Medina police officer talks about benefits of K9 during visit with law enforcement students
Press Release, Orleans/Niagara BOCES
MEDINA – Medina Police Department Lt. Todd Draper and his K9 partner, Kye, recently stopped in to the Orleans Career and Technical Education Center. The purpose of his visit was to spend time with the Security and Law Enforcement students in Steve Browning’s and Dudley Gilbert’s classes.
Lieutenant Draper talked to the students about what it is like to work with his K9 partner – a Belgian Malinois – and the bond he has with him.
“I have had Kye since he was one year old when the police department brought him over from Holland,” Draper told the students. “He is seven years old now and not only do we work together, we live together.”
Drpaer told the classes that when he was offered his promotion to lieutenant he would not accept it if Kye was not part of the package. He appreciates that the Medina Police Department honored his request.
“When he is ready to retire, I am hoping the department lets me purchase him,” Draper said about Kye. “The usual deal is that for a dollar they will transfer ownership to me.”
Belgian Malinois are used as a working dog whose tasks include detection of odors such as explosives, accelerants and narcotics, tracking humans and search and rescue mission.
“This is the breed the Seals used when they went after Osama Bin Laden,” Lieutenant Draper told the students.
He said Kye is trained for narcotics detection and he uses positive reinforcement to keep him on task.
“He has a toy that smells like drugs, so in actuality he is looking for his toy when we are out searching,” he said. “When he finds drugs I reward him for his work.”
He told the students that you never cross train a police dog because when he finds something, you don’t know what he is detecting. He also said that they work with other states to get drugs for the K9 to smell and get accustomed to.
“Drugs are made differently in each area, so it is helpful to expose the dogs to different narcotics.”
He and Kye gave a demonstration on how he locates drugs and how he is used to takedown a suspect, with Mr. Browning volunteering in that role.
He said that Kye’s heightened abilities prove to be a great asset to law enforcement work.
“He has a great sense of smell which is about 1,000 times stronger than ours and great vision,” Draper said. “He is also very athletic. He can jump over a six foot wall.”
Kye is also very social and a great draw to getting the community to interact with him,” Draper said.
“Usually when I am walking through an event alone, I won’t get a lot of eye contact or people talking to me,” he said. “When I have Kye with me everyone comes up to us and wants to pet him and interact with us. He is a great public relations tool. I really could not ask for a better or more loyal partner.”