General Contact Number: (530) 621-5567

Sheriff's Office

Response To Our Community

Sheriff’s Vision

 “A modern approach to traditional law enforcement values; Total enforcement on crime and criminals; Total care for victims, witnesses and the community; Total professionalism, through training and by example”

Here at the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office, we've heard questions and concerns in light of recent events around the country. We wanted to take a moment to provide additional information on the questions we're receiving regarding training, including topics such as implicit bias, crisis intervention and de-escalation, and use of force. 

Our Patrol Policy will be referenced multiple times on this page. You can view our Patrol Policy here.

We have received many inquiries from the El Dorado County and local community about our Sheriff’s Office policies and how they may or may not meet some of the guidelines being advocated for by police reform organizations. We’ve re-examined our policies and feel that most, if not all, directly align with the spirit of what is being asked for in the recommendations, but there are nuances in verbiage. For example, this is how our policies compare to the website’s recommendations:

Ban chokeholds and strangleholds – These techniques are not permitted in our policies. Carotid holds are only allowed by trained officer in situations involving violence or physically combative individuals.  

Require de-escalation – De-escalation is interwoven into the department’s operations and is included in the department’s policies for Crisis Intervention and Electro-Muscular Disruption Technology Guidelines (Tasers). De-escalation techniques are included in various continued professional training topics.

Require warning before shooting – In situations of a person fleeing who an officer reasonably believes will cause death or serious injury if not immediately apprehended, the officer, where feasible, will identify themselves and a warning of deadly force may be used.

Exhaust all other means before shooting – Our policy requires officers evaluate the use of other reasonably available resources and techniques when determining whether to use deadly force, and deadly force is only used when there is an imminent threat of death or serious injury to the officer or another person.

Duty to intervene and stop excessive force by other officers – Our policy mandates a duty to immediately intercede and report if any officer observes another officer using force that is unreasonable.

Ban shooting at moving vehicles – While our policy does not ban shooting at moving vehicles, it is only allowed when the driver poses a deadly threat, and is close to the Campaign Zero’s report, which provides a similar exception.

Require use-of-force continuum – Law enforcement agencies vary whether they incorporate a use-of-force continuum. Continuum’s do not require officers start with one level of force before moving to another. Our policies require officers to use only that amount of force that reasonably appears necessary given the facts and totality of the circumstances.  Policy

Use of Body-Worn Cameras – The Sheriff’s Office does not have body-worn cameras. All EDSO marked patrol units are equipped with Mobile Audio and Video recording systems and the policy can be viewed here.

Racial/Bias Based Profiling – The practice of racial/bias based profiling is illegal and will not be tolerated by EDSO. Policy

Discrimination – El Dorado County maintains a standard of zero tolerance for unlawful discrimination, harassment and retaliation. Policy

Require comprehensive reporting each time an officer uses forces or threatens to do so – All law enforcement actions are documented, to include uses of force and threats of force. The department provides data regarding all officer-involved shootings and incidents involving use of force resulting in serious bodily injury to the California Department of Justice. Policy

For these reasons, we feel our policies are already very close to the recommendations being asked for.  Your Sheriff’s Office recognizes and respects the value of all human life and dignity without prejudice to anyone. Vesting deputies with the authority to use reasonable force and to protect the public welfare requires monitoring, evaluation and a careful balancing of all interests.

We hear you, and we know there may continue to be questions about what our policies are, which is why we have this page now dedicated to covering these topics in further detail.

This is a living web page, and we will add more to it. For now, at your convenience, you can view our policies that we feel meet these guidelines and that strongly align with every intent of ensuring that all members of our community remain safe. 

We are more than happy to have further dialogue on this, and we will continue to work to move forward with intention with our community. 

Transparency and trust in our community with regards to how we protect and serve you is our top priority. The information provided here is a compilation of information you may find in other areas of our website, including our annual report, our policies page, and more.