A new, furry, four-legged police officer will soon be on the beat in Solebury Township.
K-9 Blitz, a two-year-old male Belgian Maliois, arrived in October and is currently training with his human handler, Solebury Township Police Officer Matthew Rice, at the Penn Vet Working Dog Center.
They will be the first K-9 unit in the township.
The four-year police veteran and his new four-legged partner are expected to hit the streets beginning in early 2020.
“K-9 Blitz and Officer Rice will respond to all types of calls, including burglaries, missing persons searches and traffic stops as well as track suspects who have fled from a crime scene on foot,” said Jonathan Koretzky, a Solebury detective and corporal.
The K-9 team also will be available for demonstrations at schools and community gatherings, he said.
“This builds community support and the interaction necessary for a good relationship (with residents),” the police officer said.
The police department is using “generous donations from groups, businesses and residents” to create and maintain the K-9 unit.
The department was able to buy K-9 Blitz with a contribution from the Marilyn Lichtman Foundation, the detective/corporal said.
A K-9 typically costs between $8,000 and $10,000, he said.
Area residents also have contributed almost $6,000 as of mid-November and area businesses have donated close to $10,000, the police officer said.
The donations are helping to cover the unit’s training and some of its ongoing expenses.
The department will continue its fundraising efforts to help cover Blitz’s food costs, boarding, veterinary services, and maintenance of the unit’s specially-equipped vehicle and equipment.
To make an online donation visit www.soleburytwp.org/police/pages/k9-fundraiser.
Check donations can be made payable to Solebury Township, with “K9” written on the memo line.
The contributions can be sent to the Solebury Township Police Department, P.O. Box 139, Solebury, PA 18963.
“The Solebury Township Police Department is grateful for the support and strives to ensure that the K-9 detail will fulfill its commitment in a way that serves the entire community,” Koretzky said.