The Whittier Police Department Special Occurrence Response Team (S.O.R.T.) is a highly trained tactical unit responsible for handling major incidents such as riots, demonstrations and other disturbances. Los Angeles County is divided into several different areas. The Whittier S.O.R.T Team is part of Area-E and conducts training with other Area-E S.O.R.T Teams as part of a mutual aid system in case of a large scale emergency.
The S.O.R.T team is comprised of officers assigned to the City of Whittier and Santa Fe Springs. Whenever the SORT Team is activated, officers from both cities are used to handle the situation. The S.O.R.T Team utilizes a Chevy Suburban, a mobile command center and additional police cars for transportation of personnel and specialized equipment to the scene of incident.
The S.O.R.T. Team is sometimes used to assist with control over areas that have major emergencies. In October 2008 and 2009, the SORT Team responded to the areas of wild fires and provided additional assistance in evacuation notification and security of homes which had been evacuated.
In addition to the S.O.R.T. Team’s responsibilities for crowd control, they are responsible for assisting the Entry Team on search warrants. Their main function in these situations is to maintain the perimeter. Should anyone flee from the location, the S.O.R.T. Team would be responsible for apprehending them at the perimeter.