On the job for several weeks, Mundelein’s newest police dog was formally introduced to the public Monday night.
Ranger, a 2½-year-old German shepherd, is partnering with officer Kevin Freese.
Freese’s young son, Tyler, gave Ranger a badge during a short presentation Monday. Ranger already was wearing a vest marked “police” over his black fur.
Ranger was born in Germany and donated to Tops Kennel in Grayslake to eventually serve as a police dog, Deputy Police Chief Jason Seeley said.
Ranger was named after students in Mundelein schools submitted suggestions as part of a contest.
Ranger and Freese completed an eight-week training course and will continue training together.
Ranger primarily will have two jobs: finding illegal drugs and tracking people.
He and Freese already have had one successful assignment. Earlier this month, they helped Vernon Hills police find a suspect who’d fled from officers.
But Ranger has something of a public relations job, too. He’s become popular with local residents, especially kids, Seeley said. Some people have stopped by the police station just to see how Ranger is doing, Seeley said.
Ranger replaced a German shepherd named Titan who retired earlier this year after seven years of service.
“We had a great run with Titan and we’re going to have another great run with Ranger,” Mayor Steve Lentz said.
As is customary for police dogs, Ranger will live with Freese and his family. Lentz thanked Freese, who’s been with the department since 2019, for taking on the four-legged partner.