Butler Blue II is no longer the University’s only four-legged friend walking the campus. Marcus, a 12-month old black Labrador mix, is the newest member of the Butler University Police Department (BUPD). Marcus is an EOD K9 (an Explosive Ordinance Detection Bomb Dog). He will be used for sweeps of Hinkle Fieldhouse and Clowes Memorial Hall, and other campus facilities, before high-profile events.
Since 2010, Butler has been partnering with Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department to conduct K9 EOD Sweeps before all men’s basketball games.
“It’s established best practice in law enforcement to be proactive with major events,” said Chief of Police Benjamin Hunter. “It’s also becoming more and more standard for universities to have their own EOD K9. Indiana University recently purchased their first for the Bloomington campus.”
The majority of the money to purchase Marcus was donated by an anonymous donor, with additional funds provided by Southeast Family Dental and Butler athletics. Like Blue II, Marcus’ veterinary care will be donated by Dr. Kurt Phillips of Woodland Animal Hospital, and Holistic Select will provide his food.
The dog will be trained and cared for by BUPD Officer Jason Downs. Before Butler, Downs worked at the New Castle Police Department and started their first K9 Unit. He has over 400 hours of dog-handler training with a concentration in explosive detection.
“The timing was right to add a K9 to our force. We’re really excited to be able to add this additional security measure to campus,” said Hunter.