Sacramento County Sheriff's Department

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Sacramento County Sheriff's Department
Abbreviation SSD
Patch of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.png
Patch of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department
Seal of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department.png
Seal of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department
Motto "Service with Concern!"
Agency overview
Formed 1850
Annual budget $403 million (2011-2012)
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* State of California, U.S.
Map of California highlighting Sacramento County.svg
Map of Sacramento County Sheriff's Department's jurisdiction.
Size 995 square miles (2,580 km2)
General nature
Operational structure
Headquarters Sacramento, California
Agency executive Scott Jones, Sheriff
Stations 6
Jails 2
Helicopters 4
Official website
* Divisional agency: Division of the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department (SSD), is a local law enforcement agency that serves Sacramento County, California. It provides general-service law enforcement to unincorporated areas of Sacramento County, as well as incorporated cities within the county that have contracted with the agency for law-enforcement services. Currently only Rancho Cordova, and Isleton has such a contract with the department since the Citrus Heights and Elk Grove Police Departments assumed all police authority and responsibility for their communities in 2006. It also holds primary jurisdiction over facilities operated by Sacramento County, such as local parks, marinas, and government buildings[citation needed]; provides marshal service for the Superior Court of California, County of Sacramento; operates the Sacramento County Jail and the Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center in Elk Grove; and provides services such as laboratories and academy training to smaller law-enforcement agencies within the county. The county sheriff is currently Scott Jones.


The Sacramento Sheriff's department currently issues versions of the 9mm Glock. Deputies also have less lethal items that are issued to them including but not limited to an X26 taser, expandable baton and, OC spray.


Sheriff Scott Jones

Office of the Sheriff

Community Relations Unit
Legislative Affairs
Media and Public Affairs
Sheriff's Outreach Community Advisory Board
Special Investigations/Intelligence Bureau
ABC/Bingo Regulations
ATF Task Force
Business License/Labor Relations
Criminal Intelligence/Organized Crime
F.B.I. Joint Terrorism Task Force
Gambling/Vice Operations
Gun Permits
Pawn/Secondhand Dealers

Office of the Undersheriff - Erik Maness

Fleet Services

Contract and Regional Services

Airport Division
Civil Bureau
Court Security Division
B.T. Collins Juvenile Courthouse
Carol Miller Justice Center
Gordon D. Schaber Facility
William R. Ridgeway Family Relations Court
Folsom Dam Bureau
Security Services
Children's Services
Regional Transit Police Services
Threat Management
Traffic Bureau
Parking Enforcement
Red Light Enforcement
Towing Enforcement

Correctional Services

Correctional Food Services
Correctional Health
Main Jail
Rio Cosumnes Correctional Center
Jail Industries
Work Release Division
Alternative Sentencing Program
Child Support Revenue Recovery
Home Detention
Revenue Recovery Warrant Unit
Sheriff's Work Project
Toy Project

Field and Investigative Services

Air Operations
Bicycle Rapid Response
Critical Incident Negotiation Team (CINT)
Emergency Operations
Explosive Ordnance Detail (Bomb Squad)
Off-Duty Employment
Patrol Training
Regional Terrorism Threat Assessment Center (R.T.T.A.C)
Search and Rescue
Special Enforcement Detail
Volunteer Services
Drowning Accident Rescue Team (DART)
Explorers Program
Reserve Forces
Volunteers in Partnership with the Sheriff (V.I.P.S)
Central Division
Florin Service Center
Marine Enforcement
Rancho Murieta Safety Center
Walnut Grove Service Center
Wilton Service Center
Centralized Investigations Division
ACE (Auto Crimes Enforcement)
Child Abuse
Cold Case Investigations
Crimes Against Persons
Electronic Tracking System
Felony Assault
Homicide Bureau
Major Crimes
Missing Persons
Property Crimes
Sheriff's Amateur Radio Program (SHARP)
Sexual Assault/Elder Abuse
Hi-Tech Crimes Bureau
Hi-Tech Crimes Task Force
Identity Theft
Internet Crimes Against Children
Impact Bureau
California Multi-agency Methamphetamine Enforcement Team (CAL-MMET)
Gang Suppression
High Impact Drug Trafficking Area Grant (HIDTA)
Specialized Equipment Operations
Youth Services
North Division
Dewey Service Center
Rio Linda Service Center
Rancho Cordova Police Department
East Division

Support Services

Bingo Compliance
Homeland Security
Mobile Field Force
Mutual Aid Coordinator
State Office of Homeland Security
Human Resources
Field Support Division
Forensics & Evidence Bureau
Live Scan
Forensics (formerly Identification)
Court Liaison
Communication & Records Bureau
Records and Warrants
Radio Shop
Information Intelligence Bureau
Intelligence Operations
Technical Operations
Security Operations
Asset Management
Professional Standards Division
Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC)
Employee Relations
Fair Employment
Training and Education Division
Emergency Vehicle Operations Course (EVOC)
Firearms Training Unit
Kenneth Royal Firearms Range
In-Service Training
Internal Affairs
Legal Affairs


The first elected sheriff of Sacramento County was Joseph McKinney.[1] In 1850, McKinney and his deputies were involved in a series of confrontations with Gold Rush-era squatters around the city of Sacramento. McKinney was killed in one such confrontation in August 1850.[1]

Sheriff Don Cox approved the formation of a Sheriff's Air Squadron in the late 1930s or early 1940s, prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor.[2] The Squadron was inactive during World War II as a result of restrictions on civil aviation near the California coast.[2] After the war ended, it became active again and began to undertake support activities for the Sheriff's Department, including prisoner transfers and search and rescue activities.[2]

The Sheriff's Department underwent significant changes in the 1970s. In the 1970 Sheriff's election, the Deputy Sheriff's Association voiced support for challenger Duane Lowe against incumbent John Misterly, following disagreements regarding deputies' training and pay.[3] Lowe was elected in a run-off election, and during the next six years oversaw efforts to modernize the Sheriff's Department, extend new services to the community, and improve pay and working conditions for deputies.[3]

The Sheriff's Department's canine detail was created in 1979.[4]

In 1998, Theodore Kaczynski was held by the Sacramento Sheriff's Department on suicide watch during pre-trial interviews to determine his competency to stand trial and act as his own lawyer during criminal proceedings.[5]

In 2001, multiple-murderer Nikolay Soltys, one of the FBI's Ten Most Wanted, was captured by the Sacramento Sheriff's Department following one of the largest manhunts in Sacramento history.[6]

1991 Sacramento hostage crisis[edit]

The 1991 Sacramento Hostage Crisis occurred on April 4, 1991 when four people took hostages at a Good Guys! Electronics store located at the Florin Mall. The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department Special Enforcement Detail (SED) and Critical Incident Negations Team (CINT) handled the incident.[citation needed]

The local media broadcast the crisis during which hostage takers lined up some of the hostages in front of the entrance as human shields. After which a twenty-year-old male hostage was shot in the leg released to deliver the gang's message and plight to the local media. They claimed they were trying to draw attention to the troubles of their home country and that they were on a suicide mission. During the rescue attempt three hostages as well as three of the four hostage-takers were killed and fourteen hostages were injured. The situation was the largest hostage rescue operation in U.S. history, with over 50 hostages being held at gunpoint.[7]

Fallen officers[edit]

Since the establishment of the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department, 18 officers have died in the line of duty.[8]

Officer Date of Death Details
Sheriff Joseph McKinney
Thursday, August 15, 1850
Captain Charles J. Ogle
Monday, February 12, 1951
Automobile accident
Deputy Sheriff William L. Littlejohn
Friday, June 3, 1955
Vehicular assault
Deputy Sheriff Roger L. Bauman
Tuesday, December 12, 1961
Deputy Sheriff Kenneth B. Royal
Friday, June 7, 1968
Corporal Bruce Roger Verhoeven
Tuesday, December 4, 1973
Deputy Sheriff Stewart Porter Baird
Sunday, June 13, 1976
Christopher W. Boone
Thursday, October 25, 1979
Deputy Sheriff Eugene M. Luther
Friday, April 25, 1980
Detective David E. Miller
Sunday, January 2, 1983
Vehicle pursuit
Sergeant Richard Earl Deffner
Thursday, January 21, 1988
Deputy Sheriff Sandra Lee Larson
Tuesday, December 8, 1998
Automobile accident
Deputy Sheriff Joseph Michael Kievernagel
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Aircraft accident
Deputy Sheriff Kevin Patrick Blount
Wednesday, July 13, 2005
Aircraft accident
Deputy Sheriff Jeffrey Vaughn Mitchell
Friday, October 27, 2006
Deputy Sheriff Vu Nguyen
Wednesday, December 19, 2007
Deputy Sheriff Paul William Derouen
Saturday, March 29, 2008
Struck by vehicle
Deputy Sheriff Lawrence William Canfield
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Motorcycle accident
Deputy Sheriff Danny Oliver
Friday, October 24, 2014
Deputy Sheriff Robert French
Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Alleged misconduct[edit]

The department has been the target of multiple accusations of brutality, abuse, mismanagement, and cover-ups by deputies, many at the Sacramento County Jail while under the supervision of then Undersheriff John McGinness. The Sacramento Bee has documented many such cases in its Watchdog Reports.

Judson King[edit]

In 1998, a deputy at the jail ordered Judson King to move faster, to which he replied, "I am." King claimed that his elbow was immediately fractured, and later received a settlement of $35,000.[9]

Troy Zwierzynski[edit]

In 1999, Troy Zwierzynski had surrendered himself at the jail to complete a work project as part of a misdemeanor sentence. While in a holding cell, he said, he heard a man screaming and turned to look. A deputy ordered Zwierzynski to look away, and "slammed him against the wall violently twisting back his wrists and arms," the complaint states. "The deputies asked (him) if he was going to look the next time. ... Plaintiff, in tears, responded that he would not look again." His wrist was broken, and he later received a settlement of $35,000.[9]

Michael Hay[edit]

On December 22, 2000, Sacramento State student Michael Hay was drunk in his apartment when Sheriff's Deputies Rebecca Eubanks and Robert Book confronted him about loud music. After Hay was belligerent toward Deputy Book, and made harassing comments to Eubanks, Book "handcuffed him and walked him downstairs" and arrested him for being drunk in public; the charges were later dropped and Book was reprimanded because his "arrest of Michael Hay was without legal authority." Hay claimed that while he was being booked at the Sacramento County Jail, staff made repeated comments about what his stay was going to be like. Deputy Eubanks said, "We're really, really bored and we need somebody to play with, so you're it, OK?" Later the staff nurse warned him that "they like to hurt people around here" in hopes he would stop picking fights verbally with the arresting officers. An unidentified officer made a shadow-boxing motion. When Hay was eventually searched, an officer twisted his thin frail arm for so long and with such force that he eventually broke it. After spending the night with a broken arm and no medical attention, he was released and sought medical care three days later. In 2002, Hay settled a lawsuit against the department for $147,500. Michael Hay has since stated that his claims against the Sacramento Police were false or exaggerated.[10]

Darryl O'Brien[edit]

In 2002, 52-year-old Darryl O'Brien, a woman with no previous criminal record, was "dropped," fracturing her knee. After her handcuffs were removed, her arm was yanked so hard behind her back that her shoulder was fractured. Her claim against the county was later settled for $7,500.[9]

Jafar Afshar[edit]

On June 7, 2003, ex-Marine Jafar Afshar was arrested for public intoxication, charges that were dropped the next morning. During booking, his handcuffs were taken off and he was immediately thrown to the ground, splitting his head open and leaving a pool of blood on the floor. A year later, Afshar filed a federal lawsuit (Afshar v. County of Sacramento) alleging violations of 42 U.S.C. § 1983. The only officer named in the lawsuit, Officer Spaid, said in his incident report that Afshar "swung toward him."[10] Afshar received two sets of videotape, the first showing no incident and the second with missing video, which Afshar's attorney called a cover-up.[11]

Mihaita Constantin[edit]

Mihaita Constantin, a 33-year-old Romanian immigrant, was arrested on July 14, 2003 on suspicion of drunk driving. While in one of the holding cells, he refused to sit. Five deputies rushed in, handcuffed Constantin, and scuffled with him for well over 5 minutes, putting a towel over his head. Constantin was left semi-conscious, towel still over his head, with a broken hand, fractured nose, and severe bruises; no officers were injured. On June 29, 2004, Constantin filed a federal lawsuit against the department alleging violations of his civil rights; he was later found dead in a crashed car on a mountain slope near Blue Canyon. His wife has returned to Europe but is continuing the lawsuit.[10]

Branden Johnson[edit]

On October 29, 2005, Branden Johnson was arrested on suspicion of drunk driving and taken to Sacramento County Jail. He told the Sacramento Bee that during his incarceration, "deputies beat him when he was shackled hand and foot, repeatedly slamming him to the ground." The department denied the allegations and provided an 11-minute video clip from Johnson's 14-hour incarceration, showing Johnson allegedly banging his head against the wall. Johnson stated that he'd like to see the whole video but Undersheriff John McGinness, in charge of operations at the jail, declined to immediately provide the rest of the footage.[12]

Don Anthony Antoine[edit]

On June 19, 2004, Don Antoine was arrested by Sacramento Police officers on charges of assaulting a firefighter, driving under the influence of alcohol, and possession of nunchucks after he ran his car off the Arden-Garden Connector in the Gardenland neighborhood of Sacramento and started a fight with firefighters who responded to the accident.[13] He accused deputies of using excessive force when he says they kicked, punched, beat, and choked him while shackling him to the floor grate in a Sacramento County Jail cell, an event that the deputies deny even took place. On April 16, 2008, a federal grand jury awarded Antoine $170,000 after they found the deputies acted maliciously when they beat him, and one of the jurors was quoted saying the deputies "chained him to a grate like a dog."[14]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]