Sniffing out terrorism from Central PA
POSTED 10:05 PM, MARCH 10, 2016, BY AMY LUTZ, UPDATED AT 05:01AM, MARCH 11, 2016
A dog’s nose may just be one of the best weapons against terrorism, and a company that specializes in explosives training all across the country, is based right here in Central PA.
“I think people are forgetting 9-11, and that it can happen here,” says Ryan Morris.
“If you have a drug dog that misses a joint, somebody is gonna get high, but if these guys miss a bomb, that could be somebody dying.”The veteran police officer of 20 years and former Department of Homeland Security Employee, says that’s why he created Tripwire Operations Group in Mount Joy Township, Adams County.
“Look at what’s going on in the world today. It’s not if it’s gonna happen, it’s when it’s gonna happen, so the best defense is to train our first responders and our military personnel to such a level that they are able to adequately protect and keep their jurisdiction safe.”
Tripwire is responsible for a large amount of explosives throughout the United States, from the Department of State to the TSA. However, they don’t just provide the explosives. Since 2005, they have provided in-classroom explosives-related training to hundreds of state and local government agencies, as well as the Department of Defense, ATF, and the FBI. This now includes offering K9 officers and training for them and their partners.
Lieutenant David Goddfrey with the York County Sheriff’s Office says that the training they receive from Tripwire is invaluable. “If you have a drug dog that misses a joint, somebody is gonna get high, but if these guys miss a bomb, that could be somebody dying,” he said.
He says that last year, he and his partner Captain Dargo responded to more than 50 calls and it seems to be increasing every year. The problem, he says, is that having a K9 officer is a very expensive and time-consuming process.
Morris isn’t letting that stop him from doing everything he can to prepare first responders all over the country for the worst. “The best feeling is when we get calls from overseas to tell us, hey- the training we received from you just saved someone’s life…so that’s the best feeling,” he said.