Criminal Investigation Division

The Sarasota Police Department’s Criminal Investigation Division has four Investigative Sections; General Crimes, Crimes Against Children, White Collar & Narcotics. Each section consists of specialized units that investigate crimes related to their expertise. Personnel assigned to the Criminal Investigation Division include sworn detectives, civilian employees, and volunteer professionals from the community.  This Division also has two support units:  Criminalistics & Victim Advocate.  

The primary function of the Criminal Investigation Division is to conduct follow-up investigations of reported crimes. These investigations consist of interviewing suspects, victims, and witnesses; analyzing information for validity, reliability, and accuracy; and compiling a comprehensive and factual case file to be presented in court. 

Specially trained civilian staff conduct crime analysis, investigative support duties, and victim assistance. Detectives are selected through a formal process and receive additional investigative training as a result of their assignment.


[+] GENERAL CRIMES/CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN/WHITE COLLAR

[-] GENERAL CRIMES/CRIMES AGAINST CHILDREN/WHITE COLLAR

    The General Crimes Unit is responsible for the follow-up of the following crimes: Homicides, Aggravated Battery, Aggravated Assault, Sexual Battery, Robbery, Home Invasion, Kidnapping, Burglaries and Grand Thefts. This unit also monitors pawns, secondhand dealers and scrap metal recyclers.

    The Crimes Against Children Unit has three detectives and a part-time civilian investigator assigned to investigate all crimes against children under the age of 18 to include locating runaways and sexual offenders/predators in the city limits.

    The White Collar Unit has one detective and a part-time civilian investigator assigned to white collar crimes.

    These three units are managed by two detective sergeants.

[+] CRIMINALISTICS

[-] CRIMINALISTICS

    This unit is responsible for the investigation of the physical crime scene and all physical evidence for the Sarasota Police Department. The responsibilities include responding to various crime scenes, photography, collecting and preserving evidence, collecting video, processing items for latent prints and comparing latent prints. Their casework includes written and photo documentation, latent print evaluation and comparison, preparing and transporting items for outside lab submissions, writing detailed reports and testifying in court.

    The Criminalistics Unit is supervised by one Manager and has four Criminalistics Technicians. The crime lab is led by Criminalistics Manager, Valerie Churchill.

    The FBI Latent Hit of the Year award was created in response to a request from the local and state law enforcement community for more details on major violent crime cases solved with the assistance of our Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS). The award, which goes to an outstanding latent examiner or officer who worked the case, is presented annually at the International Association for Identification conference. If you are interested in submitting a success story for consideration as a “Latent Hit of the Year,” contact the FBI Criminal Justice Information Services Division at FBILatentHit@leo.gov. More information on Latent Prints



[+] NARCOTICS

[-] NARCOTICS

    The Narcotics Unit is under the command of a lieutenant. The lieutenant provides planning for both tactical and strategic investigations. This includes organizing, budgeting, allocation for resources, and general management of investigations. The lieutenant acts as a facilitator in obtaining personnel and resources from other divisions and agencies to assist in narcotics investigations.

    Lt. James Rieser is the commander of the Narcotics section. The commander provides planning for both tactical and strategic investigations. This includes organizing, budgeting, allocation for resources, and general management of investigations. The Section Commander acts as a facilitator in obtaining personnel and resources from other divisions and agencies to assist in narcotics investigations.

    The Narcotics Unit has the primary responsibility for the investigation of both street-level and mid to upper level narcotic violations. The Narcotics Unit consists of one detective sergeant, six detectives and one full-time civilian investigator.

    Each Detective is responsible to follow up and investigate all types of narcotic violations.

    The goals of this unit are as follows:

  • Reduce street level drug sales within the City of Sarasota
  • Address citizen complaints received from the Drug Tip Line, other phone calls, or direct tips
  • Identify and apprehend drug dealers through various investigative techniques
  • Enhance the quality of life through drug investigation by maintaining safe and livable neighborhoods for the citizens within the City of Sarasota.

  • Citizens can anonymously report suspicious narcotics activity by calling the Narcotics Hotline at 941-954-7050

[+] VICTIM ADVOCATE

[-] VICTIM ADVOCATE

    The Victim Advocate provides services to the victims of serious crimes. The Victim Advocate serves as a liaison between the Police Department, the State's Attorney and various community groups dedicated to helping preserve the rights of crime victims. Jude Castro 941-954-7021