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Rod Sanford

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Law enFORCEment: Reasonable Force Options
Rod Sanford  More Info
Arrest Control Techniques & Baton Tactic
Rod Sanford  More Info
Basic Arrest Tactics & Self-Defense for Law Enforcement
Rod Sanford  More Info

About the Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office

The Santa Cruz County Sheriff's Office is composed of three Bureaus:  the Operations Bureau, the Detention Bureau and the Administration Bureau. The Operations Bureau provides the services to the unincorporated area of Santa Cruz County that citizens are most familiar with:  patrol and investigation.  These services are provided by two divisions, the Patrol Division and the Investigation Division.


The Patrol Division provides a seven-day-a-week, 24-hour-a-day, first responder 9-1-1 service.  These deputies drive the distinctive green and white Sheriff's Office patrol cars that can be seen around the county at any time of day or night.  The Patrol Division also maintains several specialized units: K-9 Unit, Bomb Team, SWAT, DARE and Air Support Unit.


The Sheriff's S.W.A.T. Team is responsible for containing and resolving critical incidents, such as hostage taking or barricaded dangerous persons.  The Sheriff's Office maintains the only S.W.A.T. Team in Santa Cruz County. Team members are select volunteers who compete for the assignment and participate in regular, intensive testing and training.


The Investigations Division is structured utilizing a specialization concept in which criminal cases are assigned by established categories to the appropriately staffed and trained section for follow-up investigation  The Investigation Division operates under the command of a Lieutenant who directs  (6) Section Sergeants and the clerical staff.  The Investigation Division is divided into: Administration/Clerical; Coroner; Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) & Property and Evidence;  Robbery/Homicide/Domestic Violence;  Sexual Assault/Child Abuse;  Crimes against Property, High Technology Crimes; Narcotic Enforcement Team (NET) / County Narcotic Enforcement.




By 1960, Rod Sanford was studying the martial arts.  Through his years of study he became a preeminent practitioner and Sensei of traditional martial arts.  In 1968, Rod Sanford joined the Santa Cruz Sheriff’s Office.  He spent most of his 25 year career with the Santa Cruz Sheriff’s Office as a patrol sergeant.  However, he was a member of several specialized units such as the search and rescue team, dive team, mounted unit and the SWAT team.  In 1969, he began to teach defensive tactics to his fellow police officers.  For the next twenty-five years, Rod Sanford would teach firearms and officer safety tactics as well as defensive tactics. 


In 1983, Rod Sanford left the Santa Cruz Sheriff’s Office and founded the Pacific Institute of Defensive Tactics in order to teach law enforcement tactics full-time.  According to the Pacific Institute of Defensive Tactics, their method, “integrated use of force training, arrest and control, self defense, tactical communications, altercation patterns, baton tactics, officer safety, crimes-in-progress, car stops, firearms, crowd control and civil disobedience, passive demonstrator tactics, emergency response team, defensive tactics for corrections and other related tactical training.  These courses are taught on a basic, in-service and instructor level.


Mr. Sanford regularly works with the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training (P.O.S.T.) as a subject-matter-expert.  He has helped develop guidelines, objectives, and tests in the areas of use of force, defensive tactics, civil disobedience, car stops, firearms and related subjects.  He is a well known author on police tactics and has developed a series of books, training manuals and police training videos on arrest and control, self defense, altercation patterns and baton tactics.”  Rod Sanford is the author of Law Enforcement: Reasonable Force Options; Basic Arrest Tactics & Self-Defense for Law Enforcement; and, Arrest Control Techniques & Baton Tactic.


According to the book description of Law Enforcement: Reasonable Force Options, “This book is for all law enforcement officers, students and instructors. No matter what your background or system you will find, tactics and techniques that will help you enjoy a successful career and keep you going home safely at the end of each shift. Rod Sanford has drawn from over 30 years of law enforcement and training experience to bring you the essence of use of force, defensive tactics and officer training in a complete text with over 1,600 step-by-step photographs.”

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