Police dog Chewy’s first call nets sizable bust

URBANA – K9 Officer Chewy’s very first call resulted in a sizable bust Tuesday night after the police dog helped U. of I. Police officers find more than 100 grams of cannabis and more than $5,000 in cash.

Officers initially stopped a vehicle for disobeying a stop sign near Gregory and Dorner drives, Urbana, at 8:27 p.m. Tuesday, and they thought they may have smelled an odor of cannabis emanating from the car when they approached.

The driver and the passenger denied having anything illegal in the car. Officers called in Chewy just to make sure.

After sniffing around the exterior of the vehicle, Chewy indicated that there were either drugs or drug paraphernalia inside. Upon searching the car, officers found more than 100 grams of cannabis, either in raw form or prepared as candy. Police also found in a suitcase more than $5,000 suspected to have been involved in drug transactions.

The two occupants of the vehicle were arrested for possession and delivery of cannabis and were taken to the Champaign County Jail.

Chewy is a 15-month-old, drug-sniffing German Shepherd who became a member of the University of Illinois Police Department this summer. Tuesday’s call was Chewy’s first real-life action after several months of training with his handler, Officer Doug Beckman, who has been a narcotics K-9 handler at UIPD for 17 years.