HEMET: New K9 team will soon be patrolling City of Hemet

HEMET – Hemet residents will soon be seeing a new K9 handler and his K9 partner patrolling the streets and back alleys of the city when Hemet Police Officer Reynoso and his new K9 companion Mac complete their training. The new team is currently in their first week of basic K9 academy at Adlerhorst International, Inc.

Once their training is complete, Officer Reynoso and K9 Mac will be joining Hemet Police Officer Gomez and his K9 companion Jack in keeping Hemet residents safe. Officer Gomez and Jack graduated the basic K9 academy at Adlerhorst International, Inc. in July, 2013.

City of Hemet Police K9 Handler Officer Gomez and his K9 partner Jack have been patrolling Hemet since July, 2013. Hemet PD photo.

Adlerhorst International, Inc. is located in Jurupa Valley. While in training, Officer Reynoso and K9 Mac will be trained in patrol necessities such as locating, controlling, and apprehending criminal suspects; locating criminals as well as missing or lost persons; locating evidence; and handler protection.

K9 Mac is a 92-pound Belgian Malinois and his commands are given in the Dutch language. Both Jack and Mac were originally purchased from a Netherlands vendor and both received certification titles from the K.N.V.P., the Royal Dutch Police Dog Association.

All new K9 teams must successfully complete five weeks – 240 hours – of intensive daily training. To maintain their abilities and skills after graduation, the K9 teams train once a week with other K9 teams throughout Southern California. 

The mission of the Hemet Police Department’s K9 Unit is to maintain a team of highly trained officers and canine partners who are prepared and equipped to assist with critical incidents which go beyond the scope of normal police operations, according to Hemet police officials.

They also handle routine calls for service, assist with searches for people as well as narcotics, and are often called upon to do demonstrations throughout the community. K9 officers and their K9 companions often appear at community events and at area schools, to the delight of the children who get to meet and interact with a real police K9 team.

Hemet PD’s K9 Jack moves in for a bite during last year’s annual K9 Trials Competition. Courtesy photo copyright Karen Hight, DogPhotog.net.

The City of Hemet’s K9 Unit is overseen by Corporal Derek Maddox, who was a K9 handler from 2009 until 2014, when his K9 partner Rosco retired from police work.

Since Rosco’s retirement, the city’s K9 needs have been provided Officer Gomez and K9 Jack, also known as King-1. Officer Reynoso and K9 Mac have already been given the radio designator King-2.

Although the city’s K9’s primary responsibilities are within the City of Hemet, they are often called to assist in the surrounding communities in and around Hemet during major incidents.

The Hemet Police Department is always looking for new areas and buildings to train in, according to officials.

Anyone interested in partnering with the department’s K9 Unit and who is willing to allow their property to become a Police Canine training site is encouraged to contact Hemet PD’s K9 unit.

Individuals or companies interested in providing new training locations for Hemet PD’s K9 Unit can contact Corporal Maddox or K-9 Officer Matt Gomez.

All of the Hemet Police Department’s K9’s – past and present – including all their necessary equipment and training, have been purchased with funds generously donated by organizations and members from the Hemet and San Jacinto Valley area.

 

Contact the writer: trevor.rcns@gmail.com

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Trevor Montgomery spent 10 years in the U.S. Army as an Orthopedic Specialist before joining the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department in 1998. He was medically retired after losing his leg in an off-duty accident.

During his time with the sheriff’s department, Trevor worked at several different stations, including the Robert Presley Detention Center, the Southwest Station in Temecula, the Hemet Station, and the Lake Elsinore Station, along with many other locations.

Trevor’s assignments included Corrections, Patrol, DUI Enforcement, Boat and Personal Water-Craft based Lake Patrol, Off-Road Vehicle Enforcement, Problem Oriented Policing Team, Personnel and Background Investigations and he finished his career while working as a Sex Crimes and Child Abuse Investigator.

Trevor has been married for more than 26 years and was a foster parent to more than 60 children over 13 years. He is now an adoptive parent and has 13 children and 12 – soon to be 13 – grandchildren.

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