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Norwalk Police Debut Newest Canine Officers

NORWALK, Conn. – Norwalk's newest police officer found drugs in a car trunk Tuesday, his first day on the job. On Wednesday morning, he performed another trick, facing paparazzi with poise and confidence.

Kai, a 16-month-old German shepard , is one of two new canine officers joining the Norwalk Police Department. Both he and Kimbo, also a 16-month-old German shepard, just completed 400 hours of training and are certified through the North American Police Work Dog Association and the Connecticut Police Work Dog Association.

The dogs were bred in the Czech Republic and cost the department $6,000 each. Training might have cost $13,000 for each dog but was done in-house, Chief Harry Rilling said. Their purchase means the department now has five canine officers.

Kai is handled by Officer Richard Montanez, while Officer Garrett Kruger is paired with Kimbo.

Kruger stepped down in rank from detective to patrolman to become Kimbo's partner.

“Since he came onto the department, one of his greatest desires was to become part of the canine unit,” Rilling said. “When he saw the opportunity coming, he put his name in for it and said that he would be willing to go back to the rank of patrolman in order to get a canine. When you have somebody who is that dedicated to the cause, it’s something that you automatically do because then you know that the person is going to do a great job. Officer Kruger was a great detective; he was also a great patrol officer.”

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