This is the first time in the Department’s history that it has had two active K-9 teams. Through the generosity of an anonymous donor, the Department was able to purchase two dogs, named Turbo and Barkley, both 18 month old Springer Spaniels. The funds totaling close to $17,000 enabled the Department to cover the cost of the dogs, $7,800 each, and leave enough money to buy kennel supplies and materials needed to equip vehicles to be K-9 units.
The first K-9 team is Detective Jessie Shaver and Barkley. Detective Shaver is a 24-year veteran of the Department. He has been a K-9 Officer since 1999 and Barkley is his third canine partner. He is assigned to the Special Operations Division.
The second K-9 team is Officer Jeremy Johnson and Turbo. Officer Johnson has been with the department for nearly six years and was recently named a K-9 Officer. He is a member of the Department’s S.W.A.T. Team. He is assigned to the Patrol Division.
Several factors have necessitated the Department’s need for a strengthened K-9 Unit.
- Alarming increase in meth and heroin use and distribution in this area.
- Increased use of hotels for transient dealers and influx of gang-related meth sales, great need for proactive hotel interdiction.
- Large increase in use of mail delivery of narcotics.
- Tremendous increase in prescription pill use in the school aged user group, creates need for additional K9 searches in the school system.
The Department’s plan for our new K-9 units is to enhance Patrol Division ability to interdict growing narcotics trade by employing one dog on a power shift to provide K9 support during peak hours.