Police dogs are a common sight as part of today’s police forces. Their supremely sensitive sense of smell (which can vary between 1000 and 10,000 times that of us humans) has led them to be a valuable asset in sniffing out drugs, money and people with high degrees of accuracy.
In a new wave of combating internet based crimes, Thoreau, a golden Labrador has had 22 weeks training after which he is now able to sniff out concealed computer hard drives, flash drives and other forms of flash-based storage, all of which may be harbouring child pornography.
Last month Thoreau performed his first search warrant during which he was able to pick out a flash drive that had been concealed below four layers of clothing and then a tin box, which itself was then hidden in a metal filing cabinet. The drive that he found was discovered to be harbouring child pornography and as his handler, Detective Adam Houston told reporters, if a device has a memory card, he will be able to find it.
Although he is not able to actively find devices harbouring the indecent images amongst those that don’t, his ability to sniff out drives that are hidden in unusual places that paedophiles tend to use is the key weapon that the police need to secure the incriminating evidence.
In exchange for finding the drives, Thoreau gets some food, which in itself is the only thing that he is really interested in, finding a drive = food so it’s no wonder that he will go to all lengths to find it. The battle against child pornography just moved up to the next level for the Connecticut State Police force.
Image courtesy: Providence Journal