Francis calls for the reinstatement of the K9 police unit

Former Home Affairs and National Security Minister Hermangild Francis described as “very unfortunate” the apparent disbanding of the K9 police unit, which was launched in 2019 under the Allen Chastanet administration.

“It’s very, very sad,” Francis told News Maker Live host Timothy Poleon on Wednesday night.

In an exclusive interview on April 1, 2021 with Loop NewsPolice Commissioner Milton Desir said “We have three K9s which will be used at airports and seaports, used by Police, Customs and SLASPA when needed.”

The Royal Saint Lucia Police Force (RSLPF) has had several successes with the assistance of K9 units.

However, the Unit has not been active for some time.

“This K9 unit cost the government a lot, but we recognize the use of K9 and this K9 was able to give us a lot of success,” Francis said.

Sources close to the RSLPF said Loop News the suspension of the K9 unit is not in the hands of the police.

Talk show host Timothy Poleon asked if cost could be a reason.

“There’s a financial issue because you have to be able to look after the dogs and pay the dog handlers…groom them and feed them,” Francis said.

With the current spike in gun violence in the south of the island, the former national security minister said the K9 unit, if operational, would have sniffed out illegal weapons there.

K9 duties include:

  • Search for drugs and explosives.
  • Location of missing persons.
  • Find evidence at crime scenes.
  • Attack people targeted by the police.

The most commonly used breeds are German Shepherd, Belgian Malinois, Bloodhound, Dutch Shepherd and Retriever.

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