Portage honors officers, introduces new police dogs
By John Robbins Post-Tribune correspondent May 13, 2013 3:07PM
Patrolman Wendell Hite and K-9 dog Bolo (far left) and Officer Kyle Lerch with K-9 dog Bomber (second from left) stand at attention during the Portage Police Memorial Ceremony held at Gilbert Park in Portage on May 13, 2013. | Charles Mitchell~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: May 14, 2013 4:20PM
Portage Police Chief Troy Williams called his assembled officers to attention for the presentation of the colors by the Portage High School JROTC as the police memorial and inspection ceremony got under way.
“The Portage Police Department has been fortunate to have never lost an officer in the line of duty,” said Williams, who acknowledged the local officers and support personnel who have died while in the service of the police department.
Portage Mayor James Snyder proclaimed the week of May 12 as Police Memorial Week.
“Each day we owe a debt of gratitude to the men and women in blue,” Snyder said. “Because of your work Portage is at peace.”
Detective Corporal Janis Regnier was named the recipient of the 2012 officer of the year award. Regnier specializes in sex and child molestation cases and is a crime scene investigator.
Regnier said her job is nothing like the popular television series “CSI” but she credits another television show, “Charlie’s Angels,” as sparking her interest in becoming a police officer. “Charlie’s Angels showed me that girls could do anything,” she said.
“We all know it’s a thankless job. It is very humbling and an honor to receive the recognition,” Regnier said.
Two of three new police dogs were introduced at the ceremony. Bomber and Bolo accompanied their handlers, officers Kyle Lerch and Wendell Hite. The third dog, Chuckie, is still undergoing training.
The dogs are trained to detect narcotics and perform utility work such as tracking and officer protection. Police dogs have a five- to seven-year working life, according to Hite.