Metro passengers may notice a new security presence as they ride the system, as we welcome Blitz and Kilo – the latest four-legged recruits to the Metro Public Safety Department.
They now bring the total number of specially trained dogs assigned to the Metro transit system up to four.
The Metro Public Safety K-9 Unit helps ensure the safety of passengers by adding an extra layer of security to the Metro Public Safety detail. As they patrol the transit system, the dogs are a proven deterrent to criminal behavior, and have the added bonus of being able to detect illegal drugs and explosives. In addition, they provide Metro Public Safety Officers with a great opportunity to engage passengers and the public in a friendly and positive way.
Blitz, a 1-year old Malinois, is assigned to handler and Metro Public Safety Sergeant Gerald Abernathy. Blitz recently completed professional training in Kansas City.
Kilo, a 3-year-old Dutch Shepard, is assigned to handler and Metro Public Safety officer Victor Chavez. Kilo recently completed a five-week K-9 course in Louisiana specializing in law enforcement.
Both dogs, as well as their handlers, receive specialized training each month to ensure their skills stay in top condition. Both Blitz and Kilo were donated to Metro and will be part of Metro’s Public Safety detail until they are retired from service. Then the dogs will become the property of their handlers.
Blitz replaces Zeus, who was retired last year. Zeus served five years with Abernathy at a local police department before coming on board with Metro Public Safety. Zeus patrolled the Metro system with Abernathy for two years.
In addition to Blitz and Kilo, the St. Louis Metropolitan Police Department K-9 Unit partners with Metro and has two of its dogs, Lacy and Gunner, assigned to patrol the transit system.