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Citizen receives commendation for finding missing girl


  On September 28, Henry County Chief of Police Keith Nichols honored Bill Hilsman with a Certificate of Commendation for his role in assisting the Henry County Police Department in locating a missing person.

Andrea Bragg, Bill Hilsman with Tess with Henry County Police Chief Keith Nichols.                                           Special photo

  On September 11, the Henry County Police Department had contacted Hilsman to assist them in locating a 16 year-old autistic girl who had been reported missing. Hilsman, with Georgia Piedmont Region K-9 Search & Rescue, offered the use of his K-9, Tess. After being provided articles of clothing from the young girl’s residence, the K-9 was able to recognize and track her scent. Tess was able to track the missing girl into a wooded area and across a creek where the girl was found alive and well.

  Tess, the dog used to locate the missing girl, previously be-longed to Henry County Police Officer Jimmy Carter, who died on April 10, 2010 from an automobile accident.

  Hilsman has been volunteering with the Search & Rescue foundation for 12 years and is one of several volunteers who work with the non-profit organization, using their K-9s to aid Georgia police departments upon request. After undergoing a year of training, their dogs work search and rescue missions in both urban and wilderness areas as well as in lakes and rivers.

  All costs associated with their services, including training, travel, and equipment, are paid for by the volunteers, at no expense to taxpayers.



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