The Support Services Division of the Buncombe County Sheriffs Office is charged with providing all the Support Services for the Sheriff’s Office. Reflecting the increasingly complex nature of contemporary police work, the division has grown more specialized over the recent years. Support Services Division is Central Records, Sex Offenders Registry, Information Technology, Property and Evidence Storage and Maintenance, Communications, Domestic Violence Protective Order Maintenance, Chaplains Services, Training and Development, Animal Control, and Crime Prevention.
This Division is commanded by a Support Services Captain. The Captain is assisted by an Executive Lieutenant, and Training and Development Lieutenant, and a Lieutenant for Animal Services.
The Personnel of the Support Services Division are assigned to one of the various areas of responsibility.
The Information Technology section is responsible for the administration of the Mobile Communications. Mobile Communications include the radio communications from Communications Dispatch to officers in the field, as well as Mobile Communication Terminals used by all the Uniformed Services and Civil Process. This system insures full coverage for collection of information, filing a report, and storing information to investigate and resolve issues or address a citizen’s request for services. Some calls are as simple as answering a question from a citizen, others as complex as a bank robbery or someone being severely injured, or issues requiring criminal prosecution in the court system. Regardless of the complexity of the issue it is vitally important to gather and maintain proper information throughout the process. This function is largely a liaison with the County Government and other providers to locate and provide equipment and services.
Central Records Section maintain the permanent records for all calls that are handled and processed through the Sheriff’s Office. Files for the Court System and prosecution of cases are filed, stored and maintained in this area. Records must be accessible for various needs through the judicial process. The North Carolina Sex Offender Registry is maintained within the Master Records section of Support Services. The North Carolina laws require certain offenders to register with the local Sheriff’s Office for some offenses. This registration and maintenance offender records are part of the Master Records section.
Property and Evidence Section is received, inventoried and stored by the Property and Evidence Manager. All evidence that is collected from all cases handled by the Sheriff’s Office is handled through this section. The property manager records, and keeps secure storage for all items. The Property Manager must always have the evidence items available and ready for court and other judicial needs. When cases are resolved and disposition is determined the property manager disposes of property as directed
Communications Unit is the first contact a citizen has with requesting assistance. Communicators answer incoming calls and determine what kind and what priority of service the caller requires. Calls are recorded, organized, prioritized and then dispatched to the person that is responsible for providing the service requested. All calls are important, but some calls have a greater priority than others. Calls are prioritized by nature and level of emergency. Calls with a greater potential for personal injury and damage have greater priority. All calls will be answered as quickly, and in priority sequence as resources can be made available.
Maintaining the Domestic Violence Protective Orders is handled through this Communications Division. When Domestic Violence Protective Orders are issued Communications maintains the records and has information available for officers 24 hours per day within Communications for the life of the order.
The Training and Development section is responsible for developing and supplying appropriate training for everyone in the Sheriff’s Office. Every person in the Sheriff’s Office requires training and development to insure proper and efficient performance of their job. Each person in every Bureau and Division requires continuing education and training. Part of the training can be handled inside the Sheriff’s Office and other training is contracted with outside providers. The Training Officer is responsible for developing and providing the specialized training. The training must be provided and records must be maintained to insure compliance with State Mandated Requirements.
Animal Control Units handles issues with animals and administers the specific laws and regulations caring for animals. Animal Control Deputies handle both legal and animal issues. In the past some calls needed animal expertise and some were issues that actually needed legal expertise. Animal control was handled by civilian personnel and calls requiring law enforcement could not be addressed at that time. Today all Buncombe County Animal Control Officers are sworn Deputy Sheriff personnel, allowing all issues to be resolved at the time the officer is on the scene.
The Chaplain Service is a diversified and far reaching service to the citizens of Buncombe County. There is a full time Chaplain that coordinates for the Chaplain Service. This Chaplain works with many other Ministers of various denominations that volunteer their time and services to the citizens of the county. They provide a wonderful service for our citizens in their time of need.