Filing Complaints

How to file a Police officer complaint.

 Listed below are common areas of police misconduct.  For a more detailed article (which I highly recommend reading) please click here.

Categories of Police Misconduct

  • Aiding another (officer) to violate a rule
  • Altering information on official documents
  • Appropriating property
  • Careless driving resulting in injury or death
  • Compromising a criminal case
  • Departing from the truth (lying)
  • Destruction of reports or records
  • Discrimination
  • Drinking on duty
  • False arrest (not to be confused with the tort of the same name)
  • False report (see also Departing from the truth)
  • Harassment
  • Knowingly making a false report (good for alleging in the case of traffic tickets)
  • Law violation(s), or conspiracy to commit law violation(s) (a.k.a. lack of conformance with the law)
  • Malicious threats or assault
  • Narcotics
  • Overdriving (driving rapidly and/or aggressively) on the way to a minor call (very common in some jurisdictions)
  • Racial or ethnic intimidation
  • Rough and careless handling of departmental equipment
  • Sexual harassment
  • Soliciting or accepting a bribe
  • Unnecessary force (a.k.a. excessive force; this category includes not only unnecessary force or violence in making an arrest or in dealing with a prisoner.)
  • Please note ridiculing, taunting, humiliating, or mentally abusing you is also grounds for a complaint

Filing the Complaint
Other categories of misconduct include:

  • Abuse of authority
  • Abuse of process
  • Conduct unbecoming a law enforcement officer
  • Lack of courtesy
  • Lack of professionalism
  • Neglect of duty
  • Retaliation (e.g., for a previous complaint you filed!)

As you can see there are allot of overlap, do not limit yourself to the list above make sure to contact the police department.   They have operational  and procedural manuals which may list more misconduct.
If the misconduct is part of a pattern of behavior by the subject officer(s), make sure to include it in the report!
Sending your complaint via certified mail helps to insure your complaint is not “cough” lost or misplaced.
To get an idea of how much professionalism you will be met with when making your complaint, see how your local police department rates on this police accountability website.

Now that you know how to file a complaint click here to learn how to file a Freedom of Information Act on that troublesome Government agent and learn all his secrets.