The Escambia County Sheriff’s Office Mounted Unit is a non-profit organization comprised of a dedicated team of 14 volunteer civilians and 4 sworn officers. The basic purpose of the Escambia County Sheriff’s Mounted unit is to promote good public relations and assist the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office in providing public safety when the use of a horse is advantageous. The use of a horse can enhance patrol capabilities such as crowd control, special events, and search and rescue operations. The authority of a member of the Mounted Unit is that of a civilian volunteer.
According to Sgt. Susie Rogers, Posse leader and originator, “The purpose of the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office Mounted Unit is to enhance the patrol unit of the sheriff’s office and assist in citizen involved activities.”
The ECSO Mounted Unit was formed in September 2010. The unit’s first training and evaluation event was in October 2010. The Posse’s first community activities took place in December 2010. The Mounted Unit rode in the 2010 Molino Christmas Parade and assisted in parking lot patrol activities at the Wal-Mart on Highway 29 around Christmas time.
Members of the Mounted Unit also serve as escorts for other volunteers during Operation Clean Sweep activities. Sgt. Rogers and her horse, “Oscar”, a 15.2 hand, American Quarter Horse gelding aided in a felony arrest during a Clean Sweep event.
Several horse and rider teams from the Mounted Unit have participated in Mounted Police Competitions in the Southeast and done very well. Members of the ECSO Mounted Unit have also assisted in crowd control in the Mobile Mardi Gras Parade, which is known for being a particularly rowdy event.
The ECSO is always open to new volunteers. Horses, equipment and all costs incurred while participating in the activity are the responsibility of the individual rider. Prospective Mounted Unit members must complete an intensive evaluation and training process for both horse and rider prior to joining the unit. For more information, contact Lynnea McCray at (850) 436-9735.