The New York State Police conducted graduation exercises Tuesday for its 2012 Basic Canine Handler School. The ceremony was held at the State Police Academy in Albany. The 12 graduates include members from the New York State Police, Albany County Sheriff’s Department, Otsego County Sheriff’s Department and the Schenectady Police Department.
“Canines and their handlers play an important role in public safety,” said New York State Police Superintendent Joseph D’Amico. “Together they have proven to be an extremely successful law enforcement tool.”
The graduation is the culmination of 20 weeks of training at the Division Canine Training Facility located in Cooperstown, New York. During the training, the students and their respective partners received instruction in the following aspects of training: Basic obedience/agility, handler protection, building searches, explosive or narcotic detection, tracking for fugitives/lost or missing persons, basic veterinary care and land navigation/grid searches.
Superintendent D’Amico said, “The graduates have completed demanding training that will give them the skills they need to find missing persons, detect bombs and locate drugs. I commend them for their hard work and dedication to the safety of all New Yorkers.”
The current strength of the State Police Canine Unit is 74 teams including those who graduated today. The new State Police Canine handlers will be stationed in Troops D, E, F, G and K and are named after Troopers who died in the line of duty.
Among the graduates are K-9 Mandin named after and in memory of Trooper Amanda Anna who was killed in the line of duty in a motor vehicle accident May 25, 2012 in the town of Hastings.
K-9 George is named after and in memory of retired State Police Colonel and former Albany County Sheriff, George Infante.
The following is a list of the graduating handlers and canines:
1. Officer Eric Reyell, Schenectady Police Department
K-9 Quin Namesake: Frank A. Quinlivan
2. Deputy Keith A. Sheldon, Otsego County Sheriffs Office
K-9 Ricky Namesake: Ret. Deputy Rick Yerdon
3. Deputy Patrick Strollo, Albany County Sheriff's Office
K-9 George Namesake: George Infante
4. Trooper Mark A. Bender, SP North Syracuse
K-9 Mandin Namesake: Trooper Amanda Anna
5. Trooper Shaun R. Smith, SP Fulton
K-9 Doyle Namesake: Trooper William G Doyle
6. Trooper Thomas E. Smoulcey Jr., SP Marcy
K-9 Jake Namesake: Joseph R. Fitzpatrick
7. Trooper Brandon M. Salyerds, SP Horseheads
K-9 Dobbs Namesake: Theodore Dobbs
8. Trooper Eric VanBramer, SP Catskill/Coxsackie
K-9 Ryder Namesake: Richard Snyder
9. Trooper Patrick A. Darling, SP Latham
K-9 Ceer Namesake: Charles Perkins Sr.
10. Trooper Christopher D. White, SP Capital
K-9 Renzo Namesake: Andrew J. Lawerence
11. Trooper Eric T. Buchinsky, SP Livingston
K-9 Cahill Namesake: John J Cahill
12. Trooper Jonathan P. Brody, SP Cortlandt
K-9 Conrad Namesake: James Conrad