ASO must comply with state and federal security requirements to ensure we have continued, uninterrupted access to state and national information databases necessary – yet, simultaneously, we want to permit citizen access and interaction with employees while on duty to foster good working relationships…“operating in the sunshine.”

Therefore, ride-alongs must successfully pass a criminal history/warrants background check. CCC applicants will be processed through a fingerprint-based background check.

The Process:

  • Any ride-along is on an as-available basis and consideration as to safety and the efficiency of ASO is of utmost importance.
  • Ride-Along participants are required to sign a liability Ride-Along Program Waiver/Release before being permitted to ride.
  • Participants will be restricted to riding along no more than once a month.
  • Participants will be given a list of Ride-Along Program – Instructions and Rules

Start your experience by contacting any employee or calling our main number of (352) 367-4000. You can also always contact us through the Contact Us link above.

Restrictions:

  • Citizens must be fifteen (15) years of age or older to participate in the program.
  • Participants under eighteen (18) years of age may only ride between the hours of 6:00 AM and 6:00 PM and his/her parent or guardian must sign the Waiver/Release form.
  • Participants may not operate ASO vehicles, unless required by exigent circumstances.
  • Participants may not ride with a family member or anyone with whom they are involved in a personal relationship.

Ride-along observers must abide by the following instructions and rules:

  • Report to the appropriate Shift Commander or his designee at a location determined by the Shift Commander/supervisor.
  • Observers will be neat and clean in appearance and attire. Decisions regarding questionable attire or appearance will be made by the Shift Commander or Bureau Chief.
  • Observers will not be armed unless otherwise authorized by their position as a current law enforcement officer, deputy or detention deputy.
  • Observers have no law enforcement authority and are under direct authority of the deputy to whom they are assigned.
  • Observers will not interfere with any deputy or detention deputy performing his/her duty and will not:
    • Become involved in any investigation,
    • Handle evidence,
    • Discuss any case with victim(s), witnesses and suspect(s), or
    • Handle ASO equipment without authorization from the deputy, unless exigent circumstances dictate to save a life or prevent serious bodily injury.
  • Observers will abide by their host deputy’s decision as to whether or not they will be allowed to exit the vehicle and observe particular calls for service.
  • Observers, host deputies, a supervisor and the Shift Commander may terminate the ride-along at any time it is deemed necessary to benefit the observer and the Sheriff’s Office.
  • Observers may be called to court as a witness as a result of participating in the program.