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Fairmont K9 Officer Wins National Awards

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An area K9 officer is receiving some national recognition.

A member of the Fairmont police department and his dog just won awards for performance in a national K9 competition. 

Officer Chad Sanow and his dog Jango are fresh off of some wins from a national police dog competition.

"First place in articles.  I perfect score, a score of seventy points and we found both articles which one was a handgun and the second was leather," said Sanow.

That took Jango thirty-two seconds to accomplish.

The dogs also have to figure out which box a suspect is hiding inside.

"We have four minutes to do that, we found the suspect in thirty-four seconds," said Sanow.

They took first place for those tasks as well as third place in agility and first place in the team competition.

"These trials are a way to demonstrate really these skills that they have and also really by him scoring so well. It helps us protect the community and us civilly against allegations that the dog was not trained well and that's certainly not the case," said Fairmont police chief Greg Brolsma.

Chief Greg Brolsma says having Jango and his predecessors on the force has proved to be very beneficial.

"So many arrests that we've been involved in over the years, a canine has been used to help us establish probable cause to conduct the searches," said Brolsma.

For Sanow, he's proud of the wins, but that's not what he's most proud of when it comes to his dog.

"When we're out and we find the suspects, that's the real trophy.  When the dog is out on the hunt doing his job, that means more to me than a piece of brass or a trophy," said Sanow.

Now they have both as a reward for all of their hard work.

If officer Sanow looks familiar, he's been in the news before.

He was shot in the chest by a suspect who'd set his own house on fire as an ambush last October.  Sanow's vest saved his life.