The Lenoir County Sheriff's Office Search and Rescue Team was created in 2018 by Sheriff Ronnie Ingram to respond to missing person incidents. This idea was began as a result of a missing person incident in another neighboring county where a child had disappeared. This incident showed Sheriff Ingram and his command staff that Lenoir County was not prepared to handle that type of incident if it were to occur. Thus the mission to have a trained search and rescue team began.
The Sheriff's Office partnered with various paid and volunteer fire departments in Lenoir County to create this team and begin training for deployment. This team is currently in its beginning phases, but already has approximately 25 certified team members consisting of law enforcement, firefighters and emergency services personnel. The goal is to be a recognized state deployable team through North Carolina Emergency Management.
Equipment including individual member packs, chest harnesses and training have been funded through asset forfeiture funds through the Sheriff's Office. Other equipment including ATV's, trailers, vehicles, etc, has been funded through Sheriff's Office access to military surplus or grants.
Thus far, no taxpayer funds have been expended on this team or its equipment.