The Patrol Division of the Platte County Sheriff’s Office is housed in the Hall of Justice Building located at 2610 14th Street, Columbus, Nebraska. There are currently 16 full time patrol deputies in the Patrol Division . All deputies are fully certified with jurisdictional powers within Platte County inclusive of the City of Columbus. Inter-local agreements with other law enforcement agencies within Platte County are presently in existence. Other agencies with jurisdiction of all or a part of Platte County include the Nebraska State Patrol, Columbus Police Department, Humphrey Police Department and Nebraska Game and Parks Division.
Platte County encompasses both urban and rural settings. Columbus the largest urban area, has a population of approximately 16,000 people. There are a number of smaller communities within Platte County which include Duncan, Monroe, Platte Center, Tarnov, Humphrey, Creston, St. Bernard, Cornlea and Lindsay. Platte County’s total population is approximately 32,000 people, living in an area of approximately 686 square miles. Platte County is home to a number of major industries which include Behlen Manufacturing, Camaco, Becton-Dickenson, and Vishay to name a few. These industries not only offer job opportunities to local workers, but also pull in a number of workers from surrounding counties.
Deputies of the Patrol Division have the opportunity to expand their relationship with county citizens by participating in the various programs that are offered by the Sheriff’s Office. The Sheriff’s Office also takes advantage of deputies’ special interests and training by having specialized investigators in accident investigation, crime scene investigation, child interviews, Court Room security, et cetera.
Deputies work a 40 hour work week, with 10 hour shifts. Some of their duties include: County patrol, investigations, serving of civil process and arrest warrants, traffic enforcement, court room security, monitoring walk through metal detector in courthouse, and prisoner transports.
The Platte County Sheriff’s Office utilizes a variety of vehicles, 16 total in its law enforcement activities. All patrol units are equipped with modern multi-directional, overhead emergency light systems. About half of the patrol units are also equipped with in-car video camera systems. All vehicles are equipped with radio communication equipment including, low band radio for dispatch communications, 16-channel scanners, and CB radios to monitor requests for road assistance, mobile radar units, and in-car video cameras.
Several four-wheel drive vehicles are used by patrol deputies. The four-wheel drive vehicles are needed due to the type of inclement weather experienced in Nebraska, but they are used year around. These vehicle are equipped with the same equipment as all other patrol units. All patrol units carry such as: traffic cones, accident investigation equipment, evidence gathering equipment, fire extinguisher, Stop Sticks, and first aid equipment, and shotguns and rifles in some units.
As guidelined in Nebraska Statutes, the official uniform of a Platte County deputy consists of a dark brown shirt, pink-tan trousers with dark brown stripe and black leather duty belt, holster and accessories. Silver badges and name plates are worn by deputies; gold badge, name plates, and collar insignias are worn by persons with the rank of sergeant and above.