CARROLLTON, Ala. (WIAT) —The Pickens County Sheriff’s Office is adding two new members to the force: K-9 Deputy Zuna and her handler Deputy Justin Franklin. The duo is looking forward to protecting and serving the community.
Franklin says having a partner that can help him locate a missing person or track down a dangerous drug suspect is a valuable tool to help him fight crime.
“It is an amazing feeling having a dog to work with and she is an amazing tool as far as tracking goes,” Franklin said. “If you have a child or an elderly person who gets out their lost in the wood, you can track them down and help get them to safety and, as far as a narcotics detection goes, it’s a great tool to find things we normally wouldn’t find and get it off the street.”
Deputy Franklin and K-9 Zuna finished their 5-week training certification program at Alabama K-9 on Feb. 10. Zuna is a Belgian Malinois that has been trained in narcotics detection and tracking. Sheriff Jordan Powell says the K-9 and her partner are now out on the road on patrol.
“It’s amazing to have another tool in the toolbox especially out here trying to combat drugs,” Powell said. “They go out here and conduct traffic stops. Highway 82 is a major road where lots of narcotics run up and down.’
Sheriff Powell tells CBS 42 that since January, deputies have made more than 20 drug arrests in Pickens County.