New MSP K-9s named for fallen troopers
PIKESVILLE — The Maryland State Police Special Operations Division K-9 Unit graduated five new dual purpose
K-9 teams at a ceremony Friday, Oct. 5, in Carroll County.
The ceremony took place at the Maryland State Police Academy in Sykesville. After
26 weeks of intense training, these animals are ready to help keep Maryland safe as they will serve as dual purpose K-9 teams that will be used for drug detection and patrol/utility work.
The class is made up of two current handlers, two new handlers from Maryland State Police and one patrol officer from the Easton Police Department. Of these five teams, three of the newly certified K-9s have been named in honor of one of the Maryland State Police’s
43 fallen heroes.
K-9 Plank, a German shepherd, is paired with Cpl. Dana Orndorff and was named in honor of Tfc. Edward Plank. Plank, 28, was killed on Oct. 17, 1995, when he was shot by a suspect after conducting a traffic stop on U.S. Route 13 in Princess Anne. K-9 Plank and Orndorff will be assigned to the Berlin Barracks.
K-9 Hunter, a Belgian malinois, is paired with Tfc. Shawn Brown and is named in honor of Tfc. Shaft Hunter. Hunter, 39, who also was a member of the K-9 Unit, was killed on May 21, 2011, when his patrol car collided with the back of a tractortrailer that was parked on the shoulder of I-95 in Howard County at about 2:40 a.m. It is believed that he was pursuing a speeding motorcycle when the collision occurred. K-9 Hunter and Brown will be assigned to the Westminster Barracks.
K-9 Wade, a German shepherd, is paired with Tfc. Kyle Morrison and is named in honor of Trooper Gary Wade. While taking enforcement action for a traffic violation on Jan. 30, 1982, Wade, 25, was hit and killed by a motorist who ran off the road, striking the police vehicle, the violator’s vehicle, the trooper and the violator. The incident occurred on the JFK Memorial Highway just outside Havre de Grace.
K-9 Wade and Morrison are assigned to the North East Barracks, the same barracks where Trooper Wade ser ved.
The other graduates include K-9 Drake, a German shepherd, and Master Trooper James Layton, who are assigned to the Cumberland Barracks. K-9 Kato is heading to the Easton Police Department with Pfc. Stephen Tindall.
The Maryland State Police K-9 unit has been in operation for nearly 60 years. Since 1961, K-9s have assisted law enforcement in drug detection, search and rescue missions, explosive detections and criminal apprehensions. The unit has
33 troopers and 41 K-9s.
K-9 Kato is heading to the Easton Police Department with Pfc. Stephen Tindall