The first recorded use of dogs performing police work was in St. Malo, France in the early 14th century, when they were used to guard dock installations.
But it was not until 1888 when the modern police dog originally came into being. It was at that time when the London Metropolitan Police Force first used two bloodhounds to track suspects by scent as part of the infamous Jack the Ripper investigation. Although “The Ripper” was never apprehended, the use of police dogs continued.
Many are unaware that police working dogs are truly considered full-fledged police officers. Assaulting, injuring, or killing a police canine carries the same punishment under the law as the equivalent offense committed against a human officer.
The K-9 Unit is one of the field components of the uniformed division assigned to the day platoon; as such, it is deployed at the direction of the Day Commanding Officer in keeping with all policies, procedures, rules and regulations.
In addition to working patrol, the K-9 Unit is deployed for specific incidents where having a canine is advantageous, such as: narcotics detection, crowd control, building and vehicle searches, pursuit of fleeing suspects, apprehending barricaded individuals, and the search for missing persons.
Furthermore, the K-9 Unit is available to assist with our agencies public relations endeavors – such as youth and community events – to not only display the tools being utilized to combat crime, but also to show the measures that are being taken to keep the residents of Central Falls safe; all in a coordinated effort to continue with our objective to build further trust with residents.