Special Units

The Catawba County Sheriff's Office Search Team is committed to using all of the resources at their disposal to locate and rescue lost and missing persons. Our mission is carried out through the use of the expertise and technology at the disposal of our office of dedicated specialists, always with attention paid to the safety of all parties involved. Our team conducts wilderness search and rescue, urban search and rescue, and evidence and article search. The team responds to an average of 20 searches per year.

Formed in 1997, the team is made up of officers from every county agency except Hickory PD. Members have to pass a strenuous physical test to get on the team and again every three months to remain on the team. The team responds to approximately 16 call outs per year.

The Honor Guard is the formal representative of the Sheriff’s Office at all types of functions in Catawba County, including funerals, graduations, color presentations, and other special events. The Honor Guard practices monthly and takes pride in maintaining its strict composure, precise military bearing and meticulous attention to detail.Each deputy must have discipline and stamina and present a professional appearance on a daily basis. Joining the Honor Guard is voluntary but competitive.

The Catawba County UAS (Unmanned Aerial Systems) Team provides support to all the other special teams. The UAS team provides an aerial view for search and rescue incidents, critical incidents involving the STAR team and also uses photography and aerial mapping to reconstruct crime scenes.

The mission of this team has and continues to be interacting with persons in crisis who have found themselves involved in an incident which has prompted a focused law enforcement response. The goal of these interactions is to facilitate a peaceful resolution to these incidents.

The Sheriff"s Office currently has six K9's. There is one assigned to each of the four road patrol platoons, one to the Narcotics division and one to the Community Relations-SRO's. All six of our K9's are Belgian Malinois and are dual purpose trained. They are trained in tracking, handler protection, off-leash obedience, article, area and building search, criminal apprehension and narcotics detection. Each of them originated in Europe and underwent several months of intensive training. Pictured below from left to right are K9's Drax, Loki, Odin, Stark, Storm and Thor.