Mutual Aid Bureau

Mutual Aid Bureau Seal
Sheriff's Non-Emergency Dispatch:
714-647-7000 or 949-770-6011

Lt. Richard Nelson
Lt. Richard Nelson

Mission Statement

The Law Enforcement Mutual Aid Bureau is responsible for providing law enforcement mutual aid to law enforcement agencies in the event an emergency occurs and the reporting jurisdiction determines that it is beyond their control.

California has had more than its share of man-made and natural disasters, civil disturbances and other significant events requiring large numbers of law enforcement personnel and equipment. Our ability to respond professionally and efficiently has proven not only cost effective, but also has saved lives and protected property. The Law Enforcement Mutual Aid system has been used successfully for many years.

The Law Enforcement Mutual Aid Bureau derives from the California Law Enforcement Mutual Aid Plan, which is on-going cooperative effort among law enforcement agencies designed to provide an effective and organized response to a wide range of emergencies. Its comprehensive structure facilitates mobilization of law enforcement resources into a cogent response organization for addressing critical incidents including floods, fire, earthquakes and civil disorder


In 2019, the Orange County Sheriff’s Mutual Aid Bureau merged with the Orange County Sheriff’s Reserve Bureau. This allowed for the combining of resources, that regularly found themselves working together to complete missions. It also allowed for cost savings, by utilizing Reserve Deputies to supplement fulltime deputies within the Sheriff’s Department and throughout the operational area.


The Mutual Aid Bureau office is staffed by a Lieutenant, two fulltime Sergeants, one ancillary Sergeant (MEU), one Deputy, one Staff Specialist, one Office Specialist, one Office Technician and two Cadets. Assigned to the bureau are several volunteers who have chosen to serve their communities in a myriad of ways to include:

Reserve Deputies are professionally trained and duly sworn law enforcement personnel. In most cases, Reserves are assigned to the same duties as regular deputies. Routine tasks such as patrol, jail operations, investigations, and undercover work are just some examples of reserve duties.

are professionally trained and duly sworn law enforcement personnel. In most cases, Reserves are assigned to the same duties as regular deputies. Routine tasks such as patrol, jail operations, investigations, and undercover work are just some examples of reserve duties.

Professional Services Responder (PSR) Program supplements traditional Reserve programs with non-sworn volunteers. PSRs provide administrative and leadership support in the areas of emerging technologies, communications, web design, graphic arts, legal and accounting services, and emergency response resources.

Explorers are young men and women between the ages of 14 and 21 years old. Explorer Post 449 is affiliated with Learning for Life, which is a branch of Boy Scouts of America. They assist deputies with traffic and crowd control at different events and volunteer thousands of hours every year.  Explorers are trained in Law Enforcement Policies and Procedures and attend weekly meeting with Advisors, who are Deputy Sheriff’s or other Sheriff’s Employees.

Chaplains are trained and utilized in counseling Department personnel and family members in a confidential manner in a wide variety of subjects, including spiritual matters, emotional difficulties, interpersonal conflict, family conflicts, and work stress related concerns.


Sheriff’s Response Team (SRT)

Consists of a core group of trained personnel that can be mobilized quickly and are able to respond to a variety of emergencies and disasters in support of primary civil authorities. SRT is a branch of the Mutual Aid Bureau under the command and responsibility of the sheriff’s Homeland Security Division. SRT works closely with the Orange County Sheriff’s Department Special Enforcement Bureau and other specialty units such as HDS and air support to coordinate other resources that may be needed during any request for a SRT response.

Mounted Enforcement

The Mounted Enforcement Unit works a variety of assignments that include patrols of rural and urban trails, parks, beaches and city streets as well as assist in search and rescue operations. They also play a vital role in crowd control during peaceful protests and incidents involving civil unrest. Representatives of the unit can also be seen at community events such as National Night Out, and Red Ribbon week events. The Mounted Color Guard honors our nation’s flag at special events and parades throughout the year. The Mounted Honor Guard also participates each year in the Orange County Peace Officer’s Memorial Ceremony.

The Orange County Regional Mounted Enforcement Unit (OCRMEU) is a cooperative effort between the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, Anaheim PD, Buena Park PD, Huntington Beach PD, Irvine PD, Newport Beach PD, Orange PD and Santa Ana PD. The Mounted Enforcement Unit stands ready to meet the growing demand for high profile law enforcement and effective crowd control management.

Search and Rescue

The Search & Rescue Reserve Unit is comprised of sworn (Level I, II & III) deputies and non-sworn civilian Professional Services Responder (PSRs) members. The unit is responsible for managing urban and wilderness searches for missing persons, and supporting the safe detection and apprehension of fleeing suspects. The unit has formal agreements for mutual aid with the California Emergency Management Agency, the US Forest Service's Cleveland National Forest, and many other local agencies. Assignments within the unit are based upon the level of training the unit member has completed.  Members are on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days per week.

K-9 Operations

Within the Mutual Aid Bureau all of our K-9 operators are trained volunteers. The team consists of Bloodhounds, Human Remain Detection K-9s and Crisis Comfort K-9s. The squad is the most active of all the unit members, due to the high volume of calls for assistance from the department and also assisting other agencies.

Aero Squadron

The Aero Squadron assists the Orange County Sheriff's Department by providing air support to Orange County law enforcement and other agencies which may require aviation resources to complete their tasks; to ensure the highest level of pilot competency through continual training and a discreet selection process; and to enhance the safety and security of the community by providing an additional cadre of professionally trained personnel to augment the regular forces and furnish unique disaster response capabilities.

Harbor Patrol

The Harbor Reserve Unit works side-by-side with fulltime deputies in Dana Point, Newport and Huntington Harbors. These exciting positions provide qualified volunteers the opportunity to participate in general and waterway law enforcement for suppression and rescue activities. Harbor Reserve Deputies receive many hours of formal instruction, followed by ongoing practical training in all phases of Harbor operations, including U.S. Coast Guard requirements.

Join Our Team

If interested in becoming a part of one of the most exciting and innovative law enforcement reserve forces in the nation, or to find out more information, you can contact us at or by calling 714-566-2711.