Police K-9 Interview | Part 1

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Many thanks to Lieutenant Eddie Rodrigue, III for taking his time to answer questions about K-9 Handlers and their partners. Join Chief Scott Silverii for more from Eddie Rodrigue.

Thanks again Eddie. Lets start with an introduction?

I’m currently a Lieutenant for the Thibodaux Police Department. I supervise the K-9 Unit and Problem Oriented Policing Unit. I’m also assigned to the Lafourche Parish Interagency Crises Management Unit (SWAT). I’m currently a National Certifying Official for the National Narcotics Detection Dog Association in the areas of Patrol, Narcotics, Cadaver, and Explosives.

I’m married with three sons. I have been teaching them how to care and work with dogs.

 

You sure have your hands full, and I know family life is most important to you. How long have you been in policing?

I am on my sixteenth year in Law Enforcement.

 

That’s a long time and long enough to find your passion in the profession. How long have you been involved in training dogs?

I had a unique opportunity growing up. My farther is a K-9 Trainer and Nationally recognized also and supervised the Lafourche Parish Sheriff Office K-9 Unit before he retired. He began to teach me how to train dogs at a very early age. I was able to work my first narcotics dog at the age of twelve, so at this time I have approximately twenty-three years of training and handling experience.

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You’ve grown up in the job – when did you did begin your professional career as a K9 handler?

I was given a unique opportunity by Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre and hired to work Police K-9’s. The day I started my career in Law Enforcement I began a twelve week K-9 Academy. I have had a K-9 attached to me since then for a total of sixteen years.

 

What ignited your passion for the K-9 assignments?

These are some of reasons why I had a childhood infatuation with K-9. At the age of ten years old I was with my dad one night. He got a call out about a biker that had gotten into an accident. The call was to search for the biker’s leg. People had been searching most of the day and had not been able to recover the leg. Jason was our cadaver dog. I went on the call to Fouchon with my dad. My dad started the search at night, in a thunder storm. Not long after the search was in progress, there was a lighting strike. With the light I could see Jason coming out of the marsh with a leg in his mouth.

Then when I was twelve my dad started training me how to train police service dogs. We started with a narcotics dog, Topper. For the next few years I learned, all other aspects of working and training with my dad’s guidance and Topper’s help.

When I was sixteen, someone broke into a house in Larose and stole the family’s Christmas presents, on Christmas day. I went on this track with my dad. We were able to recover all of the presents and return them to the family, for the children.

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I could not put into words the gratifications I felt when I say the smiles on those children’s faces, when we returned the presents. From that moment on I always wanted to be a K-9 Officer and was truly amazed with what a properly trained K-9 could accomplish.

When I was about sixteen I shared by bed room with a K-9 Officer Jay {Packey} Dempsey from Selma, Al., which had come to train with my Dad. Shortly after Packey went home he was involved in a nationally known incident, where his K-9 Princes saved his life.

Packey had responded to a complaint in a high crime area and got into an altercation with a suspect. During the altercation the suspect was able to take Packey’s pistol. The suspect then stood over Packey and pointed the pistol at him. Packey then begged for his life and was able to utilize his bail out. Packy’s K-9 Princes then exited the unit and engaged the suspect.

The suspect struck K-9 Princes in the head causing her to have a fractured skull. K-9 Princes never stopped the fight and was able to allow Packey to retrieve his back up weapon. Packey then neutralized the situation. After watching this video I knew there is something truly amazing once you bond with a K-9.

Police K-9 Interview | Part 1

BOLO for Part 2

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