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The Franklin News-Post
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Fax: 540-483-8013

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County canine unit makes Roanoke drug bust
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Courtesy Photo: Franklin County Sheriffs Department K-9 Officer Nick Shockley and his partner, CJ, pose with a brick of marijuana found by CJ during a search of packages last week in Roanoke.

Monday, August 11, 2008

By K.A. WAGONER - Staff Writer

When Franklin County Sheriff's Department K-9 Officer Nick Shockley and his partner, CJ, were called to assist the Roanoke City Police Department with a drug search last week, CJ found 10 pounds of marijuana.

Roanoke narcotics agents were conducting an investigation into the transport of illegal drugs into the area by parcel services, according to Maj. Josh Carter with the Franklin County Sheriff's Department.

CJ, a 2-year-old Belgian Malinois, searched about 30 packages and alerted the agents to the presence of illegal drugs in a package addressed to a local resident. Police have not released the identity of the resident.

A search warrant was obtained, and agents found several bricks of marijuana wrapped in cellophane and surrounded by coffee grounds inside the package, Carter said. The coffee was an attempt to disguise the odor of the marijuana, he added.

The estimated street value of the 10.3 pounds of marijuana is estimated at $16,000, Carter said.

"This is why we have these dogs -- to fight the war on drugs," said Sheriff Ewell Hunt. "I am pleased our dog was able to assist another agency with its case."

"My background is in drug investigation, and I know how drugs affect people in our community," he added. "These animals are a tremendous asset to our department."

Hunt hired K-9 Master Trainer John Hoover in February to enhance the capabilities of the department's K-9 unit. The sheriff's department now has six dogs trained in drug detection, fugitive apprehension and tracking, Carter said.

Shockley has worked for Franklin County Sheriff's Department since 2004 and has been partnered with CJ since 2007.

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