SHERWOOD, Ark. (KTHV) — The Sherwood Police Department welcomed a new, four-legged recruit this week — in large part the result of community support.

K9 officer Rony is a 2-year-old chocolate lab and takes over for the department's drug dog that retired in December 2017.

"He's anxious to get out there and work," Det. David Christman said of his new partner. "And as soon as he's certified he will be on the street making a name for himself and keeping us all safer."

Following a two-week bonding period, Christman and Rony will attend training for obedience and drug detection. Once certified, the pair will work to keep drugs off the streets of Sherwood.

"Sherwood isn't a good place to bring drugs," Christman said. "They'll try, but we'll find them."

After receiving a call for help from the police chief, The Sherwood Citizens Police Academy Alumni Association (SPCCCA) covered the $5,500 bill that brought Rony to Central Arkansas.

"He's paid for," SPCAAA treasurer Angela Manek said. "We're super excited. Now we're trying to get the communities assistance in helping with that investment."

SCPAAA has started a fundraising campaign to help cover the initial cost for Rony. The group is also collecting donations to help SPD with expenses like food, vet bills and other costs that come with the K9 officer.

"Every little bit helps in providing a safe community," Manek said. "When you look at it like that, it's a no-brainer."

Det. Christman said he and his colleagues are grateful for the support of SCPAAA.

"I'm really honored and humbled," he said. "It's one of the reasons I love working for Sherwood; we have a hugely supportive community."

Those wishing to donate toward SCPAAA's K9 campaign can do so in several ways:

  • PayPal
  • Facebook Network for Good
  • Give Back Night at participating Little Rock-area On the Border locations
  • Feb. 15, 2018, at Conway, Hot Springs, Southwest Little Rock and Sherwood locations
  • Mention SCPAAA or SPD to your server and OTB will contribute 20 percent of your bill to the fund
  • Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser
  • Saturday, March 10, 2018 from 8-10 a.m.
  • Sherwood Room — Sherwood Forest, 1111 W. Maryland Ave.
  • Tickets: $7, 5 for $30

SCPAAA is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit.