Pa­trol’s go­ing to the dogs Rambo is Lim­er­ick Town­ship’s new­est K-9 po­lice of­fi­cer is a Bel­gian Mali­nois

The Phoenix - - FRONT PAGE - By Evan Brandt ebrandt@21st-cen­tu­ry­media.com @PottstownNews on Twit­ter

LIIMERICK >> In this po­lice depart­ment, they start them out young.

The lat­est ad­di­tion to the ros­ter is just over 2 years old and he’s an im­mi­grant to boot.

His name is Rambo, he is a Bel­gian Mali­nois and he is Lim­er­ick’s new­est K-9 of­fi­cer, and al­though he is now a law en­force­ment of­fi­cer in the good old U.S. of A., he only speaks Ger­man or Dutch.

Rambo was born in Ger­many and moved to the United States when he was a lit­tle over a year old and was nearly fin­ished with train­ing to work for the FBI, when they hit a lit­tle snag.

For per­fectly un­der­stand­able rea­sons, Rambo does not like to jump out of he­li­copters.

“The FBI had him for about two months and the only is­sue he had is he doesn’t like jump­ing out of he­li­copters,” his han­dler Of­fi­cer Chris Weinczek said.

“I fig­ured Lim­er­ick Town­ship is not buy­ing a he­li­copter any time soon,” Po­lice Chief Brian Skel­ton joked when Rambo was in­tro­duced to the town­ship su­per­vi­sors for the first time at the Sept. 18 meet­ing. “So I sent Chris to Vir­ginia and we grabbed him quick.”

Skel­ton said they even beat the state po­lice to the punch, who were also in­ter­ested in ac­quir­ing Rambo.

“Part of their train­ing is his han­dler is sup­posed to be able to rap­pel from a he­li­copter with him strapped to the front. He didn’t like be­ing picked up by some­body else, so when they picked him up he started punch­ing them in the face with his muz­zle. So they said they didn’t want that. It’s some­thing they could have trained out of him, but the FBI has an end­less amount of money, so they just said we’ll get an­other dog,” Weinczek

said. “So we got him.”

“He’s been great, his de­tec­tion work in train­ing is un­be­liev­able. His ap­pre­hen­sion work in train­ing is un­be­liev­able. And his track­ing is great, so I can’t wait to put him to the test in real life,” Weinczek said.

“We got lucky,” Skel­ton said. “The FBI is al­ways look­ing for the best dogs.”

Rambo has been work­ing on the road for a few weeks now with Wienczek. The two spent eight weeks train­ing to­gether at the Pro­gres­sive K9 Train­ing Academy in Al­len­town and com­pleted train­ing in June. Rambo is trained in nar­cotics de­tec­tion and pa­trol.

“He is a work dog only and is not ap­proach­able by the pub­lic, Wienczek warned. “His pri­mary func­tion is to pro­tect me and he’ll do that at all costs, whether we’re stand­ing here or we’re in the car.”

“You have to give credit to these of­fi­cers. This is a 24/7 re­spon­si­bil­ity and those dogs home with them when the shift is over,” Skel­ton said.

The depart­ment has one other ca­nine of­fi­cer named Flynn.

“Flynn will let me pet him. I can’t do that with Rambo yet,” Skel­ton said.

PHOTO FROM LIM­ER­ICK PO­LICE FACE­BOOK PAGE

Lim­er­ick’s new­est K-9 of­fi­cer Rambo with his han­dler, of­fi­cer Chris Chris Wienczek. (Photo from Lim­er­ick Po­lice Face­book Page)

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