The Patrol Operations for the Sheriff's Office consists of the following divisions::
Effective September 1, 2011, the Sheriff's Office went from a 17 beat system to an 8 zone/27 beat system. The Hanover County Sheriff’s Office is the primary provider of law enforcement services in zones 10 through 70. The Ashland Police Department provides law enforcement services within the 80 zone, which is the Town of Ashland. The Uniform Patrol Operations Division consists of three shifts, each supervised a lieutenant. The Patrol Division as a whole includes Youth Services and a Safe Streets Unit, as well as all specialized teams. The division is managed by two captains and is overseen by a major. The division has also recently been assigned to oversee the county’s Animal Control Unit.
The Safe Streets Unit is comprised of one Uniformed Supervisor with the rank of Sergeant and 5 Uniform Officers. Members of the Safe Streets Unit conduct high visibility criminal interdiction as a means to deter, identify, and/or apprehend individuals engaged in or seeking opportunities to engage in criminal activity within the jurisdictional boundaries of Hanover County. The units’ area of concentration is based on repeat patterns of criminal activity including, but not limited to, crimes against persons, property, and repeat violations.
The Youth Services Unit is comprised of one Uniformed Supervisor with the rank of Lieutenant and 14 Uniform Officers. Of these fifteen, nine are school resources officers, who are assigned to each middle and high school as well as to the Georgetown school, the alternative education school. All of the uniform officers assigned to the schools perform similar duties, such as enforcing all criminal law violations, investigating criminal complaints, teaching classes in school safety, the dangers of alcohol and drug abuse, the law and how it affects you.
The School Resource Officer program was started approximately 10 years ago and consisted of one officer who was responsible for all schools. Today there are 9 School Resource Officers. The School Resource Officer's primary responsibility is the enforcement of criminal law within the school. Additionally, the officers participate in a wide range of activities both during and after normal school hours. The activities include but are not limited to teaching academic classes and programs, coaching school sports, supervising Explorers, volunteering with Boy Scouts, and participating in various youth oriented community functions.
The D.A.R.E program is a part of the Youth Service section which is supervised by the Lieutenant of Youth Services. D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) is a collaborate effort by D.A.R.E. certified law enforcement officers, educators, students, parents, and community to offer an educational program in the classroom to prevent or reduce drug abuse and violence among children and youth.
- The Hanover County D.A.R.E. Program consists of five full-time officers who provide instruction to fifteen public and two private elementary schools located within the county.
- Annually instructs D.A.R.E. lessons to over 8,000 elementary school students in grades K-5.
- Presents a comprehensive program of instruction of the harmful effects of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs that are commonly abused. The program is sequential and grade appropriated for elementary school students.
- D.A.R.E. officers work in concert with the schools and the community to provide school-based prevention activities and intervention strategies for the identification, early intervention and support of students at risk for substance abuse.