The Mounted Patrol Unit typically deploys into Delaware County areas in which it is easier and faster to move a horse than a car or ATV. These assignments include county neighborhoods, parks and events with large numbers of people. The Mounted Patrol Unit also assists with crowd control functions, searches for missing people, and parade / honor guard details.
The Mounted Patrol Unit serves a very special function as an ambassador of the Sheriff's Office to the citizens of Delaware County. Unit members and their horses will visit schools, public functions and neighborhood meetings to talk about the role they play in providing public safety and to visit with the community.
The Sheriff's Office established the Delaware County Mounted Patrol Unit on June 1st, 2019 with horses privately owned by the individual Unit members. Members are Volunteers and are not required to be commissioned Peace Officers. The unit is designed as an Auxiliary organization and supplements the Delaware County Sheriff with additional manpower when needed in emergency situations, natural disasters, and community relations events.
Mounted Patrol horses and riders must complete extensive training and testing to prepare them for Patrol deployment. Riders must maintain proficiency in conducting Search and Rescue operations from horseback and maneuver through crowds and moving vehicles in an urban environment. The horses are specially trained to accept sights and sounds they may encounter in any situation. This is of particular importance for the safety of not just bystanders, but the horse and riders as well.
A stringent selection process is in place for both horses and team members. Team members must attend a minimum number of training hours annually and must demonstrate knowledge and ability commensurate with the Mounted Patrol's mission. Members must pass an annual skills exam which includes ground work and equitation skills. Unit members must demonstrate that they are not only excellent individuals, but must display excellent horsemanship as well. The commitment of time involved in maintaining a horse as well as the time involved in preparation for any deployment is a quality that team members must possess.
Horses must also meet strict guidelines. Horses must be free of vices such as kicking or biting. They must be in excellent health and able to work through often long deployments in rural and urban settings. Horses must pass an annual skills test to ensure they are physically sound and able to stay calm while confronting the variety of stimulus they may encounter. A horse that can meet the stringent standards of a Mounted Patrol Horse is difficult to find.
The Mounted Patrol Unit trains a minimum of once each month and utilizes a standardized format to ensure the basic equitation and sensory needs are covered. Riding skills (equitation) are a major component of our training.
Feel free to say hello to the horses and riders whenever you see them out in the community, but remember to please check with the Rider before touching any of the horses because they are team members, not just animals.
9/16/2020 - The Delaware County Sheriff Office is currently operating under COVID-19 CDC Guidelines. Please adhere to posted guidance when entering the Sheriff Office or jail facilities. Please be advised that Sex Offender and Violent Offender Registration is limited to Tuesday's and Thursdays between the hours of 9pm and 4pm.