LINCOLNTON, NC — The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office has two new dual-purpose narcotic detection and tracking canines thanks to a donation made by The Treadstone Group.
The dogs, a Pointer named Groot and a Labrador Retriever names Treadstone, are trained and will be employed to search for and alert to drugs, or to follow a human scent to assist in locating criminals, missing Alzheimer’s patients, and lost children, according to a news release.
Owner of The Treadstone Group, Ross Bulla, donated $25,000 to the sheriff’s office, which covers the cost of both dogs, handler training, and K9 body armor.
Officials say the dogs were purchased from and trained by Highland Canine in Harmony, NC
Sheriff Bill Beam will select the K9’s handlers, who will participate in an intensive, three-week training program with the dogs, starting October 31st, 2022.
According to Sheriff Beam, “We are creating the K-9 team to make it safer for Lincoln County citizens in the battle against illegal drugs. Anytime drugs are intercepted can prevent someone overdosing and a family losing a member.”
Officials say Bulla serves on the board of directors of several nonprofits, and is the immediate past-chair of the Lincoln County Child Advocacy Center.
Bulla says he made the donation in honor of Sheriff Bill Beam, Detective Dylan Houser, Detective Sgt. Dan Renn, and Detective Kelsey Harrington, for their positive impact on the lives of children and young men and women.
In addition to this donation, officials say Bulla is offering a $10,000 reward for the arrest and conviction of a suspect or suspects involved in a recent murder, is sponsoring Lincoln County’s National Night Out, sponsored a Fraternal Order of Police concert fundraiser, and donates frequently to the LCSO Explorer Post 700.
According to Bulla, “I am making plans to retire, but I remain committed to helping organizations raise funds. However, this year is likely my last making modest donations. I am proud of the fact that Treadstone Group has provided nearly $600,000 in funds or gifts-in-kind to local nonprofits, schools, law enforcement agencies, religious institutions, and other groups.”
The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office looks forward to swearing in K9 Officers, Groot and Treadstone, following completion of training with their LCSO handlers, according to a news release.