HAZELWOOD, Mo. – A new crimefighter is on the streets in Hazelwood and all she asks in return for her work is to play with a tennis ball.
Fox 2/News 11’s Dan Gray reported from the Hazelwood Police Department to introduce us to "K-9 Jessie."
K-9 Jessie has been on duty here at the Hazelwood Police Department since November and already has found illegal drugs here in Hazelwood and found evidence while working DEA agents.
She is a 15-month-old Belgian Malinois born in the Netherlands. Jessie responds to commands in Dutch and English.
The dog and her partner, Officer James Petty, went through eight weeks of training. She is trained in narcotics detection, apprehension, and tracking techniques.
The $10,000 cost for the dog and training was paid for by the Ryan Griffin Foundation.
The Griffin family of St. Charles County started the foundation for their son Ryan who was a star wrestler. He died of an opioid overdose.
Hazlewood Police Department K-9-unit supervisor Lieutenant Andrew Eagan said they gave her the nickname "The Griff" dog in honor of the family.
"She's got a lot of energy she's like a two-year-old child," Eagan said. "But she's doing really good. Her training is coming along she's getting high scored in all her testing and she just loves to work, you can see it her eyes when she gets here as well as Officer Petty they’re just both ready to work and make a difference."
So far, Jessie has found narcotics in two cars in Hazelwood and when she was working with the DEA in an investigation at St. Louis Lambert International Airport she was able to sniff out cash in luggage.