In 1999, the Racine County Sheriff's Office began its first Canine unit. With the generous support of many businesses and citizens, the program was launched. With participation from the Racine County Deputy Sheriff's Protective Association a handler was selected and K9 Dax began service. He retired in 2006.
Gingiss was placed into service in June of 2005. He was a Belgian Malinois duel purpose K9, trained in narcotics detection, tracking of humans on various terrians in various conditions, building and area searches, as well as searching for articles and evidence. Sadly, Gingiss became unexpectly ill and passed away in May 2013.
In 2011, a donation of more than $14,000 was made to the Sheriff's Office to add an additional K9 to the unit. In May of 2012. K9 Friday was placed into service. He is a Belgian Malinois/German Sheppard mix imported from Hungary. Friday is also a duel purpose K9 trained in tracking suspects and lost persons, handler protection and narcotic detection. He is often used for search warrants and vehicle searches. Friday and his handler, Deputy Ed Drewitz, trained for 6 weeks in North Carolnia.
In June of 2013, Carlson Roofing and Sheet Metal donated the funds to replace Gingiss. Less than a week later, the Sheriff's Office began receiving donations towards purchasing a thrid K9. A grant was applied for and received from the Racine Community Foundation to also cover expenses of the second and third dog. The Sheriff's Office's plans to have a K9 assigned to all 3 patrol shifts, covering all four corners of the county.
Deputy Troy Ruffalo and Deputy Dave Fisher will be in service with their new K9 partners, Nitro and Murphy, in November of 2013.
Historically, K9 units are not funded by tax payer dollars. We rely solely on the generous contributions from people in the community of their skills, time and money. Special thanks to the following contributors. To learn more about them, click on the links below.