Cover

Police work is a number of things.  Routine, monotonous, exciting, dangerous. 

No day is the same.

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Since I’ve been assigned to the Dog Squad I get compliance from almost everyone I deal with.  Perhaps the ever watchful eyes of my four-legged partner have something to do with it as since 2005 it’s been “Yes, ma’am”, “No, ma’am”, “I understand, ma’am”.  Almost everyone is agreeable and easy to deal with. 

And then this past weekend it all went to hell in a hand-basket.

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A fellow K9 officer, who happens to be one of the toughest guys I know, was conducting an arrest of a very violent individual.  I had finished gearing up and had just put PSD Hondo into the police car for night shift when I heard it.  A voice calling for cover over the radio.  It was my fellow K9 officer, yelling for help.

This from a guy who almost never calls for assistance. From the tone in his voice I knew it was bad.  Very bad.

I think I broke a land speed record getting there (my apologies to the motorist at E 1st and Clark Dr – I did see you, even though I suspect you did not see me and this accounted for your surprised reaction at my rapid approach) and was the fourth or fifth unit to arrive.  By then the suspect was in custody, but my fellow K9 officer was in rough shape. 

His face was ashen and he was on his knees.  His dog was beside him, both of them utterly spent.  The other dog handlers and I went into ‘team mode’ and looked after him and his dog, ensuring they both got the help they needed in the following hours. 

The rest of the units at the scene were awesome, and it is during times like these I’m very proud of the officers I work with.

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Two hours after midnight I covered another unit at a domestic call.  Circumstances were such that PSD Hondo was left in my vehicle.  It wasn’t a ‘routine’ call (thinking ANY call is routine is a sure way to get yourself hurt), and tensions were high. 

And then, for the second time in one shift, a K9 officer called for Code Three cover. 

That officer was me.  Even though there were four of us at the call, we desperately needed reinforcements. 

I can’t go into specifics as the case is now before the courts, but I’ll tell you one thing – in the middle of the melee with my radio and only way to communicate with my dispatcher knocked loose, it was a relief to find a radio mike dangling in front of my face.  I had but a moment to snare it and hit the ’emergency’ button.  It sent an alarm to the dispatcher that all was not well at our call, and the troops came a’running.

God bless you guys.  Responding sirens are the best sound in the world.

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In the end, all of us had a few bumps and bruises, but we all went home to our families.  That’s the most important part.  Family.

It was clear on that night that I have two families.  The first is the one constructed of my husband, children and loved ones.

The second is that of my siblings in blue.

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