Case of the Quarter Winners
Deputy Mark Miller & K-9 Axel
2015 3rd Quarter Detector Case of the Quarter
On 090315 at approximately 1948 hours, I, along with K-9 Axel, was asked to assist the Metro Vice and Narcotics Unit (VNI) with a traffic wall stop in the area of North I-25 and Interquest Parkway. This request came from Sergeant James Mahan with Metro VNI.
Sergeant Mahan asked that I wait until they identified the vehicle in question and then assist with a traffic stop on the vehicle if any violations were observed. I responded to my assigned location and waited for the vehicle description and direction of travel. While waiting, VNI had identified the vehicle and changed the location of the staging location. I then responded to Monument, Colorado area and set up at Second Street and Jefferson Street. The vehicle moved from its location in Monument and was described as a red Honda Civic with a temporary plate in the rear window of 706737N. The vehicle was reported to be traveling southbound on I-25 at approximately 90 plus miles per hour. I attempted to catch up to the vehicle based on the speeding report and perform a traffic stop but was not able to catch them.
The vehicle was pulled over by the Colorado Springs Police Department at 1405 Jamboree Drive. This address is the Salt Grass Steak House. The operator stopped the vehicle at the entrance to the parking lot of this address. I was able to assist with cover at this location and had a second Colorado Springs Police Department officer that stopped also. The vehicle City had stopped was a red Honda Civic bearing the temporary plate of 706737N. This matched the vehicle that I was asked to try and initiate a traffic stop on. The initiating Colorado Springs Police Department officer took the lead on the traffic stop.
The request was made for K-9 Axel to conduct a sniff of the vehicle. K-9 Axel started his sniff on the exterior of the vehicle at the front grill area. He worked his way down the driver’s side towards the back and across the trunk area. At this point I had K-9 Axel turn and start back across the trunk, up the driver’s side towards the front of the vehicle and across the front to the passenger side. K-9 Axel then worked his way down the passenger side of the vehicle towards the trunk and across the trunk. At this point I had K-9 Axel turn and work back across the trunk and up the passenger side towards the front. K-9 Axel demonstrated a change in behavior on the passenger side exterior of the vehicle near the open passenger window and the hood area. He jumped onto the vehicle with his front paws and sniffed the area of the cowling. The cowling area I am referring to is the area where the windshield meets the plastic cover. This is the location that the windshield wipers mount. K-9 Axel’s change in behavior showed a definite focused response to odor on the open window area and the cowling. I recognize this behavior as how K-9 Axel will act when he has detected the odor of narcotics and is attempting to pinpoint the strongest area of the odor. K-9 Axel was showing strong interest of wanting to go inside the vehicle.
K-9 Axel was allowed to enter the vehicle on the passenger side, the area of the strongest interest. He went immediately to the glove box, located on the passenger side dashboard, towards the top next to a heater and air conditioning vent. This vent would be the one closest to the door and near the area of the cowling where the strongest interest was. K-9 Axel made a focused response to odor of narcotics. He did this by attempting to sit and stare at the location of the odor. He then looked at me, another indication when he is in odor, that he has identified the presence of narcotics odor. K-9 Axel then became frustrated and bit the dashboard area causing a tear in the cover. Again this is behavior I recognize K-9 Axel to display when he has detected the odor of narcotics and I have not acknowledged the alert by giving him his reward.
This information was passed on to the Metro VNI detectives and they took over the remainder of the stop. I did observe that there was a sock removed from high under the dashboard behind the glove box and behind the vent. I observed that there were round clear plastic wrapped items removed from the sock. These items had the shape of round balls and had the same consistency as what I recognize to be packaged narcotics. Metro VNI detectives informed me that the items in the suspected narcotics in the sock did test positive for methamphetamine and weighed 177.8 grams. The estimated value of the methamphetamine recovered was $90,000.00. The items were retained by Metro VNI for their investigation.