WCSO hosts USPCA Region 25 certification

WCSO hosts USPCA Region 25 certification
22 K9 Units from different law enforcement agencies are spending the week in Wichita Falls for an annual certification course.

WICHITA COUNTY, Tx (RNN Texoma) - Clay, Taylor, Denton County, and several other K9 Units are in Wichita Falls to get their annual certification by the United States Police Canine Association.

A national organization comprised of law enforcement K9 handlers.

The USPCA President for Region 25, Brian Hintz, said this course helps the dogs keep their skills sharp on the street.

"A lot of agencies will not allow their K9 teams to work on the street without a certification," Hintz said. "If they go to court and they don't hold a certification, their credibility is in question."

This year the annual regional trials and certification are being hosted by the Wichita County Sheriffs Office.

WCSO Corporal, Josh Brown said it's been three years since the Wichita County Sheriff's Office has hosted this week-long certification course.

"We have 22 agencies present," Corporal Brown said. "We had 10 dogs competing for patrol and the remaining are for narcotics only."

Wednesday morning the dogs focused on detecting narcotics inside rooms.

"We set up two hides in three rooms and the dogs had to find both of the hides," Corporal Brown said. "They're judged as a team consent with the handler and the dog, and you're judged with the time as well."

On Thursday, they will test their skills on detecting drugs hidden in vehicles.

"What the certification brings back is that our dogs do perform," Corporal Brown said. "Texas is not required as certification standard but as handlers we want our dog to perform better than anybody else."

All their work is not without a treat, an award banquet is set for this Friday at the Wellington Banquet Hall.

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