Jester becomes first K9 security officer at a hospital campus in Mississippi

He was sworn in Wednesday as Singing River Health Systems’ newest security officer.

Jester becomes first K9 security officer at a hospital campus in Mississippi

PASCAGOULA, Miss. (WLOX) - Singing River Health Systems is now the first hospital in Mississippi to have a canine officer on its security team.

Jester is trained in the scent detection of explosive devices and patrol duties. Jackson County Court Judge Mark Watts swore in the newest addition to the force and a very unique thing happened. When Jester was asked to say “I do,” he responded with a single bark.

Jester is officially a Singing River Campus Police Officer! In honor of 9/11, Jester is wearing patches on his vest representing each department of first responders. #improvehealth #savelives #911 #k9officer

Posted by Singing River Health System on Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Officials with the health system said that his duties serve multiple purposes.

“He’s trained and skilled as a police canine so, on command, Jester can respond to fulfill the needs of whatever his handler needs him to respond to as a police canine," said Randy Sanders, Police Chief of Singing River Health Systems.

Singing River Health Systems swears in a new campus police officer
Singing River Health Systems swears in a new campus police officer (Source: Photo WLOX)

In addition to his police duties, Jester’s social temperament allows him to fill a motivational and supportive need with patients and staff alike.

“He’s very welcomed here," said Jester’s handler Officer Thomas Spicer. “I would have never thought that just an animal showing up would cause that much of a difference in a work environment, but he has. I’m no longer relevant. Jester’s the main man, and I’m okay with that.”

Jester is trained to detect explosive devices, as well as assist with other patrol duties.
Jester is trained to detect explosive devices, as well as assist with other patrol duties. (Source: Photo WLOX)

Even though Jester will help out in the community whenever possible, his responsibilities will be shared between Singing River Health Systems’ two hospital campuses in Pascagoula and Ocean Springs.

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