The newest four-legged member of the Sterling Heights Police Force, “Ivy,” will be presented to City Council next Tuesday and unofficially sworn-in to begin her training with the SHPD.
Ivy is a 3-month-old Dutch Shepard received by SHPD last week. She is assigned to 22-year veteran Officer Darren Steele, one of the department’s two K9 Officers. Ivy will be undergoing training over the next few months before taking on full-time K9 duties specializing in narcotics later this year. She will also be trained in tracking and other uses for SHPD.
SHPD currently has two working K9 units: “Chase” and “Blitz.” When Ivy is ready for full-time duty, the department will retire Officer Steele’s current dog Blitz after more than a decade with the department. Ivy is the department’s first female K9 Officer since “Heidi” in the 1970s.
Police Chief John Berg said the department sees the value in the work of its K9 officers and look forward to seeing Ivy take on full-time duty in a few months. “The dogs’ sense of smell enables them to detect narcotics with incredible accuracy, which is highly useful for our offers assigned to Operations and Road Patrol,” Berg said. “These dogs are also great at tracking missing persons, clearing buildings and assisting in taking a non-compliant offender into custody. Very often, the dog’s presence also just has a way of keeping the peace.”
For more information please contact Community Relations Director Bridget Kozlowski at (586) 446-2471.