Road Patrol Division
The Uniform Patrol Division is comprised of fifty (50) sworn Deputies. These Deputies are divided into four rotating shifts. Captain Shannon Peterson supervises the Uniform Division, with the assistance of Lieutenants Randall Thomas, Shane Snyder, and Christopher Hans. Mrs. Tammy Schoonmaker assists as Administrative Uniform Patrol Division Secretary and Fleet Manager.
In 2013, the Uniform Patrol Division responded to 24,464 calls for service. The types of calls for service range across the spectrum from assisting citizens to investigating homicides.
The Uniform Division is at the forefront of the Sheriff's Office. When a citizen calls 911 it is the Uniform Division that immediately responds to assist with their particular situation or problem. The Uniform Division in essence is the front-line defense for our citizens assuring the safety and quality of life we enjoy in Okeechobee County. The Uniform Division is a twenty-four-hour-seven-day-a-week operation.
The Uniform Division operates on two separate rotating shifts: 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and 6:00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. Each shift has a Sergeant, a Corporal, and seven Deputy Sheriff's to patrol and answer calls within our 744 square miles of County. One traffic unit is assigned to each shift to investigate traffic crashes.
The Uniform Division has many programs in which Uniformed Deputies are utilized. They include the following:
School Resource Unit: The Sheriff's Office has partnered with the Okeechobee County School Board where we have Deputies based in and assigned to our schools. The School Resource Unit is comprised of a Sergeant and five Deputy Sheriffs. This unit works firsthand with our Youth in an effort to assure a safe and crime-free environment as possible within our school system during the school year. This unit also encompasses and supervises the five school crossing guards for our local schools that are civilian supported, and is also associated with numerous Youth programs during the summer months, which include but is not limited to the Florida Sheriffís Youth Ranches Summer Camp and other local Youth Programs. For more information, you may contact: email@example.com
One of the newest programs that have been implemented is the presence of four Deputy Sheriffs permanently assigned in the northern rural part of our County where it was difficult to respond in a timely manner.
Court Security/Civil Process: Part of the Sheriff's Office duties is to provide security for our local Judicial Center, serve civil papers and follow up on warrants throughout the County. Courthouse Security has a Corporal and one Deputy to ensure public safety within the confines of the Court House. There are two full-time Civil Process Deputies who work six days a week until around 8:00 p.m. excluding Sunday.
Auxiliary: Currently we have twenty-five Auxiliary Deputies with the Sheriff's Office. These men and women respond as a backup to our Uniform Division, they also perform various security details within the county where more manpower is needed. This also includes the Land Unit, which has five civilians that are equipped with All Terrain Vehicles and are trained in the usage of GPS coordinates.
Posse: We have twelve individuals who make up our Mounted Unit. These volunteers on horseback conduct such duties as Parade Details, Security Details, and Search and Rescue efforts through extended rough terrain where motorized units are unable to travel.
Citizens Observation Patrol (C.O.P.): There are forty-seven civilian men and women, who are supervised by one Sheriff's Office Sergeant who manages this program. These concerned citizens donate their time for patrol and are active in neighborhood watch programs. We consider these citizens our extended eyes and ears for our county.
Dive Team: This unit is made up of a Sergeant and eight Deputies combined from the ranks of the Uniform Division and the Criminal Investigations Division.
SRT: The Special Response Team is made up of an undisclosed number of dedicated and highly trained individuals all with specialized skills and duties. These individuals come from various divisions within the Sheriff's Office to meet the needs and requirements of special needs incidents.
SERT: The Sheriff's Emergency Response Team is made up of twenty-two members. They are trained in a mobile field force which is used for crowd control and to respond to correctional emergencies.
Okeechobee County Sheriff's Office takes an aggressive and proactive stance on combating crime, arresting criminals, and assuring the safety and well-being of our citizens. We believe this is instrumental in lowering the crime rate and maintaining a community where all are proud to be citizens of Okeechobee County.
Any Road Patrol or Training questions may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org