Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team
Since 1975 when the first team was established, BSO's Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) teams have responded to some of the county's most dangerous and potentially volatile law enforcement situations. The team is responsible for handling various incidents: barricaded subjects and hostage-taking situations, search/arrest warrant operations, dignitary protection missions and other tactical operations.
Thirty-eight deputies staff the BSO SWAT Team including 8 county firefighter paramedics and 12 negotiators. Members are part-time team members who have collateral functions within the agency. All members are on a 24/7 call out basis and assigned to the Bureau of Regional Services and Specialized Operations.
Qualifying for the team is a rigorous process. Members are selected annually through a very competitive process using various techniques to select only the best available. New team members serve a one-year probationary period with ongoing training in all aspects of SWAT operation.
Team members are required to attend a two week basic SWAT school which is taught by current BSO team members. Training sessions are held weekly and members also attend formal training seminars conducted at other professional relevant training facilities.
Every six months, team members must again re-qualify by successfully passing a physical fitness and firearms examination.
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