The complaint process is designed to deal with each case factually and fairly. In order for a complaint against a district peace officer to be considered by the Chief of Police, the complaint must be in writing on a form provided by the District. (CKE EXHIBIT). The complaint shall be signed by the person making the complaint and notarized. In accordance with the law, the District shall provide to the police officer a copy of the formal complaint. Once a citizen has filed a formal written complaint against a CFISD Peace Officer, he/she should expect the following process to begin without delay:
A police supervisor (rank of Sergeant or higher) will interview the individual filing the complaint. The officer will ask the alleged victim questions about the circumstances surrounding the complaint. In some cases it may be possible that the interviewing officer will be able to explain the actions in question to your satisfaction. In other cases the complaint will need to be provided in writing and notarized. It should also be understood that with some complaints the initial interview may be videotaped. The complainant should be prepared to provide a sworn statement and be willing to provide the names of witnesses and/or other police officers that may know facts about the complaint.
After the interview, the formal complaint will be forwarded to the Chief of Police for an initial review. If it is determined that the level of misconduct rises to the level of a serious infraction, criminal allegation, or an egregious policy violation the Chief of Police will designate and assign the complaint for a formal Internal Affairs Investigation. The Internal Affairs investigators are designated CFISD Command Staff administrators with the rank of Lieutenant or higher. In some cases the CFISD Criminal Investigations Division may be assigned to assist in the investigation. If the complaint includes allegations of unreasonable or excessive force or evidence suggest that an officer has committed a crime, in most cases the district attorney’s office will be immediately notified. During the investigation you should expect that all officers who have knowledge of the incident will be formally interviewed. Witnesses whom the alleged victim has named will be contacted and interviewed, if they agree. The alleged victim will receive a letter regarding the progress of the investigation. Although it is impossible to estimate how long an investigation will take, the alleged victim will receive periodic reports on the status of the investigation. Once the investigation is complete a written report and IAD complaint file will then be prepared and submitted through the proper chain of command.
The results and facts of a complaint are called "findings". After a thorough and complete investigation a complaint will then be classified by a final “disposition”. The following dispositions will be assigned:
The Chief of Police reviews every complaint after the investigation is completed and a final Internal Affairs report is written.
The Chief of Police will consider the disposition after reviewing the complaint, and the alleged victim will be informed of the findings and disposition in writing.
While we do encourage the filing of legitimate complaints against employees, the department simultaneously seeks to hold members of the public responsible for the filing of false and malicious allegations against our employees. When a complaint is proven to be purposely false, the complainant will be prosecuted within the law.
If you have any questions about the complaint process, please contact the Chief of Police Monday-Friday between the hours of 7:30 am- 4:30 pm at (281) 897-6495.