GRIFFITH | Before he officially goes on active duty, the town's first police dog already has made his first big bust.
The incident happened about 7:47 p.m. on Thursday when Patrolman Corey McCarter saw a 2000 Jeep Cherokee on Cline Avenue headed toward the Borman Expressway.
After the vehicle made an abrupt turn from the exit lane into the northbound lane, it was pulled over, McCarter's police report said.
The driver, Chloe Katherine Thompson, 22, 404 Manchester Court, Griffith, could not present a license or registration and McCarter said he recognized her and a male passenger from previous contacts.
Before issuing Thompson a citation for unsafe lane movement, McCarter called for Patrolman Robert Gutierrez to bring his new canine partner, Gino.
Prior to the dog's search, Thompson admitted that there were hypodermic needles in her purse, the report said.
Gino then searched around the vehicle and indicated for the officers to check the purse. They initially found nine syringes, various broken syringes and many empty "dime bags," the report said.
A further check of the purse revealed more syringes and two metal spoons with burn marks.
McCarter said they also found more plastic bags with white power that tested positive for 2.2 grams of heroin.
During a search at the police station, Sgt. Marlene Starcevich found a plastic bag inside Thompson's clothing that contained 0.6 grams of cocaine, the report said.
Thompson was charged with felony possessions of syringes, cocaine and heroin, the report said. She was taken to the Lake County Jail.
Town Council Vice President Rick Ryfa, R-3rd, noted that Gino is not scheduled to be officially commissioned until later this month, but his unexpected debut came when Thursday's incident took place.
"We are very happy that our community supported canine program has proven itself successful so early in its implementation," said Police Chief Greg Mance.