Larsh’s partner is K-9 officer Scout, a black German shepherd and dual-purposed trained dog. Scout is trained to detect methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine and marijuana, and is trained for patrol, which includes tracking and apprehension.
Though Larsh is pleased to have been chosen for the assignment, he said he does “feel a weight on my shoulders” being added to the K-9 unit team as it’s the first time the city’s had three active unites.
“It’s just obviously the department sees that it’s beneficial to have dogs on the department and obviously the city agrees with that,” Larsh said.
City Council authorized the addition of a third canine unit when it OK’d a resolution earlier this year for department heads to move forward on capital projects. The expense for the city was estimated to be $15,500.
Police Chief Mike Dickey said there is a growing need for the unit.
Larsh joins Officer John Cresap and his partner, Canaan, and Officer John Vinskey and his partner, Koda. This gives the city 24-hour coverage with a K-9 unit because the demand had increased in recent years.
Cresap and Vinskey had in 2015 nearly 2,900 calls for activity, which vary from traffic stops to tracking missing people and criminal suspects. While it’s hard to determine how much work Larsh and Scout will have, Larsh said his partner has been deployed 25 to 30 times over his first eight shifts as a handler all within the city and primarily for narcotic searches.