Retired Sussex County Sheriff’s Office K-9 passes away
SUSSEX COUNTY, NJ – Sussex County Sheriff Michael Strada announces the passing of retired Sheriff’s K-9 “Kilo” on Saturday, June 26 following a sudden illness.
Born in Hungary on September 28, 2012, Kilo was transported as a puppy to the United States by a canine vendor and was subsequently purchased by the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office in May of 2014. His purchase was made possible by using money from the County’s Asset Forfeiture Fund, a fund comprised of money already previously seized primarily during narcotics investigations.
He was assigned to be handled by (then) Sheriff’s Detective Kieran McMorrow and following completion of their training and graduation from both basic patrol and scent detection courses, they immediately began to answer calls for service from law enforcement agencies within the County of Sussex, quickly becoming both a familiar and welcome presence to requesting local law enforcement agencies at crime scenes throughout the county.
Unfortunately, owing in large part to Statewide mandated changes regarding the use of K-9s in both patrol work and certain aspects of narcotics detection as well as an unfortunate injury he sustained while working, K-9 Kilo’s career was rather short-lived and he was retired early in January of 2018. From that point on, Kilo lived for the remainder of his life as a much beloved member of the McMorrow family.
Despite the brevity of his career, K-9 Kilo responded to more than 170 calls over his 2 and ½ years of active service, assisting local police agencies in the location of wanted persons, burglary suspects, emotionally disturbed persons, missing juveniles, and the recovery of discarded evidence from crime scenes.
Additionally, between 2015 and 2017, K-9 Kilo assisted local, state, and federal agencies in the detection of hidden narcotics on over 100 separate occasions resulting in the subsequent seizure of substantial amounts of illegal drugs and currency.
Some of the more memorable drug seizures in his career include:
- In May of 2015, Kilo assisted the Hopatcong Police Department in a narcotics investigation resulting in 13 separate drug arrests and the seizure of 72 bags of cocaine.
- In August of 2016, he detected five (5) “bricks” (250 bags) of heroin from a stopped motor vehicle in Newton.
- In September of 2016, Kilo assisted the Sussex County Prosecutors Office Narcotics Task Force in the execution of a search warrant in Wantage Township. This resulted in the seizure of approximately 5,200 bags of heroin, 450 grams of cocaine, 4 grams of methamphetamine, 18 grams of crack cocaine, 64 grams of morphine, 43 grams of oxycodone, as well as several other controlled dangerous substances in varying amounts, and nearly $29,000 in US currency.
- In April of 2017, Kilo again assisted the Sussex County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Task Force in the execution of a search warrant in Vernon Township. This operation resulted in the seizure of over 2 kilograms of cocaine, an illegal handgun, over $10,000 United States currency, and more than 20 separate criminal arrests in both NJ and NY State.
- In May of 2017, Kilo was instrumental in securing a search warrant for a motor vehicle stopped in Vernon Township. The resulting search resulted in the seizure of approximately 2.75 oz of cocaine and over $21,000 United States currency.
- In July of 2017, Kilo detected 93 bags of heroin, along with an additional gram of separately packaged heroin, and several different types of prescription legend drugs from a stopped motor vehicle in Newton.
“Although the time he spent in active service was not nearly as long as we would have liked, he didn’t waste a single minute of it. These drug seizures and many others like them, along with currency seizures totaling in excess of $60,000 combined to make K-9 Kilo one of the most consistently prolific narcotics detection canines in the history of the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office. Often, it doesn’t require an extended period of time to make an awfully big difference. Kilo was proof of that. He will be missed immensely,” Strada said.
Sheriff Strada offers his sincere condolences to Sergeant McMorrow and his family and shares the sympathy of the men and women of the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office as we all grieve the loss of K-9 Kilo.