The four K-9s belonging to three of Highland County’s law enforcement agencies all received badges Tuesday from the Highland County Prosecutor’s Office.
According to prosecutor Anneka Collins, the badges were purchased through the Law Enforcement Trust Fund. In criminal cases, when there is money seized and/or property seized and then sold, that fund is where the money goes, Collins said. “It’s money they brought in,” Collins said of the dogs.
What got Collins thinking of the badges, she said, was seeing a shadow box recently that had K-9 Bear’s collar, patches and badge in it. K-9 Bear was formerly with the Greenfield Police Department with his handler, the late James Dale Dunn Jr. After Collins saw the shadow box, she talked to the county’s K-9 handlers about their dogs having badges and said it was something they were all excited about.
Each badge is designed to match the badges worn by other officers in each dog’s law enforcement department. The badges slide onto the dog’s collar. In the center of each K-9 officer’s badge is a dog, and on the back of each one is the individual K-9’s name.
K-9 D’Jango with the Highland County Sheriff’s Office and Sgt. Craig Seaman, K-9 Harley with the Hillsboro Police Department and officer Adam Day, and the Greenfield Police Department’s K-9 Chica with patrolman Shawn Shanks and K-9 Rony with chief Jeremiah Oyer were all present for the badge presentations.
The handlers and dogs attempted a group photo after the badges were presented, each dog wearing its badge. There was mostly good behavior from the dogs, but they were visibly excited by the other dogs and the people gathered, and amid the barks could be heard the various languages by which the individual dogs are commanded as their handlers attempted to control the excited animals.
The county prosecutor said this is the beginning of a tradition as long as she’s in office to provide any new K-9s coming in to serve a Highland County community with a badge of their own.
“We just thought it would be a really cool thing,” Collins said.
Reach Angela Shepherd at 937-393-3456, ext. 1681, or on Twitter @wordyshepherd.