Say hello to Finn: Conway police receive new K9 to help comfort crime victims

Published: Jun. 16, 2022 at 12:02 PM EDT
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CONWAY, S.C. (WMBF) - The Conway Police Department just added a new member to its squad, and it’s a fluffy one.

King Griffin, who goes by Finn for short, is a five-month-old Bernedoodle, a Bernese Mountain Dog and Poodle mix.

Finn is training to become the first comfort K9 in Horry County.

Finn will accompany officers to provide comfort and emotional support to victims at scenes and during interviews.

The Conway Police Department received an $8,000 grant from the South Carolina Attorney General’s Office to help purchase Finn and cover the cost of his supplies and training.

The police department’s victims’ advocate, Nickey Richardson, requested the grant and is raising Finn. She said they wanted a comfort K9 to help alleviate stress and offer support to victims.

“The victims with Conway Police Department, we have had actually three specific requests for Finn, our comfort K9. Just cases where they went through a traumatic experience. They suffered mental illness, anxiety, and I just felt like it was a need for him. I felt like he’d benefit the victims, benefit the staff,” said Richardson.

The department is looking forward to getting Finn up to speed and out in the field.

“We had about 30 cases last year we researched, and he would’ve just really been a good thing. He would’ve offered a lot of comfort, a lot of support for the victims involved with the crimes that we had going on last year,” said Richardson.

Finn is in the early stages of a 12 to 18-month training program in Greenville, S.C. preparing him to work with victims.

When Richardson was asked how the pup got the name Finn, she said the name Finn means fair.

“I wanted a comfort K9 that symbolized fairness, Conway Police Department, fair officers, justice lives here,” said Richardson.

Finn is expected to start his role in the field sometime next year.

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