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K-9 officer credited with early Saturday drug bust

December 1, 2011

It was either a bathroom break for X-Ray, Bishop’s K-9 police officer, or an “area check” that led to the weekend arrest of a 23-year-old Bishop resident for alleged possession of illegal narcotics.
According to a Bishop PD press release, Officer Brent Gillespie “conducted an area check” in a parking lot between Willow Street and Whitney Alley, “allowing his canine partner, X-Ray, to check the parking lot” at about 2:05 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 26.
The parking lot is not far from a local saloon and used by patrons of that establishment.
“Officer Gillespie noticed X-Ray alert to a pickup truck in the parking lot,” the press release states. “He walked over to the vehicle and upon further investigation, noticed a clear plastic baggy with a white substance inside the vehicle.”
According to the Bishop Police Department, officers responded to the scene and waited for the arrival of the vehicle’s driver. Officers then made contact with George Alexander Santana, Jr., and questioned him regarding the contents found in the vehicle.
“Further investigation revealed there were more drugs and a weapon found inside the vehicle,” the press release states, adding that Gillespie allegedly located approximately 29.9 grams of marijuana, 1.7 grams of methamphetamine, a digital scale, a glass marijuana pipe and a spring-loaded knife.
Santana was arrested for alleged possession of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance for sale, possession of marijuana for sale and possession of a switchblade knife. He was transported to Inyo County Jail.
A representative from the Bishop Police Department said that Gillespie was in the parking lot that evening to give X-Ray a “potty break,” and was not using his canine to search vehicles. She also said the methamphetamine that was allegedly located in the vehicle was sitting in plain sight, and the officer did not have to enter the vehicle to locate it.

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