Military police dog unit reactivated
Formed in 1944 as a military police escort guard unit, the 327th underwent several transformations before being completely deactivated in 1979 in Panama. But, now more than 30 years later, as part of an effort to consolidate units that also have military dogs, the Army is bringing it back. As our Brian Dwyer reports, it hopes that the new 227th, stationed at Fort Drum, will be bigger and better than ever, and save money at the same time.
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FORT DRUM, N.Y. -- For the past 30 years, this particular unit did not exist. It was shut down in 1979, but 33 years later, the flag was uncased. The 327th became the 227th Military Police Detachment, and is getting a new home in Fort Drum.
"Their priority is the safety of our families, fellow soldiers, and homes. Quite frankly, they put a soldier's face and thumbprint on law enforcement like no one else can," said Lt. Col. Guenther Pearson, 91st Military Police Battalion Commander.
The 227th will be serving as MP investigators, traffic accident investigators, force protection, and more. There will also be military dogs. There are 20 canines and their handlers stationed in Fort Drum that can deploy to the United States or overseas, and have recently helped to secure some major events.
"They deploy in support of the President of the United States mission. Currently now during the elections we send them off to do security. They also deploy singularly to Afghanistan to wherever they're needed as a team with a dog and a handler," explained Capt. Stephanie Melton, 227th Detachment Commander.
The unit comes back as the Army continues to focus on cost saving measures. One way to do that, is to consider military dog programs, which Fort Drum already has.
"They're trying to look to refine the quality of the dog, the quality of the handler, and the quality of the support we can provide," said Melton.
Captain Melton saying the dogs, having a stay-at-home detachment group to work with, can not only provide more training, but it can be specialized, making the dogs even more important.