Within the professional law enforcement community, it is recognized that the establishment of a tactically trained and equipped law enforcement component has demonstrated the capacity to substantially reduce the potential for injury, or loss of life, to citizens, law enforcement officers and others. Additionally, it is acknowledged that a well-managed and coordinated tactical response to critical incidents may significantly contribute to the satisfactory resolution of crisis incidents.
With this in mind, the Cherokee County Office of the Sheriff’s Emergency Response Team (SERT) was established in 2003, under the authority and direction of Sheriff R. K. Lovin.
SERT was created with the intention of providing a tactically trained, equipped and technically proficient resource within the office whose responsibility is to help resolve critical incidents, involving a threat to public safety, which would otherwise exceed the capabilities of traditional law enforcement first responders. The Team is staffed with ten tactically trained law enforcement officers (Known as operators) and three TEMS (Tactical Emergency Medical Support) paramedics.
Members of The Cherokee County Office of the Sheriff’s SERT Team receive monthly tactical training which is provided by state certified trainers, to help improve overall tactical readiness. Members also complete a yearly NTOA based physical fitness evaluation to ensure fitness levels are maintained.
The SERT Team is associated with the National Tactical Officers Association whose mission is to enhance the performance and professional status of law enforcement personnel by providing credible and proven training resources.
Consistent with the Mission Statement of the Office of the Sheriff, SERT is available to assist other law enforcement agencies upon request and permission from the sheriff. SERT may be required to deploy in a “primary role,” wherein SERT assumes operational command & control of the tactical incident, or in a “secondary role,” wherein SERT provides operational support to the requesting agency.