Ministry of Defence Police dogs at Plymouth Naval Base have demonstrated their skills to students.
The Plymouth University Public Service Degree students were hosted by the dog section at HM Naval Base, Devonport, as part of their final year studies.
The highly trained animals and their handlers showed off their explosives- tracking skills and how to help apprehend a suspect on the run.
The students, Adam Riley, Benjamin Moore, Sam Griffiths, Ciaran Sheehan and Ryan Evans were also shown the work of the MOD Police marine unit and went on the water on one of the fleet of patrol boats that gives 24-hour security cover to the Royal Navy fleet, property and personnel.
MOD Marine Police Sergeant Chris Latham organised the event. He said: “This was a very successful visit by the students who are specialising in police services part of their degree. There is mutual gain for both sides with the students learning the variety of tasks the MOD Police undertake and getting their degree – while on our side we are pleased to widen the knowledge of the public about the range of specialised duties that we are proud to undertake.
“Normally the public are largely unaware of what we do, compared with the county constabularies. We hope also that they might be inspired enough by their studies and this visit to take up careers with the MOD Police.’’
The MOD Police in Plymouth have a dedicated dog unit which is used for patrol security duties, detection (drugs and explosives) and as an added deterrent, and a fleet of boats on the water protecting Royal Navy ships and submarines and providing escort. MDP officers are deployed throughout the UK on security and policing duties at major MOD sites, primarily providing armed protective policing and security. They are sometimes tasked to assist Devon and Cornwall Police to find lost people and to assist at crime scenes with their dogs.
Dave Carter, of Plymouth University joined his students at Devonport. He said: “We are very pleased to have this chance to have an insight into the MOD Police. The students are studying police force operations and planning alongside the aspects of law and how UK policing has changed over the years. Having worked alongside local forces such as Devon and Cornwall Police, they really benefit from understanding the range and variety of policing roles within the UK. The MOD Police as a national force has a very different remit to regionally-based police organisations with a wide range of duties and skills who are also amazing to see at work.’’
Student Benjamin, 21, of Newquay, said: “I was so interested in the MOD Police when we studied them earlier in the course that I am now going through the selection process to join them. They are a special force in that they operate through the UK and have completed missions abroad. I can’t wait to join up.’’
The dog handlers and their charges were PC Simon Hill and Jura, PC Simon Davey and Nell and PC Nick Ditcher and Monk and they were co-ordinated by PC Dave Gibb, unit manager.