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Cpl Jeff Rachel & K9 Jett
Montgomery County MD Police

On December 8, 2008 at approximately 1230 hours, Corporal Jeff Rachel and his partner, K9 Jett, of the Montgomery County Police Department’s Drug Interdiction Unit were requested by officers on a traffic stop for a K9 scan. An older Dodge Dakota pickup truck had been stopped for traffic violations. The driver of the vehicle was a target in an ongoing Immigration Customs Enforcement investigation. The driver had been observed acting in a suspicious manner prior to being stopped.

Upon arrival, Corporal Rachel made contact with officers who had removed the driver from his vehicle. At this point Corporal Rachel retrieved K9 Jett and conducted a scan of the vehicle. The vehicle was stopped on the right shoulder of Interstate 270. The driver of the vehicle had pulled the vehicle close to the concrete barrier making only the front of the truck, the driver’s side, and the rear of the truck available to scan. When the driver exited the vehicle he had left the driver’s window rolled down. The weather was cold and there was a stiff wind blowing from the rear of the vehicle towards the front. The scan was initiated at the front of the vehicle. A fast pass was conducted, followed by a detailed scan. During the detailed scan, Jett was presented the driver side mirror. As Jett was moving to the area of the mirror a noticeable change in her behavior was observed. Jett then went down, moved to the open window and attempted to enter the vehicle. Corporal Rachel recognizing Jett’s alert to the presence of a narcotic substance then allowed Jett to enter the vehicle.

Once inside the vehicle Jett began to work the odor from the front of the truck towards the rear of the vehicle which had an extended cab. In the rear portion of the cab Jett went to the right side behind the driver’s seat. Jett gave a final indication by scratching on the side panel wall. The vehicle was then searched by Corporal Rachel. Investigators located a hidden compartment built into the wall of the vehicle. The truck was then removed from the roadside and taken to a secure police facility for further inspection.

At the police lot investigators were able to gain access to the hidden compartment which was secured by a trunk latch mechanism. A car battery was located in the bed of the truck. Investigators learned that the battery was brought into the cab of the truck, hooked up to an after- market wiring system, and used as a power source to operate the latch for the compartment via a concealed button.

The compartment was found to contain five kilograms of Cocaine having an estimated street value of $147,500. The Cocaine had been wrapped in cellophane, wrapped in paper towels soaked in cleaning fluid, wrapped by more plastic wrap, packaging tape and dryer sheets. There was also an abundance of miniature air freshener bottles placed throughout the interior of the truck. The driver was subsequently arrested and taken into custody by ICE agents.



Dfc Joshua McFarland and K9 Brit
Frederick County MD Sheriff’s Office

On 08/11/08 at approximately 2055 hours, Dfc Joshua McFarland and K9 Brit of the Frederick County Sheriff’s Office were requested by deputies on a traffic stop for a K9 scan. Upon arrival, Dfc McFarland made contact the initiating deputy who stated he had stopped the vehicle for a traffic violation. Upon initial contact, the occupants were moving around more than usual and were stating that they did not speak English. Dfc McFarland had the occupants exit the vehicle and had all the windows rolled up on the vehicle.

Dfc McFarland retrieved K9 Brit and conducted a scan of the vehicle. K9 Brit began working odor near the passenger side door and squared up on the door. K9 Brit placed his nose on the door seam and gave a respiration change. K9 Brit then began to scratch at the door. Dfc McFarland recognized K9 Brit’s actions as his alert to the odor of narcotics within the vehicle.

In a search of the vehicle, 1,110.5 grams of cocaine was recovered from the vehicle and the occupants. The driver and two other occupants were placed under arrest for possession of CDS with the intent to distribute. The vehicle, as well as in $550.00 in US currency was also seized.


Pfc Mike Ensko and K9 Hadson
Howard County MD Police Department

On May 21, 2008 at 2001 hours Pfc. Ensko was requested to respond to Little Patuxent Parkway at Vantage Point to assist patrol with a vehicle drug scan. Upon arrival Pfc. Ensko contacted patrol officers and was asked to scan a black Lexus with his certified narcotics canine, Hadson.

Pfc. Ensko and Hadson started the scan at the front passenger headlight and proceeded counter clockwise around the car. Pfc. Ensko noticed a change in Hadson’s behavior when he reached the driver’s side door. Hadson sniffed the bottom seam and stood up and stuck his head in the open window. Hadson then started to intently sniff the air that was coming from inside the vehicle. Hadson then sat down and stared at the driver’s door and would not move. Pfc. Ensko advised officers of the positive alert and the vehicle was then searched.

While searching the vehicle officer’s recovered marijuana and a heroine press in the trunk. The driver of the vehicle was arrested, at which time a search warrant was written for the suspect’s residence. While searching the residence 2 kilo’s of heroin, 2 large suitcases containing 5.4 million dollars in U.S. currency, and an MP5 assault rifle were seized from the suspect. All of this would not have been possible if not for the canine alert. The suspect was charged with numerous violations to include CDS distribution, CDS possession, and illegal possession of a regulated firearm.



Cpl Dennis Reighard and K9 Shadow
Prince George's County Police

On January 29, 2008, members of the Prince George’s County Police Interdiction Unit were conducting hotel / motel interdiction efforts at the Red Roof Inn, Lanham. During surveillance of the parking lot an individual was observed walking to the door of room #105. The individual began to look around the parking lot and then walked away from the door over to a parked vehicle.

The individual was approached and interviewed, at which time he denied any relationship motel room #105. The individual acted very nervous and continued to look towards room #105. As the interview continued several discrepancies were found with his story, the individual finally advised he was in fact living in room #105 and provided a room key.

The individual then gave Detectives consent to search the room. The detectives opened room #105 and found the room to be extremely cluttered with boxes, food and trash. The Detectives then requested a drug scan of the room by Corporal Reighard #2152 and his Canine partner “SHADOW”.

Corporal Reighard #2152 began the scan at the front door of room #105, working in a clockwise direction. The team encountered a large pile of boxes, clothes and food at the first corner of the room. Canine “SHADOW” then began to shut down and inhale deeply; “SHADOW” changed his search pattern and began to work the scent cone back towards the motel room door. Upon reaching the door, “SHADOW” turned again and began working the scent back towards the corner.

Corporal Reighard #2152 noticed “SHADOW” working back and forth, and observed that a Detective was holding the door slightly open from the outside looking in. Corporal Reighard #2152 realized that this was disrupting the scent cone and had the Detective shut the door. “SHADOW’ then worked the scent cone back to the corner and continued to the bed, “SHADOW” jumped onto the bed and placed his nose onto the end of the light over the bed. “SHADOW” began to indicate on the light by scratching.

Corporal Reighard #2152 completed the drug scan of the room with no other indications given by “SHADOW”. The Detectives were advised of “SHADOW’s” indication. The light was examined and the end cap was pried off, a void space was found between the light bulb and wiring system. Located in this void were 59.7 grams of Marijuana and 6.2 grams of Crack Cocaine.



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