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Doggone disgrace: Top cop denies push for police pooch stalled

TAMWORTH’S top cop has rubbished suggestions the push for a dog squad has been abandoned because the Sydney-based handler did not want to relocate.
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Oxley Superintendent Clint Pheeney said there had been no decision made yet on stationing a handler and dog in Tamworth. The community’s call for a police dog comes after a spate of violent and drug crime across the city.

Superintendent Pheeney said the matter was still before Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione, following a successful month-long trial earlier in the year.

“I still strongly support it and I know the regional commander does support it,” Superintendent Pheeney told The Leader.

“The dog unit has other regional units across the region and just because one particular officer didn’t want to move to Tamworth it doesn’t scuttle the plans at all.

“It’s in the hands of the police commissioner to make adetermination.”

At Tamworth Regional Council’s meeting on Tuesday night, several councillors expressed their growing frustration at the continued absence of a crime-fighting dog.

They said they had been informed by police that the handler’s refusal to relocate to Tamworth had proven to be a setback for the community-driven campaign.

Mayor Col Murray said he was “disturbed” that the safety of the Tamworth community could be “dictated by whether one person in NSW chooses not to relocate”.

“I don’t condemn that person at all, but our system is very poor if a community of this size suffers the consequences of some disgraceful planning,” he said.

“If there’s not one extra person trained in the whole police to be able to fill a role like this, then it’s a sad day for democracy.”

Deputy mayor Russell Webb said with the state election approaching, it was an opportune time to “start applying a bit of pressure” again.

“The whole idea of having a trial was to see if it worked or not, and it clearly worked, so let’s ask where a dog is and when it’s coming,” he said.

“There’s been ample time to put plans in place to locate this resource in our local area command and there have been commitments made that this will happen.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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