New K-9 officer introduced to city council

The Sequim Police Department's newest officer wasted no time introducing himself to city officials during the Aug. 11 city council meeting.

Police service dog Chase and his handler Sequim Police officer Mike Hill, were being recognized at the start of the meeting for completing their K-9 officer certification training.

When Chase heard his name, the 3-year-old German shepherd leaped up to give a very surprised Sequim Mayor Laura Dubois a kiss. The mayor took it gracefully and then Chase settled back down on the floor next to his handler.

Chase is the Sequim Police Department's third police dog but first patrol dog. The department's first two dogs, Huey and Titus, were trained to sniff for drugs, as Chase will be later.

Chase and Hill graduated from the Police K-9 Academy in July following four months of training.

The two went through 450 hours of training that included tracking, trailing, evidence recovery, suspect apprehension, master protection and searching areas, buildings and for evidence, Hill said.

The training also included pursuing suspects through water and having Chase jump onto

a rooftop from his shoulders,

Hill said.

The pair now is certified through the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission as well as accredited by the Washington State Police Canine Association.

The Sequim Police Department decided last year to switch from a narcotics dog to a patrol dog because of an increase in assaults, felonies and physical altercations between officers and suspects.

Chase was born Aug. 2, 2005, in the Netherlands. He was bought with donations to the Police Department K-9 program.

Hill selected him from about 50 dogs at a kennel in North Carolina.

The Sequim Police Department K-9 program began in 2000 with Sgt. Dave Campbell and police service dog Huey.

He was a narcotics detection canine that began working for the Clallam County Sheriff's Office before being donated to the Sequim Police Department.

Huey retired in 2005 and lived with Sgt. Campbell until he died in 2007.

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