OT - but working related - Civilian K9 detectors? - German Shepherd Dog Forums
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-03-2008, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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OT - but working related - Civilian K9 detectors?

Civilian Drug Detector Dogs? Anyone doing it?

I’ve heard rumors of individuals in states where permitted, obtaining certification to perform detection services as a private individual for schools, homes (parents wondering what’s going in kids bedrooms), businesses, etc. It seem most of these individuals fall under the licensing requirements for other private security and investigation services and frequently have to work under the “umbrella” of one of these firms.

I would assume business licensing, incorporation (or at least LLC), insurance and matters of leasing your dog to your business (so if business sued or bankrupt it cannot be seized) are all areas of concern.

So, anyone doing this? Pseudo scent is legal to purchase online and frankly, having watched some scent detection training, it doesn’t appear too hard.

I live in Virginia and the state is a little anal about it all. Security businesses are strictly regulated and licensing and insurance is EXPENSIVE. There is a ton of mandatory training as well – just to get out of the gate –meaning to deploy a uniformed, unarmed guard – thing escalate in complexity and expense rapidly from there. There are already standards in place for private patrol canine certification and licensing through the Dept. of Criminal Justice Services, Private Security Services section - and the DCJS-PSS has had mandate since 2003 to regulate detector dogs as well – although it appears they haven’t run with the ball at all and have done nothing to regulate or put forth standards.

Some have offered that such as service would be a waste as many LE departments offer such service free to their community schools, cutting out one huge source of revenue. On the other hand, private schools probably don’t get the local LE benefit and in either case (as I’ve read online) civilians aren’t required to arrest and simply report to the requestor of the search – nice for schools, businesses, etc that have the legal right to search without PC but still want to have option to handle infractions “in-house.”

Anyhow, I’m looking at trying to turn the dog training hobby into something more profitable. LE canine is a very closed community and hard to break into not having come from within (K9), even with an LE background – which in my case was so long ago (over 10 years) it doesn’t count either. I’m not into the SAR thing so much as the randomness of the call-outs are not compatible with my “day job” and herding is out of the question

Thanks for any input.

-Calvin
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2008, 07:23 AM
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Re: OT - but working related - Civilian K9 detectors?

From a legal standpoint, (hopefully D Frost will jump in), most departsments will not use civilians due to the chain of evidence issue.


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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2008, 09:48 AM
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Re: OT - but working related - Civilian K9 detectors?

The issue Sue mentioned is a big one in many areas. With defense lawyers having become experts and poking tiny little holes in cases and exploiting them, it can be a very big issue.

I know a couple people here in MI who do this and know a little about it, though not much. One thing I do know is that training with pseudo only is severely frowned upon. Ok for initial training, but the dogs must also train on the real thing. Again, it's a court issue. Pseudo only trained dogs often will not hold up in court. So they have obtained DEA licenses in order to possess real narcotics for training. No idea the process for doing that, and I'd imagine it varies from state to state. But from my understanding, being able to train with the real thing is imperative when it comes to the cases holding up in court.


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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2008, 07:36 PM
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Re: OT - but working related - Civilian K9 detectors?

Quote:
Originally Posted By: cledfordCivilian Drug Detector Dogs? Anyone doing it?

I’ve heard rumors of individuals in states where permitted, obtaining certification to perform detection services as a private individual for schools, homes (parents wondering what’s going in kids bedrooms), businesses, etc. It seem most of these individuals fall under the licensing requirements for other private security and investigation services and frequently have to work under the “umbrella” of one of these firms.

I would assume business licensing, incorporation (or at least LLC), insurance and matters of leasing your dog to your business (so if business sued or bankrupt it cannot be seized) are all areas of concern.

So, anyone doing this? Pseudo scent is legal to purchase online and frankly, having watched some scent detection training, it doesn’t appear too hard.

I live in Virginia and the state is a little anal about it all. Security businesses are strictly regulated and licensing and insurance is EXPENSIVE. There is a ton of mandatory training as well – just to get out of the gate –meaning to deploy a uniformed, unarmed guard – thing escalate in complexity and expense rapidly from there. There are already standards in place for private patrol canine certification and licensing through the Dept. of Criminal Justice Services, Private Security Services section - and the DCJS-PSS has had mandate since 2003 to regulate detector dogs as well – although it appears they haven’t run with the ball at all and

First of all psuedo is no alternative. I have seen dogs fail time and again when they come to me for certification when only trained on that. It is worthless except to the company making $$ selling it. That being said. There are many individuals in the private security industry contracting out with scent detector dogs. In most states you HAVE to be licensed to do this. There is a reason. There is a lot of work in maintaining the proficiency of the dogs and the handlers. Not only am I a police k9 handler,but I work private contracts for a private security company.Most private contractors are civilians,but they are licensed within the industry.
As far as scent detection training "not being too hard..I have been training police k9s,all fields ,for over 20years. It is not rocket science but I promise you, it is more complicated than it initially appears IF,IF the dog is proficient. As in all things, there is only one way to do this and that is the right way
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 11-04-2008, 10:39 PM
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Re: OT - but working related - Civilian K9 detectors?

There are a some civilians doing drug dog detector work. Most of them work for industry, private business and schools. In those instances there is a lessor expectation of privacy, therefore, search and seizure rules are not as applicable.

To contract work for law enforcement there is a different set of problems.

1. response time. It's often difficult for a civilian contractor to meet the response time that can be extremely critical.

2. Certification. Certification of those dogs must be consistent with what is considered "industry standard". That would include the recommended amount of proficiency training.

3. Documentation: There would need to be a comprehensive system of documentation of training and utilization including the success rate of a dog in actual situations.

civilians, if they are willing to jump through the hoops can obtain a DEA license and use actual drugs for training. Like most things involved with the government, there is a lot of red tape, but it can be done.

I'm on record in nearly every forum I post, seminar and training events I've attended, I disapprove of the use of pseudo drugs. To be fair though, to my knowledge, there is no case law that the use of pseudo was detrimental or had an adverse effect on a suppression hearing or trial. The primary reason I am against the use of pseudo is; it's not real. If it was you'd need a DEA license to possess it. I've also done enough testing over the years to show that a dog that is trained on psuedo, will not usually pick up a real drug without having first been exposed to it. A dog trained on real drugs will not respond to pseudo, without being exposed to it. So my question has always been; What's the point. To me it's like firing blanks at the range on qual day.

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