GALION — An unannounced drug dog search was conducted Wednesday at Galion High School and Galion Middle School.
The outcome was exactly what school administrators wanted to see.
No illegal contraband was found by the searches in either building.
“I could not be happier with how this was executed or with the results,” School Resource Officer Ralph Burwell said. “This was my first time organizing a search, and everything went just as I had hoped.”
“The staff of Galion City Schools is committed to keeping our schools a drug-free environment,” he said.
Multiple agencies assisted with the operation. Six K-9 units from the Ohio Highway Patrol, Bucyrus Police Department, Crawford County Sheriff’s Office and Delaware County Sheriff’s Office participated.
The search was conducted during a time when students were in the the gym for an assembly in which officers spoke to the kids about drug use, tits lingering affects and possible consequences. By removing students from the classrooms and hallways during the search, the K-9 units were able to perform their jobs without distractions to ensure as much accuracy as possible.
While the dogs did “hit” on some lockers in each building, further searching by officers showed nothing illegal inside. The areas involved in the search including lockers, classrooms, vehicles and locker rooms.
“These sweeps were conducted to ensure a safe campus environment for students, staff members and the community,” said Galion City Schools superintendent Jim Grubbs. “I appreciate Officer Burwell organizing today’s searches and want to thank the officers from the Galion and Bucyrus police departments, as well as troopers from the Ohio Highway Patrol, for assisting with the searches.”
Ohio State Highway Patrol Trooper Mark McLaughlin talked to high school students, while Crawford County Sheriff’s Deputy and DARE officer Chris Martin spoke at the middle school. The officers enlisted student volunteers at each assembly to wear goggles that were designed to simulate the affects of being under the influence of drugs and alcohol.
At the conclusion of the high school assembly, numerous students asked questions about the dogs involved in drug searches and the training that goes with their work.
Trooper Shane Morrow explained the training process and tools involved.
“The dogs come to us already trained,” Morrow said. “Once they are matched with an officer, both go through training together to establish the relationship. My dog lives with my family and knows the difference between work and relaxing at home. My children play on the floor with her and she is a part of our family life.”