The K-9 Unit operates within the Patrol Division to provide important services to the entire department and to other law enforcement agencies. Typically the police K-9’s are utilized to assist in searching for missing persons, victims, and violent individuals. They aid in locating and apprehending individuals fleeing from the police, and the detection of hidden controlled substances including marijuana, methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin.
While on duty, the police canines are focused on their work. While off duty, the canines live at the homes of their partner/handlers and enjoy being a family pet. Continuous training is mandatory for the K-9 Teams and all expenses for the maintenance of the dogs is the responsibility of the Police Department.
Above and beyond their patrol duties, the K-9 handlers and their ever-faithful partners often visit schools and conduct demonstrations for local community groups. These demonstrations offer first hand insight to their effectiveness, discipline and overall benefit to the community.
Sergeant Mike vonMillanich supervises the K-9 Unit under the direction of a Patrol Lieutenant. Currently, we have four K-9 Teams consisting of:
- Officer Robert Richer and his partner Tango
- Officer Enrik Melgoza and his partner Argos
- Officer Danielle Bowler and her partner Ivan
- Officer Greg Niemi and his partner Shadow