“Please Bring Him Home” were the words a family member said to Paul Coley as he and the Tallahassee PD Bloodhound Team began the search for missing 4-year-old Noah Beebe. Coley had been conducting scent discriminate training with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office earlier that morning. During the training FCSO Sgt. Drew Young got the call that an endangered child with autism had gone missing. Coley and Sgt. Young sped to the residence of the missing child with K9 Josie to begin searching. They collected a scent article from the child’s clothes using a pad from one of the Scent Kits Paul had delivered that week as part of the Bringing The Lost Home Program. Sgt. Young presented the Scent Jar to K9 Josie and they began trailing into a heavily-wooded marsh. En route, Coley called Tallahassee PD Detective Paul Osborne for backup and he loaded up his Bloodhound, K9 Jon Jon, and rushed to Franklin County. K9 Josie, a Lab that was only on her 3rd day of scent discriminate training was on the trail but grew tired in the thick Florida swampy terrain. Det. Osborne and K9 Jon Jon arrived on the scene shortly thereafter and the Tallahassee Bloodhound team used a Scent Kit to collect a new scent article from the child’s shoe and deployed again from the residence with Scent Evidence K9 CEO, Paul Coley. The crowd at the scene had grown to dozens of people and many vehicles. K9 Jon Jon took a whiff of the Scent Jar and took off into the woods. “The woods were so thick that Osborne and I had to hand the lead off to each other to get through,” said Coley. The trail was now 3 hours old. K9 Jon Jon pushed through the swampy woods for .25 miles and located the missing child in knee-deep water with only a shirt on. When they radioed in that they had found the missing boy, they could hear the cheers from all the people at the scene a quarter mile away.
Coley had traveled to Franklin County Sheriff’s Office earlier that week to train with Sgt. Young and K9 Josie and deliver Scent Kits and a SEKR Scent Evidence Vacuum as part of a federal grant awarded to The Alzheimer’s Project in Tallahassee. Read More HERE.
The Kevin and Avonte Program: Reducing Injury and Death of Missing Individuals with Dementia and Developmental Disabilities grant provides scent discriminate K9 trailing and Missing Person Response Protocol training to the Tallahassee Police Department, Havana Police Department, Gadsden County Sheriff’s Office, and Franklin County Sheriff’s Office. The grant also implements a highly successful Scent Kit program for people at risk of wandering in area communities. “We are proud of our partnership with The Alzheimer’s Project, to provide services for the grant resources. Just like today, the Bringing The Lost Home Program is working to create awareness, save lives, and find the missing all across the country, “stated Scent Evidence K9 CEO, Paul Coley.
Franklin County Sheriff’s Office was also a participating Bringing The Lost Home Program agency in 2020-2021 along with Lee Co. Sheriff’s Office, St. Johns Co. Sheriff’s Office, Marion Co. Sheriff’s Office, and the Tallahassee Police Department. Florida’s Bringing The Lost Home Program began in 2019 through an appropriations bill sponsored by former Rep. Scott Plakon and Rep. Rachel Plakon. The BTLH program is now ready to begin its fifth year and has provided scent discriminate K9 training, missing person response protocol training, missing person and wandering community awareness, scent collection technology, and a successful Scent Kit program to protect those at risk in 25 Florida counties. 249 persons in Florida have been located utilizing the program and that number grows weekly.
Coley and Scent Evidence K9 trained K9 Jon Jon and have been working with the Tallahassee PD on missing person cases and scent discriminate training for years including a homicide case that helped the TPD win the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP IACP/Thomson Reuters Excellence in Criminal Investigations) in 2020.
K9 Jon Jon was donated to the Tallahassee Police Dept by Scent Evidence K9 and Citizens For Scent Evidence, a Tallahassee group founded by the brother of Jonathan “Jon Jon” Hagans, who went missing as a child in 1968 during a family outing and was never found. The case is Florida’s oldest missing child case.
When the call came in that little Noah was missing, Coley remembered a similar call from over 10 years ago before he founded Scent Evidence K9. Coley was called to search for a missing child that turned out to be his 4-year-old nephew. He and his Bloodhound, K9 Clyde, located the child safe, deep in the woods near a creek. “People don’t think that a small child can travel that far but it happens all the time. Having well-trained scent discriminate K9 search resources available and ready to deploy quickly is essential to bringing them home safe,” stated Coley.
Great Job to Inv. Osborne/K9 Jon Jon and Sgt. Young/K9 Josie! Thanks to the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office for their efforts to coordinate the search with so many partner agencies to BRING THE LOST HOME.