Blair County community raises thousands for new K-9 vehicle

Local News

The Blair County Sheriff’s Office revealed their new K-9 vehicle Monday morning.

For months, K-9 Rik’s future with the department was a little uncertain. His designated car was becoming unsafe, even breaking down.

“For a while we really couldn’t utilize him like now,” James Ott, Blair County Sheriff, said. Now every shift he’s with Corporal Justin Bennett. They’re out during every shift as partners and he’s available to the community to provide a service.

The sheriff’s office set out on a mission and asked the Blair County community and businesses for help in purchasing a replacement vehicle.

In all, around $40,000 was raised for the new 2019 Ford Interceptor Utility vehicle, which will help K-9 Rik and his handler provide the best service to residents.

It’s the world to have him here, Corporal Justin Bennett, K-9 Rik’s handler, said. It’s indescribable just how much he offers and people get to see that now.

The following individuals, groups or organizations donated $1,000 or more:

  • The Michael E. Ward Family Foundation
  • Stuckey Ford-Subaru-GMC
  • Smith Transport
  • The Degol Family Foundation
  • Blair County Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Foundation
  • Joanne Tomb
  • Mountain Top Sportsman Associations

The Blair County Sheriff’s Office K-9 unit runs solely on donations.

The foundation can receive donations throughout the year by:

  1. Calling Central Pa Community Foundation at 814-944-6102
  2. Online:
  3. Mailing a check of money order to: Central Pa Community Foundation, C/O Blair County K-9 Foundation, 1330 Eleventh Avenue, Altoona, Pa. 16601

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February 07 2021 06:30 pm

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