MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Mechanicsburg police have a new tool in the war on drugs. The department is training its newest recruit to help take a bite out of the heroin epidemic.
K9 police officer Marc is training at Castle’s K9 in Monroe Township. He knows commands in English and in Czech.
“He’s doing odor detection work so that he can help us in finding drugs,” Officer Justin Shutt, Marc’s handler, said.
“The dog is trained on marijuana, hash, coke, crack, heroin, and meth,” said Bill Castle, owner and master trainer at Castle’s K9.
K9 Marc and Shutt have been training since Nov. 28. They’re focusing on battling the surging heroin problem in the borough.
“We’ve had a number of deaths, and our overdoses have gone up significantly. Marc is going to be a great tool,” police Chief Margaret Myers said.
“They cut down on your search time,” Castle said. “You can go in and search with a dog, where it would take three or four or five guys an hour or two maybe and a dog can scan a room, and he can indicate if there’s any odor in that room.”
K9 Marc sits to indicate he smells drugs. He’ll also work as a patrol dog.
“I’m excited to get out there and make a difference with the dog and show just valuable a dog can be to a police department,” Shutt said.
“He’s going to help keep the community safer,” Myers said.
K9 Marc and his handler should be hitting the streets of Mechanicsburg sometime in early January.