Meet Barney, an eleven (11) y/o Labrador mix sworn police K-9 Officer. That’s him below…
Barney and his partner / handler (since 2010), Tacoma Police Officer Henry Betts were serving a search warrant on Tuesday, March 24th, 2015, hoping to find controlled substances. Barney detected the scent and signaled his handler by placing his nose on the substance, which, in the case, was methamphetamines (forty-four (44) lbs of meth to be exact).
The good news is that forty-four (44) pounds of meth won’t hit the streets, three (3) folks, Samuel Tafolla Hernandez, 39, Thomas Servantes Diaz, 34, and Jose Mauricio Lozano-Miranda, 38, were charged with unlawful possession of a controlled substance and $225,000.00 in cash was recovered and seized from a book case during the search.
The bad news is that meth is extremely toxic to dogs and apparently Barney ingested some of the powdered crystal while doing his duty. Per his handler “Barney put his sniffer on the unwrapped drugs and came in direct contact with the meth”. By Tuesday evening, when when he was brought to BluePearl Veterinary Hospital, Barney had a body temperature of 109 and was having seizures. Per Dr. Kobi Johnson (of the veterinary hospital): “Thankfully, the Tacoma officers got Barney here very quickly… Methamphetamines are extremely toxic to dogs.” Fortunately Barney was becoming more alert and responsive by Wednesday morning and doctors are “cautiously optimistic” that he’ll make a full recovery.
Per Pierce County Prosecutor Mark Lindquist: “This is one of the biggest drug busts we’ve seen in Pierce County in the last decade”, and Barney is, in large part, responsible. Per Barney’s partner / handler: “He’s a phenomenal dog… Really just incredible.” Per me: Thank you Barney, and all of your sworn police K-9 brothers, sisters and cousins. You are all great service dogs (even if you are sometimes hampered by piss poor trainers). Get well soon and enjoy safe shifts!