Mountlake Terrace bids farewell to K-9 Officer Harley

Harley, the guest of honor, dons a festive hat at her farewell party. (Photo courtesy City of Mountlake Terrace)

Officers, friends, family and city leaders bade farewell Wednesday to Mountlake Terrace’s K-9 Officer Harley, who is transferring to Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office (SCSO).

Harley, a 4-year-old German Shorthaired Pointer, was given a farewell party by the Mountlake Terrace Police Department on Wednesday for her service to the city.

Harley gave hugs and kisses to her Mountlake Terrace friends and family. (Photo by Rick Sinnett)

A cake for humans to share was served, but Harley got a cake all to herself. The well-mannered canine kept the frosting on the cardboard her cake came in but ended up with a blue tongue. However, that didn’t keep her from giving well-wishers hugs and kisses.

Mountlake Terrace Police Officer Heidi Froisland, who has served as Harley’s handler, said she was disappointed because she hoped to retire with Harley. However,changes in state drug laws and the loss of funding for the Mountlake Terrace K-9 program kept that from happening.

Officer Heidi Froisland and Harley at the Mountlake Terrace Police Department. (Photo courtesy City of Mountlake Terrace)

The Washington State Supreme Court declared the state’s liability drug possession law unconstitutional and moved knowingly possessing drugs from a felony to a misdemeanor.

Although drug possession laws in Washington state have changed, possession is still illegal in the jail and prison systems. Harley will work with the SCSO to find contraband in jail cells, helping to keep drugs out of the county jail system.

A personal cake for Harley, thanking her for her service to Mountlake Terrace. (Photo by Rick Sinnett)
Harley eats her cake with almost no mess. (Photo by Rick Sinnett)

Froisland said she is prepared to separate from her four-legged partner and transition Harley to her new handler at SCSO, who will be chosen next week.

Between changes in drug laws and working the day shift, there wasn’t much for the drug-finding dog to do.

“She’s happiest when she’s working,” Froisland said. “That’s what she lives for.”

— By Rick Sinnett

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