New K-9 at Sheriff’s Department receives warm welcome
ALBION – The newest member of the Orleans County Sheriff’s Department received a warm welcome today when Otto, a German Shepherd from Holland, was introduced at the County Legislature meeting.
Otto is 27 months old and already has been trained in tracking. He has been working with Deputy Jeff Cole since the dog arrived at the Buffalo airport on Oct. 13.
Cole and Otto will received more training in the coming months, working with K-9 handler Lt. James Hildreth of the Niagara County Sheriff’s Department. Cole said he and Otto will also learn from the Rochester Police Department’s K-9 teams.
Sheriff Randy Bower and Cole both thanked members of the community for donating generously. Bower said 73 donors gave $12,405. That more than covered the $8,500 cost of Otto from Upstate K-9 in Hilton.
The extra money will pay for equipment and some other expenses with having the dog.
Bower said the dog is useful for solving crimes, finding suspects and also for public relations. Otto will join Cole for patrols and for narcotics detection.
Bower said the Sheriff’s Department first had a K-9 in 1997 when then Lt. Chris Bourke, now the undersheriff, served as the handler.
“It’s nice that we can continue it,” Bower said about the K-9 program. “We couldn’t have done it without the community.”