APD Receives Nine Donated K9 Vests

The Austin Police Department has received nine donated K9 vests from the non-profit organization Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. (VIK9s). The vests, Level II Spike II Gemini by Armor Express located in Michigan, are valued at $2,800 each. Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. receives a government contract price and is able to purchase them for $950.  They protect the K9 units from ballistic and stab wounds. The generous donation was made to VIK9s by PetArmor, the maker of flea and tick products and will equip all nine of Austin’s K9 units.

Vested Interest in K9s is a 501(c)(3) non-profit based out of East Taunton, Massachusetts. Since its inception in 2009, VIK9s has donated over 454 vests to law enforcement agencies throughout the country. The funds for the vests are provided by donations which are collected through various fundraisers as well as standalone contributions. VIK9s also encourages holding fundraisers to pay for a K9 vest, where they allow the organizer to specify which law enforcement agency the vest will be donated to.

The K9 units are currently adjusting to the vests. Officer Jimmie Davenport, currently working with Wiley (pictured above), stated: “We are incorporating them into our training regimen. As with anything new, there is a period of adjustment to work out the kinks. Dogs being dogs, some accept it without issue and others not as readily.”

Officer Davenport also had this to add in regards to VIK9s: “I’m moved that there are people who are concerned for our partners to the point of providing such a vital piece of equipment to us. I hope to never “need” the vest’s protection.  But it’s reassuring knowing it’s available to us.  Again, we are grateful and humbled for being provided these vests for our partners.”

Anyone who is interested in VIK9s is encouraged to visit their Facebook page, Twitter Feed, LinkedIn profile, and Google+ page. Donations can also be submitted through VIK9s’s main website.


A 3-minute video about one of APD’s K9 units can be found here.

APD Hosting Women’s Recruiting Event


APD Women's Recruiting

Always thought of as a job for men, more and more women are choosing police work. The Austin Police Department currently has 171 female officers and is looking for more women to join the ranks. To encourage more female applicants, APD is hosting a Women in Law Enforcement recruiting event onSaturday, October 19, 2013.

Topics include application and training requirements, balancing home and work life, and career paths and promotion opportunities. APD Recruiting staff will be on hand to speak with interested applicants. Speakers include APD Assistant Chief Jessica Robledo, who started with APD in 1988 and rose through the ranks to her current role, in which she oversees the Special Operations (SWAT and Bomb Squad), Specialized Patrol and Special Events, Highway Enforcement, Communications, and Victims’ Services Divisions.

“Women bring their own uniqueness and style to a male-dominated profession,” Robledo said. “I would tell any woman interested in becoming a law enforcement officer to not let fear of the unknown paralyze you from achieving your dreams.”

Women in Law Enforcement Recruiting Event: Are you APD Strong?
Saturday, October 19, 2013
10 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Cornerstone Church, 1101 Reinli, Austin, TX

APD Recruiting Lieutenant Gerardo Gonzalez said that having women on the force is essential. “APD understands the value women bring to law enforcement and we are looking for strong, committed, women to join our team and help us remain the most professional law enforcement agency in the nation.”

Austin is a fast-growing, diverse community and APD offers a competitive benefits package including health and life insurance, vacation and sick time, retirement and many career opportunities. To learn about how to be APD Strong, visit apdrecruiting.org, email recruiting@austintexas.gov or call 512-974-4211.

79th CPA Class Begins

September 17 was the first night of the newest session of the APD’s Citizen Police Academy with almost 40 people registered to attend the session that will conclude with graduation on December 17, 2013.  The class members were welcomed by SPO Jermaine Kilgore, who assumed duties as the CPA Coordinator early this year.  As of June 2013, a total of 1,910 citizens have completed the Academy which was implemented in 1987.

A meal of pizza, drinks, and cookies was provided by the Austin CPA Alumni Association whose President, Melinda Rodriguez, welcomed all to the class and assured them that they would benefit greatly by what they learn.  She invited them to become members of the Alumni Association and to extend their knowledge of APD operations with volunteer opportunities available through the Association.  Several members of the ACPAAA were present at the meeting to visit with class attendees and welcome them.

Officer Kilgore briefly reviewed the agendas for the 13 weeks of classes this session and announced that ride outs with patrol officers for the class would be done in late October and early November.  He thanked the class members for their participation and commitment to the Academy.