By DARA LEVY
Members of the Ithaca community can expect to see a new furry friend at City events in coming months, according to the Ithaca Police Department, which announced Thursday that it will re-establish its K-9 program.
The department will choose the dog in March, according to an IPD press release.
Officer Pat Kimmich will undergo a training program with the dog where they will learn “basic dog obedience, tracking, suspect apprehension,” and other applicable skills, according to an IPD press release. Later this year, the dog and officer will become certified in explosive detection.
The K-9 team will attend Ithaca community events that draw large crowds, and will be responsible for “building searches, suspect apprehension, explosive detection and searches for missing persons,” the release said.
“This is another avenue that will help build stronger police-community relations,” IPD Chief of Police John Barber said in the press release.
Private donations and a grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security are providing the program’s initial start-up costs, according to the press release.