The Patrol Division is the most visible to the public, and has more deputies assigned to it than any other division.
In order to effectively provide service to the 6,215 square miles that comprise Cochise County, the Sheriff’s Office has six dedicated substations and one satellite substation. The six dedicated substations are located as follows:
Area 1: Sierra Vista
Area 2: Bisbee
Area 3: Douglas
Area 4: Elfrida
Area 5: Willcox, with the one satellite substation located in Bowie
Area 6: Benson
Each area, or district, is supervised by a lieutenant and one or more sergeants. The number of personnel assigned to each area is dependant upon such factors as the number of calls for service that originate from the area and the size of the service population. The Sierra Vista substation has the most deputies assigned to it as that one area contains a population approximately equal to half the total population of the county. The Sierra Vista substation is also the only substation that has a dedicated 24 hours a day, seven days a week operation. The other substations often go to an “on call” status during the early morning hours. Due to the “on call” requirement, deputies are required to reside within a 30 minute drive of their station of assignment.
The patrol division is currently phasing out the use of sedans for patrol vehicles, as sedans are impractical for some of the unimproved roadways that are common in the county. Sport Utility Vehicles (SUV’s), both two wheel and four wheel drive, along with four door pick up trucks are the preferred patrol vehicle.
A new multi-million dollar quasi-sync simulcast radio system is utilized for voice communication throughout the county. Recently the county was able to use COPS technology grant funds to place Mobile Data Computers in the vehicles, thus providing the deputies with near instant access to records and the Arizona Criminal Justice Information System (ACJIS).
Each deputy is assigned Colt .45 automatic handgun, along with a Remington 12 gauge pump action shotgun. Deputies are also provided the option of being issued a Colt .223 caliber patrol rifle. In addition to firearms, deputies are also trained in the use of less-lethal devices, such as Taser stun guns and Oleoresin Capsicum (pepper) spray.
In addition to an assignment to the patrol division, some deputies may also perform additional duties as SWAT team officers, Search and Rescue Coordinators, Traffic Accident Investigators, Physical Fitness instructors, and other specialized assignments.