The Franklin County Sheriff's Office Canine Unit is a part of the Patrol Bureau. Responsibilities include tracking of criminal suspects and lost persons, evidence recovery, bomb detection, drug detection, and general patrol duties. The Canine Unit is one of the few available in central Ohio and their use is often requested by other agencies.
The unit also goes to schools, fairs, and other public events to demonstrate the important work they do, as well as showing the public how well they are trained in getting the bad guys – while also showing how friendly and loving they are with the good guys.
All of the canines in this unit are trained in general police work, along with a specialize focus.
K9-1 Sgt. Aaron Heflin and Vando - Explosives/Patrol
Sergeant Heflin is a 17-year veteran of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. His partner, Vando, is a 6-year old German Shepherd specializing in explosive detection.
K9-2 Sgt. Jeff Valentine and Will - Narcotics/Patrol
Sergeant Valentine is a 12-year veteran of the FCSO. His partner, Will, is a 5-year old German Shepherd. Will has specialized training in narcotic detection.
K9-3 Deputy Jeremey Copas and Atrey - Explosives/Patrol
Deputy Copas is a 21-year veteran of the FCSO. His partner, Atrey, is a 6-year old Belgian Malinois trained in explosive detection.
K9-4 Deputy Zach Cooper and Turbo - Narcotics/Patrol
Deputy Cooper is a 17-year veteran of the FCSO. His partner, Turbo, is a 3-year old German Shepherd with specialized training in narcotics detection.
K9-5 Deputy Jimmy McCoy - Narcotics/Patrol
Deputy McCoy is a 23-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office. His partner, Riddick, EOW 10/21/19 was a 6-year old Belgian Malinois with specialized training in narcotics detection.
K9-6 Deputy Mike Severance and Hazen Jay - Narcotics/Patrol
Deputy Severance is a 44-year veteran of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, and is the longest serving member of the Canine Unit with 31 years as a canine handler. His partner, Hazen Jay, is a 3-year old German Shepherd. Hazen Jay will be Deputy Severance's seventh canine partner.
K9-7 Deputy Robert McKee and Gator - Narcotics/Patrol
Deputy McKee is a 32-year veteran of the Sheriff’s Office, and has been a canine handler for 17 of those years. His partner, Gator, is 3-year old Dutch Shepard. He is specialty trained in narcotics detection.
K9-8 Deputy Roderick Thorne and Diablo - Explosives/Patrol
Deputy Thorne is a 20-year veteran of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. His partner, Diablo, is a 5-year old German Shepherd that has specialized training in explosive detection.