About the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office
The Bannock County Sheriff’s Office was established in 1893, when the Mills Act created Bannock County. Now, over a century later, we find the Bannock County Sheriff’s Office a state of the art office, being recognized as one of the pioneers in rural law enforcement in the state. The ever increasing growth in the Pocatello and the surrounding communities has placed increasing demands for service on the Sheriff’s Office. Because good police service is expensive, we have found it necessary to become innovative in order to provide adequate law enforcement at a reasonable cost to our constituents. We are proud of the fact that we were the first county within the State to introduce a dual purpose K-9 program. This program, since its implementation, has been used not only by our agency, but other local agencies in the fight against drugs. It has been a very successful program and millions of dollars of narcotics have been taken off our streets. We also started the first rural Mountain Bike Patrol Unit, which we use to patrol areas within the County where instances make it more advantageous to use bicycles rather than patrol cars.
Our Patrol Division consists of 19 deputies, who provide twenty-four hour law enforcement services to all the unincorporated areas of the County and to four (4) contracted municipalities. Patrol areas amount to 1142 square miles, with a total county population of almost 70,000. In addition, some of the patrol officers belong to our STAR (Special Tactics and Response)Team, who have received special training to handle hostage and other high risk incidents..
Our Detention Division consists of 56 deputies. In 1955, a new jail was built to house 72 inmates. It provided almost forty (40) years of service before inmate populations demanded that a new and larger facility be constructed. Today, a modern facility, which was constructed in 1994, can house 253 inmates. Within this new facility we also have a medical infirmary which provides the necessary medical and dental service to the inmates. Within the Detention Division we have developed a specialized unit which we call the SCILD (Sheriff/Commissioners Inmate Labor Detail) Team, which is made up of low risk inmates who provide community service work rather than sitting their time out within a cell. This program provides more beds for those who need to be confined due to the degree of the crime that they have committed, while at the same time provides a great service within the community in completing clean up and service projects. This unit is manned by 3 deputies who oversee the work of the inmates.
Also included in our Detention Division is the DART (Detention Automatic Response Team) which is composed of highly trained Detention Officers who perform cell extractions and cell searches for hidden contraband and weapons. Our office is the first office within the state to develop this program.
The Sheriff’s Office is also comprised of a Detective Division, with 8 trained detectives working felony cases. We also have one detective who works directly with the Department of Health & Welfare in investigating child abuse cases. Our Office was an active participator in developing a multi-agency approach to child abuse investigation, which included the development of a special interview room used exclusively for the interviewing of child abuse victims. Our protocol has been used as a model program for the State of Idaho.
Other divisions within our office are the Court Services Division, comprised of 8 deputies who perform court security duties, a Training Division, and a Civil Division which comprises both the Drivers License Office and also is responsible for the processing and serving of all civil papers within the County. Our Support Services Division staffs the Emergency 911 Communications Center, as well as Emergency Services. Within this division are the volunteer groups that staff the Search & Rescue Unit and the Ham Radio Operators, who assist the department in emergency situations.
Other services performed by the Sheriff’s Office include a Records Department, School Resource Officer, the registering of sex offenders living within the County, the issuing of Concealed Weapon Permits, Crime Prevention programs, and the Chaplain Corps.
The Bannock County Sheriff’s Office mission is to provide the citizens of Bannock County with quality law enforcement through a team of professional, compassionate men and women, who strive daily to work together to make a difference within our communities.