News 12 visits bloodhound search and rescue training facility

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MIDDLESEX COUNTY -

News 12 New Jersey visited the Middlesex Canine Search and Rescue Team training facility this weekend to observe the role bloodhounds play in solving crimes.

Bloodhounds are often portrayed in detective dramas as having a powerful sense of smell and crucial to solving crime. In real life, they have, in fact, proven to be an effective tool for law enforcement as well.

The handlers at the facility say bloodhounds are often called “man trailers” because of their strong ability to trail.

The training facility set up two mock manhunts of missing people for the dogs to track down during News 12’s visit.

Joker and Aleck are bloodhounds that make up the Middlesex Canine Search and Rescue Team.

Michael and Debbie Campbell raise and train the bloodhounds nearly 20 hours per week. They say a bloodhound's sense of smell is at least 1,000 times stronger than a human's.

News 12 is told that the bloodhounds have tracked and located countless missing children and adults suffering from cognitive impairments, including a man who was near death after ingesting a large amount of pills.

“They obtain a scent article of the missing,” said Debbie. “From there, they'll take us on the track of where the direction they went.”

Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew Carey says that while the dogs are serious when they have to be, they can also be very playful when they’re not wearing their work harnesses.

News 12 is told that Joker will be retiring in a few weeks and replaced by Becket, who just came into town after weeks of training at the elite 832 K-9’s Deputy Dogs facility in Florida. The 9-year-old is set to continue living the Campbells.

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