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RVIPF invests $150k in new K9 unit

-can detect drugs, guns, explosives
One of the new K9 ranks demonstrates their crime fighting abilities. Photo: Team of Reporters
Riddick, Bosco, and Pattie are the three new four-legged K9 Officers of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force. Photo: Team of Reporters
Riddick, Bosco, and Pattie are the three new four-legged K9 Officers of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force. Photo: Team of Reporters
A demonstration of the detection skills in the new K9 unit. Photo: Team of Reporters
A demonstration of the detection skills in the new K9 unit. Photo: Team of Reporters
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI - Riddick, Bosco, and Pattie are the three new four-legged K9 Officers of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force (RVIPF).

The trio are specially equipped with the requisite crime fighting skills, in the hope that the force will crack down particularly on drugs and firearm related criminal activities in the Territory; having expended close to $150,000. 

Disbanded in 2015, the RVIPF’s new Canine unit officially re-commissioned yesterday, November 28, 2018, at the Force’s Road Town, Police Station.

Present for the simple ceremony and to present certificates to the handlers was Governor of the Virgin Islands (VI), His Excellency, Augustus J. U. Jaspert and Commissioner of Police, Mr Michael B. Matthews.

Drug Detection

Riddick, Bosco, and Pattie are trained to detect drugs and firearm. Patty, however, also has the special ability of detecting explosives.

“What’s good is that we know that we have a programme to ensure that training is kept alive both for the dogs for the officers as well,” Governor Jaspert remarked, as he spoke to the international training received by three RVIPF Officers and dogs.

“This is an investment that isn’t just a one off investment, it is an investment that is going to keep on giving and keep on building as we go forward in our security plans here.”

He said, the unit’s establishment is part of the Territory’s security plan to improve, “border security, increase our security in the Territory, improve joint operations across agencies and I am pleased to hear from the Commissioner and others that these dogs also work alongside Customs and Immigrations, in joint operations, whether that’s at the airport or the ports.”


The estimated $150,000 includes the costs of two brand new vehicles donated to the unit by Legacy Auto, the branding and outfitting of the vehicles, overseas training of the three police officers, the construction and outfitting the kennels and other essentials for the unit.

Commissioner Matthews in his remarks to those gathered for the auspicious occasion observed that, having canine capabilities are nothing new to the RVIPF but this was lost in 2015.

Yesterday’s commissioning of the department, as such, was a re-launch, having acquired new dogs.

The three new dogs to serve in the RVIPF’s K9 unit arrived in the territory about four months and according to Mr Mathews, “they have been doing a lot of activities before we reach this official launch stage in terms of the capture of illicit drugs and firearm.”

Speaking to the future operations of the unit, the Commissioner used the occasion to also disclose, “e are hoping that the dogs will be trained further so they go beyond just drugs and firearm. We are looking now at training them for the scent of money because we know that there has been a lot of cash flow in and out the territory.               ”

Training is ongoing for the local officers, two and four legs, by K-9 On Patrol Security (KOPS)of Florida USA, headed Mr Paris Nicholson III, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.


5 Responses to “RVIPF invests $150k in new K9 unit ”

  • 123 (29/11/2018, 10:22) Like (10) Dislike (0) Reply
    good stuff
  • Music (29/11/2018, 10:30) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    Why was it disbanded in 2015 and what happened to the dogs? Were the handlers reassigned?
  • wize up (29/11/2018, 10:40) Like (9) Dislike (1) Reply
    hope border patrols will given a chance: try stopping the dope and guns from making it unto the streets....interception and prevent the crimes need funding as well
  • justice (29/11/2018, 19:01) Like (5) Dislike (0) Reply
    Come on doggies let's find the guns that were used to kill our brothers,sisters,fathers,uncles, aunts,mothers, friends etc.
  • Scent of money (02/12/2018, 20:10) Like (1) Dislike (0) Reply
    Good idea but if the dogs are trained to alert on the scent of money then they will *always* signal without probable cause.

    Thus allowing police to illegally search pockets bags cars and houses of who ever.

    Even without drugs or fire arms present.

    This makes the concept of obtaining a warrant unnecesary/void.

    All they have to do is walk the dog around the house and let it alert to money?

    Then the police are in an innocent persons house/car/backpack/purse invading their privacy and embarrassing them.

    What if that person knows they have nothing illegal and get mad at police because they think the dog is giving false signals, then they could face charges of indecent language, and resisting arrest.

    An otherwise innocent person may suffer just because this dog loves treats and the scent of money .

    Cars, house, pockets, purse.
    Those are all places where everyone keeps their money.

    Some body is playing smart and trying to have the ability to search anywhere without due process.

    Let the dog signal for guns and drugs leave the money out.

    Before we have officers at the ports reaching into the innocent peoples pockets for cash and CAR KEYS.

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