Police Department Home

Hostage Negotiation Team

The Petaluma Police Department utilizes a highly trained group of officers who serve on the Hostage Negotiations Team ( HNT ). HNT , along with the Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team, is a component of the Department's Special Operations Division. Special Operations are called upon when the police officers on patrol require more specialized training and weaponry to handle a critical incident. The HNT is an integral part of the SWAT Team and they both work closely together in responding to critical incidents.

The goal of the HNT , is to defuse potentially life-threatening crisis situations through the use of proven verbal crisis management and communication techniques. Most often HNT will be called in for incidents that include but are not be limited to:

  • Suicidal persons and the mentally ill
  • Armed/barricaded subjects
  • Suspects who have taken a hostage(s)

The HNT team is a voluntary on-call unit comprised of one sergeant, two team leaders, and six team members. Because most critical incidents are resolved by the HNT crisis negotiators, ongoing training is mandatory. All members must successfully complete a 40-hour Basic Negotiators course prior to being placed on the team. Team members then must complete a 40 hour Advanced Negotiators course. The team maintains the necessary skills of its negotiators by attending monthly in-house training and quarterly seminars sponsored by the California Association of Hostage Negotiators. In addition to the negotiation courses mentioned, members also receive specialized training in interview and interrogation techniques, mental health issues, domestic violence, and terrorism.

The Petaluma Police Department's Hostage Negotiations Team has taken an active role in the community it serves. In 2002, the HNT hosted its 1 st Annual Golf Tournament to raise funds for training and equipment that could not be paid for due to the City's fiscal limitations. Since then the tournament has gained a strong following of loyal participants. In 2003, the tournament proved to be another great success. As a thank you to the community support, the HNT used a portion of the proceeds to help the United Anglers of Casa Grande High School and the Adobe Creek Restoration project by purchasing under water cameras for their fish hatchery. With proceeds from the 3 rd annual tournament in 2004, the HNT purchased a new desktop computer system and a LCD projector for the Petaluma High School Wildlife Museum.

Contact Us

EMERGENCY cell phone calls: 707.762.2727


Non-Emergency: 707.778.4372
Fax: 707.656.4059

Ken Savano, Chief of Police
969 Petaluma Blvd. North
Petaluma, CA 94952


To submit a commendation or to

report possible officer misconduct,

click here (English) or (Spanish)

Administration 707.778.4370

Code Enforcement 707.778.4469

Graffiti Hotline 707.776.3606

Records 707.778.4372

Property & Evidence 707.778.4328

Mental Health Resources

Report Habitual DUI Offenders 707.778.4379

Parking and Abandoned Vehicle Complaints 707-776-3710


Public Lobby Hours
Monday – Thursday, 8AM - 5PM


Police Department
Police Administration