Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)



Back row: decoys Carl Bennett (Willow River/Moose Lake), Mitch Cocchiarella (Faribault), Dennis Zahn (Lino Lakes) Front row: Jamin Leuzzo, John Rathai, Chris Persing, Mike Langerman, Rick Jennings

St. Paul – Five K-9 officers from the Minnesota Department of Corrections (DOC) took first place as a department team at the 2011 U.S. Police Canine Association National Police Dog Trials.

“The DOC team did an incredible job,” said K-9 Officer Rick Jennings. “Taking this first place goes a long way toward showing our dogs are totally under control. Having dogs operate at this level helps ensures the safety and security of our staff and facilities.”

Officers Jennings and Mike Langerman (Lino Lakes prison), John Rathai and Chris Persing (Faribault prison) and Jamin Leuzzo (Moose Lake/Willow River prisons) represented the DOC at the event.

“I’m extremely proud of what this DOC team accomplished,” said Commissioner Tom Roy. “We take the security of our facilities and the safety of our staff very seriously around here. These guys embody what it takes to get the job done.”

Teams competed in six events: obedience, suspect search, article search, agility, criminal apprehension, and criminal apprehension with a gun. The total points earned by each officer determined who won as a team.

Individually, officers Jennings and Langerman took first and second place respectively in the agility event, while Persing took fourth place in the criminal apprehension event.

Teams qualified for nationals through regional competitions. More information is at


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