The department estimates it will take between $8,000 and $10,000 to establish the K-9 Unit.
Pomeroy Assistant Police Chief Alan Queen, who is spearheading the K-9 unit campaign, said the department has so far received $2,000 in donations.
Pomeroy Village Council has also approved the installation of a K-9 unit for the village, though the department must raise the entire sum.
With the money raised, the department will receive a trained Belgium Malimar, equipment for the K-9 unit, and continual training for the dog and Queen, who will be the dog's handler.
Queen feels the drug dog is “absolutely necessary” for the village to fight drugs.
“I miss drug busts on a daily basis without the dog during traffic stops where drugs are suspected,” Queen said. “If the drug dog indicates hits on a car, it gives me probable cause to search and will give us more leverage on getting better traffic stops where we recover narcotics and remove them from the streets.”
Without the drug dog, a police officer can hold a vehicle whose owner has refused a search while a warrant is issued, though this may take hours and tie up law enforcement on one stop.
The dog would be trained in sniffing out several different narcotics including marijuana, heroin, methamphetamine, powdered cocaine and prescription pills.
Queen has already made contact with several K-9 organizations that provide educational materials for officers to visit schools to explain what the K-9 unit does and plans are to take the Pomeroy K-9 unit into the schools for educational purposes.
Queen says the most prevalent illegal narcotics the department sees now are crack cocaine and cocaine.
“There is just more available in our area and it's really being pushed here,” Queen said. “We're right along the river between Columbus and Charleston and with U.S. 33, we're getting a lot of cocaine brought into our area. The dog will help tremendously to fight this trend in the village.”
Pomeroy Police Chief Mark E. Proffitt, who supports Queen's efforts, announced an account at a local bank has been set up to handle donations that can be sent to the Pomeroy Police K-9 Fund, 320 E. Main St., P.O. Box 666, Pomeroy, Ohio 45769. Checks can be made out to Pomeroy Police K-9 Fund.
Questions can be directed to Proffitt or Queen by calling 992-6411 or e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“This drug dog is absolutely necessary for the deterrence and apprehension of drugs in the village,” Proffitt added. “The dog will enable our department to make more drug arrests and seek out the stiffest, possibly penalty for those pushing drugs on our citizens and children. Drugs will not be tolerated in the village of Pomeroy.”