Narcotics dogs to track any drugs at Atlantic Beach Bikefest - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Narcotics dogs to track any drugs at Atlantic Beach Bikefest

The dogs can smell marijuana, heroin, cocaine and methamphetamines. (Source: Amy Lipman). The dogs can smell marijuana, heroin, cocaine and methamphetamines. (Source: Amy Lipman).

ATLANTIC BEACH, SC (WMBF) - Atlantic Beach police are cracking down on drugs during Bikefest this year with the help of some specially-trained noses.

The department's two narcotics dogs, Vigor and Bafy, are on call throughout the weekend.

"Just having a dog here in Atlantic Beach as people come in, I think they'll think twice about trying to bring narcotics into town," Atlantic Beach Police Chief Tim Taylor said. "That's the main thing I'm kind of focused on is the gang, and the narcotics that are going to try to come here to Atlantic Beach."

The department received the dogs for free from U.S. Customs and Border Patrol several months ago and have been practicing with the dogs about 15 hours a week ever since.

"I've been doing a lot of training with them, getting them ready up until this point here looking for this big day in Atlantic Beach," Chief Taylor said.

The dogs can smell marijuana, heroin, cocaine and methamphetamines. They alert an officer to the location of the drug by sitting. That signal gives officers probable cause to do a search.

As of Saturday morning, Chief Taylor said Bikefest has been going smoothly, and the department hasn't had to put the dogs on duty.

"There's no need for me to bring the dogs out. The crowd's well behaving here," he said. "I feel like bringing the dogs out, that's going to draw attention from the crowd, but if we need to, we'll bring the dogs out, but there's no need to bring them out at this time," He said.

The dogs are permanent members of the police department, so their skills will come in handy in the future.

"I think these dogs are going to be a great asset to this community here not only during Bike Week, but as we continue to go forward and move here in Atlantic Beach," Chief Taylor said.

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