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HomeMy WebLinkAbout0033 - CANINE POLICYRed Wing Police Department Policy SUBJECT: POLICY NUMBER • K-9 UNIT 33 EFFECTIVE DATE May 23, 2008 REFERENCE(S): APPROVED BY: CHIEF ROGER D. POHLMAN PURPOSE: Police canine teams are legitimate tools in law enforcement. The canine team is a valuable law enforcement aid to criminal apprehension, evidence detection, crowd control and to promote public relations. It is the purpose of this policy to identify responsibilities and establish rules and regulations in conjunction with the staffing, maintaining and use of police canine teams within the Red Wing Police Department. POLICY: The City of Red Wing Police Department authorizes the use of police canine teams in making or maintaining an arrest when the immediate incident circumstances, and the facts known to the officer, justify it. Canine Officers must bear in mind that the use of police dogs may constitute the use of force, or an implied threat of force. It is imperative that the police dog handler be fully cognizant of all the facts and circumstances surrounding a given situation, before a dog is deployed for use. The canine officer must bear in mind that in each situation where the assistance of the police team is requested, unless they are relieved of the responsibility by a superior officer, they are responsible for making the decision to utilize the police dog. They shall be accountable for such action under Minnesota State Statute and the Red Wing Police Department Policies. 1. USE OF CANINE: Canines are used in the field primarily for the purposes of officer protection, tracking, searching, apprehension of suspects, and public relations. All department members must keep in mind that the use of a police dog in an arrest constitutes the use of force or an implied threat of force. Before the canine team is used, the police dog handler must be fully cognizant of facts and circumstances surrounding the situation. Probable cause for use of K-9 as a reasonable necessity will be determined by applying the following objective reasonableness test: Page 1 of 4 K-9 UNIT -POLICY 33 • Does the suspect pose an immediate threat to the safety of officers or others? • Is the suspect actively resisting or attempting to evade arrest by flight? • Does the severity of the crime, or reason for arrest, warrant the use of the K-9? The police dog handler must be constantly alert to the fact that a police officer may only use that amount of force that is reasonable to make or maintain an arrest. When determining the degree of force to be used, the officer should take into consideration all information known at the time. In all cases, the handler must reasonably believe that there are no innocent persons within the search area. The canine handler must give a verbal warning before entering a building and on each successive floor to search, unless by giving the warning the handler would give up a tactical advantage and place the handler or others in greater danger. Further, all K-9 handlers are trained to recall their K -9's in the event the suspect gives up prior to being located. It is the intent of the Red Wing Police Department to take all reasonable steps to protect innocent persons from potential injury, minimize the risk of injury to officers and ensure that only reasonable force is used in the apprehension of suspects. The police dog handler is responsible for making the decision to utilize the police dog and shall be accountable for the decision. The police dog shall be kept under the handler's control at all times. 2. CROWD CONTROL, RIOT OR IMMINENT RIOT SITUATIONS: It is the policy of this department not to use canine teams for crowd control at lawful and peaceful demonstrations. Use at riotous scenes shall be at the direction of the Chief of Police or their designee. 3. SUPERVISION: Canine teams shall be under the primary supervision of the Chief of Police or their designee. Canine teams shall be under the immediate supervision of their respective shift supervisors. Supervisors shall consult with dog handlers prior to directing the tactical use of the team. 4. USE OF CANINE FOR APPREHENSION: The use of canine teams to physically apprehend a fleeing or resisting suspect is a use of force. Such force must be reasonable and based upon the totality of the circumstances known to the officer at the time. The use of canine teams for the physical apprehension of a suspect may be appropriate for a misdemeanor through felony suspect who is believed to be armed or who otherwise poses an immediate danger to officers or others. Page 2 of 4 K-9 UNIT -POLICY 33 When a suspect is no longer actively resisting an arrest or actively attempting to evade arrest, the handler shall immediately command the dog to release the hold or disengage from pursuing the suspect. The canine shall not be used to apprehend persons who are merely running from the police, when no other articulable facts exist that indicate that the person is committing or has committed a crime. Canines may be used in the appropriate manner as a physical force for the protection of officers or others when their safety is immediately threatened. 5. USE OF CANINE AND ASSISTING OTHER OFFICERS IN THE CITY OF RED \/VINr,- Officers requesting assistance shall make the request, by radio, to the shift supervisor or senior officer if there is no supervisor on duty, indicating what the intended use will be. The officer making the request shall meet the canine handler at the scene and be available to brief the handler of the circumstances of the event upon their arrival. The officer making the request shall secure the scene to prevent contamination and make sure no innocent bystanders are present. Officers shall position themselves in such a manner as to control access to the area, the scene, the building and to provide assistance to the canine handler. 6. USE OF CANINE TEAM OUTSIDE OF THE CITY OF RED WING AND MUTUAL When a request is received for use of the canine team, outside of the City of Red Wing, the canine handler will review the facts surrounding the use and determine if the situation is appropriate for the canine service. In most cases this will require a direct conversation with the requesting agency or officer. If the canine handler determines that the use is appropriate, approval to respond must be granted through the shift supervisor or senior officer if there is no shift supervisor on duty. The shift supervisor, or senior officer, shall determine whether the team should respond after consulting with the handler to see if the team can be of value and determining if the canine officer can leave the city based on shift levels and calls for service. Red Wing Police Department canine teams used outside of the city will follow the guidelines outlined in this policy. Canine mutual aid shall only be accepted and used after the shift supervisor confirms that the team from the other agency will be used consistent with or more restrictive than this policy. 7. REPORTING: The handler shall immediately report all dog bites, regardless of where or how they occur, or how minor they appear, to the shift supervisor or senior officer if there is not a shift supervisor on duty. The shift supervisor or senior officer shall Page 3 of 4 K-9 UNIT -POLICY 33 be responsible for making sure a report is submitted to the Captain and the Chief of Police before the end of their shift, based on a complete and thorough investigation of the incident. Such report shall include a written statement by the handler, officers involved, victim (s), all witnesses and photographs of the injury (injuries). Medical release of information forms shall also be included if there are injuries to suspects or innocent parties if subjects are treated at a hospital. 8. INJURIES RELATED TO CANINE USE: In the event of an injury to persons resulting from the use of the canine, the handler and officers involved shall determine the physical condition of the injury and render the appropriate first aid. Photographs shall be taken of all bites and included in the above report. 9. TRAINING: Each handler and their respective K-9 shall receive their PD -1 rating from U.S.P.C.A. as soon as practical after they begin working the street. It shall be the goal of each canine handler to have their K-9 annually certified and receive a PD- 1 rating from U.S.P.C.A. Those dogs that fail to certify as required will have their working status evaluated by department administration and the K-9 handler. Canine Teams within the canine unit of the Red Wing Police Department shall be reasonably required to attend and participate in regional seminars and trials held by the United States Police Canine Association. At the discretion of the department administration, the canine teams may be allowed to attend national seminars and trials sponsored by the U.S.P.C.A. 10. CANINE TEAM DISPOSITION: Whenever a canine handler is transferred or otherwise leaves the canine unit, the dog assigned to the handler shall remain the property of the Red Wing Police Department. The decision as to serviceability of any dog in the canine unit shall be determined by the Chief of Police or their designee. The decision as to whether the canine handler can keep the dog shall be made by the handler, or the Red Wing Police Department, City of Red Wing and City Attorney. Page 4 of 4 K-9 UNIT -POLICY 33