Air Support Unit



Mission: To provide effective and rapid-response aerial support for law enforcement and emergency services.


The San Juan County Sheriff’s Office Air Support Unit is the only airborne law enforcement asset in the Four Corners region. We operate two Bell OH-58A+ helicopters in support of local, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement and emergency services in multiple cities, counties and states. Some of the services that we provide are: support of patrol, search and rescue, suspect searches, missing/endangered person searches, pursuits, and supporting SWAT operations.

An aircrew in a helicopter can very quickly search an area 30 times larger than an officer on the ground can. This ends searches quickly and reduces the manpower required. The SJCSO Air Support Unit has been responsible for many violent fugitive apprehensions, which would otherwise have resulted in escape. No suspect has ever escaped when one of our helicopters was involved in an active vehicle pursuit. We have located a considerable number of stolen vehicles and numerous bodies in remote locations, that otherwise may not have been found for a prolonged period of time, if ever. We have rescued several people in situations that would have resulted in serious injury or death if a helicopter was not involved.