LORDSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The village of Lordstown is looking to add a K-9 unit to help with drug control. A community meeting was held Monday evening to inform the public and raise support for the plan.
The plan has some challenges in its way before it can become a reality.
At the meeting, Lordstown police shared why they think a K-9 unit is needed in the force.
An officer from Newton Falls told the audience why having a trained dog has been valuable to his village.
“A lot of people aren’t afraid of a Taser anymore, but they’re definitely afraid of a dog’s teeth. We’ve found more drugs this year than the other four years combined,” said Newton Falls Officer Steven Lyden.
Lyden has also heard of many criminals traveling through Lordstown carrying illegal drugs.
“There’s not a lot of crime as far as I understand, but there are a lot of drugs that move through Lordstown,” Lyden said.
Brett Blank is the Lordstown police officer behind the push for a K-9 unit. He is confident that the village can raise the money, but needs village council to approve the plan.
“We have to have it approved through our safety committee, through council, as a voted decision on their end,” Blank said.
Blank says a K-9 unit can give officers probable cause to search a vehicle, and potentially find illegal drugs.
“When you have a K-9, you can do a drug sniff on that vehicle, which alerts to the possibility of narcotics being inside that vehicle, which gives us a better understanding, a better chance of catching these criminals,” Blank said.
Blank hopes that by employing a K-9 unit, those carrying illegal drugs find a new route away from Lordstown.
“We want to make it known that you’re not allowed to just come through Lordstown bringing drugs and doing illegal activity. We want that out of Lordstown,” Blank said.