The Sonoma County Sheriff's Office created the Domestic Violence/Sexual Assault Unit on October 1, 1996. The DVSA Unit consists of a Detective Sergeant, five Deputy Detectives, an administrative aide, and a student intern.

The DVSA Unit is off-site in keeping with a community-oriented philosophy. The Sheriff's Office, in partnership with the  District Attorney's Office, is a founding member organization of the Family Justice Center of Sonoma County,  in order to create an innovative service in which advocacy organizations are in partnership with law enforcement and prosecutors to provide service to the community in one location. The goals of the unit are being met by a three-pronged approach, which include prevention through education, suppression through enforcement and diversion through advocacy and counseling.

The Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Investigations unit provides professional, compassionate, and effective investigation and intervention services for families and youth based on a victim-centered / driven philosophy. The DVSA unit endeavors to improve the quality of life in Sonoma County by providing superior service to our citizens, especially children, and completing comprehensive investigations of those who victimize. Detectives assigned to this unit work closely with advocates from the Family Justice Center of Sonoma County.

The DVSA Unit investigates sexual assault of adults, children and dependent adults, child physical abuse and neglect, sexual assault cold cases, and human trafficking. The DVSA Unit investigates all reported cases of domestic violence, including elder and dependent adult abuse, in Sonoma County jurisdiction. The unit coordinates its efforts with the Sonoma County District Attorney’s Office, Redwood Children’s Center and the Family Justice Center.

DVSA is tasked with investigating and monitoring all registered sex offenders living/working in Sonoma County and ensuring their DNA samples are on file with the state. In addition, the unit is also tasked with the processing (registering) of all convicted sex offenders as mandated by State law.

The DVSA Unit investigates all cases involving the technology-facilitated child sexual exploitation online. Working with the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force Program (ICAC) and our CSI unit, through the use of computer forensics and other investigative components, we develop information to obtain search warrants, make arrests and rescue children from further exploitation.

The DVSA unit also reviews all cases of domestic violence wherein there is a potential for lethality.  Detectives can petition the court for an order to collect, retain and destroy firearms used in the crime.