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New K9s help Department of Corrections curb contraband in Oklahoma prisons

Thursday, November 03, 2022

PAULS VALLEY – The Oklahoma Department of Corrections’ (ODOC) Canine Program, part of the agency’s Office of the Inspector General (OIG), has added five new contraband-detecting dogs to its team.

The five new Belgian Malinois completed rigorous training before being deployed to Oklahoma’s 23 prison facilities. Skilled at identifying methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, and marijuana, these canines are also trained to detect cellphones. Soon, they’ll become the first in the state to be trained to combat the ever-growing fentanyl threat.

“It creates a safer environment for our officers and staff, and the inmates themselves,” Canine Program Manager Eric Enblom said. “They can’t look out for themselves so we have to look out for them.”

The newly deployed members of Canine Program are already credited with a significant contraband bust this week. A handler and his dog tracked 2.75 pounds of marijuana, 16 pounds of tobacco, and 14 cellphones in a contraband drop west of Oklahoma State Reformatory in Granite.

“Using the scent of the bad guy. The handler noticed a footprint in the dirt south of the institution,” Enblom said. “A mile back, he got to a farm building and finds the drop.”

With the new dogs, ODOC now has 14 K-9s within the agency. They will be used to find drugs and other contraband for the Department of Corrections and other outside agencies.

Canine handlers and the animals are registered with the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.


Note: A broadcast-ready version of this story and photos are available upon request.

Media Contact:

Josh Ward, Public Information Manager
(405) 435-9173

Last Modified on Nov 03, 2022
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