Lt. Bernie Escalante, the team leader of the Emergency Services Unit (ESU), put together an overview of the team's January operations.
During January, the Santa Cruz Police Department ESU Tactical Team participated in four separate operations. These operations showed the continued need for an in-house specially trained and equipped tactical team.
Within the same day the team served search warrants at two different locations within Santa Cruz. These two search warrants were for gang related indicia. The search warrants were based on a criminal investigation involving two gang members who were seen on video footage challenging people to fight, displaying hand gestures representing their gang, and distributing marijuana to a juvenile. Significant gang indicia was located at both of these locations providing the team with key gang intelligence.
In the third operation, the unit served a narcotics-related search warrant in Santa Cruz. This location has a history of weapons, video surveillance and other protective measures. This search warrant required extensive preparation. The search warrant was based off of a lengthy narcotics investigation completed by the Santa Cruz County Anti-Crime Team. The search warrant was for methamphetamine and the sales of methamphetamine. A moderate amount of methamphetamine was found at the location. In addition, the team located several fake guns at the location. In all, three suspects went to jail.
In the last operation the team was called upon to resolve a barricaded subject wanted for felony domestic violence on his pregnant girlfriend. After several attempts to negotiate with the barricaded male suspect inside his motor home, the Tactical Team was able to breach several windows on the motor home and make contact with the suspect. The suspect was taken into custody after a brief struggle with officers.
All four of these operations were a representation of the excellent skills and tools that the Tactical Team operates with. You can learn more about the ESU team by clicking here.