Open main menu

Jacksonville Sheriff's Office

The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office (JSO) is a joint city-county law enforcement agency, which has primary responsibility for law enforcement, investigation, and corrections within the consolidated City of Jacksonville and Duval County, Florida, United States. Duval County includes the incorporated cities of Jacksonville, Atlantic Beach, Baldwin, Jacksonville Beach, and Neptune Beach; the beach cities have their own police departments as well.

Jacksonville Sheriff's Office
Jacksonville, FL Sheriff-Police.jpg
JSO Badge.png
Agency overview
Map of Florida highlighting Duval County.svg
Map of Jacksonville Sheriff's Office's jurisdiction.
Legal jurisdictionDuval County
Headquarters501 E. Bay Street, Jacksonville, Florida

Sworn members2,082 Police Officers
950 Corrections Officers
Unsworn members800 civilians
Agency executive
  • Michael Williams[2], Sheriff
Official website

The sheriff's office also performs the corrections duties for the county. The current sheriff is Michael Williams, in office since July 1, 2015. Sheriff John T. Rutherford retired on June 30, 2015 and had been Sheriff since July 1, 2003. The JSO is one of the largest departments in the Southeastern United States, with 3,832 employees. Its headquarters is 501 E. Bay Street Jacksonville, Florida 32202.


According to the Sheriff's Office, its Mission is "To serve and protect in partnership with our community." The Vision of the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office is "A crime-free environment, driven by partnerships with empowered citizens, fostering a vibrant community and the success of all individuals." The Core Values of the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office are: "Always Improving; Community Focused; Respect for Each Other; and Worthy of Trust."


Jacksonville Police Department: 1822-1968Edit

Police Chief A. J. Roberts with Mayor John W. Martin around 1923.

The first sheriff to be appointed in Jacksonville was James Dell in 1822 when Duval County was incorporated. A town ordinance in 1845 required all free males living in Jacksonville to participate in evening patrol duty. From 1865 to 1869 law enforcement was enforced by the continued occupation of the Union Army and their provost marshal and guard. A civilian Marshal was appointed as head of the department in 1871 along with the creation of the Captain of Police rank. The mayor appointed the captain who would then be confirmed by the city council. In 1887 the captain of police became known as chief of police. A new charter was also established in 1887 creating a board of police commissioners. The department was composed mostly of African Americans. House Bill No. 4 was passed by the Florida State Legislature allowing the Governor to abolish all offices in Jacksonville and to make new appointments to fill the vacancies. The police force in 1889 consisted of a chief, three officers and 24 patrolmen. The first patrol wagon, pulled by two horses, was used in 1895. In 1904, as the automobile became more popular, the speed limit was set at 6 miles per hour. The first automobile patrol car was established in 1911.[3]

Jacksonville Sheriff's Office: 1968-presentEdit

In 1967 a mandate was given by residents of Jacksonville and Duval County with 65 percent of the votes cast in favor of consolidating the city (Jacksonville Police Department) and county governments (Duval County Sheriff's Office). On October 1, 1968, the two governmental bodies were replaced with "a single unified government", the new organization, the Office of the Sheriff - Jacksonville Police, paralleled the name of the new jurisdiction. The four other municipalities within Duval County retained their own police departments. However, the Baldwin city council voted to disband their police department by 2007; at midnight on March 13, 2006, the sheriff's office took over responsibility of police services.[4]

Starting in the late 1980s, the agency adopted the Glock 17 9x19mm pistol as the new sidearm. Police Officer's now carry the Glock 22 .40 caliber Generation 4's as there sidearm.

Elected SheriffsEdit

  • 1903-1904 John Price
  • 1913-1915 W. H. "Ham" Dowling
  • 1924-1928 W. B. Cahoon[5]
  • 1932-1957 Rex Sweat
  • 1957-1958 William Alpheus "Al" Cahill[6]
  • 1958-1986 Dale George Carson[7]
  • 1986-1996 Jim McMillan
  • 1996-2004 Nat Glover
  • 2004–2015 John Rutherford
  • 2015–Present Mike Williams


The Jacksonville Sheriff's Office responding to an emergency

The JSO is headed by the sheriff, a Florida constitutional officer elected to a four-year term. The sheriff appoints his own senior staff from Undersheriff to Assistant Chiefs. All sworn members of the JSO are sworn in by the sheriff and are considered under the Florida constitution as his/her deputies. All sworn members of the JSO are Law Enforcement Officers (LEO) or Correctional Officers with all powers allowed by state law to carry firearms and make arrest. JSO also employs Community Service Officers, who are unsworn personnel that respond to primarily traffic-related incidents not requiring the full police powers of a sworn officer.


The Sheriff's Office is divided into five departments, each sub-divided into divisions, sections, units, zones, and squads. Each department is commanded by a director with the rank director of a department. Each division is commanded by a chief. The department and its sections are as follows.

Department of Patrol & EnforcementEdit

There are three divisions in this department, and is headed by the director of patrol and enforcement

Patrol East DivisionEdit

Commanded by the chief of Patrol East.

  • Zone 1-assistant chief/zone commander
  • Zone 2-assistant chief/zone commander
  • Zone 3-assistant chief/zone commander
Patrol West DivisionEdit

Commanded by the chief of Patrol West.

  • Zone 4-assistant chief/zone commander
  • Zone 5-assistant chief/zone commander
  • Zone 6-assistant chief/zone commander
Community Affairs & Special Events DivisionEdit

Commanded by the chief.

  • Community Affairs-assistant chief
  • Special Events-assistant chief

Department of Investigations & Homeland SecurityEdit

There are three divisions in this department, and the director holds the title of director of the Department of Investigations & Homeland Security.

Detective DivisionEdit

The Detective Division is under the direction of the chief of detectives who is responsible for the overall operation of the division. The Detective Division comprises a Crimes Against Property Section and a Crimes Against Persons Section, both under the command of an assistant chief.

  • Crimes against property
    • Burglary Unit - The Burglary Unit investigates all business and residential burglaries as well as thefts over a certain dollar amount. These squads are assigned to the geographic patrol zones.
    • Polygraph Unit - The Polygraph Unit is staffed by polygraphists who administer polygraph examinations to suspects, victims, and witnesses involved in criminal investigations. They also administer polygraph examinations for police and other job applicants as part of their background investigation process.
    • Economic Crimes - The Economic Crimes Unit investigates forgeries, frauds, including Internet fraud, bank fraud and credit card fraud, along with identity theft, con games, and other economic crimes.
    • Crime Scene Unit - The Crime Scene Unit is staffed by evidence technicians.
    • Latent Print Unit - The Latent Print Unit is staffed by latent print examiners who play a vital role in the investigation, identification, and conviction of criminal offenders.
    • Photo Lab - The Photo Lab is staffed by police photographers who are responsible for processing, printing and maintaining all crime scene photographs.
  • Crimes Against Persons
    • Homicide Unit – The Homicide Unit handles current cases while one team handles cold case investigations. The "hot" teams investigate cases such as murder, manslaughter, suicide, accidental death (except traffic crashes), in‑custody deaths, any death of a suspicious or undetermined nature or a death in which a doctor will not sign the death certificate as well as any incident (except traffic crashes) resulting in life-threatening injury. The homicide unit also investigates officer involved shooting incidents, no matter how serious the injury, and incidents when an officer has been shot or seriously injured.
      • Cold Case Unit – The Cold Case Team reviews all requests for an investigation, provided the original detective, or reassigned detective is no longer in the Homicide Unit and there is no other active ongoing investigation.
      • Missing Persons Unit - The Missing Persons Unit is under the direction of the Homicide Unit commander.
    • Robbery Unit - Detectives are tasked with the investigation of the crimes of armed robbery, unarmed or "strong-arm" robbery, home-invasion robbery, carjacking, and a relatively new Florida statute covering the crime of "robbery by sudden snatching." Additionally, the Robbery Unit oversees the enforcement of the Jacksonville Business Security Code and the Florida Convenience Business Security Act.
      • Traffic Homicide Unit - The Traffic Homicide Unit is responsible for investigating traffic fatalities, and hit and run crashes with serious bodily injury.
      • Auto Theft Unit - The Auto Theft Unit handles approximately auto theft investigations a year many of which result in civil disputes. The unit also investigates thefts of marine craft, all terrain vehicles, motorcycles and aircraft
    • Sex Crimes Unit - The Sex Crimes Unit detectives are tasked with the investigation of all felony sexual assaults, as well as crimes involving child pornography and lewd and lascivious acts.
  • Victim Services Coordinator - The Victim Services Coordinator provides assistance to all crime victims, witnesses, survivors, and their significant others. The coordinator also provides short-term crisis intervention and counseling for law enforcement.
Homeland Security & Narcotics/Vice DivisionEdit

The Homeland Security & Narcotics/Vice Division is commanded by a chief. It encompasses units and squads that include: Aviation; Bomb Squad; Canine; Dive Team; Homeland Security; Hostage Negotiators; Gang Intervention; Narcotics; Warehouse and Forfeiture Unit. Detectives also work with the North Florida High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA); the division also includes the Violent Crimes/Narcotics Task Force and Internet crimes against children investigations. The division has two sections, both led by an assistant chief.

  • Narcotics/Vice-Assistant Chief
  • Tactical Support/Canines/Homeland and Seaport Security/Mounted/Aviation-Assistant Chief

Department of Police ServicesEdit

A director leads the Department of Police Services. There are three divisions in this department.

  • Budget & Management Division-Chief
  • Police Support Services Division-Chief
    • Central Records-Assistant Chief
    • Communications-Assistant Chief
    • Logistic/General Support-Assistant Chief
    • Court Security-Lt.
John E. Goode Pretrial Detention Center

Department of Personnel & Professional StandardsEdit

A Director leads the Department of Personnel & Professional Standards. There are two divisions in this department.

1. Human Resources Division-Chief

  • Recruitment and Selection
  • Occupational Health
  • Personnel Services
  • Time and Attendance

2. Professional Standards Division-Chief

  • Training Section-Assistant Chief
    • Academy
    • Firing Range
    • Field Training
    • Leadership Development
  • Public Accountability Section
    • Internal Affairs Unit
    • Professional Oversight Unit
    • Public Relations & Information
  • Compliance Section-Executive
    • Internal Audits
    • Accreditation
    • Sworn & Corrections Compliance

Department of CorrectionsEdit

The director of this department holds the title of director of corrections. The Department of Corrections has more than 600 state certified corrections officers and civilian personnel with three correctional facilities in Duval County. The largest is the John E. Goode Pretrial Detention Facility (PTDF) located in downtown Jacksonville. It is a twelve-story building with a capacity of 2,189. The others are the Montgomery Correctional Center (MCC); and the Community Transitions Center (CTC). The Department of Corrections maintains many various specialized units, staffed by Corrections Officer, such as;

  • Fugitive Unit - The duties of the Fugitive and Transportation Unit consist of returning wanted suspects who have been arrested in other jurisdictions to face outstanding local charges, transporting inmates for legal proceedings from one secure facility to another as directed by the courts, handling the extradition and rendition proceedings for fugitives arrested locally and in other jurisdictions, and serving writs of bodily attachment.

There are two divisions within this department:

  • Jails Division - Chief of the Jail
    • Jails - Assistant Chief
  • Prisons Division - Chief of Prisons
    • CTC - Assistant Chief
    • MCC - Assistant Chief

Rank structureEdit

Insignia Rank
  Assistant Chief
  Captain (Corrections Only)
Master Sergeant
Senior Sergeant
Master Police Officer/Master Corrections Officer /

Community Service Corporal/Police Emergency Communications Officer II (Dispatcher) Lapel Pin

Senior Police Officer/Senior Corrections Officer/Police Emergency Communications Officer I (Receiving Officer)

Lapel Pin

[no chevrons] Officer / Detective

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ SLMPD: History
  2. ^ SLMPD: Sheriff Michael Williams
  3. ^ "History of Jacksonville Police Department" (PDF). NCJRS. Retrieved 11 March 2016.
  4. ^ Baldwin PD disbands
  5. ^ "W.B. Cahoon". Gainesville Police Department. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  6. ^ Scanlan, Dan (19 November 2014). "1913-2014: Duval sheriff William Cahill, whose term was marred by allegations, dies at age 101". Florida Times-Union. Retrieved 20 November 2014.
  7. ^ Kerr, Jessie-Lynne (May 28, 2000). "Former sheriff Carson dies at 78". Florida Times-Union. Retrieved 20 November 2014.

External linksEdit