2 officers, K-9 join Huntingburg police forceMay 22, 2019
By CANDY NEAL
HUNTINGBURG — Two new officers and a new K-9 officer joined the Huntingburg Police Department force Tuesday.
Jason Haycox of Dale and Stephanie Alexander of Boonville were sworn in Tuesday morning. With Haycox, comes his partner, K-9 Maya.
Haycox, 30, has been an officer with the Dale Police Department for five years. Prior to that, he worked for the Rockport Police Department for two years. He and his wife, Tracy, are owners of Santa Paws Pet Park.
Maya has been with the Dale Police Department for four years, all of those as Haycox’s partner. She is a dual-purpose dog, which means that she has been trained to search for narcotics and can be used as a bite dog. She will be the second K-9 officer with the Huntingburg Police; Ester is the other one.
“It can be stressful at times. Your uniform kinda always looks like this,” Jason said as he picked hair off his suit. “I like clean clothes, but that never happens, being with her.”
But he enjoys the partnership, he said.
Haycox’s father, Kevin, pinned his badge on him after he was sworn in, with Maya sitting to his left. Haycox’s mother, Sheila, was also at Tuesday’s ceremony. Tracy was at Santa Paws and couldn’t attend.
“There is some field training I need to do, to get used to the department’s operating procedures,” Jason said. “Other that, I’m ready to jump in and serve.”
Maya goes through constant K-9 training. But she is completely certified, so there is no additional training she needs to join the Huntingburg force. “She’s ready to go,” Jason said.
He is looking forward to serving in Huntingburg.
“This is my hometown,” Jason said. “I’ve been wanting to be on this police force for a long time.”
Alexander, 27, has always wanted to be a police officer.
“It’s always been a dream of mine as a little kid growing up,” she said, “to protect and serve.”
She has served as a correction officer at the Warrick County Sheriff’s Department for two years.
Alexander’s boyfriend, Ryan Nance, pinned her at Tuesday’s ceremony, while her sister, Dana Belcher, and friend and former co-worker Jed Lashley watched.
Alexander is using this achievement as an example for her two sons, 9-year-old Chase Heck and 6-year-old Brantley Heck.
“I just want to show my boys that dreams do come true,” she said, “and they can make theirs happen.”
She will attend the law enforcement academy at the end of this year. In the meantime, Alexander will complete her pre-basic training and ride along with other officers.
“There’s many steps to becoming an officer,” she said. “But it’s worth it.”
The department will start the hiring process again to fill an open spot and one that will become open next month, Police Chief Art Parks said.
“We need one more right now. And we will have one that will be going to state in mid-June,” he said. “So we will be needing two again.”
A new application process is about to start. The department will take applications until June 7, with agility tests June 8.
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