Police departments from Ocean and Monmouth Counties worked together daily since September to train K9 Officers and their handlers for police work. On Friday, January 11th, those officers graduated the program in Toms River.

Brick Township’s newest K9, a German Shepherd named Echo, has been assigned to Ptl. Scott Smith. A Labrador Retriever named Vader, who was deployed last year with Ptl. John Turrin, attended portions of the training to become certified in scent tracking. Echo is a patrol dog, and Vader is an explosives detection dog.

The graduation ceremony was held at the Toms River Police Department where family, friends, and command staff of several departments gathered to celebrate the completion of the graduates’ training. These dogs are capable of tracking and patrol work, and could potentially go on to specialize in various areas of policing and public safety.