|New CPD K-9 Officer already connecting to community|
|Written by Janna Ross|
|Tuesday, 06 November 2012 11:16|
Sometimes you just know what you are suppose to do. Sometimes you just have a calling and your path in life leads you exactly to where and what you should be doing.
That is exactly the case for Charlestown Police Department’s new K-9 Officer, Alex Streets.
Streets grew up in Charlestown and was always interested in law enforcement. Now, at the age of 25, he is living his dream.
“I’ve always had an interest in law enforcement ever since I was a kid. I was always raised in my family to help others and to serve others. I expressed an interest at 21 years old and got into be a Reserve and fell in love with it,” Streets said.
The 2006 graduate of Charlestown High School was hired as a Reserve for the Charlestown Police Department in 2009. He was hired as a full time officer for the department in May. After being hired, Streets, peaked an interest in the K-9 unit.
“When I was a Reserve I was in charge of the Juvenile Community Service Program. When I got into law enforcement in ‘09, I always had the attitude to be pro-active and always wanted to work hard for the department and invest in my career as a police officer,” Streets explained. “I started training with the guys when I was hired. I was a decoy for K-9 Officer Bertram and began developing an interest in K-9 when I saw their abilities and resources. I then expressed the interest to the administration.”
Streets was given the opportunity to take over the K-9 training of Charlestown’s K-9 Awi. She has been serving the community since 2008 under former K-9 Officer Adam Clark.
He has taken the opportunity to another level in the short time he has been with his new K-9 partner. K-9 Officer Streets was certified with K-9 Awi on October 18. After the weeks of intense training, he took the weekend off. Once he was back patrolling the streets and doing his part to keep Charlestown safe, it didn’t take long for him to be able to take the K-9 training and use it.
Streets and K-9 Awi are certified through NAPWDA, the North American Police Work Dog Association and are certified in narcotics, obedience, area and article search, tracking, building search and criminal apprehension. The duo were trained by Master Trainer and Major of the Jeffersonville Police Department Glenn Jackson.
Streets knew when he became a full time officer what he wanted. He wanted to be a K-9 Officer.
“I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for the support of my family and the leadership of the guys I work with everyday,” Streets stated. He gave credit for his success to his wife, his three year old son and the influence of family members who are in law enforcement and former K-9 Officers at Charlestown.
Streets has several family members in law enforcement. His cousin, Bob Lemmons, is a Reserve for Charlestown Police while another cousin, Chris Springstun is a Conversation Officer in Putnam County. Yet another cousin, Bill Lemmons, is a Private Investigator in Alabama. The family is definitely devoted to public service as one of Streets’ younger brothers, Blaire Streets, is in the Air Force. His other younger brother, Blaise Streets, is a local musician.
Streets was also quick to give credit to former K-9 Officers for helping develop his interest in K-9 when he was a Reserve.
“I worked with K-9 Awi when she was operating with Adam and K-9 Maja when she was with Jason Broady, who is now the Assistant Chief,” Streets recalled. “I always enjoyed watching the dogs work on deployments and when I got full time, I had a lot more exposure and knew that is what I wanted to do.”
Streets concluded explaining the new baseball cards Charlestown K-9 Officers have ordered. K-9 Officer Streets and K-9 Commander Bertram will soon have trading cards to hand out during community events.
“Awi says, to be Top Dog, Stay in School, Work Hard and Keep Your Paws Off Drugs,” Streets concluded about what his K-9 Awi says on the new card.
Charlestown Police Chief Keith McDonald is excited about the new leadership of his K-9 teams.
“Alex and Ben, both, have brought a new excitement to the K-9 Division and to the department as a whole. As an administrator, I think that anytime you can take a young officer and keep them motivated they are going to take the programs that they are invested in to new heights and make improvements to programs such as our K-9 division, which already has a rich tradition and history behind it. Not to mention the will to fight crime with the special abilities that these two dogs posses,” Chief McDonald said.
Chief McDonald continued, “Alex has impressed me from the standpoint that one, he is eager to learn new things. But most importantly, his mindset is to be vested in our community by assisting my administration in making improvements to the department so that we can provide better service to our citizens. I think that Alex’s youth plays a significant role as well in that Alex has a lot of fresh ideas that assist our department in reaching out to others in our community, especially our youth; and being in K-9, kids can relate to an animal that they may have had in their lives. So a connection with our kids is usually established pretty quickly and Alex has a great personality to connect and relate to our youth.”