Officer Adam Miller is leaving the Clintonville Police Department (CPD) to take a job in Menasha – and K-9 Apollo is going with him.
Extensive fundraising efforts were conducted in 2011 to help bring a K-9 unit to Clintonville. The dog, Apollo, arrived in July. Miller completed training with Apollo in August, and Apollo started on the job on Aug. 13, 2011. The pair had several weeks of training for narcotics, missing person and cadaver recovery training.
One of the police department’s vehicles was transformed into a K-9 unit with a dog kennel, automated door openers, and an automated air conditioning and heating system.
The city has been negotiating with Miller regarding his departure. An agreement was reached on Oct. 1 to allow Miller to purchase Apollo on his last day of employment.
According to City Administrator Lisa Kuss, none of the police department’s remaining full-time employees want to be a K-9 officer. She also said that trying to force an officer to become a K-9 officer wouldn’t work well.
Kuss said the city could keep Apollo until a new K-9 officer can be chosen and trained, but it would cost $150 per week just to house him. Additional expenses to keep him exercised in drug and search missions would also be incurred.
Kuss also noted that Apollo has had surgery on his leg, and in his last training – which was three days long – he struggled to perform at an acceptable level. If Apollo had to be re-trained, he would have to go through six weeks of training missions with the new human officer.
“While we could have kept (Apollo), we didn’t feel like we had a viable plan with what and who to keep him with,” said Kuss. “So, with that said, we tried to do the best we could with funds to allow Miller to take Apollo.”
A purchase agreement between Miller, the City of Clintonville, and the Clintonville Professional Policeman’s Association states that Miller will purchase Apollo on his last day of employment. The total reimbursement amount for Apollo is $8,000. Miller will pay $6,000 on his last day of employment, and the remaining $2,000 will be paid prior to Dec. 24, 2013.
The agreement also states that Miller must return all city owned equipment that had been purchased for Apollo on his last day of employment.
“If we have to get a new dog with a future officer, it would cost $16,000; we will get half of that from Miller. We do have the remaining $8,000 in funds raised. In addition, we still have all the other expenses like the vehicle and equipment, and would not have to incur more costs.”
Kuss said the city would like to have another K-9 unit in the future, but said that it may take some time.