Captain Townsend Division Commander
The Special Operations Division Commander oversees the daily operations of the four Neighborhood Policing Centers, North, East, Central and West. Each NPC is tasked with managing resources and coordinating efforts to reduce crime in their assigned geographic areas, while addressing issues of neighborhood livability. Each NPC is managed by an Area Commander and staffed with a group of Burglary and Auto Theft Detectives, School Resource Officers, Police Service Representatives and Problem Oriented Policing Officers. The collective staff strives to address emerging crime trends, maintain safe school campuses, create safe parks and neighborhoods, reduce retail crime and develop working partnerships with all of our Riverside communities.
The Special Operations Division includes the Downtown Entertainment District (DED) team, which focuses on working with downtown business operators, security, and others to make downtown a safe place to live, work and visit.
Special Operations also includes officers assigned to the City's Public Safety and Engagement Team (PSET). This multi-departmental team focuses on homeless issues throughout the City. Those wanting to report non-criminal homeless issues can do so through the City's 3-1-1 system. Additional information cna be found at https://www.riversideca.gov/homelesssolutions/
A vital tool in the overall scheme of crime reduction is the tremendous work done by the division’s Crime Analysis Unit. The unit is comprised of one Programmer, three Analysts and one supervisor. Together they collect and evaluate crime data in an effort to provide all investigative units with pertinent information to identify and combat crime.
In addition to the personnel at the NPC’s, and included in the Special Operations Division are the following specialized units: Metro / SWAT, Air Support Unit, Hostage Negotiations Team, Snipers, and the Post-Release Accountability & Compliance Team. Together these specialized units serve as emergency responders to handle a myriad of situations where specially trained individuals are needed to deal with critical incidents, violent offenders, hostage and barricade situations and many others. From the sky, the Air Support unit continually supports all ground efforts and provides officers with critical information by which to safely respond to critical events and hot pursuits of suspects and vehicles. These services are non-stop and the specialized units are ever at the ready 365 days a year in an effort to provide for a safer city.
Special Units within the Special Operations Division Include:
- Air Support Unit
- Auto Theft
- Crime Analysis
- Hostage Negotiations Team
- PACT - Post-Release Accountability & Compliance Team
- School Resource Officers
- SWAT and Sniper Team
- UNET - University Neighborhood Enhancement Team