How to Get a calendar
The Mahoning County K-9 Units 2011 Calendar costs $15 and is available at various pet stores and also at the following police departments:
Austintown Police Department, 82 Ohltown Road
Beaver Police Department, 601 W. South Range Road
Boardman Police Department, 8299 Market St.
Struthers Police Department, 6 Elm St.
For additional information on where to purchase a calendar, contact Boardman Police Officer Brian Cionni at 330-726-4144.
Area residents who still need a 2011 calendar have the chance to stay organized while supporting police dogs at local departments.
Sales from the Mahoning County K-9 Units 2011 Calendar, which cost $15, will benefit Austintown, Beaver, Boardman and Struthers police and the Mahoning County Sheriff’s Office.
“Almost all police departments are in a budget restraint time, and any extra activities like canine units are not able to be funded,” said Boardman officer Brian Cionni, who noted that it costs about $11,000 to buy and train a new police dog.
In Boardman, for example, the recent purchase and training of Eros, a Belgian malinois, was the first time the department had to go to township residents for financial support, he said.
“Our department and a lot of others are now depending on fundraisers to support and maintain” canine units, Cionni said. Local departments “train together and came up with this idea of doing a calendar.”
Five hundred calendars were printed, and proceeds will be split among the five departments to prepare for the future replacement canines, as well as maintenance of equipment, veterinary services and training seminars.
Struthers officer Jason Murzda said police dogs are a crime deterrent.
“The criminals do know what the dogs are capable of,” Murzda said. “In Mahoning County, the dogs have taken a substantial amount of narcotics off the street.”
He said that the police dogs also are useful for suspect-tracking, car searches and protection of officers.
One piece of equipment that departments already have or are looking to purchase is a “hot-pop system.” It
connects to a pager and lets an officer know if the cruiser reaches 90 degrees and automatically rolls the windows down so the dog doesn’t overheat. The “pop” in the system is a small remote carried by the officer, which can be pushed to open a car door and let the dog out.
“If we’re on a traffic stop and someone starts to fight, we could push a button to get the dog out for help. I’ve actually had to use that once or twice,” Murzda said.
Calendars are available at the any of the five police stations and also some local businesses. Canine units from Boardman, Struthers, Austintown, Canfield, Beaver, Youngstown, Mahoning County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Criminal Identification and Investigation are pictured in the calendar.