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The Hesston Record
345 Old Hwy 81
Hesston, KS 67062
(620) 327-4831

July 12, 2018 Hesston RecordJuly 12, 2018 Hesston Record

New Officer Taking On The Full Weight Of Hesston Drug Trade

Posted 4/13/2017

Record Staff

Hesston Lions Club President Amanda Claerhout and Treasurer Diane Bonczyk presented Hesston Police Chief Doug Schroeder with a check for $4,500. 

“We were not surprised by the donation amount. We knew the community would come out and support the police department,” said Bonczyk. 

The funds were raised at the annual Pancake Feed in January and were designated for the purchase and training of the department’s newest officer - Atlas.

According to Schroeder, the donation helped offset the cost of the first three weeks of intensive training for Atlas and his handler, officer Jacob Garver. 

“Officer Garver and Atlas have been trained and demonstrated proficiency by completing certification testing.  They are fully deployable as a resource.  Ongoing training is important for canine teams as they will average 16 – 20 hours of training a month for the rest of Atlas’s career,” he said.

Schroeder said having Atlas on the streets of Hesston is a major benefit for the community.

“A dog is a tremendous resource in deterring and interdicting drugs in the community,” he said.

As a certified drug dog, Atlas can give officers access to vehicles and allow for searches that otherwise may not be conducted.

“I’m looking forward to the ability to find drugs when we suspect that drugs are present, but don’t have probable cause for a search.  If drugs are present, Atlas will indicate and give us probable cause to conduct a search,” said Schroeder.

With Atlas and Garver on call, Schroeder said the pair will be major assets in getting illegal drugs off community streets.

“We are making it very hard for drug users and drug dealers to want to live, traverse and operate in Hesston.  In regards to drugs, we can’t make positive decisions on their behalf, but we will hold them accountable for poor decisions in Hesston,” he said.

As for the Lions, Bonczyk said they will continue to be positive influences on the community.

“  We want people to know we just don’t collect eye glasses and do the pancake feed, we do interstate cleanup twice a year, we sponsor the health fair bus, the rabies clinic and H-town camp. We also sponsor band camp for high schoolers . Just to name a few things the Lions do,” she said.