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County Public Service Committee OKs new K-9 unit

By Bonnie Marrocco

The Sheriff’s Office has a new K-9 team to replace current police K-9, Pharoah, and his handler, Deputy Brian Thompson. The 11-year-old Czech German Shepherd is retiring and his handler is relinquishing his K-9 assignment after 13 years to return to road patrol.

Thompson has nothing but praise for Pharoah, whom he described as a great tracker, good with children and an excellent drug-detection dog.

“Pharoah is an awesome dog and you would never know that he’ll be 12 in the fall,” Thompson said.

On Tuesday afternoon, the County's Public Service Committee approved $13,346 for a new police K-9, training for a new K-9 handler and additional equipment and supplies. The funds come from money donated to the Genesee County K-9 Fund, as well as funds from Forfeiture of Crime Proceeds.

The K-9 team is used for search and suspect apprehension, locating missing persons including missing children and Alzheimer patients, contraband and drug searches, tactical tracking, evidence recovery, building searches, patrol, and public presentations. 

Pharoah began working with Thompson in November 2010 and was donated by Niagara Falls Police Department. He is certified in patrol, tracking, handler protection, narcotics detection, building searches and apprehension. Pharoah and Thompson will work until the dog and handler are trained and ready to take over.

“Training lasts for 15 weeks, from September to December,” Thompson said.

Pharoah's retirement will be spent with the Thompson family.

Mardell Lamb

Thank you, Pharoah for your years of dedicated service. Thank you Deputy Brian Thompson! "Happy Trails To You..."

Blessings & good luck to your replacement.

Aug 7, 2013, 6:50pm Permalink
Ed Hartgrove

I had the honor of having dinner & conversation with Deputy Thompson a couple months back. He is one of my nephews, and had come to southwest Florida on some personal business. He had the time to come over and spend with one of his cousins, and the three of us went out to eat. He said then that he wanted to get back to road patrol, so I guess he got it.

Good luck, Brian, and it was good to see you. As Rick said, come down again, when you can stay longer.

Aug 7, 2013, 11:46pm Permalink

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