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When our office receives your complaint, we first perform a preliminary investigation to help us with classification. If a complaint is classified as an allegation of misconduct, we will then identify the specific allegations that require investigation. The matter is then forwarded to Internal Affairs (IA) for investigation. Our office works closely with the IA investigators (who are EPD employees) to ensure that investigations are thorough and fair. As part of IA’s investigation, you and any witnesses may be contacted for more information. If you claim that you were injured by an officer, you might be asked to sign a release of medical records. The investigation will include related police reports, in-car video, and body-worn video (where available). Our office participates in IA interviews of the subject officer and witnesses. The IA investigation normally takes about 90 days. Our office collaborates with IA to ensure the investigation is thorough and fair; we are permitted to send investigations back for additional investigation where necessary.
At the close of the investigation, both our office and the EPD chain of command issue recommendations on whether the allegation of misconduct should be sustained or not. The Chief of Police has final adjudication authority. If a complaint is sustained, EPD will determine discipline with the advice and input of the City’s Employee Resource Center.
After the investigative and adjudication process is over, your case is considered closed, and you will receive a letter from our office explaining the findings of the investigations. The public can read the Police Auditor’s Office Annual Report for more details about each complaint received throughout the year.
Service level complaint investigations are typically completed within 30 days.
Investigations into allegations of misconduct are typically finished within 90 days, but the entire investigative, adjudication, and disciplinary process can take longer. In general, the process is complete within 3-6 months.
We try to keep the process fair for all involved parties. State law and union contracts provide many protections to officers during this process. These protections include the right to have a representative present during their misconduct investigation interviews, the right to grievance appeals, and the right to review and respond to comments in the officer’s personnel file. There are also rules on how interviews of police officers are conducted and timelines in which investigations shall be completed.
No, we cannot. We are prohibited from disclosing any discipline arising from a complaint. We can tell you what steps were taken during the investigation of your complaint and you may ask the Civilian Review Board (CRB) to review your closed complaint during one of their monthly public meetings, if you wish.