Florence Co. Sheriff's Office excels in search, rescue, manhunt missions

Florence Co. Sheriff's Office excels in search, rescue, manhunt missions

FLORENCE COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - A local sheriff's office is touting major success when it comes to manhunts and finding loss and missing persons.

In the category of search, rescue and capturing suspects who flee, the national average is five percent. The Florence County Sheriff's Office said its average is 52 percent.

"Whether it's a wanted fugitive or a wandering Alzheimer or child missing… we want to make sure we have the resources to find them," said Major Michael Nunn with the Florence County Sheriff's Office.

Investigators said the reason they are able to capture those suspects who run away and find missing and vulnerable children faster is because of a strong team and multiple search resources.

In addition to K-9 teams, the sheriff's office uses ground search teams as well as its aviation unit.

Deputies said catching suspects and also finding the missing is something that its helicopter has brought much aid to.

But the "secret sauce" in being so successful is team work, Nunn said.

"We've had a tremendous amount of success, that's directly related to the dedication of our handlers, their training and their desire to bring those home that are wandering, missing and to bring to justice to those who are fleeing," Nunn said.

Investigators said if you ever find yourself in the situation where the department's search efforts are needed, time is of the essence. Call and report the missing so that deputies have plenty of time to establish a search perimeter and collect all evidence needed in catching the suspect.

"One of the reasons are numbers are so high is because it's a multidisciplinary approach. It's not just the dogs, not just the handlers, its multiple disciplines and that includes the helicopter."

It should be noted that FCSO does not have a crew that is just paid to track on these cases. The men and women used during a manhunt have other duties –and they volunteer their time to perform search and rescue and manhunts missions.

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