Celebrated canine deputy dies
The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Department lost one of its four-legged members on March 20. Asko died from unexpected natural causes.
Asko joined the Sheriff’s Office in 2006 when he started his law enforcement training with partner Deputy Jeffrey Tucker. Canines and their handlers become a very close team as they live together and work together in excess of 40 hours per week.
Through his training with Tucker, Asko became certified to work patrol apprehension, article/evidence searches and narcotics detection. During his six years of service, Asko caught 17 violent criminals who required the use of force to apprehend them. Many of these suspects were hiding in buildings, attics and in the countryside. His mere presence at the scene assisted with hundreds of other arrests. Often times suspects surrendered simply because Asko had arrived on the scene.
Asko’s life was not only dedicated to apprehending criminals and protecting his partner. He was also dedicated to protecting and serving the residents of the community in many different ways.
On one occasion a wanted man threw a handgun from his vehicle in the Cameron Park area. It was very important to find the gun, as the area was highly populated and commonly walked by children. Deputies searched the area for an hour but could not find the gun. Asko arrived to help and found the gun in 15 minutes, eliminating the possibility of the gun falling into the hands of a child or another criminal.
Asko was a true public servant, performing in numerous demonstrations for Red Ribbon Week, Bark in the Park, the Boy Scouts, local grade schools and local middle schools.
Deputy Tucker will remain a member of the canine unit and will begin the arduous duty of finding a new partner. Canine officers are responsible for purchasing their own partners and have established the El Dorado County Canine Association, PO Box 1721, Shingle Springs 95682, to assist in this valuable endeavor.