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Updated and Maintained




Lt. J.J. Brewer













Captain K.W.Sarvis

 Division Commander


Lieutenant W.E. Crowningshield

 Assistant Division Commander


910-798-4260 Main

910-772-7804 FAX


The Detective Division consists of a group of highly trained investigators.  The New Hanover County Sheriff's Office Detective Division is under the direction of the Division Commander - Captain K.W.Sarvis  who is responsible for the overall operation of the division.  

              2012 Per  
            2011-2012 1,000
Part I Crime 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 Change Population
Murder 2 3 4 3 2 -33.33% 0.02
Rape 8 7 8 20 22 10.00% 0.26
Robbery 50 49 41 37 33 -10.81% 0.38
Commercial 15 15 10 10 7 -30.00% 0.08
Individual 35 34 31 27 26 -3.70% 0.30
Aggravated Assault 104 104 91 98 121 23.47% 1.41
Burglary 675 703 715 608 609 0.16% 7.08
Larceny 1,831 1,937 1,739 1,891 1,480 -21.73% 17.21
Motor Vehicle Theft 124 63 86 89 91 2.25% 1.06
Arson 10 7 8 9 7 -22.22% 0.08
Total Violent 164 163 144 158 178 12.66% 2.07
Total Property 2,640 2,710 2,548 2,597 2,187 -15.79% 25.43
Total Part I 2,804 2,873 2,692 2,755 2,365 -14.16% 27.50






Note: Due to reclassification year to year and ongoing investigations, final numbers are subject to change.



The primary function of the Detective Division is to conduct follow-up investigations of crimes.  Cases are reviewed by a Detective supervisor and screened for solvability factors. Detectives are then assigned cases based on those solvability factors.  Detectives from specialized units are assigned to investigate crimes on the basis of their expertise.  For example, fraud cases are assigned to the White Collar Crimes Unit, child sexual assault cases are assigned to Juvenile/Child Abuse Unit, etc.

This Division is staffed with some of the most talented and skilled investigators in North Carolina.  Each member of the Detective Division is dedicated, tenacious, and committed to the citizens of New Hanover County.  The Detective Division of the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office is divided into 9 specific units.  The team concept approach is utilized by the Detective Division and is exemplified by daily briefings and exchanging criminal intelligence information amongst the detectives.

Deputies selected for assignment to the Detective Division are chosen for their knowledge, skills and abilities they exhibited as patrol deputies and for their desire to do the specific job for which they have applied.  Members of the Detective Division receive specialized training to help develop them into capable interviewers and investigators.

Every case is important to the Detectives investigating the crimes.  Their first priority is to take care of the victims and protect the innocent.  This is the core value of the Detective Division of the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office.

When the Detectives are assigned cases, they make contact the victims and introduce themselves and conduct a follow-up interview and discuss the preliminary aspects of the cases.  The Detectives then begin to examine and explore solvability factors of their cases and follow any leads that are present.  These leads are often in the form of witness information, physical evidence (fingerprints, DNA, etc.), apparent methods of operation (MO), or a strong intuitive feeling of the Detective that is based on their knowledge, training and experience.

Investigating crimes are often like putting together a jig saw puzzles.  As the cases are investigated, pieces of the puzzles are revealed that lead to the true pictures of the crimes.  That is when Detectives are able to bring about a proper case disposition.

This often means that arrests are made and the cases are taken before the courts for adjudication.  The Detectives are also intimately involved in the trial process of these case.

In criminal investigations the division works with many other agencies to investigate its cases and to network information.  When necessary the division works with State and Federal Law Enforcement agencies such as SBI, ALE, INS, IRS, DEA, FBI, and ATF.  All Detectives work very closely with the New Hanover County District Attorney's Office.  This helps to ensure that the cases come to proper adjudication.

The Detectives are called upon to address the problems of criminal activity in a variety of manners that may include:

  • High visibility plain-clothes work

  • Undercover operations

  • Surveillance

  • Intelligence gathering

  • Search warrants

  • Arrest warrants


The Detective Division is comprised of the following units.


Through the diligent efforts of the personnel assigned to this Division we have attacked issues the members of our community have shared with us as being detrimental to the quality of life in New Hanover County.   

While it is difficult to truly reflect in words the energy that our detectives put into their assignments, their accomplishments tend to speak for themselves. 

The Detective Division can be reached at:  910-798-4260.