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Cherokee County

Conference Center 

1130 Bluffs Pkwy, Canton GA

Black Background

2024 Class Agenda

We are still working on updates - please be patient

Wednesday September 11  8am to 5 pm

8am - 8:30am - check in and welcome


Dangerous Dogs  8:30-5:00

 How to identify, handle, approach, contain, etc.   (will have better class description coming soon)

Speaker:  Dr. Jim Crosby 

Thursday September 12  8am to 5 pm

Dangerous Animal Investigation:   2 = 4 hour blocks

 How to document what steps to take during a (dangerous or vicious animal) case.  What questions to ask, impounding animals, mitigating circumstances. Court orders and recommendations. (full 8 hours will have several components that will guide participants from start to finish).

Speaker:  Kevin Hearst


Friday September 13  8am to Noon

Confrontations:  2-hour block

How to use de-escalation tactics when confronting canines on routine calls.  Using video and best known and current tactics to resolve scary, vicious, and aggravated canine situations. Case review breakdown of previous mistakes made when arriving at incident scene. Emergency, environment, equipment assessment review of training and tactics.


Speaker:  Kevin Hearst

Compassion Fatigue   2 hr block 

Dustin Dutton – 


Awards and Door Prizes given out

Each day a 1 hour lunch will be given and 10-15 min breaks will be given during the classes.

Dr. Jim Crosby

Wednesday Speaker 

Retired Lieutenant James W. Crosby BS, MS, CBCC-KA (Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, Jacksonville, FL, USA) is an internationally recognized authority and court accepted expert on canine attacks and aggression. Jim’s specializes in investigating dog bite related fatalities, especially evidentiary and behavioral factors involved in dog bite related fatalities. He has directly investigated over 40 fatalities, completed post attack evaluations of over 50 subject dogs, and has been essential in numerous successful prosecutions. He assists and trains prosecutors and agencies facing these cases and was most recently on-scene for a homicide investigation in Central Georgia. Jim assisted, on-site, the Australian Federal Police on a fatality case in Canberra, Australia.

Jim earned his Master’s Degree in Veterinary Forensics from the College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Florida where he is currently completing his PhD studies.

Jim has extensive canine behavior training and expertise. He has been a Certified Professional Dog Trainer (CPDT) and is a Certified Behavior Consultant-Canine (CBCC) Jim currently serves on the Board of Directors for the CCPDT.

He works extensively in the field of public Animal Control and sheltering and served as Division Manager for Bay County (FL) Animal Control and Management Consultant (acting chief) of Jacksonville Animal Care and Protective Services. Jim served on the Board of Directors of the Florida Animal Control Association and has worked with many Animal Control Associations across the United States and internationally. Jim assisted the Department of Animal Services for the Australian Capital Territory, leading a National Study on Dangerous Dog policy and procedure for the Australian Capital Territory Government.

Jim assists in dogfighting investigations. He was the expert on the Polk County, GA case wherein Devicio Rowland was sentenced to fifty years for dogfighting, the longest sentence for that crime in US history. Jim serves as an expert consultant regarding the use of deadly force by police officers against companion animals.

Kevin Hearst

Thursday Speaker

K.D. Hearst Sr.

Consultant/ Instructor for Bigtimespeakers, LLC.

Law Enforcement Training Institute

Washington D.C. 20011

Mr. Hearst Sr. began his Animal welfare career in Atlanta GA in 1994, where he was heavily influenced by Dr. Melinda Merck in 2007 who opened his eyes to Animal cruelty investigations. Being part of a Countywide Animal cruelty task force was incredible for his next chapter in life as an instructor. 

He was given training opportunities which led to LETI (Law Enforcement Training Institute), where I met Lisa Dority, John Worden and Bill Stephens.  


Kevin Hearst being recognized/assigned as a humane investigator. Mr. Hearst has been a member of our National Animal Cruelty Investigations School faculty for over 13 years and is recognized as an expert in the field of animal cruelty investigations. Our school is written into policy in several jurisdictions throughout the United States. And has been recognized as one of the leaders in education for humane investigators. Mr. Hearst is one of the primary reasons for this honor. He has been asked to and delivered many presentations for conferences throughout the nation.

Dustin Dutton

Friday Speaker

Cherokee County, Alabama,

Lead Instructor - BigTime Speakers, LLC.

I started my career back in 2009. I worked in corrections for a couple of years before I transferred to the Animal Control Department. I've attended training through various organizations HSUS, NACA, NACI/LETI, Humane Educators of Texas, just to name a few. I have been the Shelter Manager since 2017. I'm skilled in various animal welfare/control investigations. I have worked multiple cruelty cases and assisted in cases with other agencies. I am also an instructor for Big Time Speakers, LLC.

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