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investigation · Investigative Assistance Division

The Investigative Assistance Division (IAD) provides investigative services, technical support, and training to the Washington State Patrol, law enforcement agencies, other agencies, and community groups to improve the quality of life in the state of Washington. The Division is comprised of the Narcotics Section, the Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT), and the Special Investigations Section.

Narcotics Section


Personnel in the Narcotics Section participate in 14 local and 4 Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) task forces. Washington State Patrol supervisors and investigators are assigned to task forces in Benton, Clallam, Clark, Cowlitz, King, Kitsap, Lewis, Pierce, Skagit, Spokane, Thurston, Whitman, and Yakima Counties. The Narcotics Section also conducts criminal pharmaceutical diversion investigations and provides ongoing drug investigation training for the Washington State Criminal Justice Training Commission and local clandestine laboratory teams.

The Task Force Coordinator for the Narcotics Section monitors the progress of 20 federally funded (Bureau of Justice Assistance) task forces throughout the state. The coordinator is responsible for conducting meetings with task force commanders, developing training, and maintaining communication links between task forces. The coordinator is also responsible for representing task force interests at the Governor's Drug Policy Committee, the Bureau of Justice Assistance Conferences, and with the Department of Community Development.

Special Weapons and Tactics Team


SWAT VehicleThe Special Weapons and Tactics Team (SWAT) is comprised of detectives and troopers in conjunction with Crime Laboratory personnel trained to dismantle methamphetamine and other types of dangerous drug laboratories. The SWAT Team responds to suspected dangerous drug laboratories to execute search warrants, arrest criminal suspects, process evidence for criminal prosecution, and render the laboratories safe. The SWAT Team provides the sole law enforcement response to clandestine laboratories in most Washington counties. The SWAT Team also provides tactical response for the Washington State Patrol and other law enforcement agencies upon request. SWAT Team members are trained to respond and manage barricaded persons, sniper incidents, hostage situations, terrorist confrontations, and other high-risk arrest situations.

To request SWAT Team assistance, contact a local WSP Office.

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Special Investigations Section


The Special Investigations Section is comprised of the following units:

  • High Tech Crime Unit — The High Tech Crime Unit provides technical investigative support both within the State Patrol and to outside agencies. One of the fastest growing areas is computer seizure and forensic processing. Specific cases have related to homicide, child pornography, embezzlement, telephone and credit card fraud, narcotics, and internal affairs investigations.

  • Missing and Exploited Children Task Force — The Missing and Exploited Children Task Force assists law enforcement and other agencies with missing, abducted, and exploited children cases through investigations, case referrals, case management, and training. For additional information, see Missing and Exploited Children Task Force.

  • Missing Persons Unit — The Missing Persons Unit coordinates the exchange of information between law enforcement agencies, citizens, schools, the Department of Social and Health Services, and other interested groups regarding the location and return of missing children and adults. For additional information, see Missing Persons Unit.

Contact Information


Investigative Assistance Division
PO Box 2347
Olympia WA 98504-2347
(360) 704-2400

After hours, please contact your local WSP Office.

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