K-9 Chase, partner of Officer Michael Calchi, served the Millville Police Department for eight years.
He was 9.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Officer Calchi and his family with the loss of K-9 Chase,” Millville Police said on their Facebook tribute. “K-9 Chase will be sadly missed by the entire Department.”
Calchi and the Belgian Malinois graduated as a K-9 team from the Atlantic County “John Sonny Burke” K-9 Academy Class of 2012.
“He was a through-the-roof energy dog,” said Officer John Butschky, who along with his police dog Rio, makeup the other half of the department’s K-9 unit.
Chase was perfectly suited to Millville, balancing his crime-fighting with community outreach, Butschky said.
Chase tracked the missing and the wanted.
His sniffed out illegal drugs.
The pup visited students area schools where he would “go in for a cuddle,” Butschky said.
In 2016, the U.S. Postal Service credited the Millville K-9s with detecting about $5 million worth of illegal drugs moving through the regional mail system.
K-9 Chase and Rio were directly responsible for intercepting 446 pounds of marijuana, 28 kilos of cocaine, 21 pounds of crystal meth, 4.25 ounces of heroin, and $44,430 in cash, the postal service reported.
During a USPS screening a year later, Chase and Rio located cocaine mailed from Puerto Rico bound for a Bridgeton address resulting in four convictions.
The Chase and Calchi team are also credited with taking “numerous criminals off the street they have been sworn to protect,” the Millville Police Facebook post said.
No plans for a public memorial for the K-9 were announced. Cards may be dropped off at the Millville Police station.