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K9 Units

Corporal Hall & K9 Luke (Luke retired January 2024)

The primary objective of the Atascadero Police Department K-9 Unit is to reduce hazard exposure to uniformed patrol officers as they carry out their public safety mission. When fully staffed, the unit is authorized two officer handlers and their respective service dogs. The program is overseen by a sergeant.

In an effort to maintain the highest operational standards, each K-9 team regularly participates in ongoing intensive training with other regional police service dog and handler teams at the Inglis Police Dog Training Academy. The day-long training occurs at least twice each month with additional specialized training occurring throughout the year.


  • Reduce crime through the pro-active deployment of the police service dog.
  • Minimize the potential for assaults and injuries to police officers attempting to apprehend suspects involved in violent crimes.
  • Increase the number of suspects apprehended while committing or fleeing from the scene of criminal acts.
  • Minimize the potential for injuries to suspects while committing or fleeing from the scene of criminal acts by providing Police Officers with the less lethal force option of deploying the police service dog.
  • Reduce the personnel and time needed to thoroughly and safely search buildings or structures for suspects.
  • Enhance pro-active narcotics enforcement through the pro-active deployment of narcotics detection police dogs.
  • Enhance searches for missing persons or physical evidence.
  • Promote positive and closer relationships between the community and the Department.


Although the City allocates funds for the basic maintenance of the police service dogs, including food and veterinary care, the money for the purchase of each K-9 and the training of each K-9 and its handler has been historically generated solely by generous contributions from private individuals and Atascadero businesses. Each K-9 represents an investment of over $17,000 by the community. The continued success of the Department's fundraising efforts is testimony to the level of community support for the K-9 program. Each K-9 is truly the community's dog.

K-9 Demonstrations

K-9 officers are available to perform demonstrations for public service organizations, schools, or other civic groups. If you would like to schedule a demonstration for your group or would like additional information regarding the K-9 program, please contact Sergeant John Taylor.

Current K-9 Units


Officer Ramon Hernandez | K9-11

K9 Unit officer and dog team photo.

Pomic is the eleventh patrol canine to serve the community of Atascadero. Born in Germany in 2020, Pomic was hand selected by the Inglis Police Dog Academy for the Atascadero Police Department and he was flown into California. Pomic and his handler, Officer Hernandez, teamed up in the Fall of 2022. The two of them completed a rigorous five-week patrol school where they learned to work as a team and perform various tasks including obedience, open area searches, building searches, handler protection, and apprehension.

Pomic and Officer Hernandez thank each of you in the community for the continuous support and contributions that keep the Atascadero Police Department’s K9 Unit in operation.