reportedly find no environmental links to deaths of 5 dogs who stayed there By Josh Mitchell - Sun Reporter - January 31, 2006,
Baltimore County officials declared the Police Department's canine facility safe Tuesday, saying tests found no environmental links to the deaths of five police dogs that spent time there. Tests on soil and groundwater showed that the site and surrounding area at Southwest Area Park poses no health risks to officers or dogs, county officials said. They vowed to reopen all portions of the park immediately and to try to move the canine unit back to its facility within six weeks. "There is no increased risk for humans and canines at this site," county environmental chief David A.C. Carroll told reporters at police headquarters in Towson. "This site is safe. Cole B. Weston, president of the Baltimore County police union, which has raised concerns about the facility, said he would not comment specifically on the findings until union-hired analysts reviewed them. The tests were performed by EA Engineering, Science, and Technology of Hunt Valley on a 70-acre parcel of the park that is the site of the canine unit, a playground and athletic fields. The athletic fields and other portions of the park were built on top of a former landfill. County Police Chief Terrence B. Sheridan closed the canine building in September after the deaths of two dogs and the health complaints' of some officers stationed there.
five dogs that had been stationed at the facility died last year.
The county police union said it believed that four of the animals died of cancer and raised questions about the site. The county sent the test results and the dogs' medical records to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The society's Animal Poison Control Center determined that two dogs died of cancer, a third died of a collapsed lung and a fourth died of bacterial infection. The police union is paying for the necropsy of the fifth dog, which died in December. Sharon Gwaltney-Brant of the ASPCA said the two cancer cases -- lymphoma and brain cancer -- were likely of a "hereditary nature than an environmental nature." She pointed out that older dogs and bigger breeds face increased risk of disease. The dogs that died of cancer were a 6-year-old bloodhound and an 8-year-old German shepherd. "None of the BCPD police dogs developed illnesses related to chemicals identified in the soil and water nor is there any evidence to
suggest that environmental conditions pose any health risk to dogs that work, exercise or are housed there," according to a report released Tuesday by the county. In September, about 30 employees of the canine unit filed injury reports with the department, some complaining of headaches, dizziness and respiratory problems. Tuesday, a county-hired physician said that medical tests on those employees and about 20 others that spent time at the park showed no serious medical problems or abnormalities.Weston, the police union president, predicted that some officers would be reluctant to return to the facility. "I keep reverting back to five dogs dying within 10 1/2 months," he said. "It's a huge concern for us."
Sheridan said that he would meet with the union to review the results, and that he hoped to have the 29-officer unit back at the facility within six weeks. County officials estimate that the tests cost $300,000.
Fifth Balto. County police dog dies
by Josh Mitchell sun reporter Originally published December 24, 2005
The Baltimore County police union says it will pay for a necropsy for a retired police dog that was euthanized this week - the fifth animal that was stationed at the canine unit's now-closed facility and died this year. The 8-year-old German shepherd, named Geko, was euthanized Thursday after a veterinarian found signs of internal bleeding and determined the dog was suffering from a stomach tumor,
said Cole B. Weston, president of the Baltimore County Fraternal Order of Police. Three other dogs that have died since February were found to have cancer, Weston said. The body of a fifth dog, which died Dec. 2, has been sent to the University of Maryland for a necropsy to determine the cause of death.
All five dogs had been stationed at the department's canine center in Southwest Area Park in the Baltimore Highlands area. The park was built on top of a former landfill. Police, prompted by the first two dog deaths and health complaints from officers, closed the canine center in September until environmental tests could be done. The county expects test results in mid-January. "I can't emphasize
enough: Losing five dogs in a 10-month period from a unit that just has over 30 dogs, I'm absolutely very concerned about what's going on with that site," Weston said. "This is just unprecedented." But county officials have said they doubt there is a link between the site, which was in use for about two years, and the dogs' deaths. "There are a lot of assumptions being made, and the assumptions are countered by what we know about the site," said David A.C. Carroll, the county's top environmental official. In a December 2001 memo to Carroll, a county supervisor pointed out "elevated levels of Benzene and Benzene derivatives in the groundwater samples" at the park, and asked whether "some form of surface remediation be attempted to minimize any contact that the dogs might have with existing soil." Carroll said subsequent environmental tests showed the park posed no "undue risk" to humans or dogs. The latest dog to die, Geko, was retired from the department's canine unit in December 2004 because of hip problems, Weston said. The county gave the retired dog to the handler, as it typically does. The dog recently showed signs of internal bleeding and a veterinarian determined it had a stomach tumor, Weston said. "It's devastating to him to have to put the dog down," Weston said of Geko's handler, whom he
declined to identify. "The family is really struggling." The union is paying for necropsies of Geko and a 9-year-old German shepherd that was euthanized Dec. 12. That dog, Enno, was retired in March after it was found to have a brain tumor, Weston said, but the union wants to confirm the cause of death. The county is awaiting the results of a necropsy on an 8-year-old German shepherd named Harley, which died Dec. 2. The dog's body was sent to the University of Maryland. Veterinarians told the union that the necropsy results might end up being compromised because Harley's body was frozen over a weekend.
Ellen Kobler, a county spokeswoman, said the refrigerator in which Harley's body was stored had a "mechanical malfunction" that caused items inside to freeze. "But we're told that should not in any way compromise the results." The county has also sent two dogs that spent considerable time at the canine center to the University of Pennsylvania for physicals. "There's all sorts of unknowns at the moment on this," said Bill Toohey, a Baltimore County police spokesman. "We're just waiting for when we get medical
tests on the animals and scientific results on the facility before we can say anything meaningful about it." About 30 employees of the canine unit have filed injury reports with the department, some complaining of headaches, dizziness and respiratory problems. Weston said officers were tested at a county-contracted health clinic this fall. But the officers could not interpret the results because they came in the form of "raw numbers," Weston said. A county spokesman said this month that a Police Department colonel has asked the health clinic physicians to translate the blood test results in a
"more user-friendly format."
In Loving Memory of
April 28, 2005
Handler/Partner: Lt.Toby Baker
Crestview Police Department
Crestview, Florida 32536
submitted by Jim Cortina
In Loving Memory of
June 6, 2005
Partner: Officer William Van Antwerp
Prince County Police Department
1 County Complex Court (MA 475)
Prince William, VA 22192
K9 GUNNER - Shot & killed 6/6/05 By DAVID STEGON 6/8/05 VA
A Prince William County police officer unknowingly shot and killed a police dog during the chase of a suspect Monday night in Woodbridge, a police spokeswoman said. Officers were chasing a 24-year-old Woodbridge man into a town house on Winslow Court after the man fled during a traffic stop in Woodbridge, said 1st Sgt. Kim Chinn. The police dog's handler was one of the first officers on the scene and followed the man into the home, police said. The handler pressed a button on his gun belt that opened a door of his police car to let out the dog, Gunner, so he could help in the pursuit, police said. However, when Gunner got out of the car, the door to the house was closed. Other officers arrived on the scene and saw Gunner outside the house. Gunner approached an officer, who then shot him, not knowing he was part of the police force, police said. Gunner was taken to a veterinarian but died. Police are doing an internal investigation of the incident, as is customary any time an officer fires a gun, police said. One of the gunshots ricocheted into an adjoining town house, but no one was hurt, police said. Gunner, a 7-year-old German shepherd, was with the Prince William County police department for six years. For the past four years, Gunner was assigned to officer William Van Antwerp and lived with his family."It's a sad day for all of us here," Chinn said. Gunner was one of five dogs the department used, primarily in tracking and apprehending subjects, search and rescue. Some, such as Gunner, are also used in drug detection, police said. The dogs typically cost around $3,500,
but some are donated to the force. The dogs undergo a 16-week K-9 school, along with nine weeks of drug training as well as monthly training, police said. "It is immeasurable to put a dollar figure on these dogs," Chinn said. "They are definitely an investment, but they are a very valuable resource for us." Gunner won first place at the U.S. Police K-9 Associationcompetition last year and has won several other awards. As a result of the chase, Jason Randolph Beer of 1945 Winslow Courtwas charged with driving under the influence, unreasonable refusal, felony alluding, possession of a concealed weapon and possession of marijuana in the case, police said.
submitted by Jim Cortina, Dir. CPWDA
UPDATE: July 23, 2013
In Loving Memory of
K-9 Goldon was struck and killed by a vehicle at the end of his shift in Currituck County on August 17, 2005. He is now resting peacefully at the Rainbow Bridge. Goldon was nine years old. He was born in Budapest, Hungary, he moved to Elizabeth City when he was just 18 months old. He is survived by his handler Sergeant Mark Chappell of the Currituck County Sheriff Office and wife Michele and their three sons,Anthony, Jared, and Will, along with two dog sibling, Sasha and Dobey and two cat siblings, Pumpkin and Midnight. Everyone in the family
has been left with a whole in their heart, he will be deeply missed forever. 1. Goldon attended and graduated Mid-Atlantic Canine School at the top of his class. He was trained as a patrol dog, handler
protection, narcotics, tracking, article searches and criminal apprehension.
He was a member of the USPCA (United States Police Canine Association) Region
In Loving Memory of
Therapy K-9 Belgian Shepherd bitch ( Gina) to the dreaded cancer. The loss of Gina is very personal to me as I once leased her from
her owner and I had a litter from her to our boy Montanna (which you have on your tribute) which produced our lovely boy Tex who is now 4 years old and also a certified Therapy K-9. She was a certified Therapy K-9 who was too nice and too young to pass.
THE RAINBOW BRIDGE
In Loving Memory of
In Loving Memory of
April 22, 1992 - March 11, 2005
Garth was an outstanding Drug Detector Dog and served honorably with the Tennessee Highway Patrol, with his handler Trooper Jim Grant. As a team, Trooper Grant and Garth were responsible for many drug arrests and seizures of large quantities of drugs and vehicles. Even after Garth's retirement, he continued to serve by visiting hospitals and schools, and particularly enjoyed showing off for children.
Spreading the word of the dangers of drugs was like a second career to this noble animal. Garth will truly be missed by all, particularly his handler, Trooper Jim Grant.
Most of our dogs are labs, although I do have a few GSD's, Malinois and even an old sitting on the front porch, he haw looking bloodhound. We have a 40 dog section at the moment with an authorized strength of 50. The canine training section is part of Special Operations, which also includes aviation, divers, bomb technicians and the SWAT team.