A new police dog has proved his worth after sniffing out his first criminal suspects.
Police Dog Rocket, a two-year-old Belgian Malinois, joined Nottinghamshire Police in June and showed an exceptional ability to track suspects during his training.
Those skills were put to the test in the early hours of Sunday morning when he and his handler were called to an address in Knoll Avenue, Hucknall, after a motorbike was stolen from a garage.
Rocket later picked up a scent and led his handler towards a garden in Watnall Road, where a suspect was found hiding in a bush.
A 16-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of burglary and was also detained in relation to the theft of a bicycle in Loughborough on 15 May this year.
He was later released on police bail and investigations into the whereabouts of the motorcycle are continuing.
Rocket’s exceptional nose was again put to the test on Friday afternoon after a suspect ran from a car that had been stopped by police in Stockhill Lane, Basford.
The dog then led his handler towards a wooded area next to Nottingham College and a man was detained.
Two men, aged 35 and 30 were arrested and later released on bail. A large quantity of cash was later recovered from the vehicle.
Superintendent Louise Clarke, of Nottighamshire Police, said: “This was a great bit of work by Police Dog Rocket and his handler that allowed us to bring into custody two suspects who may otherwise have evaded police.
“As this case demonstrates, police dogs are an invaluable part of the wider team and regularly allow us to find suspects and evidence we couldn’t have hoped to find without them.
“Rocket has made a brilliant start to his career with us and am sure will continue to develop even further in the years ahead.”
Nottinghamshire Police operates with a mixture of general purpose dogs like Rocket, and also a small team of specialist sniffer dogs trained to detect drugs, cash, firearms and other evidential items.