Eric Watson Bradley County Sheriff

An important BCSO member

Posted 6/18/17

I have no doubt you have read in the Cleveland Daily Banner about the loss of an important member of the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office.

This deputy was dedicated, highly trained and provided …

This item is available in full to subscribers

Eric Watson Bradley County Sheriff

An important BCSO member

Posted

I have no doubt you have read in the Cleveland Daily Banner about the loss of an important member of the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office.

This deputy was dedicated, highly trained and provided valuable assistance in any instance we needed her. The important member of the BCSO was Lucy, one of the extraordinary K-9 deputies we use on a daily basis. Lucy had been missing for a day and, sadly, was found deceased this past Monday morning in McMinn County.

Details on her death were published this past week. Lucy, a Belgian Malinois, became one of the agency’s K-9 units in October of 2016, and was presented as a “Top Dog” during United States Police Canine Association certifications just last year. Lucy, as do all Bradley County Sheriff’s Office K-9 deputies, received intense training before going “on the road” and had many hours of in-service training as required.

I ask you keep her handler, Deputy Chris Shope, and his family in your thoughts and prayers. Each K-9 literally becomes a part of the handler’s family, not to mention the BCSO family, so her loss has been particularly tough.

Lucy was given a memorial service with full honors on Friday, as she was an important part of our effort to serve the public. I want to thank the staff at Faithful Friend Pet Crematory and Funeral Home for their extraordinary assistance as we remembered Lucy. Members of the Chattanooga Police Department, which was involved in some of her training, provided valuable help as we searched for our fellow K-9 deputy.

While we’re on the subject of K-9 deputies, let me mention again how much we depend on our four-legged officers to assist us on a regular basis. The Bradley County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit is comprised of dual-purpose dogs that support the Patrol Division’s activities by responding to incidents requiring the unique abilities of the K-9 team. Each dog has a dedicated handler who is a certified Bradley County deputy sheriff.

As I mentioned above, these dogs and their handlers forge a deep bond that contributes greatly to the success of our K-9 Unit as a whole. Instances where we utilize a K-9 could include missing persons searches, apprehending fleeing criminals, high-risk vehicle stops, jail incidents and narcotics detection.

I can’t begin to name all of the instances where our K-9 deputies have helped in finding a missing elderly person or a child, or have alerted officers to illegal drugs in vehicles or elsewhere.

The loss of our K-9 co-worker has made for a difficult week around the BCSO. I sincerely thank all who took the time to send a note, make a phone call, or simply shake the hand of a deputy this week. That said, we will all miss the ‘Pocket Rocket’ (Lucy’s nickname because of her speed) at the Bradley County Sheriff’s Office.

Finally, today is Father’s Day. The BCSO salutes all Dads on this day … especially those who wear the badge to serve and protect. Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers for their safety as they work, 24 hours a day, every day.

A special thank you to my Dad, who has always been there for his family.

Comments

No comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment

X

Print subscribers have FREE access to clevelandbanner.com by registering HERE

Non-subscribers have limited monthly access to local stories, but have options to subscribe to print, web or electronic editions by clicking HERE

We are sorry but you have reached the maximum number of free local stories for this month. If you have a website account here, please click HERE to log in for continued access.

If you are a print subscriber but do not have an account here, click HERE to create a website account to gain unlimited free access.

Non-subscribers may gain access by subscribing to any of our print or electronic subscriptions HERE