K-9 Unit Teams
Each team remains active within the City of La Porte and also provides their services for outside law enforcement agencies upon request. The teams are composed of:
- 1st team: Patrol Officer Barry Groaning and German Shepherd "Huligan”
- 2nd team: Patrol Officer Michael Harness and Belgian Malinois "Sylvester".
Since the 2009 start of La Porte Police Department’s (LPPD) K-9 program, the K-9 teams have remained quite active. Narcotic-related arrests and other patrol assistance endeavors have led the division to become an invaluable resource for the agency. In order to keep their skills honed, LPPD K-9 teams train regularly and attend the National Narcotic Detector Dog Association (NNDDA)’s conference each year. This year’s NNDDA conference was held in Amarillo, Texas.
The NNDDA conference culminates in various practical narcotic dog competitions. More than 90 K-9 team from around the country participated in this year’s competition. As in previous years, a wide range of training and skills competitions were evaluated for each K-9 team, when the event was concluded, LPPD’s K-9 Teams proved themselves to be a force to be reckoned with for yet another year.
Among the 90 teams, La Porte Officer Barry Groaning and canine partner “Huligan”, placed 2nd overall. La Porte Officer Michael Harness and canine partner “Sylvester” took 8th overall giving LPPD two top ten finishes. Huligan was awarded the Bark, Bandit, Trooper for single best score of all K-9s over five years old. Finally, the LPPD received the first place, Top Team Award for the highest scoring pair of K-9 Teams from a single agency.
Each canine possesses individual certifications which enable the unit to perform various duties related to detecting narcotic odors, tracking suspects, and locating missing persons.