Military Police


Military Police contains information about military police functions in maneuver and mobility support, area security, law and order, internment/resettlement, and police intelligence operations.

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51 Spring 2016 By Sergeant Jajuan X. Burton O ne of the least-discussed subjects in the military and the United States is the loss of our unsung hero, the military working dog (MWD). MWDs do not work for a paycheck, and they do not receive retirement benefts. They simply work for the love and affection of their han- dlers. The military has used canines for more than 70 years. MWDs received their frst call to action during World War II, after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The Unit- ed States partnered with an organization called Dogs for De- fense. This group of professional breeders helped the Army train the frst war dogs, which were known as sentry dogs. The dogs were then sent to prove their worth in North Africa, where commanding offcer General F. S. Gage reported that, because the base was practically blacked out at night, hav- ing a sentry dog team was like having two sentry Soldiers on guard. 1 In 1969, the Sentry Dog Program became the Military Working Dog Program. The U.S. Air Force is responsible for the initial training of MWDs for all military branches and U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U. S. Department of Homeland Security. Training for MWDs is conducted at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. The pre- ferred MWD breeds are the German shepherd and the Bel- gian Malinois. However, the military boasts a wide range of MWDs, including Labrador retrievers, boxers, Doberman pinschers, and rottweilers. MWDs have also flled a vital role in Afghanistan and Iraq by detecting improvised explosive devices, locating large caches of weapons, and tracking enemy insurgents. To slow down the use of marijuana in Southeast Asia, the military began to use drug detector dogs to sniff out the drug in 1971. The training for these dogs has evolved over time, and they are now also capable of detecting harder drugs, such as cocaine and heroin. MWD Pitt was a dual-purpose service dog, certifed to perform narcot- ics detection and law enforcement patrol duties. As a pa- trol dog, MWD Pitt provided the capability to help appre- hend a person, perform handler defense, increase security for restricted areas, and protect government prop- erty. On 22 September 2015, Fort Bliss lost one of its fnest guardians to a battle with cancer. MWD Pitt was one of the best MWDs that the handlers on Fort Bliss had ever encountered. His most shining moment came perhaps just 1 week after his arrival. MWD Pitt was a master of his craft, and he passed a force command certifcation just 3 days af- ter being teamed with his handler. When asked about MWD Pitt, his handler stated, "When I met Pitt, I could immedi- ately tell he was a dog that worked solely for the handler rather than reward. He showed that man's best friend was more than companionship. The ability to build rapport was the easiest thing to do because of his dedication to work for his handler." The last handler to certify on MWD Pitt had this to say about his fellow guardian: "I had no confdence in myself as a handler before I teamed with Pitt. The frst time I pulled him to train, I went to the obedience yard and did everything off leash, and to the standard; so I knew at this point, I had found my dog and he was very special." MWD Pitt logged countless hours and even deployed to Kosovo as a patrol drug detection dog. The consensus within the 513th Military Police Detachment was that MWD Pitt was a handler trainer who worked until the day he died doing what he loved to do. Upon hearing the news of his death, the handlers were heartbroken. It was obvious how much MWD Pitt meant to the kennel personnel at Fort Bliss. For a time, he was unbeatable and nothing passed him undetected. He was caring, and he was the best dog that a handler could ever hope for. MWD Pitt is, and always will be, a true guardian. Endnote: 1 Tracy L. English, The Quiet A History of Mili- tary Working Dogs, Offce of History, 37th Training Wing, Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, 15 December 2000, , accessed on 10 February 2016. Air Force Manual 125-6, USAF Sentry Dog Manual, 15 May 1956. Army Regulation 190-12, Military Working Dogs, 11 March 2013. Sergeant Burton is a specialized search dog handler for the 513th Military Police 93d Military Police Battal- ion, Fort Bliss, Texas. He holds a bachelor's degree in

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