Pinellas County, Florida -- The St. Pete Police Department is trying to make schools safer -- one sniff at a time.
On Wednesday, Feb. 26, the K-9 Compound of the police department debuted two new K-9 Labradors, Roo and Macy, whose chief purpose will be to search exclusively for guns and shell casings in school.
Unlike standard police K-9 teams that are trained to perform a variety
of functions, "We obtained two Labrador retrievers that are passive,
people-friendly, single-purpose dogs and trained them to search
exclusively for guns and shell casings," said Assistant Chief Melanie
Bevan, who spearheaded this initiative.
"They have that hunt drive we need for them to search extended periods of time, and sociability as well," K-9 trainer Chris Ladd says.
Police say this program is likely the only one of its kind in the country. The dogs were purchased with and will be taken care of by a nearly $24,000 Justice Assistance Grant.
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