Fresno Police Department
Fresno Police Department’s K9 Unit
The K9 Unit was established in 1993 and originally consisted of 8 officers and their newly selected K9 partners. Today, the team consists of 14 officers and K9s, a number that allows the team to provide it’s much needed 24/7 coverage to the City of Fresno. Thirteen of the K9s are patrol certified and 1 K9 is a narcotic detection only K9. Each of the patrol K9s are trained to meet specific patrol needs, including tracking, evidence location, officer protection and suspect apprehension. Seven of the 13 K9 teams are cross trained in narcotics detection while another 3 K9 teams are cross trained in explosive detection.
K9 Officers in our Department are not assigned to a specific Patrol District or beat. This is done in order to ensure the availability of their specialized resource. The K9 officers are utilized every day, assisting patrol and other Department specialized units with warrant arrests, crimes in progress, building searches, suspect tracking, evidence location, high-risk vehicle stops and narcotic searches. In 2013, members of the Unit were directly involved in the arrest of 489 suspects (through tracking, placating, etc), responded to 1,086 alarm calls, performed 94 article searches and located 10 firearms used in crimes.
In 2013, the K9 Unit certified 6 of our dogs in narcotic detection. The K9s were trained to detect the odors of methamphetamine, cocaine, opium, heroin and marijuana. Since their certification, the narcotic K9s have been requested to conduct 149 searches.
Response to K9 requests for patrol service is our top priority, however members of the team do find the time to attending K9 demonstrations and community “meet and greets”. The Unit has tremendous community support and contributes this to our willingness to interact with the public. On a near weekly basis, members of the Unit have found themselves talking to a wide variety of community members in all types of venues including school children in Kindergarten to career fairs on Fresno State University’s campus, service clubs, Farmer’s Market and the Big Fresno Fair.
To augment training with new challenges throughout the year, members of the unit are encouraged to participate in regional K9 trials. Performing in front of crowds and allied agency peers truly challenges the Officer to step up and put their best foot forward. Most Officers participate in one to two trials each year. In 2013, members of the Unit participated in several trials, including the following:
- 28th Annual Sierra K9 Trials in Visalia
- "Top Dog" – Officer Tushnet & K9 Kubo
- Agitator's Choice Award – Officer Sturgeon & K9 Jack
- 2013 Kingsburg K9 Trials
- "Top Dog" – Officer Sturgeon & K9 Jack
- 1st Place, Open Division – Officer Young & K9 Flurk
- 1st Place, Novice Division – Officer Freer and K9 Cash
- "Top Team" – Officer Young/K9 Flurk & Officer
We, the officers of the Fresno Police Department’s K9 Unit truly enjoy the work we do. We view this assignment as the privilege it really is…never taking it or our K9 partners for granted.
“My goal in life is to be as good of a person my dog already thinks I am.”
Contact K-9 Unit