K-9 finds meth outside Ohio county jail in latest contraband bust

Thunder, a black Labrador retriever, and his handler, CO Jason Schultz, found approximately four grams of meth outside the Court Street Jail

By Lauren Pack

BUTLER COUNTY, Ohio — The latest discovery of drugs near a Butler County jail facility continues the work of a new trained dog for the Butler County Sheriff’s Office and efforts to prevent the passage of contraband outside facilities.

Thunder, a black Labrador retriever, and his handler, Corrections Officer Jason Schultz, found approximately four grams of meth outside the Court Street Jail on Monday in an area regularly checked for dropped contraband.

The jail facility is housing inmates granted special privileges, such as being outside on work detail and cleaning in the three county jail facilities.

Chief Deputy Anthony Dwyer said items such as drugs, tobacco and cell phones are left for the inmates to pick up while working outside the jail.

“We use the dog at all of our facilities to go, and we search areas immediately around the jail, specifically ones that are know to historically contain contraband,” Dwyer said. “The contraband trade in our facility comes in a variety of ways, but one is for a person to secretly hide it on the exterior premises and (inmates working ouside) move around the outside of the building will pick it up.”

Inmates will have someone, through a conversation or letters, plant something in a location they may be able to get to, he said.

“Our staff is always with (them) but you many have three or four (inmates) with with one staff member,” Dwyer said. “It becomes almost like a magic show as to whether you can see every movement they make. The creativeness to smuggle contraband into the facility isn’t rivaled by much.”

Dwyer said contraband has been found in dirty diapers taken from the public restrooms and dropped in a dirty mop bucket that resurfaces when the water is emptied.

“The officers with them are trained to spot (contraband operations) and it goes on in every correctional facility in the world,” Dwyer said. “That is one of the main reasons we got the dog. It is a force multiplier, one dog can do the job of 100 corrections officers.”

The Matt Haverkamp Foundation, which was established in 2005 for Golf Manor police K-9 Officer Matt Haverkamp, who died in a car crash, is funding the dog.


©2020 the Journal-News (Hamilton, Ohio)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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