Handler: Joseph Salisbury
Department: Maine Department of Corrections
Years Worked: 7 years
K9 Tyson is an 11 year old Belgian Malinois who came to Maine from the Netherlands in early January of 2010. In March of 2010 Tyson and I started the 14 week K9 Patrol school taught by the Maine State Police K9 division. For 14 weeks Tyson and I became very close eating, sleeping and training together. During the patrol school it became very clear Tyson was going to be a standout K9. His work ethic, drive and ability to problem solve made him standout from the rest. After 14 weeks of training we had to certify in all aspects of patrol work. Two weeks after graduating patrol school 2 inmates had escaped and Tyson was called in to assist in the tracking process. For 3 days we tracked on and off as we got intel to were these inmates where.
Tyson and I spent our days watching inmate mass movements, walking the fence line and doing article searches for weapons or contraband, responding to fights and inmate refusals to lock in. Then in October of 2010 Tyson and I were back at the academy for K9 drug school. We spent 9 weeks learning how to search for drugs. Tyson was the 1st K9 in New England that was certified to search for Saboxone and Oxycodone. Both of these drugs are highly trafficked in the prison system. Once again Tyson showed that he was an exceptional K9 and had little to no problem learning the art of narcotic searching. After 9 weeks of training we became an official dual purpose K9 team. We spent our days searching cells, inmates, visitors and vehicles for contraband and narcotics. We searched the incoming ma every day as well as all the visitors coming into the facility. Since Tyson was certified in Saboxone and Oxy’s we where ask many times to assist the US Postal Service and many other Police Agencies with warrants and searches that may have Suboxone and Oxy’s involved. Tyson had a very successful career with the Maine Department of Corrections. Both Tyson and I retired October 1st 2017. Tyson’s arthritis in the middle of his spine had gotten worse and his ability to do the job diminished. Now he lives the life of a King. He is not a pet to me or my family. He is a member of our family and at times we all think he runs the house.