Roethlisberger Donates New K-9 to Penn Hills Police Force
The Penn Hills Police Department’s canine division will soon have a new member thanks to a grant from the Ben Roethlisberger Foundation. The department was awarded the $10,000 grant earlier this month and will use the money to add an additional police dog, bringing the division up to full staffing.
Penn Hills’ canine division has a long history in the municipality, dating back to 1977. Officers use the dogs to assist with narcotics detection and routine patrol work. The department currently has three police work dogs assigned to the canine division, and the grant will allow a fourth canine to be added.
According to Penn Hills Municipal Manager Mohammed Rayan, once the funds are disbursed, a handler will be identified and paired with the new canine. Training for the officer and his new partner will last approximately six weeks and is expected to start in June, according to Rayan. Upon completion of training, the new dog will join Officers Rap, Riggs, and Lex, the department’s other canines, protecting and serving the community.
The Ben Roethlisberger Foundation routinely donates money to law enforcement agencies in both the Pittsburgh metro area and nationwide. This year, in addition to Penn Hills, the foundation donated money locally to Castle Shannon, Findlay Township, Mount Oliver, and West Mifflin police departments in Allegheny County. Ligonier Township and Arnold police departments in Westmoreland County and Wheeling, West Virginia were also awarded grants. In total, Roethlisberger donated $76,000 to these departments, and this is not the first time the Steelers quarterback has donated money to the Penn Hills canine division.
In a statement, Penn Hills Police Chief Howard Burton said that all three of the department’s current four-legged officers were purchased with funds from the Roethlisberger Foundation. The funds are especially important at this point in time due to ongoing funding issues.
Burton went on to thank Roethlisberger, “The Penn Hills Police Department greatly appreciates the generosity of Mr. Roethlisberger and The Giving Back Fund for their support of local law enforcement agencies.”