Hostage Negotiation Team

The Placer County Sheriff’s Hostage Negotiation Team (HNT) is a specially trained unit of highly skilled crisis/hostage negotiators. The goal of HNT is to resolve the crisis or hostage situation through a combined application of tactics and negotiations that will result in a peaceful resolution, with all hostages rescued safely, all law enforcement personnel uninjured and all suspects safely in custody.

HNT works closely with our Special Enforcement Team in high stress and crisis situations. These situations can include service of high-risk search warrants, hostage situations and barricaded suspect incidents. The HNT also deals with people who may be in personal crisis and be suicidal.


The team is made up of a Lieutenant, one sergeant and seven deputies. All nine team members are crossed trained to handle any role on the negotiation team.

The Team

The team roles consist of:

  • Primary Negotiator who deals directly with the subject(s);
  • Secondary Negotiator who works beside the Primary Negotiator and assists him/her with the negotiations process, note taking and passing on of all vital information to the Operations Negotiator.
  • The Operations Negotiator gathers information on an ongoing basis; establishes communications with the Special Enforcement Team, monitors equipment; maintains forms and logs used in negotiations. This negotiator will monitor the Main Negotiator and the assistant Negotiator to evaluate their needs and their progress in the negotiation process. All information gathered will passed on to the Special Enforcement Team.
  • The Team Leader will clear and keep out unnecessary personnel from the negotiating post; establishes liaison with the Incident Commander; and/or the Special Enforcement Team Commander; gathers information on an ongoing basis, and protects the Negotiators from all unnecessary distractions
  • All other non-specified members assist with intelligence gathering, de-briefing victims of witnesses and logistics.