The Dane County Sheriff's Office Crisis Negotiation Team (CNT) consists of nine sworn personnel, including the team lieutenant and team sergeant. All members are certified negotiators having completed the FBI Crisis Negotiations training course. Members participate in yearly conferences and specialized seminars to enhance and expand their training base. In addition, team members coordinate in-house training events throughout the year.
The Crisis Negotiation Team focuses on resolving critical incidents involving barricaded suicidal persons, armed offenders, and hostage situations. The CNT coordinates with the Tactical Response Team, Hazardous Devices Unit and K-9 to resolve the incidents with the safety and security of the affected persons, and the community in mind. The team utilizes many resources in a crisis situation. The negotiators gather details from witnesses and persons close to the subject in crisis. The negotiators must work in an expedient manner to assess the situation and formulate a communication plan as a team. It is important for negotiators to be good conversationalists, however, they must also be excellent listeners in order to understand the concerns of the subject involved.
The CNT has specialized and enhanced communications systems, such as technical phone equipment. Every situation is unique and coordination with other tactical teams is worked out to provide the safest response. The Dane County Sheriff's Office has exemplified the philosophy of "Resolution through communication" during tactical incidents. The team's goal is to see that every effort is made to bring about a peaceful resolution to a critical incident.