MIAMI (WSVN) - The City of Miami Police Department gained an additional member on Wednesday afternoon.

Claudine, an American Kennel Club bloodhound, was sworn in to the department and assigned to the Special Victims Unit.

Claudine is the department’s first bloodhound since the early ’90s.

“Our hope is that we never have to use them, but in the case where we do have to use the dog to find a child who’s been abducted or missing,” said Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina, “or help us find an adult that suffers Alzheimer’s who’s been lost and needs their meds, this is a resource that we will now have that’s gonna help us accomplish our mission and save lives.”

The four-legged member of the department was presented by Don Ryce, founder of The Jimmy Ryce Center for Victims of Predatory Abduction.

The center was formed after 9-year-old Jimmy Ryce was killed by Juan Carlos Alvarez, who abducted him as the boy walked home from his bus stop.

After the 9-year-old’s murder, his parents made it their mission to advocate for and help find missing children.

The organization now donates bloodhounds to law enforcement agencies.

“At the time, we didn’t realize what a potential resource these dogs were, and there wasn’t a single dog anywhere close to Miami or the tri-county area,” said Ryce at the presentation.

Jimmy’s mother, Claudine Ryce, passed in 2009, but her spirit lives on through the department’s new four-legged member, who is named in her honor.

“One thing that my wife used to say was that every time a child was saved by one of these wonderful animals, it was like getting a hug from Jimmy,” said Ryce.

While Claudine is part of the Miami Police Department, Colina said she will be available to help other agencies that need her.

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