The Santa Clara County Office of the Sheriff was recently awarded $953,250 to monitor sex offender registrants in northern California with the Sexual Assault Felony Enforcement (SAFE) Team Program. Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (OES) awarded the grant based on the concept that the Santa Clara County Sheriff's Department would form a multi-agency, multi-regional coalition to better ensure the registration and tracking of sex offender registrants in northern California.
With the OES funding, the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office current SAFE team will train each of the 11 northern California county Sheriff's Departments: Contra Costa, Humboldt, Marin, Monterey, San Benito, Santa Cruz, Del Norte, Lake, Mendocino, Napa, Solano, and the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office.
Team members in all 12 counties will participate in tracking and monitoring sex offender registrants, registration compliance sweeps, high-risk offender surveillance, and community outreach and communication.
Conceptually, this represents one of the most creative efforts in the state to develop and implement a regional, cooperative approach to addressing the sex offender registration problem.
Given that Santa Clara County has an existing and active SAFE Team, the expansion to a 12 county geographical region will aid in greatly enhancing enforcement and compliance activities. The SAFE team concept originated in Santa Clara County in 1994 and was the first of its type in California. We are confident the Sheriff’s concept will be as successful as its original inspiration.