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Sturtevant police Officer Tonia Purtee invites the entire community Friday for a wine and beer tasting fundraiser for the village’s first K9 officer.

The event runs from 7 to 11 p.m. at Fountain Hall, 8505 Durand Avenue, and admission is $25 per person. Tickets are available both at Timers Beverage Center, 3800 Northwestern Avenue, and at the door.

Efforts to add a K9 officer pair to the Sturtevant Police Department got underway in April 2015 but stalled when Officer Kim Gall left the department. Officer Tonia Purtee is now leading fundraising for a dog.

The cost of a K9 animal can cost up to $30,000 to both buy a dog and for the K9 officer pair to train. Many K9 officers from Racine County agencies meet their dog and train at a facility in North Carolina, and dogs are usually either a German Shepherd or a Belgian Malinois from Germany.

Neighboring jurisdictions with dogs include the City of Racine, the Villages of Caledonia and Mount Pleasant and the Racine County Sheriff’s Department.

Caledonia recently added is first  K9 after raising money through donations both private and through special events. The CAPD’s dog is expected to go onto patrol early next November. An online contest to name the new officer ended with Louie as his moniker.

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