K9s trained to detect electronic devices being used in Wisconsin
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Law enforcement in Wisconsin is using a type of police K9 to help detect electronic devices that criminals, like child predators, may be hiding.
The K9s are known as electronic storage detection dogs. They can detect devices like a thumb drive or a small SD card that officers may not be able to find when searching a suspect's home. Those items can contain crucial evidence.
Kozak is an electronic storage detection dog working for the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation.
"He can search for things all the way down to an SD card the size of your pinky fingernail all the way up to cell phones, flash drives, hard drives," said his handler, Tami Pawlak, a special agent with the Wisconsin Department of Justice.
"Trained to detect a odor from adhesive that's used in the memory boards of devices that have storage," added Joseph Mech, Special Agent In Charge for the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
Kozak is assigned to the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.
"A lot of these predators they hide things on very small items, child pornography they hide something, whether it's manufactured or online, they hide it anywhere. It could be in their ceiling, it could be in their wall, it could be on tiny devices hidden on a purse that we just miss," said Pawlak, "Investigators searched a room and he's found items that they missed after they were done searching."
He's also helped on homicide and missing persons cases, including the Closs case.
"We were up in Barron County participating in the investigation up there and Kozak went to help," said Pawlak.
Kozak is one of two electronic storage detection dogs in the state of Wisconsin who have been trained at Jordan Detection K9 in Indiana.
"What takes an investigator two, three hours, the dogs can get it done in about ten minutes," said Todd Jordan, owner and trainer at Jordan Detection.
Jordan has trained more than 20 dogs, but the first dog Jordan trained to detect electronic devices was named "Bear." He was used to search the home of Jared Fogle, the former Subway Spokeperson, during a child pornography investigation.
"The state's attorney said on the news that the dog had found key evidence," said Jordan.
For Koza, when he seeks and finds, the reward is food. For his handler, the reward is knowing no piece of evidence has been left behind.
"On a case where you have, you know someone's manufacturing child porn, and you go through this house, did I miss something that we didn't see," said Pawlak.
"He's not only a huge asset to locate the device for charging but also piece of mind for investigators that we found everything in that house."