K9 Bear, Detective Ian Polhemus Win ASPCA Award for Public Service

Congrats to our electronic-sniffing K9 Bear (who can’t read this) and his handler, Det. Ian Polhemus (who can!) on their ASPCA award for public service, featured in PARADE Magazine.

Public Service Award: Bear (Police Dog), Seattle, Washington

Deputy Chief Marc Garth Green, Detective Ian Polhemus, and K9 Bear

A former homeless Labrador-mix, born in 2013, Bear found his calling in an innovative program in Indiana that trains animals to detect electronic storage devices. Bear is the third police dog in the world trained to discover and identify these devices, a crucial skill in the collection of key evidence in child sexual exploitation cases and the successful prosecution of offenders.

Now living in Seattle with his partner and owner, Seattle Police Department detective Ian Polhemus, Bear spends 99 percent of his time on similar cases in the Seattle area. Since 2015, he has been involved in more than 125 cases, 38 of which resulted in Bear recovering more than 100 critical pieces of evidence that would otherwise have been overlooked. Bear also provides emotional support to officers working in the stressful division, as well as to children at the sites of the raids who may need to be questioned.

Bear is deserving of the ASPCA Public Service Award thanks to his unique and highly effective contributions to integral police work.