MONTGOMERY – Law enforcement and Montgomery Police Chief Kenneth Hudgens suffered a tremendous loss Wednesday night, with the death of a four-legged crime fighter named Harley, better known as “Crackhead.” The nickname was because she was what Chief Hudgens called a hyperactive puppy.
The police narcotics detection K-9 died unexpectedly around midnight. Crackhead was a two-and-a-half year old Golden Retriever and German Shorthaired Pointer mix that belonged to Chief Hudgens, who personally trained her.
She was certified in narcotics detection at nine months old, finding her target in a little over two minutes, which is very fast.
“She was an unbelievable dog, with a gifted nose,” Hudgens said. “She was finding marijuana at only four months old.”
When Crackhead was just over a year old, Hudgens attended a competition and had her waiting in the car. When it ended, he asked the other officers to wait while he brought his dog in to see how she would do. They were astonished when she found the drugs in 27 seconds.
The chief wished he could have used Crackhead more on the streets, but in his position, Hudgens was unable to be out and about as much as he would have otherwise.
As important as she was in detecting narcotics, she was also somewhat of a local celebrity. Her second talent was public relations, and she participated in many demonstrations and was loved by all, especially children, who she tended to lick all over, the chief said.
“She was the life of the party wherever she went,” he said. “She’s going to be missed.”
A veterinarian who examined Crackhead believes tetanus was the cause of her death. He told the chief tetanus is very rare in dogs, and is contracted in the same way in canines as humans.