South San Antonio Independent School District Police Department
Official Complaint Process
Implementation of Complaint Process Addressing General Complaints of Misconduct and Allegations of Racial Profiling Practices
In accordance with Senate Bill 1704, the SSAISD Police Department has made significant efforts to launch an educational campaign aimed at informing the public on issues relevant to the complaint process. Special emphasis has been placed on informing school community members on filing a complaint relevant to racial profiling practices.
Filing a Complaint Based on Violations of the Texas Law on Racial Profiling and General Complaints of Misconduct
The following information is made available to the population of the South San Antonio Independent School District:
UNDERSTANDING THE PROCESS
Once an individual has filed a complaint regarding racial profiling or complaints of misconduct, he/she should expect the following process to commence:
A police officer (rank of Corporal/Investigator or higher) will interview the individual filing the complaint. The officer will ask the alleged victim questions about what happened. It is possible; the officer may be able to explain the officer(s) actions to your satisfaction.
·Usually, the alleged victim will be interviewed at the Police Department's Main Building. It is possible that he/she may be videotaped during the interview.
·The individual filing the complaint may bring a lawyer, family member or friend to the interview.
·The police officer will ask the individual filing a complaint about the names of witnesses and other police officers that may know facts about the complaint.
·A police photographer may take pictures of any injuries that the alleged victim think are related to the complaint.
After the interview, the SSAISD Police Department will investigate the alleged misconduct. Investigators will talk to witnesses and visit the site of the incident.
·All officers will be interviewed and 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 the investigation will take, the alleged victim will receive periodic reports on its status.
·A report will then be prepared.
THE REVIEW PROCESS
The Police Chief reviews every complaint after the investigation is completed and a report is written.
·If the complaint includes excessive force or charges an officer with a crime, it will also be reviewed by an Internal Investigation Section investigator.
·The IIS will review your complaint, statements from all witnesses and reports from the investigation. The IIS investigator may ask for additional information before making recommendations to the Police Chief.
·The results of investigations that suggest there are no charges that the police officer used excessive force or committed a crime are also reviewed by the Police Chief.
·The Police Chief reviews investigations and makes the final decision on all complaints.
The results of your complaint are called "findings". There are four possible findings:
·Sustained - The complaint has been supported: The officer(s) involved acted improperly and may be disciplined.
·Unfounded - The investigation found no basis for the complaint filed.
·Exonerated - The police officer(s) involved acted properly and will not be disciplined; or
·Not provable - There was not enough evidence to prove the complaint true or false so no further action will be taken.
The Police Chief will decide on a finding after the complaint has been reviewed. Further, he will inform the alleged victim through an official letter of the final decision.
A COMMITMENT TO RESPOND TO THE NEEDS OF THE COMMUNITY
The SSAISD Police Department has made a commitment to its citizens regarding the following:
1.The department shall accept complaints from any person who believes he or she has been stopped or searched based on racial, ethnic or national origin profiling. No person shall be discouraged, intimidated or coerced from filing a complaint, nor discriminated against because he or she filed such a complaint.
2.Any employee who receives an allegation of racial profiling, including the officer who initiated the stop, shall record the person's name, address and telephone number, and forward the complaint through the appropriate channel or direct the individual(s). Any employee contacted shall provide to that person a copy of a complaint form or the department process for filing a complaint. All employees will report any allegation of racial profiling to their superior before the end of their shift.
3.Investigation of a complaint shall be conducted in a thorough and timely manner. All complaints will be acknowledged in writing to the initiator who will receive disposition regarding said complaint within a reasonable period of time. The investigation shall be reduced to writing and any reviewer's comments or conclusions shall be filed with the chief. When applicable, findings and/or suggestions for disciplinary action, retraining, or changes in policy shall be filed with the chief.
4.If a racial profiling complaint is sustained against an officer, it will result in appropriate corrective and/or disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
Please understand that if the investigations prove these allegations to be false, the complainant may be held liable for both criminal and civil prosecution. Any person convicted of making a false complaint against a police employee is a violation of Texas Penal Code sec. 37.02. A person convicted of making a false claim can be fined up to $2,000 and/or risk confinement in jail up to one year.
A complainant may be asked to submit a polygraph examination as part of the investigation.
If an individual would like to file an official complaint, the complainant may do so by contacting a supervisor and completing a complaint form at the South San Antonio ISD Police Department located at 5622 Ray Ellison Blvd, San Antonio, Texas 78242.