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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Indianapolis has one of the largest K-9 units in the country and that division is growing.

This week, Mayor Hogsett Chief Roach and other city leaders held the first swearing in ceremony for seven new K-9 recruits.

“They serve with unparalleled loyalty and obedience, they continue to dig up new leads and they keep their noses to the ground until the case is solved,” Hogsett said.

The new recruits bring IMPD’s K-9 unit to a total of 45 dogs. Last year, the group assisted officers on more than 10,000 calls and help apprehend 601 suspects.

“They are irreplaceable,” IMPD K-9 Handler Sgt. Mark Fagan said. “They had 600 apprehensions last year that is 600 people that would have got away.”

Sgt. Fagan has had a K-9 since 1996 and most recently he works with a bomb sniffing dog named Francis.
In May, Francis will sniff around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the route of the Mini-Marathon to keep Hoosiers safe.

On a daily basis, Francis helps officers look for weapons suspects ditch when they are running from police.

“(Francis) will canvas the area and hopefully find the weapon where it was discarded at between running and apprehension,” Sgt. Fagan said.

Other dogs in the agency focus on finding drugs and some specialize in humans.

“They work for a bowl of Kibbles and our love. They don’t get a paycheck. They do it because they want to make us happy,” Sgt. Fagan said.