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Department welcomes new sheriff's deputy


June 17, 2009
Crawford County has a new sheriff's deputy. He's kind of a quiet fellow — never complains — and works for less than most law enforcement officers. Ac-tually, he'd rather have a can of Alpo than a paycheck.

Kaden is his name; finding crooks is his game. And he gets excited every time he goes to work.

Kaden
shadow
Kaden, Crawford County’s newest deputy sheriff, shows off his new protective vest and badge. Trained by Deputy Eddie Weber, Kaden will be used to assist police officers in the county for drug busts, tracking or apprehension of criminals. When he’s not working, Kaden is just a pet whose best friend is a beagle.Photo by Lee Cable
The 5-year-old shepherd, owned and trained by Deputy Eddie Weber, was born in Germany and came to the United States as a puppy. Weber, a nationally certified trainer, began training Kaden when the dog was about 6 months old. The training continued until the dog was 2 years old.

"He's trained in almost every aspect of police work," Weber said. "When I was with the Madison Police Department, Kaden helped locate one of the largest drug finds in the town's history. In the last few weeks, he's tracked and helped with four arrests here in Crawford County."

When Weber joined the Crawford County Sheriff's Department a few months ago, Kaden also joined the department as a deputy. The county pays $1 a year for Kaden's services. Sheriff Tim Wilkerson ordered K-9 decals for Weber's patrol car and welcomed the dog to the department. The sheriff and Weber then set out to find funding for a bullet-proof, stab-proof vest for the dog, which can cost more than $1,500.

They contacted Susie Jean, of Socorro, N.M., who founded Vest 'N.P.D.P. (Police Dog Protection) Inc., a nonprofit that collects donations to purchase bullet- and stab-proof vests for police dogs. She, in turn, contacted NASCAR driver Tony Stewart's foundation. Stewart, who is from Columbus, has donated funds toward vests for Indiana State Police K-9 units and for dogs in four other states. With the help of Jean, Wilkerson and Weber received $1,000 from the Paoli Wal-Mart Supercenter and, with the Stewart funds, were able to order a new vest for Kaden. The vests are custom-fitted for each dog.

"The Greenwood Police Department Canine Unit helped us with a lot of the red tape," Weber said. "We had to set up a policy for a county canine unit, just like with any other personnel. Louisville Metro Police donated a kennel for my car. And Sheriff Wilkerson got the Crawford County sheriff's logo patches added to the vest. Kaden is now an official deputy of Crawford County. If someone assaults him, they will face the same charges that they would face if they assaulted any other deputy."

Kaden's medical care is donated by Dr. H.R. Gough in Clarksville.

Like many K-9 dogs, Kaden has been trained to find drugs and track criminals. But he has also been trained in aggression, control of criminals, apprehension, article search and building searches.

Last Thursday, Kaden was relaxed, laying on the floor of the sheriff's administrative office. As a demonstration, Weber asked Chief Deputy Andy Beals to stand up, then said one word (in German) to Kaden, who suddenly came to attention, stared at Beals in the eye and proceeded to bark in a way that made Beals aware that he shouldn't move — or even think about moving. Then, in a softer voice, Weber said, "OK, go to Andy," and Kaden walked to Beals and rubbed against him, wanting to be petted — as calm as a lap dog.

"Kaden has opened up new doors for us," Beals said. "Almost every officer here has already used him. This is the first K-9 the sheriff's department has had. We have great officers here. Jeff Howell, Shawn Scott and Glen Crawford are real pro-active on drugs, and I'm sure Kaden will be of great help to them and the whole department."

Weber and Kaden have been invited to perform at the Canine Nationals this summer in Fayetteville, N.C.

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  1. print email
    This is good news!!
    June 17, 2009 | 12:34 PM

    I am very glad to hear the Sheriffs dept obtained a K-9 unit!! It's been extremely productive in Harrison County.

    Dispatch 31
  2. print email
    Dog/Trainer Asset to Sheriff's Dept
    June 19, 2009 | 11:43 AM

    Kaden and Deputy Weber make a great team! I worked with
    them at the Madison Police Dept. and know that Crawford
    County will greatly benefit from their expertise.

    Karen Pfeiffer
  3. print email
    Kaden's Mom
    June 28, 2009 | 11:26 PM

    I would first like to thank everyone that has showed their support to my husband, the sheriffs department and mostly kaden. I have been out in the community with both my husband and kaden and not once has someone not either apporached us or told how great they think kaden is. What I hear the most is how beautiful he is, and of course being his mom I have to agree. My husband and kaden have been working alot now that we have finally moved to the county and I have to say that sometimes it is hard not to have them home, but I see first hand the pride on their faces when they come home from work. Kaden is the first one to the patrol car when he is asked if he is ready to go to work. Yet when he comes home all he wants is to lay with myself and our seven year old daughter. I want everyone to know that kaden is not just a service animal he is very much a part of my family and we love him deeply. Please remeber that when you see kaden and my husband out protecting our community. Also when you see them out let them know how much you appreciate them both. It makes their day and lets them know that the long hours of hard training and work is in fact making a difference.

    Amy Weber
  4. print email
    Kaden's Aunt
    July 01, 2009 | 02:52 PM

    Greetings to all. My name is Tammie O'Neil, I am Eddie's younger sister. I just want everyone to know how happy I am that Eddie and Kaden have been so well received by your community. Eddie has worked very hard and sacrificed much to get to where he is. It makes our family that much more proud of Eddie and Kaden to know that they are making such a difference. Thank you again for all of the love and support that you have shown them. Please take care of them, I only have one big brother and one Kaden, and they mean the world to me.

    Tammie Weber O'Neil
Schuler Bauer
Barbara Shaw
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