FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  November 24, 2021


@CorrectionNYC   NYC DOC TV 





- D.O.C.’s elite D-O-G and handler compete for national K9 law enforcement title


Photo Credit: Officer McArdle


East Elmhurst, NY–NYC DOC will compete for top dog in a national K9 law enforcement competition.


The contest is put on by American Kennel Club (AKC) and the United States Police Canine Association (USPCA), which have selected a team from Department of Correction’s K9 Unit to participate in the inaugural AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge. The first-of-its-kind event will pit the best narcotics and explosive detection dogs and their handlers compete against other law enforcement teams from across the country. The event will demonstrate the important role dogs play in law enforcement.

Competing on behalf of DOC is the esteemed duo of Correction Officer Lawrence McArdle and K9 Zoey, who work to detect contraband on Rikers Island. McArdle was recently honored with a Meritorious Duty Medal for helping to capture an individual on Rikers Island who escaped a housing facility in June of 2020. Most recently, McArdle and Zoey won a citation award at USPCA Region 7 Detection Trials.


The Challenge is taking place at the PNC Arena in Raleigh North Carolina, where ten narcotics dog teams and ten explosives detection dog teams are competing against each other to see which could most quickly find their respective substances. The teams navigate obstacles and sort through distractions to find the hidden items and are scored on the accuracy of their search, perfection of their alert (telling the handler where the hide is), and the find itself (a combination of the ability of the dog and the handler to accurately tell judges where the hide is located). 


The event will be broadcast on ESPN2 on Sunday, November 28th at 10pm ET.


“We are thrilled that these national organizations can sniff out the talent that DOC brings to this competition,” said Department of Commissioner Vincent Schiraldi. “We’re proud of our team and confident that CO McArdle and K9 Zoey will excel in this contest.”


“I’m so excited to participate in the 2021 Inaugural AKC/USPCA K9 Detection Dog Challenge with my pal Zoey,” said Officer Lawrence McArdle. “We will do our absolute best to bring home the grand prize!


Photo Credit: Susu Hauser


“We are thrilled to host this exciting event with the USPCA,” said AKC Executive Secretary Gina DiNardo. “It’s amazing to see these dogs in action and show viewers their training and precision. We can’t wait to share it with the ESPN2 audience.”


Check your local provider for ESPN2 channel information. To learn more about AKC events, visit To learn more about the USPCA, visit


About the Department of Correction

The New York City Department of Correction (DOC) is dedicated to creating a safe and supportive environment while providing individuals in our care with a path to successfully re-enter their communities. The Department provides for the care and custody of people ordered held by the courts and awaiting trial or who are convicted and sentenced to one year or less of jail time. DOC manages 8 facilities housing people in custody, 7 of which are located on Rikers Island. The Department also operates two hospital wards (Bellevue and Elmhurst hospitals) and court facilities in each borough. Our dedicated workforce of both uniformed and non-uniformed staff members represents the city’s Boldest.