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Police sniffer dogs used to find missing people and dead bodies "urgently" need better training and monitoring, according to an official report.

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Police sniffer dogs used to find missing people and dead bodies "urgently" need better training and monitoring, according to an official report.

Post by Jill Havern on 03.09.18 10:28

Report: Sniffer Dogs Hindering Cop Probes

7:35am UK, Thursday March 24, 2011

Gerard Tubb, Sky News correspondent


Police sniffer dogs used to find missing people and dead bodies "urgently" need better training and monitoring, according to an official report.

Sniffer dog Eddie was relieved of his police duties after complicating investigations

The Government's National Policing Improvement Agency says specialist victim recovery dogs are not trained to approved standards, with no way of gauging their competence.

"There is no consistency in what the dogs can do and how it is done," the report states.

"Furthermore, there is no national standard for accrediting dogs and handlers or record keeping of the success rate they achieve."

The report says the dogs, which are trained to detect the smell of dead bodies, have "the potential to cause complications in an enquiry."

There is an urgent need to have national policy on (police sniffer dogs') training, accreditation and deployment.

National Policing Improvement Agency report
"There is an urgent need to have national policy on their training, accreditation and deployment," it concludes.

One kidnap investigation is highlighted in the report where dogs tied up valuable police time by detecting human remains in old furniture that had been bought from houses where the owner had died.

The use of victim recovery, or cadaver dogs, has proved to be controversial in a number of high-profile cases in recent years.

A South Yorkshire Police spaniel called Eddie was said to have sniffed out the "scent of death" at the Haut de la Garenne children's home in Jersey and the apartment from which Madeleine McCann disappeared in Portugal.

But in both cases nothing more was found and South Yorkshire Police say Eddie is no longer working with them.

Sniffer dogs hindered the police probe into Shannon Matthew's disappearance

The NPIA reviewed the use of the specialist sniffer dogs two years ago, but its report has only now surfaced following a request by Sky News.

Victim recovery dogs from four different police forces were used during searches for kidnapped schoolgirl Shannon Matthews in Dewsbury in West Yorkshire in 2008.

The dogs found evidence of dead bodies, but officers later discovered the corpses were nothing to do with her disappearance.

"The properties searched contained a high level of second-hand furniture bought from dwellings where someone had died," according to the NPIA report.

"This resulted in numerous indications that required further investigation to confirm whether they were connected to the investigation, or to previous owners of the furniture."

The Association of Chief Police Officers told Sky News it was consulting individual police forces and hoped to have national training standards for the dogs later this year.

Article whooshed but saved http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/UK-News/Sniffer-Dogs-Report-Says-No-Approved-Standards-For-Police-Dogs-Which-Are-Complicating-Some-Probes/Article/201103415959107?lpos=UK_News_Carousel_Region_3&lid=ARTICLE_15959107_Sniffer_Dogs%3A_Report_Says_No_Approved_Standards_For_Police_Dogs%2C_Which_Are_Complicating_Some_Probes_


And some comments from that article:

Posted by: debbie hunt on March 24, 2011 10:03 AM
The dogs find the scent it is up to the police to uncover the crime.Don't blame the dogs they did their part.Recommend (12)Report this commentPermalink

Posted by: chocadooby on March 24, 2011 9:50 AMGiven the report has been obtained under the freedom of information act perhaps sky can provide a link to it so we can see what it says and compare it to the work of Mr Tubbs.

Recommend (13)Report this commentPermalink


Posted by: tetegtetemmememe on March 24, 2011 9:44 AM
another opportunity to bobby bash, conspiracy theories etc..... where does it say that the police are blaming the dogs, nowhere. it says the npia does. they are not the police. just because the word police appears in their tiltle doesnt make them so.
Recommend (0)Report this commentPermalink


Posted by: Calliope on March 24, 2011 9:36 AM
Anyone who has ever entered or watched a scent discrimination exercise in an advanced obedience test, will know that dogs often make mistakes and failing the 'scent' exercise is one of the main reasons for failing the test.Recommend (1)Report this commentPermalink


Posted by: chocadooby on March 24, 2011 9:33 AM
And meanwhile in another Sky news story about the missing lady in Wiltshire we have this paragraph:

"Searches will be limited by available daylight but we will be further assisted by specialist dog teams who arrive tomorrow and resume the search effort as soon as daylight permits."

Why bother, clearly the dogs will just confuse the issue!Recommend (9)Report this commentPermalink


Posted by: minicoopers09 on March 24, 2011 9:33 AM
""Victim recovery dogs from four different police forces were used during searches for kidnapped schoolgirl Shannon Matthews in Dewsbury in West Yorkshire in 2008.

The dogs found evidence of dead bodies, but officers later discovered the corpses were nothing to do with her disappearance.""


So the dogs found again what they were supposed to. It makes no difference if it was the right person they were looking for or not. The dogs pick up scents of dead bodies, they cannot put a NAME to the scent.

What an absolutely stupid and ill written article. Is this today's Journalists, no wonder the UK press is so bad!

Recommend (20)Report this commentPermalink


Posted by: emilyb3 on March 24, 2011 9:32 AM
The use of victim recovery, or cadaver dogs, has proved to be controversial in a number of high-profile cases in recent years.
-
what are they all then? A number? Or just two? And why was their use controversial in the Shannon case. They did their job didn't they? Their competence surely is judged by how many cases they help solve. No national standard of testing or record keeping? Really? Why not? What piffle.Recommend (14)Report this commentPermalink


Posted by: hastings10 on March 24, 2011 9:32
Human remains were found at Jersey, in the form of teeth and bones. The dogs also did their job, as they did in the Matthews case.So not sure for what purpose this article has been written.!!!Recommend (2)Report this commentPermalink

Posted by: minicoopers09 on March 24, 2011 9:22 AM
This article if very confusing. So the dogs alerted to furniture purchased or removed from a dead persons house? How did the dogs take up valuable time, surely they were right, its there job to find the scent, it’s the Police Officers job to check where the furniture alerted to came from surely?Recommend (17)Report this commentPermalink


Posted by: Steve.Luther on March 24, 2011 9:18 AM
So the dead body dogs DID find evidence fo dead bodies being in contact with furniture or dead bodies had been in the vicinity of where they were sniffing so infact the dog did its job perfectly. It was the police that screwed up by using a dead body sniffer dog to detect a missing person. So the wrong tool for the specific job. Then they blame the dog for not finding what they want it to find when infact it did find what it was trained to find.Recommend (12)Report this commentPermalinkShowing 11 to 20 of 31


Posted by: cityblueboy70 on March 24, 2011 10:40 AM
What a load of rubbish. Body dogs are trained to indicate the presence of human remains, including bodily fluids, blood, bones and flesh. They are trained to a Home Office approved standard and are tested regularly. In the case of Shannon Matthews the dogs searched 100's of addresses at the request of the Senior Investigating Officer and at one relevant address, indicated on a mattress. The occupier of the address was under investigation for attempt child abduction. Follow up enquiries revealed that the mattress had been purchased from a second hand shop, who had in turn got it from a deceased ladies house clearance and was indeed the bed on which she had passed away.
These are the facts and the NPIA are manipulating this positive indication into casting doubt on these dogs abilities, as for the journalism well its inaccurate at best.
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Jill Havern


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