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The Times' criminal justice team looks behind the scenes and behind the headlines.

May 6, 2009 at 12:39 PM

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Dixie the dog keeps her job

Posted by Nick Provenza

Dixie the drug-finding dog, whose job was on the chopping block in a cost saving moved by the city of Snohomish, won't lose her job with the Snohomish Police Department.

The Herald newspaper in Everett says the Snohomish City Council decided Tuesday night that Dixie won't be one of more than a dozen cuts the city needs to make to keep its budget in the black.

The council decided that the $16,000 the city would save each year isn't worth the loss of her skills and the city's investment in her training, Mayor Randy Hamlin said.

Dixie, one of two dogs on the force, finds illegal drugs and the dirty money that often comes with it. The other dog, Kizar, is trained as a tracking dog.

Dixie, a ball of barely contained energy, and her partner, Sgt. Jeffrey Shelton, showed up at the meeting to argue that the shepherd-collie mix should keep her job. Snohomish recruited the pair in 2006 and she's never missed a day of work.

Dixie has found $25,000 in cash and seven pounds of drugs, Shelton said, holding up a plastic bag of 25 grams of cocaine to emphasize his point, according to The Herald story.

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