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Wed, Sep 11



Managing and Training for the HRD K9 Cold Case Search - Lockport, NY

There are differences in fresh decomposition odor versus the odor from skeletonized remains. Train for the difference, and plan for the differences in search management.

Managing and Training for the HRD K9 Cold Case Search - Lockport, NY
Managing and Training for the HRD K9 Cold Case Search - Lockport, NY

Time & Location

Sep 11, 2024, 8:30 AM EDT – Sep 15, 2024, 4:30 AM EDT

Lockport, Lockport, NY 14094, USA


About the event

This 5 day workshop will combine both classroom and field instruction to enhance the handler and canine understanding of odor, search theory, mapping, and reporting.  Field exercises are designed to work on both handler and canine mechanics, while strengthening the trained final response, commitment, and presentation. Field work will include real world scenarios with both marked and unmarked graves in a variety of environments. Exposure to shallow surface geophysics and real-time kinematic GPS systems allowing participants to see first hand how multidisciplinary surveying provides enhanced results for cold case investigations.

Participants will travel to different communities in the surrounding area to enhance the experience of the class. Most days the class will have lunch in the field, but a few days the class will be responsible for their own lunch in town.

This class will be instructed by Paul Martin, who has been a canine handler for 27 years, and is also a Secretary of the Interior qualified Archaeologist that is a member of the Register of Professional Archaeologists. Paul's research with canine's to detect historic and precontact human burials spans over 22 years, and has led to him working with History Flight, Inc to assist in the location of WWII MIAs in Europe and in the Philippines. He also owns Martin Archaeology Consulting, LLC with his wife Michelle Martin, and notable survey projects that MAC has conducted include working at Tuscumbia Landing Trail of Tears in Alabama for the Chickasaw and Porch Creek Nations respectively, Shockoe African Burial Ground in Richmond, VA, Jumonville Glen: a Unit of Fort Necissity NPS in Pennsylvania,  and is currently working with the NPS in Alaska to locate burials related to the Russian Battle of 1804.

Paul is currently working with his sixth canine partner, K9 Abby, a 5 year old female chocolate Labrador Retriever. K9 Abby has been trained specifically for archaeological human remains detection, in that her target odors are typically decompisition events that are older than 75 years before current events (BCE).  Paul is the founder and former director of the Western Carolina University Cadaver Dog Training Program from 2011 to 2017. Paul is a past president of the National Network of Canine Detection Services and is an Evaluating Official. Paul currently sits on the Dogs and Sensors Consensus Body for the Academy of Forensic Sciences Standards Board.

He has a B.S. in Anthropology with a concentration in forensics from Western Carolina University. Paul has  a M.A. in Anthropology from the Univeristy of Mississippi where his thesis research focused on the forensic application of shallow surface geophysical instruments to detect toddler-sized internments, and he completed his Ph.D. coursework at the University of Memphis in Earth Science with a concentration in Archaeogeophysics.


  • Participant with K9

  • Observer with No K9




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