“We have received an overwhelming response from the community,” said Police Chief Jake McGee at a final check presentation on Monday morning.
Chief McGee accepted a $5,000 donation from the Southeast Iowa Regional Board of Realtors on September 11th.
The Oskaloosa Police Department decided to begin their fundraising for a new K-9 unit back in June. The department set a goal to raise $40,000 to purchase and train a canine, buy a specific K-9 vehicle and appropriate training for the officer.
Oskaloosa Officer, Austin Rogers, spent an extensive amount of time for his K-9 research and will be the handler. McGee noted that having a K-9 is a huge commitment for an officer. “The dog is a part of your family, it comes home with you,” said McGee.
The OPD is expecting the new vehicle, and K-9, to last seven to ten years. This vehicle will only be driven on one shift. By purchasing a specific vehicle, will actually help save money for the department in a long run with no longer having to replace other patrol cruisers that were used for a K-9.
This is the third K-9 for the police department. Nash was the K-9 for Lt. McClun from 2003 to 2012 and Quest served from 1996 to 2003.
Officer Austin Rogers will head to Indiana in the spring for a 6-week training camp. Where he will be matched with a shepherd that is a year to a year-and-a-half old.
Chief McGee noted that it could be a German, Dutch or Czech Shepherd – but it will be a shepherd from overseas. Officer Rogers will work 7 days a week for 6 weeks in the spring of 2018. McGee wants Rogers and the dog to be back for about a month to ensure they are both ready for demonstration sometime in the summer of 2018.
According to Chief McGee, the department received donations from all over state of Iowa. “We received dollar donations from kids that came in and giving it to our receptionist,” said Chief McGee.”We had kids with lemonade stands donating their proceeds.”