The Summit County Mounted Patrol was formed in 1953. The unit works under the authority of Sheriff Drew Alexander. It is a non-profit charitable organization. The unit is made up of regular and special deputies who volunteer their time, their horses, and their equipment for the benefit of the Sheriff's Office and the citizens of Summit County. The unit also has an auxiliary that assists them with their functions. Although the unit still can be seen at parades and other public functions, it underwent many changes in the late 1980's and early 1990's. The unit began to train for more law-enforcement type functions. The mounted unit can be more effective than deputies on foot or in vehicles in certain situations. The mounted deputy is able to view a large area, from his position on the horse, and can pursue a suspect fleeing on foot into areas that a vehicle cannot go. Members of the unit and their horses have gone through training at the Ohio Peace Officers Training Academy, the Cleveland Metro Parks Mounted Training School, and the Buckeye State Mounted Training School. The unit also hosted two training sessions conducted by the national Mounted Training Grouand from mounted units in New York and Florida. The mounted patrol also conducts their own training sessions each year. The deputies and their horses are trained in the proper methods of crowd control and arrest procedures, from horseback. The horses are exposed to gunfire, fireworks, smoke, fire, flashing lights and sirens during these trainings.
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