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UNR Police Mourn Loss of Former Explosive Detection Canine


UNR Police Officer Thomas Emmons with Turner and another unnamed officer.
UNR Police Officer Thomas Emmons with Turner and another unnamed officer. Photo: UNR

Turner, a 13-year-old former explosive detection canine who served the community for 9 years, has passed away, University of Nevada, Reno police announced Thursday.

The Labrador Retriever was acquired through the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and worked with UNR police officer Thomas Emmons. Together, the officer and the canine completed training and were certified as an Explosive Detection Canine team.

Tasks for Turner, who served from 2006 to 2015, included precautionary sweeps for dignitaries, major events, suspicious circumstances, post blast investigations, evidentiary searches of crime scenes, preemptive searches of threatened areas, and attending community events and demonstrations.

Emmons and Turner also attended a variety of events as part of ATF, including the 2011 Super Bowl, NASCAR races, the Democratic National Convention, Olympic Trials, and search warrant services, according to UNR.

“Turner’s value extended far beyond his natural gifts and productivity,” Emmons said in a statement. “He mentored his handler in our shared craft. The lessons he taught continue to teach today. He provided an example of what a solid explosive detection canine can do for his community and nation. He provided comfort and calm in our home, to co-workers, and members of our community. Though not threatening, he provided reassurance by way of a presence that was always ready to provide.”

Turner passed away at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday. In honor of his service, members of the University Police Department are draping their badges in black.

According to www.pedigree.com, a Labrador Retriever who’s lived for 13 years is the equivalent of 96 years old.

UNR has two K-9 officers still on the police force, Bonnie and Harley.

Carla O'Day
Carla O'Day
Carla has an undergraduate degree in journalism and more than 10 years experience as a daily newspaper reporter. She grew up in Jacksonville, Fla., moved to the Reno area in 2002 and wrote for the Reno Gazette-Journal for 8 years, covering a variety of topics. Prior to that, she covered local government in Fort Pierce, Fla.




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