TUCSON, Ariz. - Oro Valley police welcomed a four-legged member to the squad: Diesel the K-9.
The 2-year-old, Czech Republic-born Belgian Malinois replaces Emerson, who had been on the force since 2011 and retired last year for age and health reasons.
A $12,000 donation from realtor Lisa Bayless funded Diesel's purchase and 12 weeks of training. The Canyon del Oro Kennel Club donated $3,000 to complete the certification process.
“One of the reasons people move to Oro Valley is because it’s a safe town”, Bayless said in a statement. “The OVPD obviously plays a large role in creating a safe environment for all the residents to enjoy. I was happy to support their efforts because I love Oro Valley and I love dogs.”
Diesel will aid human officers -- including partner Kevin Peterson -- in narcotics detection, searches and suspect apprehension. Oro Valley's other active K-9 is named Bruno.