PHOTO: CJ Sullivan, Jones County Sheriff’s Deputy, talks to a group at the monthly Jones County Safe & Healthy Youth Coalition here in Monticello about Kane, the Sheriff’s Department’s newest member to the force. (Photo by Kim Brooks)
By Kim Brooks, Express Editor
Jones County Sheriff Deputy CJ Sullivan introduced the newest member of the Sheriff’s Department to the public at the monthly Jones County Safe & Healthy Youth Coalition meeting. Kane, the department’s K-9, showed off his drug-sniffing skills at a meeting held at the Renaissance Center in Monticello.
Sullivan hid about 2 grams of marijuana in the room, prompting Kane to locate the drugs by sniffing objects and people along the way. The trick was a success and a learning opportunity for Kane and for the public to see what his role is within the Jones County Sheriff’s Department.
Kane, who’s a German Shepherd from Poland, lives with the Sullivans at their home. Both Sullivan and Kane had to go through a five-week K-9-handler training course together. Kane learned skills in tracking people and objects, searching, officer protection, apprehension and narcotics searches.
“It was an intense training,” Sullivan told the crowd. “He’s certified in narcotics searches, which is what he’s used for the most.”
When giving commands to Kane, Sullivan is able to speak in both English and Polish, depending on which Kane responds to.
“I always say his name first, followed by the command and praise,” explained Sullivan.
Whenever Sullivan is on duty, Kane follows.
“He does real well,” Sullivan said of being in the squad car and interacting with his family as well. “He’s a great chase dog.”
With multiple K-9s in Jones County now, (Both the Monticello and Anamosa police departments have K-9s.), Sullivan said they’re able to work together to perform random school searches, which usually takes multiple dogs and a lot of time.
“He can do locker, parking lot and article searches,” Sullivan said. He said it’s ideal to have more dogs than one because they can get exhausted searching for several hours at a time.
He commented that if someone loses his/her keys, Kane could locate those as well.
“We try and train with him at least every day.”
Another useful tool in having Kane on the department is in handling missing people. “He can search for a missing person if he has a scent to lead on,” explained Sullivan. “If he senses something, he’ll pick up on it.” He did say that Kane doesn’t know the difference between a missing child and a run-away convict.
In patrolling with Kane, Sullivan said his patrol vehicle was fitted with an alarm system should the car get too hot or cold with Kane inside.
Those at the Coalition meeting felt Kane was a necessary and needed tool in Jones County. Already, there have been instances where drugs were found in a school through searches.