LAFAYETTE COUNTY – As everyone was dealing with the year 2020, the Lafayette County Sheriff’s Department K9 and the Darlington Police Department K9 were still hard at work, keeping the county safe.
Deputy Tim Farrell and his partner K9 Ranger have been on active duty since November 2018 after the retirement of K9 Cody, who was with the department since 2009. Ranger, a German Shepherd/Belgium Malinois mix, has been doing great these past years.
In 2020, Ranger and Deputy Farrell have had several cases ranging from assisting other agencies on traffic stops as well as assisting other Lafayette County deputies.
The majority of cases Ranger dealt with last year involved narcotics. K9 Ranger also assisted in several drug incidents at locations and/or article searches or tracking assignments.
The Sheriff’s Office also has a bloodhound, K9 Chief. Chief is with Deputy Brandon Gudgeon. Chief deals with mostly tracking and locating. Deputy Gudgeon and Chief had limited use last year but assisted on several tracking cases for individuals involved in crimes or locating missing persons.
Chief is available with Deputy Gudgeon for assistance in Lafayette County and other jurisdictions as needed.
The Lafayette County Sheriff’s Department feels that Deputy Farrell and K9 Ranger and Deputy Gudgeon and K9 Chief are both important and valuable parts of the team and provide a valuable service to the citizens and community.
The Darlington Police Department has K9 Ace who has been partnered with Officer Nick Mantsch since June 2020 after retirement of K9 Kilo, who was with the department since 2010.
Unfortunately last year, Ace was diagnosed with heartworm less than a month after getting back from training with Officer Mantsch. He was unable to be put back on active duty until October.
After that brief time away, Ace was able to be deployed on 15 cases, mostly for exterior vehicle sniffs on traffic stops. Methamphetamine, Cocaine, THC, large amounts of illegal prescriptions, methamphetamine paraphernalia, and THC paraphernalia were all confiscated as a result of those deployments.
In December, Ace and Officer Mantsch were able to apprehend a drug dealer on Main Street in Darlington. That person was jailed on those offenses along with resisting arrest.
Both Office Mantsch and Ace are looking forward to continuing to be an asset to the community in 2021.