Captain John Hayes
The Operations Division consists of several smaller divisions and units, including the Auxiliary Unit, Court Security, the Crisis Negotiation Unit, the Honor Guard, the K-9 Unit, Patrol, and the Tactical Response Unit.
The Sangamon County Sheriff's Office Auxiliary is a volunteer organization, which maintains approximately 15 non-sworn members. While "on duty" they carry the same authority as a Merit Deputy. The Auxiliary personnel function as a valuable, well-trained addition to sworn personnel. They assist in numerous functions such as patrol, event security, responding to disaster scenes, and assist in special operations such as roadside safety checks, drug collections at Department of Health, and volunteer to add additional uniformed bodies for special events. Prior to accompanying deputies on patrol, every member must complete training in the use of deadly force and firearms proficiency, followed by continual training in communication procedures, domestic disturbance response, traffic stops, search/seizure and any other legal aspect of law enforcement which they may encounter. Virtually all members have other full time employment, and volunteer their time and talents to the Sheriff’s Office on a regular basis.
The Sheriff’s Office has thirteen, full-time Court Security Officers. Court Security Officers are responsible for protecting the Sangamon County Court Complex facility. Their responsibilities include screening everyone who enters the building to detect weapons or illegal contraband, as well as searching packages or other containers entering the court building. Court Security Officers also secure the halls, offices, and courtrooms. Officers provide personal protection for Judges, elected officials, attorneys, county employees, and all other personnel within the building. These officers are trained in various aspects of security and law enforcement, including the recognition and detection of explosive devices, crowd control, and arrest and apprehension techniques. In addition, Court Security Officers are responsible for securing and transporting juvenile suspects between the Juvenile Detention Facility and court as necessary. The Court Security Officers are commanded by a Court Security Lieutenant and one Court Security Sergeant. A staff of four part-time bailiffs, who assist with daily court operations and trials, also fall under the Court Security Division.
Crisis Negotiation Unit (CNU)
The Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office Crisis Negotiations Unit is comprised of members who are uniquely trained to negotiate with people in crisis. Crisis can be a mental health deterioration where the person poses a danger to themselves or others, suspects who have barricaded themselves and are threatening danger to law enforcement or others who try and approach, or suspects who have taken hostages to demand a desirable outcome for themselves. The goal of CNU in any of these situations is to facilitate a peaceful resolution with the utmost emphasis on safety of the general public, law enforcement officers, and subject in crisis, while working in collaboration with the Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office Tactical Response Unit to achieve this goal. CNU includes members of the Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office, Menard County Sheriff’s Office and Chatham Police Department.
The Sangamon County Sheriff's Honor Guard Unit represents the men and women of the Sheriff’s Office in parades, funerals, public demonstrations, and presentation of the national colors at public events. The Honor Guard also participates in the Illinois Police Memorial Ceremonies at the Illinois State Capitol every May; and at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Services & National Police Week in Washington D.C. in May of every other year. The Honor Guard is comprised of Deputies, Court Security Officers, and Correctional Officers. The majority of the funds needed to purchase uniforms, equipment, and for travel expenses are raised by the unit members through community donations and various fund-raising events throughout the year. The Honor Guard has received numerous awards in competitions and takes great pride in representing the Sangamon County Sheriff’s Office.
The K-9 Unit consists of three handler/canine teams, Deputy Dickason/K-9 "Brax", Sergeant Tweryon/K-9 "Asa" and Deputy Tudoreanu/K-9 "Ivo", and is supervised by the Commander of Operations. They are currently assigned to power shifts for optimal coverage. The canine teams must go through extensive training and continuing certification. All of the canines are "dual-purpose", which means they are trained in multiple functions such as tracking, building searches, article searches, handler protection and narcotics detection. The three teams provide numerous community service demonstrations every year and are used regularly by various school administrators to conduct drug ‘sniffs’ within the local schools.
The SCSO Patrol Division consists of 52 sworn Deputies, Sergeants and Lieutenants. There are three shifts; days, evenings and midnights, that cover 24 hours a day 7 days a week. Included in the 52 sworn Deputies are three K-9 Handlers that cover a daytime and nighttime power shift and 2 Deputies assigned to the Springfield Mass Transit District. In addition to handling calls for service, the Patrol Division executes arrests warrants and conducts traffic enforcement, as well as serves summons, civil papers, evictions and orders of protection. Many of the SCSO Patrol Deputies have secondary functions such as; Crime Scene Technician, Field Training Officer, DUI Officer, Accident Reconstruction Officer, Tactical Response Member and Crisis Negotiation Member. All Deputies assigned to the Patrol Division have marked squad cars, with the exception of the shift Lieutenants.
Tactical Response Unit (TRU)
The Tactical Response Unit, also referred to as the “TRU”, was implemented in 1975. Currently, the Unit consists of 17 sworn members and 2 tactical medics. The TRU is a support resource within the Sheriff’s Office. Members of the TRU are also a part of the City/County Weapons of Mass Destruction Special Response Team. This joint team may respond anywhere in Illinois in the event of a terrorist attack or natural disaster. The TRU is also a multijurisdictional team, with Officers from the Sherman, Rochester and Chatham Police Departments. The TRU is charged with various assignments; inclusive of executing high risk search, securing and resolving barricaded/hostage situations, VIP dignitary protection, crowd control, security at large scale natural or manmade disasters, and any situation where a tactical unit may be needed. Members of the TRU are trained in security, sniper/observer, stealth and dynamic entry, including explosive breaching and hostage rescue situations. Members of the TRU train at least once a month, and members of the City/ County Weapons of Mass Destruction Team train an additional day per month. TRU members, depending on their assignment, may attend a variety of specialty schools each year. All TRU members are on call 24 hours a day, and can be called at a moment’s notice.