GRANITE SHOALS (KXAN) — A small town in Central Texas will soon have its first K-9 police officer.
During Tuesday night’s Granite Shoals City Council meeting, local leaders announced that they’ll soon have a furry friend helping crack down on crimes.
The new K-9 unit was made possible through a $25,000 donation from Dr. Caesar DePaço and his wife Deanna.
The New Jersey couple support law enforcement across the country, providing financial resources to fund police K-9 units.
Granite Shoals Mayor Kiel Arnone is originally from New Jersey and played a pivotal part in organizing this arrangement.
“Having this dog in our community is going to be huge,” he said. “It’s going to help combat drug activity and hopefully clean up the drug activity that we currently have.”
The donation will fully fund the purchase of the animal along with its specialized equipment, healthcare needs and food.
As a result, the police department’s K-9 unit will come at no cost to local taxpayers.
Granite Shoals police officers have already picked out a pup.
Zoe is a Belgian Malinois, currently living at the Pacesetter K9 kennel in Liberty Hill.
Granite Shoals Police Chief John Ortis says the dog will provide a big benefit when it comes to recruiting new officers into his department.
“This gives us the ability to have one more tool in our pocket,” he said. “To go out on the street and protect our community from the illegal narcotic trade.”
Zoe will be paired up with detective Andrew Kos, who recently survived being shot on duty back in February.
The pair will undergo three weeks of intense training at Pacesetter K9 in July.
When their course is complete, the dog will be trained in narcotics detection and tracking lost people.
To learn more about the Granite Shoals Police Department’s new K-9 unit, click here.