Special Operations

Special Operations

Waterbury Police Special Operations include the Emergency Response Team, the Crash Reconstruction Team, the Hostage Negotiation Team, the Traffic Unit, the Mounted Unit, the Gang Task Force and the K-9 Unit.

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Emergency Response Team

The Emergency Response Team (ERT) is a highly-skilled, disciplined and well-equipped police tactical unit whose primary objective is to preserve innocent life. The Waterbury Police Department ERT, also referred to as SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) was formed in 1991 and is a regional response team, currently comprised of twenty-six active sworn Police Officers from six different agencies.

The ERT may be activated by the Chief of Police, Deputy Police Chief, Assistant Deputy Chief, Shift Commander or in their absence, a designee. ERT missions include:

  • Barricaded persons

  • Hostage situations

  • Suicidal persons

  • Sniper situations

  • Terrorist acts

  • Crowd control

  • VIP security

  • Other incidents beyond the capabilities of the Patrol Division (due to required specialized training or equipment)

The Hostage Negotiation Team

The Waterbury Police Department’s Hostage Negotiation Team was founded in 1994 and is comprised of officers from various divisions in the department who have special training and experience in communication with armed subjects, suicidal persons, and hostage takers. This is a voluntary on-call unit and all team members have regular duty assignments as well. 

The team is also supported by two dedicated clinical social workers from the Department of Mental Health that are assigned to the department’s Crisis Intervention Team. These clinicians provide on-scene professional mental health evaluations while an incident is progressing and prove to be a great asset for the Hostage Negotiation Team.

The Hostage Negotiation Team concentrates on resolving violent situations through effective communication with those people in crisis, providing them with the means to reach a peaceful resolution. Specific responses range from barricaded persons to suicide interventions and no matter the situation, each requires a calm and deliberate methodology to minimize the effects of the crisis on those involved.

Captain Steven Gilmore Waterbury Police DepartmentGet In Touch

Captain Steven Gilmore

ERT/Hostage Negotiation Unit Commander

Telephone: 203-573-6346

 

A police officer and his K-9 posing for a picture in front of a police cruiser

K-9 Unit

Currently, the Waterbury Police Department has one cross-trained K-9 named Blitz. Blitz is a 3-year-old shepherd certified in patrol and narcotics detection. The department is actively looking to gain more K-9's to serve the city.

These police K-9s are certified in tracking, searches, evidence recovery, apprehending suspects and obedience. They are able to track human odor and often search for missing people, suspects and any evidence of a crime that might have been discarded. A cross-trained K-9 is also certified in narcotic detection and is able to smell out marijuana, cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine in various settings.

These K-9s are also utilized in community-related events such as demonstrations, meet & greets and more. K-9 handlers have a huge responsibility in training and caring for their partners all day and every day.

Asst.Dep. Chief Edward  Apicella.jpgGet In Touch

Assistant Deputy Chief Apicella

K-9 Unit Commander

Telephone: 203-573-6346

Group of neighborhood kids surround an officer mounted on a police horse

Mounted Unit

Since 2017, the Waterbury Police Department Mounted Unit continues to serve as a highly visible role in the community.  Assisting with the mission, values, and goals of the Waterbury Police Department through effective community policing by partaking in activities such as:

  • Visiting schools and positively engaging and interacting with our future: City of Waterbury youths.

  • Partaking in community outreaches and events for all ages.

  • Using directed patrols in and surrounding downtown areas, at city parks, and other special events as determined by the Chief of Police.

The Mounted Unit is part of the Community Relations Division under the Uniform Bureau, which is staffed by 3 sworn Mounted Patrol Officers.  This unit works year-round unless there are hazardous weather conditions which pose a danger to the Mounted Patrol Officers and their partners: 3 police-trained geldings.  

 

Get In Touch

Sergeant Ryan Bessette

Mounted Unit Supervisor

Telephone: 203-346-3921

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Traffic Division

The Traffic Division is responsible for a variety of traffic-specific duties, including investigating serious injury and fatal collisions, DUI enforcement and traffic complaints. The division is committed to raising awareness regarding traffic safety for vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians and providing enforcement as a deterrent to unsafe driving practices.

Each year traffic officers respond to preventable collisions caused by unsafe driving. These collisions can deeply impact those involved, their families and loved ones as well as have a negative effect on the economy.  The Traffic officers' number one priority is to reduce or eliminate the dangerous behaviors of all road users that might lead to a collision, including speed, impairment, distracted driving and disobeying signals.

Crash Reconstruction Team

The Crash Reconstruction Unit (CRU) is a specialized unit within the Waterbury Police Department responsible for the investigation of all serious physical injury and fatal car crashes. The unit also assists with the investigation of industrial accidents that result in serious physical injury or death, as well as assisting with crime scene documentation and evidence collection.

Regardless of the time of day or the weather, the unit responds to scenes, working to determine the sequence of events in a situation, the underlying causes to ultimately prosecute those responsible in criminal court.

All the members of the CRU have attended 3 intensive courses offered by the University of North Florida (Institute of Police Technology and Management) and are trained in the use of the department’s advanced precision measuring equipment and corresponding diagramming software. Based on both the training and experience the officers have received over the years, many of the members are considered experts in the field of Traffic Crash Reconstruction.
 

Sgt. Gerald Hanson.jpgGet In Touch

Sergeant Gerald Hanson

Traffic Division & Crash Reconstruction Supervisor

Telephone: 203-346-3975

Gang Task Force

The Waterbury Police Department's Gang Task Force investigates criminal offenses committed by known gang members. The Gang Task Force unit is tasked with tracking and maintaining gang membership and affiliations.  The unit investigates crimes of violence and narcotics violations committed by members of criminal street gangs.  The unit works with both state and federal law enforcement to target and suppress gang activity.  
 

Get In Touch

Lieutenant Michael Slavin

Gang Task Force Commanding Officer

Telephone: 203-574-6945

Looking for More Information?

Contact the Waterbury Police Department with any inquiries, requests for service, information on a crime or to report suspicious activity.