From a Berrien County press release:
The Berrien County Sheriff’s Office canine unit will be receiving ballistic vests for canines Nero and Pokky thanks to a nationwide Groupon event that has raised over $335,000.
The “Occasions” campaign for Groupon Grassroots to outfit police K-9’s with bullet and stab protective vests ran February 15th through March 5th, 2014. Vested Interest in K-9’s Inc. was the nationwide non-profit organization and charity partner selected by Groupon Grassroots to participate.
The online $10 donation suggested interested persons purchase a GROUPON (a tax deductible donation) through the secure website where all funds were allocated to purchase ballistic vests for our four-legged crime fighters who put their lives on the line for the community and their partner.
Vested Interest in K-9’s Inc. will be providing over 350 law enforcement dogs nationwide including the two Berrien County Sheriff Office canines with the protective body armor in memory of K-9 Rocco of the Pittsburgh Police Department who sacrificed his life in the line of duty in January of 2014.
All vests will be embroidered with the sentiment, “In Memory of K9 Rocco, Pittsburgh Police Department”.
Vested Interest in K-9’s Inc. a 501c(3) organization is still accepting donations through their website: www.vik9s.org and via mail P.O. Box 9 East Taunton, MA. 02718.
In 2013, Vested Interest in K-9’s Inc. partnered with Groupon and was named as one of “The Best of 2013” campaigns. This non profit raised $155,537.33 in just one week, which provided ballistic vests for 163 law enforcement dogs in 30 states. There are an estimated 30,000 police dogs throughout the United States.
BIOGRAPHY of “POKKY”
Pokky is a 4 year old Belgain Malinios from Holland. He is extremely driven to deter crime and cannot stand drug use, people who do harm to others, and outright malicious intent. Pokky is trained in the detection of narcotics, tracking, and apprehension. Pokky loves his Kong toy and gets extremely excited to go to work. When he is relaxing, he loves to go for walks, visiting with children, and playing fetch.
Pokky is currently partnered up with Deputy Thomas Dyer.
BIOGRAPHY OF “NERO”
Nero is a 3 year old Belgain Malinois from the Czech Republic. Nero has a strong drive to deter crime, protect citizens and his handler. Nero is trained in the detection of explosives, tracking, and apprehension. Nero loves to play with his tennis ball. Nero’s favorite time of the day is when he gets to get in the police car and go to work with his handler. On Nero’s time off, he likes to go for walks and play fetch with his tennis ball. Nero is currently partnered with Deputy Brandon Crosby.