General Purpose Dogs (1021A/22)
The information requested concerns the general -purpose and specialist police dogs which is defined by Ingram 2011.
The general- purpose police dogs (GPD) are trained to track a human scent and to deliver a controlled bite, which is deemed a success when the handler verbally delivers the “off” command and the animal immediately releases its bite.
In addition, the term GPD also incorporates tactical dogs who are only trained to carry out a determined bite regardless of if the suspect is aggressive, armed or passive.
A specialist dog is trained to detect scent such as, firearms, illegal substances, and others (Ingram, 2011).
- On how many occasions have general purpose police dogs deployed to assist operational policing between April 2015 – April 2020?
- On how many occasions have cash dogs been deployed to assist operational policing between April 2015 -April 2020?
- On how many occasions have drug dogs been deployed to assist operational policing between April 2015 – April 2020?
- On how many occasions have cadaver dogs been deployed to assist operational policing between April 2015- April 2020?
- Based on the number of deployments of general-purpose dogs in the period covered by Q1 what operations were they used for by approximate percentage? (Searching for specific items, missing person, detaining, riots, crowd control).
- Based on the number of deployments of general-purpose dogs in the period covered by Q1, on how many occasions has deployment resulted in a bite to a member of the public?
- How many general-purpose dogs does your force currently have in total and how many of those are currently operationally ready?
- What geographical boundary does your dog section cover?
Our data are not organised in such a way as to allow us to provide this information within the appropriate (cost) limit within the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act (see ‘Reason for Decision’ below).
Although excess cost removes the force’s obligations under the Freedom of Information Act, as a gesture of goodwill I have supplied information, relative to your request, retrieved before it was realised that the fees limit would be exceeded (see attached). I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for the remainder of the request.
REASON FOR DECISION
Please note that researching each individual case would exceed the appropriate limit (FOIA, s.12).
Due to a change of systems we are unable to locate and retrieve the data for the requested date range, therefore we are unable to answer questions 1 – 6 without undertaking a manual review, this search would exceed the FOI time limit.
The cost of compliance with the whole of your request is above the amount to which we are legally required to respond, i.e. the cost of locating and retrieving the information would exceed the appropriate costs limit under section 12(1) of the FOI Act 2000. For West Midlands Police, the appropriate limit is set at £450, as prescribed by the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004, S.I. 3244.