Police dogs find burglar hiding in crawl space
Sun-Times Media June 7, 2012 9:30PM
Updated: June 9, 2012 11:23AM
JOLIET — A bloodhound with a track record for sniffing out the bad guy did it again Thursday — this time when a real crime happened during a nearby training session.
Cook County bloodhound Melanie was training near Joliet when sheriff’s police got a call about a man on the run after a burglary in nearby Manhattan, Cook County Sheriff’s spokesman Frank Bilecki said.
Police responded to where the suspected burglars crashed near Interstate 80 and Larkin Avenue in Joliet, where a woman was taken into custody and a man fled on foot, Bilecki said.
Melanie — who helped locate an escaped inmate in a portable toilet in 2011 in Lockport and helped in the high-profile murder of 14-year-old Kelli O’Laughlin in her Indian Head Park home — picked up the scent and led police about 1.25 miles through a wooded area, Bilecki said.
The handler noticed Melanie was losing the scent and had the dog sniff a hat he found, which got the bloodhound back on the trail, Bilecki said.
Melanie led police to a nearby home, where a different dog found the burglar hiding in a basement crawl space.
“It was old-school police work, one where good old-fashioned police bloodhounds show their worth,” Bilecki said.
A Manhattan police spokesman was not immediately available for comment on the burglary Thursday night.
Joliet police, Will County Sheriff’s police and Illinois State Police assisted with the manhunt, Bilecki said.