Canton Police K-9 Tuko graduates, ready for patrol

Canton Police K-9 Tuko graduates, ready for patrol
K-9 Tuko officially graduates from training. (Source: Police K-9 Association)
K-9 Tuko officially graduates from training. (Source: Police K-9 Association)

CANTON, OH (WOIO) - After a rigorous K-9 training, Canton Police K-9 Tuko is ready to start the job. He graduated this week at the top of his class and is ready to patrol the streets.

Officer Ryan Davis, K-9 Tuko's handler says it's been a bittersweet experience getting to know his new partner.

"I never expected to go through another class," said Officer Davis. "Jethro was supposed to take me to retirement and we were gonna ride off into the sunset together hopefully."

But instead, he's still grieving the loss of his fallen partner, K-9 Jethro but moving forward with K-9 Tuko.

Tuko trained for 12 weeks in Canton. His handlers put him through the paces, readying him for the job. His specialty is narcotics.

"Yeah, he's still a lot of puppy still. 17 months old, not quite. Very attentive. Very driven," said Officer Davis.

Cleveland 19 News Reporter Sia Nyorkor wanted to see Tuko in action but was too nervous, so Senior Producer Cassie Nist put on a "bite suit" and went one-on-one with the K-9.

Officer Davis and K-9 Tuko will work the midnight shift just like he and fallen K-9 Jethro did. He says his family is anxious.

"It's them dealing with the fact that I'm back out there. The fact that everything that happened is gonna be in their minds for a long time," he said.

Officer Davis says playtime is over and he and K-9 Tuko are ready to hit the streets. They start patrols next weekend.

The trial for the suspect charged with shooting and killing K-9 Jethro, Kelontre Barefield, will start in July, in Stark County.

You can read about Officer Davis & K-9 Tuko's journey here.

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