Sheriff’s department fundraises for K-9

Kristen Lewis, Staff Reporter

A fundraiser for a new service K-9 dog that will be coming to the sheriff’s department will take place from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on May 30.

Sheriff James Rankin of the Coles County Sheriff’s Office said the dog would be a new addition to the sheriff’s department family.

He said having multiple dogs is helpful for the force.

The department is hosting a “Posse Ride” to raise funds to get a German shepherd.  All motorcycles and Jeeps are welcome to participate in the ride, which will take place in Charleston and other surrounding areas. Food and music will be at the event as well, which also welcomes children.

Rankin said posse rides also happened a few years ago, and as new sheriff he wanted to bring them back again.

Donations and grants have already been received to get the new dog. Businesses like Mars Pet Care in Mattoon have already contributed to the cause.

Funds from the fundraiser will be used to purchase a bulletproof vest for the dog and a new vehicle for the dog to ride in with its caregiver.

Officer Shane Dusan is the new caretaker of the K-9 coming to the force.

Rankin said once all of the money is received from the fundraiser, Dusan will go pick out a dog that suits him the best.

The dog stays with the caretaker at all times, and Dusan will train the dog to work on the force.

Officer Steve Spurgeon takes care of the older K-9 dog Bo, a golden retriever who is trained to find drugs and explosives. Known as a sniff dog, Bo will still be active on the force even after the new dog comes to the department.

A meet and greet will start off the day at 8 a.m. through 9:55 a.m. at the Owen Motor Sports Dealership in Charleston where the department will serve doughnuts and coffee.

At 10 a.m. everyone will be directed to leave for the first stop at the American Legion Post 88 leave for Oakland Veterans of Foreign Wars in Mattoon. 

The Oakland VFW leaves for Charleston VFW at 12:15 p.m. The Charleston VFW will have a lunch where a silent auction will be held and donations will be taken. There is around $1,000 worth of raffles for the event.

It costs $10 to participate in the ride and tee shirts can be purchased at the event for $10 as well.

Kristen Lewis can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected].