Georgia arson canine passes away - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Georgia arson canine passes away

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Smokey, a Georgia arson canine, died on Tuesday, April 16, 2013. (Photo provided by Department of Insurance) Smokey, a Georgia arson canine, died on Tuesday, April 16, 2013. (Photo provided by Department of Insurance)
ATLANTA -

A Georgia arson canine passed away on Tuesday, Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudgens announced.

Smokey died after a brief illness, Hudgens said.

"We'll always remember Smokey as a valuable employee in the fight against arson, Hudgens said in a press release."His death leaves a great sadness within the entire Department."

The following information was provided in a press release by the Georgia Department of Insurance.

Smokey, an arson detection Labrador retriever, began his training in September 2003 at the Maine State Training Center in Alfred, Maine. He came to work in Georgia in October 2003 as the fifth arson canine in the state to serve the law enforcement and fire service communities.

Between October 2003 and April 2013, Smokey and his handler, Investigator Ken Palmer were involved in over 700 fire investigations around the state. Smokey's specialized training allowed him to determine if accelerants were used to start a fire. This ability led to the arrest of numerous arson suspects, which included arrests for murders that involved arson.

Born July 2001, Smokey worked his last assignment on March 30, 2013, which was a house fire in Catoosa County. That fire which was determined to be arson.

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