The Special Enforcement Division consists of the School Resource Officer (SRO) Unit, Reserve & Volunteer Units, Incident Response Team, and Seasonal Teams. The Traffic Enforcement Sections also falls under the Special Enforcement Division, which includes the Traffic Unit, K9 Unit, Motor Unit, Traffic Specialist Unit, and TRV Unit.
TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT SECTION
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office has a full-time Traffic Unit responsible for keeping the roads safe. The Traffic Unit consists of the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety H.E.A.T. (Highway Enforcement of Aggressive Driving) Unit and D.U.I. Task Force, and working alongside the Motorcycle Unit, Traffic Specialist Unit, K9 Unit, and a Traffic Response Vehicle.
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office is proud of its partnership with the Georgia Governor’s Office of Highway Safety (G.O.H.S.). In 2018, The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office continued its H.E.A.T. Unit program and received a grant from the Governor’s Office for its enforcement and educational efforts. The G.O.H.S. H.E.A.T. Unit members aggressively target unsafe driving behavior in the areas of D.U.I., speeding, occupant protection, and distracted driving. The mission statement for the H.E.A.T. members is to reduce accidents, fatalities, and serious injuries through education and enforcement. The H.E.A.T. members work various schedules with different days and hours to target the most violators of unsafe driving behavior. The members participate in all state and national traffic safety campaigns. They also deploy across the state during H.E.A.T. mobilization, including “Rolling Thunder” and “100 Days of HEAT,” as well as conducting concentrated enforcement and checkpoints with other agencies and H.E.A.T. members. The H.E.A.T. members attend monthly Traffic Network meetings for education, networking, and enforcement to help keep our surrounding communities safe. The H.E.A.T. Officers are expected to be at the top of their game in all areas of traffic safety and continue training and education to maintain those expectations.
Not only do the H.E.A.T. members aggressively target unsafe driving violators, but they also spend time on educational efforts. The H.E.A.T. members are commonly requested to teach at schools, businesses, and community events to educate the public about Traffic Safety issues.
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office also has a D.U.I. Unit that essentially has the same goals and responsibilities as a H.E.A.T. member, just not attached to the grant. The H.E.A.T. and D.U.I. members work side by side to combat unsafe driving behavior.
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office K9 Unit consists of five Dual Purpose Canine and Deputy Teams. The primary duties of the K9 Unit include, but are not limited to:
• Tracking lost or missing persons
• Tracking suspects engaged in criminal activities
• Evidence recovery
• Lost property recovery
• Assisting in high-risk warrants
• Locating illicit narcotics (extensive training)
The unit works throughout the county and has assisted other agencies when needed. Our Dual Purpose Canine Teams train daily and meet up
four times a month to conduct scenario-based K9 training.
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office also has a full-time Motor Unit. The agency understands the benefits of having a Motor Unit to enforce Traffic Laws. The Motor Unit is also tasked with aggressive traffic enforcement, targeting high traffic crash areas and complaints from citizens of traffic issues. The Motor Unit also oversees deploying “Speed Smart Trailers” and TraxxPro devices. These devices help the agency target dates and times to best focus on speed enforcement, as well as educating the public on speeding issues.
The Motor Unit is also responsible for funeral escorts and other special assignments.
TRAFFIC SPECIALIST UNIT
The Traffic Specialist Unit (TSU) of the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office was developed in June 2001, when the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office command thought there was a need for a specially trained team to investigate serious injury and traffic fatalities that occur within Forsyth County. Litigation often follows serious injury and fatal traffic crashes, so it was essential that well-trained professionals conduct these investigations. TSU Unit is also responsible for investigating hit and run crashes within Forsyth County.
Very well trained and experienced Deputies are assigned to the Traffic Specialist Unit. They consistently maintain their training and certifications. TSU has proven to be an asset to our agency. Since 2013, the Traffic Specialist Unit has investigated over 170 fatal and/or serious injury crashes and over 1400 hit and run crashes.
Traffic Specialist Deputies are equipped with numerous, state of the art, pieces of equipment. The unit utilizes a Total Station System, which is used to map a crash or crime scene to scale, a Bosch Crash Data Retrieval System, which retrieves crash data from an airbag module of a vehicle, and other critical investigative software and hardware tools. Most of this equipment was purchased with drug seizure funds, at no expense to taxpayers.
TRAFFIC RESPONSE VEHICLE (TRV)
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office Traffic Response Vehicle (TRV), much like the Georgia Department of Transportation’s HERO truck is designed to help residents with roadside problems. However, the FCSO Traffic Response Vehicle also enforces laws and issues citations as needed.
The TRV Unit patrols high-traffic county roads and provides roadside help during busy weekday rush hours. The TRV is equipped with many tools and equipment that would be needed for roadside assistance, like tools, jump boxes, cones, fire extinguisher, tow staps, gas, water, and more.
The Traffic Response Vehicle Unit also assists the other Traffic teams as needed.
SCHOOL RESOURCE OFFICERS
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office School Resource Officer Unit falls under the Law Enforcement Bureau. The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office is committed to working closely with the Forsyth County Board of Education and School Safety Department to maximize the safety of our most valuable treasure, our youth.
Sheriff Freeman and the Board of Education have developed a plan to staff a minimum of one SRO at each public school campus in Forsyth County. School resource officers protect over 50,000 students, plus staff, within 38 school campuses. The SRO deputies provide direct services to the schools; which include campus safety inspections, classroom presentations, criminal investigations, student and parent conferences, along with a variety of other activities including traditional law enforcement duties and security.
SCHOOL SAFETY TASK FORCE
In early 2018, Forsyth County Schools Superintendent Dr. Bearden and Forsyth County Sheriff Freeman announced that they were commissioning a School Safety Task Force with the objective of completing a comprehensive safety assessment of all Forsyth County school campuses and review of possible security improvements. The task force is led by the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office’s Major Perkins and includes additional FCSO Deputies, staff from Forsyth County Schools, as well as representatives from the Forsyth County Fire Department and Forsyth County Emergency Management Agency.
Upon the inception of the School Safety Task Force, they took several weeks to complete a review of existing policies and conducted physical surveys of all Forsyth County public school campuses. They engaged the community on ideas and concerns as they reviewed security needs. The task force prepared a thorough report of their findings and recommended potential safety improvements. This report was presented to both Sheriff Freeman and Dr. Bearden, thus aiding decisions made on what steps can be taken to further ensure the safety of our children and school staff. The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office is committed to securing the safety of our schools and will continue to have enhanced presence on all campuses.
If you have questions or are interested in learning more about the School Resource Officer Program, please contact:
RESERVE DEPUTIES & VOLUNTEERS
At the Forsyth County Sheriffs Office, we take pride in the men and women dedicated to keeping the citizens of Forsyth County safe every day. We also pride ourselves in those that desire to help in this endeavor without receiving anything in return. FCSO is fortunate to have numerous volunteers and reserve Deputies that drop everything when called upon to serve however needed.
Forsyth County Sheriff's Office Reserve Deputies are located all across the county. They hold regular jobs within the community and they have a strong desire to contribute something back to the community. A unique feature of these people is the fact that they volunteer their spare time to the Sheriff's Office.
Not everyone is cut out for this kind of involvement so all of us should be proud to have individuals who live beside us and are capable of this type of volunteerism. Individual candidates must pass the same qualifications and training as full-time officers in order to be approved. If qualified, you will become part of the unique group a volunteer Peace Officers that provide a variety of public service functions to enhance and supplement the day to day activities of the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office.
BECOME A RESERVE DEPUTY
Augment the following Forsyth County sheriffs office divisions in the execution of their duties with special attention to:
Uniform patrol division
Court services for magistrate, state and superior court security
Warrants and civil process
Respond to our special callouts
Searching for missing persons, escaped/ fleeing prisoners/ suspects
Disasters- plane crashes, major fires, gas leaks, power outages, storm damage, etc.
Training for reserve deputy’s includes:
Department required in-service training
Twice a year firearms requalification
Field training officer program
Each Reserve Unit member undergoes the same stringent screening process as regular full-time Deputies to ensure that only the most qualified personnel are entrusted with the publics' safety.
The Reserve Unit donates its resources and talents to the citizens of Forsyth County by devoting many hours of personal service towards enhancing the services and operations of the Forsyth County Sheriff's Office.
The following requirements must be met and/or successfully completed:
Reserve Unit board approval
Ability to work a minimum of 60 hours per quarter
BECOME A VOLUNTEER
The Forsyth County Sheriff's Office welcomes volunteers from our community. Our volunteers are vital to the day-to-day operations that take place in each of our offices. We have many volunteer opportunities, which include day to day volunteers, our Citizens Helping In Policing (CHIP) Unit, and Community Emergency Response Team (CERT).
COMMUNITY EMERGENCY RESPONSE TEAM (CERT)
The Community Emergency Response Team program teaches residents of Forsyth County how to prepare for and assist first responders in the event of a natural (tornado, earthquake, major winter storm) or man-made disaster. CERT students receive training in disaster preparedness, first aid, fire safety, and urban and rural search and rescue. After the basic CERT training class, students are encouraged to attend monthly training classes and to assist with community events throughout the year. Before being accepted into the CERT Program, students must complete an application packet and submit to a criminal background check.
CITIZENS HELPING IN POLICING (CHIP)
The mission of the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office Citizens Helping In Policing (CHIP) is to help improve the quality of life for Forsyth County residents and visitors by providing a visible presence and by observing and reporting suspicious activities. This mission is accomplished through a collaborative partnership with the residents of Forsyth County and the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office. The CHIP team members help the Sheriff’s Office and the community in many ways. This includes assisting with special events, traffic direction, residential and business checks, park patrol, and other types of support functions. Prior to being accepted into the CHIP Program and attending the basic CHIP training class, CHIP applicants must complete either the CERT training class, Citizens Law Enforcement Academy, or be a retired Law Enforcement Officer. CHIP applicants must be 21 years of age, attend an in-person interview, complete the CHIP application packet, and submit to a criminal background check, and drug screen prior to being accepted.
AMATEUR RADIO EMERGENCY SERVICE (ARES)
The Amateur Radio Emergency Service Team is a trained, FCC-licensed group of Ham radio operators available to provide emergency communications for the County’s Public Safety Organizations in the event of a localized or widespread communication failure. ARES Team members also provide communications for CERT Teams during community events throughout the year. Those interested in joining the ARES team must hold a valid Ham Radio license. ARES members are encouraged to attend monthly training classes and assist with community events throughout the year. Before being accepted into the ARES Program, students must complete an application packet and submit to a criminal background check.
The Credentialed Administrative Volunteer Unit is a group of men and women who assist with ‘behind the scenes’ clerical duties and/or manage our interoffice mail delivery. Prior to being accepted into the CHIP Program and attending the basic CHIP training class, CHIP applicants must complete either the CERT training class, Citizens Law Enforcement Academy, or be a retired Law Enforcement Officer. CHIP applicants must be 21 years of age, attend an in-person interview, complete the CHIP application packet, and submit to a criminal background check, and drug screen prior to being accepted.
CIVILIAN CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION
The volunteer Civilian Criminal Investigation Unit is a group of men and women who assist Detectives with ‘behind the scenes’ clerical duties specific to Investigations. Prior to being accepted into the Volunteer Civilian Criminal Investigation Division Unit you must complete either the CERT training class, Citizens Law Enforcement Academy, or be a retired Law Enforcement Officer. Civilian Criminal Investigation Division Unit applicants must be 21 years of age, attend an in-person interview, complete the Civilian Criminal Investigation Unit application packet, and submit to a criminal background check, and drug screen prior to being accepted.