SYKESVILLE,Md. (WJZ) —  Six new Maryland state troopers joined the force Friday.  They graduated from a state police academy where they were tested.

As Mike Schuh reports, all of their answers were non-verbal.

In high-stress situations, patrol officers and special ops teams alike welcome the special skills and training which roll up at a scene in state police trucks.

Senior Trooper Derrick Bernard carries two troopers in the back of his SUV. Those troopers are dogs!

At the Maryland State Police Academy in Sykesville, Bernard trains K-9s and their handlers.   

“And then you have to get the dog to do what they actually have to do,” said Bernard.

Six new handlers and six new bomb, drug and patrol dogs graduated Friday.

How do they get this far?

“Repetition, repetition, repetition,” said Bernard.

After 10-16 weeks, it worked. No one washed out.

The superintendent showed up to welcome the new troopers, and then they were sent off to work.

“Feeling of freedom, of you’ve made it, because we tell the handlers that you’re not guaranteed to make through this course.  If you or the dog doesn’t make it, the team doesn’t make it,” said Bernard.

In addition to the four state police dogs, Prince George’s and Baltimore County had dogs and handlers who graduated Friday.


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