It is doubtful that many Morrison County residents would suggest that drugs are not a problem here. Like every other community in America, it is an ongoing battle to stop the flow of illegal drugs into the county and all of the bad consequences that accompanying them from more crime to more family dysfunction and physical endangerment.
One tool used by law enforcement to fight the drug trade are drug dogs. Morrison County recently lost its canine patrol dog, Brix, to cancer.
A new dog costs about $10,000 ($6,000 for the dog itself and $4,000 for training). There is no money in the county budget for a drug dog, but the public should be able to see the need for one.
To its credit, the Pierz Fire Relief Association recently donated $3,000 toward the purchase of a new dog. But more needs to be done. What’s needed are four or five civic clubs that can contribute $500 to $1,000 each, plus 100 individuals who can contribute $50.
Checks should be written to Morrison County with a notation that it is for the Sheriff’s Canine Program.
Morrison County Sheriff’s Deputy Dan Rocheleau is currently working with a German shepherd from the Czech Republic to see if the dog can develop into a member of the K-9 Patrol. Whether or not that happens, however, the Sheriff’s Department could use two dogs, as well as help with the costs of feeding the animals and their veterinary expenses.
In addition to sniffing out drugs, the dogs can also be used for tracking or in dangerous situations.
Those who would like more information or would like Rocheleau to speak to a civic group about the program should call him at (320) 630-6340.
Recently, a Morrison County jury convicted Jason Dominguez of murder in a drug deal gone bad. Several other defendants are waiting to stand trial for murder in two drug overdose cases.
We need to support law enforcement efforts to rid the county of the scourge of drugs. Re-establishing the K-9 Patrol is one way of doing that.
Don’t expect someone else to do it. Send a check today for whatever you can afford to Morrison County in support of the Sheriff’s Canine Program.