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Special Activities and Programs

  • Traffic Homicide:

    The Traffic Homicide Investigations Unit was created in 1967 to meet the Florida Highway Patrol's desire to provide a comprehensive investigation into the circumstances resulting in all traffic-related deaths in the State of Florida. The Florida Highway Patrol's Traffic Homicide Investigations Unit is comprised of 168 full-time investigators, divided into 23 squads statewide. Over the last five years, the Patrol has worked diligently to provide investigators with advanced equipment and training.

    Since 1997, the Patrol has purchased 14 forensic mapping systems and laptop computers for use by the Traffic Homicide Investigation units. In 2000, 55 desktop computers with software were purchased for use by investigators to complete their reports. Also, 200 advanced, fully automatic 35 mm cameras were purchased for FHP traffic homicide investigators to allow them to collect photographic evidence quicker and more easily.

    During the past two years, traffic homicide investigation training has been held at least twice a year. This training provides both practical and classroom knowledge, and includes outside instructors, such as Dr. Henry C. Lee, who are experts in their field. Members are now being trained prior to being promoted, which allows a member who is promoted to only need a period of 30-day field training to be ready for investigative duties. Since 1999, approximately 310 members of the Patrol have been trained in traffic homicide investigations.

    In addition, in-service field training is performed throughout the year for traffic homicide investigators. Field training includes advanced information and techniques related to traffic homicide investigations. Periodic Service Bulletins are created and distributed to traffic homicide investigators to keep them informed of changing trends and recent information. During the period of July 1, 2000 to June 30, 2001, the Patrol investigated 1,728 fatal traffic crashes.

  • Drug Interdiction Program incorporates:

    drug team with k-9s
    1. Advanced training of all sworn personnel in drug identification and use detection as well as search and seizure laws;
    2. Use of FHP Aircraft for observation of marijuana fields during routine flight duties;
    3. Canines;
    4. Drug Interdiction teams; and
    5. Utilizion of fiber optic scopes to locate concealed compartments

  • Drug Interdiction Teams:

    Fifty specially trained troopers designated as felony officers and canine handlers comprise twenty felony teams. Each felony team consists of two troopers and one canine, and is assigned to patrol the interstate system and other major highways throughout the state in order to interdict drug trafficking. Currently, the interdiction program has 31 dogs, 11 fiber optic scopes, and 22 BUSTER drug detection devices.

  • Aircraft:

    The Florida Highway Patrol Flight Section pilots flew 3481.8 total flight hours during FY 00/001 (July 2000 to June 2001). Of these total flight hours, 1721.9 were flown over speed check zones producing 30,967 arrests. This is an average of 18.0 arrests per hour.

    The total cost to operate these aircraft during FY 00/01 was $212,472.14, with an average of $61.02 per hour. The total revenue generated by the aircraft was $3,870,875.00, an average of $125.00 per citation.

  • Armored Personnel Carriers

    In November 1998, the Florida Highway Patrol acquired 3 armored personnel carriers from the Department of Management Services, Bureau of Federal Property Assistance. The fully functional units were acquired for a total of $1,500.00. These military surplus V-150 carriers have been re-painted courtesy of the Apalachee Correctional Institution at an average cost of $260.34 per unit, and now proudly display the Florida Highway Patrol colors and seal. These units will be strategically placed throughout the state of Florida as a means of providing law enforcement support and safety in the event of high-risk emergency situations. Currently, the carriers are assigned to Troop D- Orlando,Troop E-Miami, and Troop G-Jacksonville.

  • Mobile Command Units:

    Currently, the Florida Highway Patrol has three mobile command units. They are stationed in Jacksonville (Troop G), Orlando (Troop D), and Miami (Troop E). On February 3, 1999, the Jacksonville Transportation Authority leased a 1986 surplus bus to the Florida Highway Patrol for $1 a year. This vehicle was painted by the JTA in FHP's color scheme, complete with decals and lettering, and will be used as a mobile command center for natural disasters and other emergencies in north Florida. The Florida Highway Patrol was responsible for outfitting the bus interior with appropriate communications and other support systems. A grant from the State Emergency Operations Center was used to pay for the refurbishing of the interior. The Broward County Transit Authority entered into a similar partnership with Dade County FHP. Troop E's Mobile Command Center came into service in 1997. The bus was donated by the Broward County Transit Department. The equipment used in the conversion was mostly donated. Bell South donated the wiring and phone system, and South Florida I.M.P.A.C.T. donated the money to purchase the many other items such as computers and printers needed to equip this mobile command center. The total cost was approximately $60,000.00 dollars. In 2000, Troop D's command center was ready to help with special details and emergencies that arise in the central region of the state. The 1990 VanHool Bus was confiscated in the panhandle after it was found to have been used to transport drugs. A grant was applied for and awarded to the FHPl for $250,000 to completely gut the two buses and outfit them with state of the art equipment. Troop G took this project to the Department of Community Affairs, who is over the State EOC and they came up with a plan to use PRIDE (the prisoners at Tomoka Prison). PRIDE specializes in training inmates how to remanufacture heavy equipment. This project had many benefits; PRIDE was able to complete the project for about half of what it would have cost for the private sector to complete, it kept the money in State Government, and training was provided to the inmates. The bus has 4 workstations for dispatching, 2 laptop computers, a cell phone, a 1200 hp generator, and a self-contained satellite for the TV and VCR. This command post is utilized in coordinating special details such as Black College Reunion, Bike Week, and Race Week.

  • Community Service Officers:

    Civilian Community Service Officers are stationed in the Tampa Bay area, with 14 in Hillsborough County and 14 in Pinellas County. These non-sworn officer positions are responsible for responding to, and investigating minor crashes where there are no criminal charges involved, and providing assistance to stranded motorists. Community Service Officers are not armed, nor do they have any arrest authority. They wear a distinctive colored uniform, which consists of a white shirt with FHP patches and black trousers.

  • Reaction Force Teams:

    To provide rapid assistance to areas of the state affected by hurricanes or other natural disasters, the Florida Highway Patrol has developed Reaction Force Teams. These teams would be deployed to disaster areas immediately after the emergency stabilizes. The response time will be between two to eight hours depending upon their starting location. There are eight teams, each consisting of one lieutenant, three sergeants and 21 troopers or corporals for a total of 25.

  • Motorcycle Squads:

    The Florida Highway Patrol currently uses 43 motorcycles for traffic enforcement and crash investigations. Ten motorcycles are assigned to Troop C-Tampa and eleven each are assigned to Dade, Duval and Orange counties.

  • Tactical Response Team:

    There are five tactical response teams (TRT) statewide comprised of members specially trained in crowd control, weapons, tactical maneuvers, building searches, service of arrest warrants, and other special techniques.

  • Investigations:

    There are 54 sworn and 11 non-sworn personnel assigned to the Bureau of Investigations with duties as follows: One Chief of Investigations, four Captains (three Captains are regional commanders over the Northern, Central and Southern Regions), twenty-seven Lieutenants, ten Sergeants, three Corporals and nine Troopers. These officers conduct investigations on auto theft, driver license theft and fraud, title fraud, odometer fraud, and other criminal activities statewide. During fiscal year 2000/2001, 153 stolen vehicles, valued at $2,414,664, were recovered; 13 vehicles valued at $94,500 were seized; 289 warrants were issued; and 174 arrests for criminal activity were made. The Bureau also conducted 63 professional compliance cases, 954 criminal Investigations, 26 division cases and 19 internal review cases for other divisions within the department.

  • Public Information/Safety Education:

    One Major and 12 Lieutenants are assigned as Public Information/Safety Education Officers. During FY 2000/01, 156 traffic safety programs were conducted with 22,649 in attendance. In addition, the PIO section initiated 5,583 media contacts and issued 3,410 news releases statewide.

  • Recruitment:

    One Captain is assigned as Chief Recruitment Officer and is responsible for coordinating the recruitment program. Six full-time Regional Recruitment Officers are stationed throughout the state. During 2000, FHP Recruitment Officers distributed 9,349 applications to prospective applicants. The FHP website is responsible for over half of all applications requested each year. FHP Recruiters continue their outreach efforts to attract qualified applicants from the nation's college campuses, military installations, and other police agencies.

  • Background/Selection:

    One Lieutenant is assigned as Chief Background Investigator and one Sergeant as the Assistant Chief Background Investigator. Together they coordinate and supervise thirteen full-time Regional Background Investigators stationed throughout the state. The Regional Background Investigators are also assisted by FHP personnel in their local troop as needed. Thirteen full time background investigators are assigned throughout the state. This section is responsible for all pre-employment testing and screening of all applicants for the positions of state trooper and community service officer. This screening consists of pre-employment written testing, physical abilities testing, polygraph, eye examination, physical examination, psychological screening, background investigation, and drug screening. This section is also charged with the responsibility of handling requests for assistance from other law enforcement agencies throughout the country in conducting background investigations on applicants with their agency. Currently this section is processing in excess of 300 applications for employment each month.

  • Inspections:

    The Office of Inspections, established in 1995, is responsible to the Director and represents his office while conducting staff inspections throughout the Patrol. The staff inspection process consists of a periodic management review of all Patrol GHQ and field units on a three-year cycle. The office is permanently staffed with a Chief, one Staff Assistant, three Inspectors (Captains) and one Captain and one Lieutenant who are responsible for the Grants, Accreditation, and Policy (GAP) Section. GAP is responsible for the Division's Policy development and management, is the Accreditation Manager for the Florida (CFA) and National (CALEA) Accreditation programs and manages the Division's financial grant acquisistions. Additionally, a total of seventeen Inspectors-in-Place (IIP) representing all ten Troops and GHQ, formally trained, assist the permanent Inspectors on a need basis during the staff inspection of field and GHQ units.

  • Aggressive Driving Enforcement:

    In response to the growing problem of "Aggressive Driving", the Florida Highway Patrol launched a selective traffic enforcement campaign in South Florida called "Eye on 95". The program was piloted in Dade (Miami) and Broward (Ft. Lauderdale) counties using two confiscated Jeep Grand Cherokees equipped with grant-funded in-car video equipment, radar, laser, and other speed measuring devices. The Jeeps are designated as observation vehicles, and work with second vehicles that are standard issue marked or unmarked Florida Highway Patrol cars. These vehicles are designated as the enforcement vehicles, and are utilized to overtake the violator upon receiving information from the observation vehicle. The enforcement vehicle conducts the traffic stop of the violator and takes enforcement action for the team. As a result of this successful pilot project, similar aggressive driving enforcement programs have been developed in all other areas of the state.



General Information/Facts & Figures
General Information

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