Maryland’s First Electronic Storage Detection Dog
The Harford County Sheriff’s Office’s has introduced its newest law enforcement canine, K-9 Sata, a certified electronic storage detection (ESD) dog; the first ESD canine in Maryland! ESD K-9s are dogs who are specially trained to detect the presence of electronic media storage or other digital evidence, such as hard drives, USB drives, and cell phones.
Sata and his new partner, Detective Carey Gerres, are assigned to the Harford County Child Advocacy Center’s (CAC) Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) Unit, whose focus is rescuing victims and arresting perpetrators of child sexual abuse material (CSAM – what is legally defined as child pornography) via the Internet and other related technology facilitated crimes against children.
“K9 Sata will allow the Harford County Sheriff’s Office to expand our investigative capabilities to address the growing number of cases involving digital media,” said Sheriff Jeffrey R. Gahler. “Access to this cutting edge opportunity greatly enhances our abilities to protect the most vulnerable among us – our children.”
Additionally, Sata is cross trained as a therapy and comfort dog. He will support, and provide comfort to, child victims who visit the CAC. Sata succeeds Kilo, the CAC’s first therapy dog who passed away in October, who was also assigned to Detective Gerres.
Sata was trained by Jordan Detection K-9. The costs of purchasing and training him were generously provided by Neighborhood Electronic Detection K-9 Inc, a non-profit formed specifically to fund and provide fully-trained ESD K9s to law enforcement in order to remove child predators from our streets. Additional funding was also provided by the Harford County Task Force, and the Governor’s Office of Crime Prevention, Youth and Victim Services.