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From the Australian Illawarra Mercury
A SMALL corner of the Goulburn Police Academy bears testament to the bravery of Carts, the police dog killed in the line of duty at Corrimal in December.
Police were devastated and the community outraged when Carts was stabbed twice while in pursuit of a Balgownie teenager, and later died from his injuries.
The youth was initially charged with the killing, but the charge was subsequently withdrawn.
At yesterday’s graduation ceremony for two legged police officers, new recruits of the four-legged variety were also introduced.
Three new police dogs and two drug detection dogs enjoyed their own coming out parade, while 299 human recruits were sworn in.
NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione and Carts’ former handler David Williamson added the slain dog’s name to a memorial wall dedicated to police horses and dogs killed in the line of duty.
Police Dog Carts’ name joins Police Dog Sam, Police Dog Boss and Police Dog Titan.
The memorial was built to recognise the importance police horses and dogs play in supporting front line police work.
Acting inspector Tony Irons from the NSW police dog unit said the dogs provided support 24 hours a day, seven days a week to police out in the field.
He said the bond between the dogs and their handlers went far beyond a working relationship.
“The dog and his handler are a team. At the end of shift, the dog will go home with that handler and live with the family,” Inspector Irons said.
“The loss of a dog to the handler’s family is immense. It’s a very strong bond.
“The loss of Police Dog Carts was greatly felt amongst police and the community.
“His legacy will live on through the memorial that was unveiled today.”
He said apart from the emotional attachment to the animals, the dogs are highly trained and valued members of the team.
“Our dogs undergo 16 weeks’ initial training to get the dog to a basic operational level, and the training is ongoing for the rest of their working life.
“They are trained in tracking and searching, property searching, searching for missing people and criminals and criminal apprehension.
“We are on the front line. The dog unit is called in when other police have lost an offender or are wanting that bit of extra support in arresting an offender.”
At the ceremony, tribute was paid to Senior Constable Brett Williams, who was Carts’ handler at the time of the stabbing.
Also on Friday, the PD Titan Memorial Award, instigated in memory of Police Dog Titan who was killed in the line of duty during in Sydney in 2004, was awarded to Leading Senior Constable Matthew Warwick and Police Dog Riggs. The pair showed bravery while attending a siege at Rylstone, in which an offender was pursued and arrested without serious injury to police or the suspect.
Carts was named after Constable David Carty, who was stabbed in an off duty incident in 2007.
In May, Carts was recognised by the German Shepherd Dog Council of Australia for his diligent service. Since joining the force in 2002, Carts achievements included finding missing persons and tracking offenders for serious crimes including sexual assault and armed robberies.