SPRINGFIELD, Ore. – The Springfield Police Department just got a generous boost to their K-9 Unit after the owner of a gun shop held a rifle raffle.
KEZI spoke to Neal Caloia who owns Gun Pro Shooting Supplies off of Main St. in Springfield.
Caloia said he raised $1,880 for the Springfield Police Department K-9 Unit after holding a raffle in his store in February. He said he raffled off a Smith and Wesson AR 15 with all proceeds going toward the K-9 Unit. Each ticket cost five dollars and the rifle was awarded to a licensed gun owner.
Caloia said he wanted to donate to the Springfield Police K-9 Unit because he saw online that the unit was primarily funded through donations, and wanted to make sure he could show his appreciation for their service.
"I told them thank you, I appreciated the work that they do around here,” Caloia said. “We see them occasionally, one or two of them in here. But, you know, just thank you, thanks for the support they give for the community."
Lt. Scott McKee with the Springfield Police Department said he knows some people may have some concerns with his department accepting the donation because of the rifle raffled off. But said the department stands by their decision.
"When they (Gun Pro Shooting Supplies) do a fundraising benefit like this, the winner is going to be somebody who is a responsible gun owner, they do a background and it's only given to a licensed responsible gun owner who has passed a background check."
McKee said the money will go towards training and grooming the dogs, equipment, food, and potentially purchasing more dogs.
Caloia he’s not done yet. He plans on partnering with other Springfield businesses to host another fundraiser for the police department.