PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. – Those who are interested in the amazing skills of TBI’s K9 unit will not want to miss this exhibit at Alcatraz East Crime Museum. The exhibit includes a section on K9s and on March 12 will showcase the unit’s newest members. The museum will also host a K9 meet and greet on April 1, from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm.
“We offer a fascinating look at the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, and now it’s even better,” explains Candice Cook, director of operations at Alcatraz East Crime Museum, in a release. “This exhibit offers a look at what the bureau does, cases they have worked on, and features their K9 unit and the important role it plays.”
The temporary exhibit opened in summer 2020, showcasing the critical work that the bureau does on a daily basis throughout the state. The exhibit includes details from well-known and ongoing cases. The new additions to the exhibit include K9 Zeus, who is an Electronic Storage Detection (ESD) canine. He’s also the first and only ESD canine in the bureau. TBI has also added K9 Millie and Honey, who will both be featured in the exhibit.
Alcatraz East Crime Museum will also host a meet and greet with some of the bureau’s canines on April 1, 2021, from 10:30 am to 12:30 pm. This will be included in the regular admission into the museum, and will give people a chance to meet the canines and learn more about the important role they play.
“We are excited about the new update to the canine portion of the TBI exhibit,” says TBI Director David Rausch. “Our K9 Agents are a huge asset to our team, and we are grateful to have this opportunity to educate the public about their specialized skills and how they make an impact every day across the state.”
An ESD canine is a dog that has been specially trained to sniff out electronic storage devices. The devices may play an important role when it comes to crimes ranging from child pornography to terrorism, the release says. The electronic storage devices they have been trained to sniff out include memory cards, computers, cell phones, thumb drives, and memory chips.
The TBI was founded in 1950, and has existed in various forms over the years. It has seven offices throughout the state, and over 600 employees spread across eight divisions. Its mission is to support local law enforcement around the state by providing them with specialized investigative skills. At any one time, the Criminal Investigation Division has more than 1,500 open cases. The bureau also routinely conducts its own independent investigations into child victimization, drug violations, domestic terrorism, and fugitive recovery.
The museum partnership with TBI allows visitors to learn about the founding of the agency and the important roles of TBI’s agents, forensic examiners, and analysts. This exhibit will also bring attention to current missing children and features a local cold case, the brutal 2015 murder of Donald Lawton in Kodak, Tenn. Other cases featured in the exhibit will include the Bain sisters kidnapping in 2012, the murder of Rhonda Daugherty in 2014, and murder of State Senator Tommy Burks in 1998. For more information about the TBI temporary exhibit, visit the site at: https://www.alcatrazeast.com/temporary-exhibits/tennessee-bureau-of-investigation-2/.
Alcatraz East Crime Museum has a star-studded panel of experts who make up the Advisory Board, including those in law enforcement, collectors, a medical examiner, crime scene investigators, and others. The board includes Jim Willett, a retired prison warden; Anthony Rivera, a combat veteran and Navy SEAL chief; and Judge Belvin Perry Jr., who is best known for the Casey Anthony trial. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit: www.alcatrazeast.com. Or, visit the TBI page at https://www.alcatrazeast.com/temporary-exhibits/tennessee-bureau-of-investigation-2/.