A lady of law enforcement: Southwest Virginia remembers DWR K9 Josie

SWVA Today, Jeff Simmons

A good dog is gone.

Known to children and adults throughout Southwest Virginia, retired Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources K9 Josie died on Jan. 29. She was 13.

Partnered with Conservation Police Sgt. Wes Billings for around eight years, the energetic chocolate lab helped DWR officers with more than 400 cases during her career.

Working an area from Montgomery to Lee counties, Billings and Josie were available as a resource for other law enforcement agencies as well.

Billings said Josie tracked a man who’d run from Wythe deputies, located a buried gun belonging to a man who wasn’t supposed to have one and found a missing hunter.

“We stayed on the road all the time,” he said. “It was really cool.”
Billings said part of her success was “just letting her be a dog.”

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