The Operations Division is the largest and most visible division in the St. Cloud Police Department and is responsible for the safety of our residents, workers and visitors. The department’s commitment to effective policing is strongly rooted in our community and tied to our local concerns. Through community policing and community engagement, the Operations Division officers perform their law enforcement duties while also embedding themselves into our community as part of a team that works together to improve the safety and quality of life for everyone.
The Operations Division consists of 1 Commander, 3 Lieutenants and 12 Sergeants that supervise Patrol Police Officers, Criminal Investigators, Canine & DUI Officers, Sex Trafficking, Violent Offender Task Force Officers, the Special Weapons and Tactics Unit (SWAT), and Police Reserve Officer Unit.
The goal of the St. Cloud Police Department Canine Unit is to provide trained and certified canine teams to assist our department and surrounding law enforcement agencies in a safe and efficient means for criminal apprehensions, explosives detection, narcotics detection, tracking and search and rescue operations. The Officers and their canines complete bi-monthly training with the Central Minnesota regional canine group and with the Minneapolis Police Department Canine Unit.
Our Canine Unit also serves as a public relations tool for the department. During their patrol shifts the unit is often called upon to conduct demonstrations, talks, or routine visits to introduce the canines to members of the public. These demonstrations and talks are presented at schools, childcare centers, nursing homes and to a variety of community organizations and citizen groups.
Criminal Investigations Unit (CIU)
The Criminal Investigations Unit is responsible for the coordination of all types of criminal investigations. The General Investigations Unit consists of a team of 2 Officers and 2 Sergeants. There are 7 Officers assigned to general investigations, and 1 Officer assigned to investigate auto-related thefts, and 1 Officer assigned to the Central MN Human Trafficking Task Force. These officers conduct follow-up on cases originally received by Patrol Officers that need additional assistance due to geographical issues, expertise or time commitments. The cases include Deaths, Physical and Sexual Assaults, Burglaries, Robberies, Frauds and Forgeries. The Officers also conduct investigations on cases regarding physical and sexual abuse that are reported by Benton, Stearns and Sherburne County Human Services.
Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT)
The St. Cloud Police Department Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT) is a specially trained unit within the department. Since its inception in 1991 SWAT has been involved in hundreds of critical incident responses and high risk warrant operations. The primary functional objective of SWAT is the safety and preservation of human life.
The SWAT Team is recognized as a multi-jurisdictional team and has police officers assigned from the Sartell and Waite Park Police Departments and team paramedics that are employees of Mayo Ambulance Service.
The SWAT Team trains one to two days a month and conducts a variety of training. The Team trains for a 3 day period annually at Camp Ripley using the training village for full scale exercises with command staff and utilizing the automated training ranges. 50% of the teams training time involves reality based scenarios involving barricaded suspects, hostage situations, vehicle take downs and other high risk scenarios.
Violent Offender Task Force (VOTF)
The Violent Offender Task Force (VOTF) combines the efforts of several law enforcement agencies to identify and investigate the most violent offenders in the region.
The Task Force is comprised of Supervisors, Officers and Deputies from the following Central Minnesota law enforcement agencies:
- Sartell Police Department
- St. Cloud Police Department
- Benton County Sheriff’s Department
- Morrison County Sheriff’s Department
- Sherburne County Sheriff’s Department
- Stearns County Sheriff’s Department
- Todd County Sheriff’s Department
The Task Force does not break down any arrest statistics for the City of St. Cloud but is responsible for reports to the State of Minnesota covering the Central Minnesota Region. Reports on the Task Force activity may be obtained from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.