Archive for military police

K-9 cop keeps military safe

Posted in Military Working Dogs with tags , , , , , on June 20, 2009 by wardogmarine

Howdy Stout – Staff Writer

“We’ve got a bomb threat at the shoppette,” the Airman says. “Who do you want to send?” Tech. Sgt. Michael Jones thinks for a second. “I’ll go with Blacky,” he says.

It takes only a few minutes for Sergeant Jones, the kennelmaster for the 72nd Security Forces Squadron to locate his partner, an all-black German Shepherd. Blacky leaps into the rear cab of the truck and the two — cop and canine — are on the way.

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Tech Sgt. Michael Jones and military working dog Blacky pause during patrol in Iraq for a water break. (Courtesy photo)

“We don’t normally get those on base,” Sergeant Jones says of the bomb threat. “They’ll have set up a cordon and then we’ll go in and search it out.”

For Sergeant Jones and Blacky, their Monday morning call to duty is another day of a partnership that started several years ago and included two eventful tours of duty in Iraq, for which Sergeant Jones received the Air Force Combat Action Medal, three Army Commendation Medals and the Army Combat Action Badge.

“Both times I was there, we were on nothing but combat missions,” Sergeant Jones said. “We’d go out on patrol and see what the dog would find.”

Like other military working dogs, Blacky is trained in a number of skills, including searching out explosives, drugs, weapons and people.

Trained with other canines destined for military service, Blacky learned his basic skills at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas. Assigned to Tinker, with Sergeant Jones as his handler, Blacky refined those skills before he and Sergeant Jones were deployed to Iraq in September 2006.

As one of only two dog teams supporting an entire Army Brigade, Sergeant Jones said the days were busy. “We did everything,” he said. “A wide array of jobs.”

Using Blacky’s training and superior sense of smell, the German Sheppard could sniff out IEDs, illegally-cached weapons and even terrorist suspects. On raids of suspected terrorist hideouts, Sergeant Jones said he and Blacky would often wait outside in case the suspect tried to flee. Dogs, of course, are faster than humans.

“That’s where a dog comes in handy,” Sergeant Jones says.

Patrols were conducted in Hummvees, Stryker armored vehicles or by helicopter. “Which is pretty interesting with a dog who’s never been in a helicopter before,” Sergeant Jones said. Like any combat newcomer, Sergeant Jones said Blacky was a bit skittish at first. “Going from here to the streets of Baghdad, it’s a completely different environment.”

Gone were the air-conditioned K-9 trailers and patrol vehicles. In their place were dusty vehicles loaded with fellow warfighters.

“They adapt to the environment just like we do,” Sergeant Jones said. “By the second deployment, he was like a vet.”

Returning home in May 2007, Sergeant Jones and Blacky had a six-month respite before returning to Iraq in November 2007. This time, Sergeant Jones oversaw 13 teams of dogs and handlers and spent much of his time assisting Special Forces in locating insurgents. Although they were a experienced team, the work was still dangerous.

“We were out on a search and we got ambushed by insurgents,” Sergeant Jones said. “At first, it was like in slow motion…I could see the rounds hitting the street and I remember thinking, ‘Are they shooting at me?’”

Faced with a firefight, the insurgents fled.

“We went to another location, searched it, and it happened again,” he said. That day, Sergeant Jones said, “was eventful.”

Sergeant Jones said insurgents often used hit-and-run tactics as they knew they couldn’t win a stand-up firefight. And they especially respected the capabilities of trained military dogs. “They looked at our dogs as completely different,” he said. “And for some reason, they don’t like black dogs.”

Dogs were a good tool to keep people from congregating in one place, making themselves good targets for suicide bombers. In addition, the psychological effect of a dog’s presence often deterred aggression.

“That’s the biggest part of our capability is psychological deterrence,” Sergeant Jones says.

Returning to Tinker in May 2008, Sergeant Jones and Blacky resumed their duties of supporting the base’s security forces and even patrolling as “ordinary” police. As the Kennelmaster at Tinker, Sergeant Jones oversees the 12 teams of handlers and dogs. Every day is a training day for the handlers and the dogs as they continually build on their skills and practice their proficiency. The dogs must maintain the ability to identify explosives with 95 percent accuracy and identify drugs with 90 degree percent accuracy.

“It’s our job to progress the dog through training,” Sergeant Jones says. “Once a handler is assigned a dog, they’re responsible for everything concerning that dog, from grooming to washing to training.”

Dogs too old or ill to work are often adopted by handlers. Sergeant Jones adopted one, Sonja, after her retirement. But sometimes they don’t make it to retirement. In 2007 Marco was electrocuted and killed during a building search in Iraq. “He’s our only combat casualty,” Sergeant Jones said.

However, the work continues, with the odd bomb threat to vary the routine.

“I bet they don’t run no exercises on us today,” says one Airman as he and his partner eyeball Sergeant Jones and Blacky searching the suspected bomb area.

“It was nothing,” Sergeant Jones says of their search. “But I’d rather do that than do paperwork.” Blacky jumps back into his spot in the truck and quickly snuggles down. “And that’s a day’s work.”

(June 19, 2009)

Kazakhstan Military Police Visit Luke Air Force Base

Posted in air force teams, military working dog handlers, Working Dog News with tags , , , , , on June 6, 2009 by wardogmarine

56th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Story by Deborah silliman Wolfe

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. – Luke Air Force Base 56th Security Forces Squadron members had a chance to share some of their military policing skills with members of the Kazakhstan Ministry of Defense and Arizona National Guard who visited here Monday.

“State National Guard Bureaus have coordinated with foreign nations in a state partnership program which was started at the end of the Cold War when the Soviet Union fell apart,” said Maj. Andrew Chilcoat, Air National Guard 162nd Fighter Wing bilateral affairs officer for the state partnership program who currently works in the U.S. Embassy in Astana, Kazakhstan. “Arizona has partnered with Kazakhstan for more than ten years. We usually do 20 events every year, bringing officers from Kazakhstan to Arizona, or taking ANG members to Kazakhstan.”

Capt. Bill Karlage, 856th Military Police Company AANG, Flagstaff, explained that because of limited assets at his detachment in Prescott, it was necessary to come to Luke to demonstrate some training that would be beneficial to the Kazakhstan visitors.

“One of my missions is law and order, but I do not have a lot of patrol cars,” he said. “I don’t have the dogs, and I don’t have the law and order proficiency for a traffic stop. We are more of a combat type mission focusing on area security, maneuverability, mobility operations and police intelligence in Iraq and Afghanistan. Here domestically, it is great to have a Defense Department installation such as Luke to bring their assets to this type of training.”

While many Luke security forces members frequently team with other services to perform “outside the wire” combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan, the visit was an excellent opportunity to showcase security forces home station duties.

Tech. Sgt. Warren, 56th SFS non-commissioned officer in-charge of the military working dog section, headed up the effort at Luke to ensure the Kazakhstanis were able to see and participate in certain local training scenarios.

“We were happy to help,” he said. “This is the first time we’ve done this here and I’m very excited to share our experience.”

Warren, who recently served a year with the Army working with a provincial reconstruction team training Afghan police, escorted the visitors around base, starting with a brief at 56th SFS headquarters.

Col. Andre Curry, 56th Mission Support Group commander greeted the visitors. After Curry’s remarks, Maj. Michael Borders, 56th SFS commander, briefed the group and led a question and answer session after which the group headed to the kennels where the military dog handlers led the K-9s in demonstrating their skills. Following the kennel, the group practiced their baton skills and witnessed how Luke security forces would handle a high-risk traffic stop.

Members of the Kazakhstan ministry of defense appreciated their time at Luke.

“It is very important and very helpful, I think, for both sides,” Justice Col. Timur Dandebayev Kazakhstan ministry of defense, said. “For us it is very important because we learn something new from your experienced personnel, especially about the dog training and military police forces. There are lots of points which we can commonly use in cooperation and in terms of the partnership for peace missions.”

Video of US Army K9 & Handler on Patrol in Iraq

Posted in Army Dog teams with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 19, 2009 by wardogmarine

The 35th Military Police Detachment has added a new addition to the unit. As a team, this new addition is creating a physical and mental deterrent against insurgent activity in Iraq…

Qatar Military Dog Show Enhances Bilateral Relations

Posted in Foreign Dog Teams with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 14, 2009 by wardogmarine

All pictures and Story by Dustin Senger
This article was found here: Qatar Dogs

CAMP AS SAYLIYAH, Qatar – Forty-seven members of the Qatar military police exhibited working dog capabilities for U.S. service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. The first-time event was coordinated to enhance bilateral relationships between the two nations’ armed forces, following talks between Maj. Gen Thamer Al Mehshadi, Qatar army military police commander, and Col. David G. Cotter, U.S. Army Central Area Support Group Qatar commander, March 26.

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“I’ve seen a lot of dog shows before but this was really good – especially the drug and bomb detection,” said U.S. Air Force Jennifer Asia Gonzales (center), from Chicago, Ill., after a Qatar military working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. Gonzales was enjoying a four-day pass from duty in Iraq, by participating in the U.S. Central Command rest and recuperation pass program in Qatar. Also on pass from Iraq (far right): U.S. Air Force Brianne Gordon-Garcia, from Charlotte, N.C. and Army Pfc. Sharmeka Reed, from Hollandale, Miss.

Surrounded by curious spectators, Sgt. Maj. Abdulla Al Ghanem, Qatar army military police canine trainer, directed the demonstration of fitness, skillfulness and obedience. Several German and Belgium shepherds (Malinois), along with an English springer spaniel, traversed through various obstacles and mock scenarios. The dogs showcased aggressive attack procedures, situational restraint during riot control and hostage rescue, as well as detection of narcotics and explosives hidden on persons and vehicles.

“I like how obedient the dogs are,” said U.S. Air Force Jennifer Asia Gonzales, from Chicago, Ill. She was attending the demonstration while enjoying a four-day pass from duty in Iraq, by participating in the U.S. Central Command rest and recuperation pass program in Qatar. “I’ve seen a lot of dog shows before but this was really good – especially the drug and bomb detection.”

“This is paving the way for more military integration in the future,” said Lt. Col. Nasser Al Halbadi, Qatar army military police canine unit commander. “We plan to continue these joint training opportunities, so our military units learn from one another.”

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Belgium shepherds (Malinois) react after stopping a “detainee” escape during a military working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. The dogs showcased aggressive attack procedures, situational restraint during riot control and hostage rescue, as well as detection of narcotics and explosives hidden on persons and vehicles.
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Lt. Col. Nasser Al Halbadi, Qatar army military police canine unit commander, accepts a token of appreciation from Col. David G. Cotter, U.S. Army Central Area Support Group Qatar commander, after a Qatar military police working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. The first-time event was coordinated to enhance bilateral relationships between the two nations’ armed forces, following talks between Maj. Gen Thamer Al Mehshadi, Qatar army military police commander, and Cotter, March 26.
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A German shepherd locates a Qatar army military police canine trainer by following nearly 200 meters of tracks during a working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. Several German and Belgium shepherds (Malinois), along with an English springer spaniel, traversed through various obstacles and mock scenarios to demonstrate fitness, skillfulness and obedience.
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A German shepherd searches for explosives during a Qatar military working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. The dogs traversed through various obstacles and mock scenarios to demonstrate fitness, skillfulness and obedience.
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Col. David G. Cotter, U.S. Army Central Area Support Group Qatar commander, and Maj. Gen Thamer Al Mehshadi, Qatar army military police commander, finalize talks at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, March 26. The two military officers discussed ways to enhance bilateral relationships between the two nations’ armed forces. An exhibition of Qatar military working dog capabilities was immediately offered to the U.S. military installation.
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An English springer spaniel searches for explosives during a Qatar military working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. The dogs traversed through various obstacles and mock scenarios to demonstrate fitness, skillfulness and obedience.
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Sgt. Khalid Ahmed H. Sulaiti, Qatar army military police canine handler, during a military working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. The dogs showcased aggressive attack procedures, situational restraint during riot control and hostage rescue, as well as detection of narcotics and explosives hidden on persons and vehicles.
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A Belgium shepherd (Malinois) leaps over a vehicle to apprehend a “terrorist” during a Qatar military working dog exhibition for U.S service members at Camp As Sayliyah, Qatar, April 13. The dogs traversed through various obstacles and mock scenarios to demonstrate fitness, skillfulness and obedience.

PHOTOS: K-9 Team makes ‘scents’ for Raider Brigade Soldiers

Posted in Army Dog teams, military working dog handlers, Military Working Dogs with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 2, 2009 by wardogmarine

By Sgt. David Hodge

1st BCT PAO, 4th Inf. Div., MND-B

k-9_team

FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – Sgt. Craig Walker, military dog handler, and Belgian Malanois, Carla, a military working dog, part of the Falcon K-9 Team, attached to the 1st Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad. Walker, a native of Kelso, Wash., is part of the 40th Military Police Detachment, out of Fort Sill, Okla., deployed to Forward Operating Base Falcon in southern Baghdad’s Rashid district. The Falcon K-9 Team joined Soldiers from the 1st “Raider” Brigade and Iraqi Security Forces during a combined cordon and search operation to find weapons and explosives in Rashid’s Abu T’shir community.

scratching_the_surface

FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – A military working dog named Carla, a Belgian Malanois trained to sniff out weapons and explosives, digs into a scent inside an abandoned house in the Abu T’shir community of the Rashid district in southern Baghdad. Sgt. Craig Walker, a military dog handler from Kelso, Wash., part of the 40th Military Police Detachment out of Fort Sill, Okla., leads Carla during combined operations with Iraqi Security Forces and Soldiers from the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, to search for any signs of activity. The 40th MP Det. is attached to the 1st Special Troops Battalion, 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div., Multi-National Division – Baghdad in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

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FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – Sgt. Craig Walker, military dog handler from Kelso, Wash., part of the K-9 Team, assigned to the 40th Military Police Detachment, attached to the 1st Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad, leads his partner, a Belgian Malanois dog named Carla, through an abandoned house during combined operations in the Abu T’shir community in the Rashid district.

roughin_it

FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – Sgt. James Bowhay, a cavalry scout from San Angelo, Texas, assigned to Troop C, 7th Squadron, 10th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad, helps military working dog, Carla, a Belgian Malanois, part of the Falcon K-9 Team, over a wall and into the hands of her owner, Sgt. Craig Walker, a dog handler, from Kelso, Wash., during a combined cordon and search operation in Abu T’shir. Capt. Sean Tennimon, a native of Mobile, Ala. and commander of Troop C, 7th Sqdn., 10th Cav., helped Walker, who is part of the K-9 Team assigned to the 40th Military Police Detachment, out of Fort Sill, Okla., attached to the 1st Special Troops Battalion, 1st BCT, 4th Inf. Div., MND-B. The K-9 Team supports the 1st “Raider” Brigade deployed to Forward Operating Base Falcon, located in the Rashid district of southern Baghdad.

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FORWARD OPERATING BASE FALCON, Iraq – Military working dog, Carla, a Belgian Malanois, sniffs out a scent while looking for explosives and weapons in the Abu T’shir community with her partner Sgt. Craig Walker, a dog handler assigned to the 40th Military Police Battalion, out of Fort Sill, Okla. Walker, a native of Kelso, Wash., is part of the Falcon K-9 Team, assigned to the 1st Special Troops Battalion, 1st Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division, Multi-National Division – Baghdad, deployed to Forward Operating Base Falcon in the Rashid district of southern Baghdad. Carla and Walker assist Soldiers of the 1st “Raider” BCT during combined operations to provide security for the Iraqi people.

Navy military working dog team in Afghanistan video

Posted in Navy dog teams, various k9 videos, Various Teams with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 17, 2008 by wardogmarine

A report by the Armed Forces Network about a Navy military working dog team at Bagram, Afghanistan. MA3 Gerry Winkler and his mwd Zack are featured in this video titled by MA3 Winkler “Doggie Downtime Down Range”

Fort Huachuca honors military working dog SSgt Britt

Posted in Army Dog teams, fallen dogs, Tribute Videos, Various Teams with tags , , , , , , , , , , on December 17, 2008 by wardogmarine

Britt, military working dog, earns last rites befitting hero
Arizona Daily Star ^ | Carol Ann Alaimo 

Britt the bomb-sniffing dog, who served overseas in Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan, will get a funeral befitting a hero at Fort Huachuca. The ashes of the Army canine, recently put down due to neurological illness, will be interred behind the kennels that served as his home base as a military color guard looks on.

The 11-year-old German shepherd was euthanized on Sept. 11 and will be buried Dec. 3 at the Southern Arizona Army post.

Following tradition, taps will be played and a flag folded and presented to Sgt. Megan Hobson, Britt’s last handler.

“We lost a fallen comrade,” said Hobson, 24, a Utah native serving with the fort’s 18th Military Police Detachment.

“He may have been a piece of Army equipment, but I loved that dog,” said Hobson, who was with Britt when he died.

The German shepherd held the rank of staff sergeant — military dogs always outrank their handlers by one stripe, to discourage ill treatment of a superior. He had several Army medals to his credit and had worked as an explosives detector dog since 1999.

Overseas, he took part in numerous missions that likely saved lives, officials said. On patrol in Iraq, he unearthed weapons caches and makeshift bombs, and even collared an insurgent by chasing him down.

Hobson, Britt’s handler for three months, arranged for the canine to spend his final days in the Huachuca Mountains doing his favorite things.

“They let me have a couple days with him where he was just a dog, he didn’t have to work,” she recalled.

She bought him doggie delicacies — sirloin steak with mashed potatoes from a Texas Roadhouse restaurant — and they played fetch with his favorite squeaky toy.

Britt had a reputation for nipping people — “love bites” as the handlers call them — but Hobson, a rarity as a female handler, said she never saw that side of him. “I think he needed a woman in his life,” she said.

Fort Huachuca spokeswoman Tanja Linton said the fanfare at an Army dog’s funeral is not quite the same as honors rendered for a human.

Still, she said in a statement, the service aims to pay respects to “a different kind of soldier.”

“Britt served his country with loyalty and distinction,” she said.
● Contact reporter Carol Ann Alaimo at 573-4138 or at calaimo@azstarnet.com.

Army Military Working Dog Unit video-K9

Posted in Army Dog teams, various k9 videos, Various Teams with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on November 22, 2008 by wardogmarine

“Gotta love this job”

Military working dog receives Army Achievement Medal

Posted in Army Dog teams, dog awards, Military Working Dogs, Working Dog News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 3, 2008 by wardogmarine


During his deployment, Zzarr uncovered more than 5,000 pounds of explosives used in the manufacture of Improvised Explosive Devices. (Photo by Master Sgt. Tim Volkert)

Multinational Division – North PAO 

MOSUL, Iraq On his last day of duty at Forward Operating Base Marez, Sgt.1st Class Zzarr seemed excited with the Soldiers hovering around him at the 3d Armored Cavalry 

Regimental headquarters June 5. 

Zzarr was about to receive and Army Achievement Medal, a reward for his service to the Army during his deployment. Zzarr was responsible for discovering about 6,000 pounds of explosives in hidden caches around Mosul. 

Staff Sgt. Kevin Dee, Zzarr’s handler, puts the K-9 through his paces at Fort Eustis.(Photo by Keith Whitteaker)

As the Soldiers stood at attention and the orders were posted, Col. Michael Bills, commander of the 3d ACR, bent down and pinned the AAM on Zzarr‟s collar. Instead of a salute, Zzarr enthusiastically offered a paw, wagged his tail, and wanted to play. 

Zzarr, a three-year old Dutch Sheppard, is a military working dog assigned to the 221st 

Military Police Detachment stationed at Fort Eustis, Va.  

The dog‟s trainer, Staff Sgt. Kevin Dee, said Zzarr specializes in searching for explosives. During the past year in Mosul, the dog was credited with finding three major caches, one of which included 1,200 pounds of explosives that was going to be used in a vehicle-borne improvised explosive device. 

The dog‟s discoveries have saved countless lives by “finding things the (human) eye can‟t find,” he said.  

“The military working dogs are extremely well trained and adept at discovering these caches. The „finds‟ remove these weapons from the hands of the enemy and decrease the resources they have to use against us,” said Maj. Parker Frawley, planning officer for the 3d ACR. Frawley‟s mother, Starline Nunley, and the Gem City Dog Club in Dayton, Ohio, also recognized the value of the dogs on the battlefield and have been sending a variety of items for the working dogs to ensure they have all the necessities and some creature comforts while deployed. 

 

Zzarr was one of 15 military working dogs in 3d ACR‟s area of operations that work daily with the Coalition and Iraqi Security Forces to find hidden explosives and other weapons and keep them from making it to the streets. 

 “These MWDs have been extremely useful in our daily combat operations,” said Capt. William Nance, commander of Regimental Headquarters and Headquarters Troop, 3d ACR. Nance worked with Zzarr and other MWDs regularly as the Heavy Company, 3rd Squadron, 3d ACR commander during the first six months of the regiment‟s deployment to Iraq. “They can cover more ground, faster than human search teams and have been instrumental in clearing sites for COP builds, as well as quickly clearing a building during a raid. This speed allows us to spend less time on the objective, keeping everyone safer.  

“That and they‟re a lot of fun to have around the CP before and after missions,” Nance added.  

With the award pinned on his collar, Zzarr received a multitude of congratulatory pats on the head from the Soldiers. This attention is well-deserved for the dog. After all, Zzarr is the one digging around in the dirt and roaming through buildings looking for explosives, said Dee. 

“He does all the work. I have all the fun,” Dee said.  

“You can’t beat this job”

Posted in air force teams, dogs, various k9 videos, working dogs with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 25, 2008 by wardogmarine

Listen to what he says at 1:03 and 1:20

I just love this video. You can tell he genuinely enjoys being a military working dog hanlder. All of us handlers share the same sentiment when he says “You can’t beat this job.” It is hard to be able to beat a job where you get to work/play with some of the world’s finest dogs and people everyday. 

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