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Professional Standards Bureau

Purpose Statement

To ensure the integrity of the Salt River Police Department. All alleged or suspected personnel misconduct observed or suspected by supervisors, department employees or citizens will be thoroughly investigated. All commendations of employee's performance are documented.

Mission Statement

To thoroughly and objectively investigate all complaints against its employees, to preserve the confidence of the public and to evaluate the services provided to the Community and address remedies to improve any deficiencies. The Professional Standards Bureau accepts, assigns, tracks and investigates external and internal complaints on employee's conduct. Internal investigations are conducted in a fair and expeditious manner in accordance with department, tribal, state, and federal laws and regulations. The Professional Standards Bureau accepts, assigns and tracks commendations of employee's performance.

Who may make a complaint?

Any person who witnesses or has direct knowledge of police employee misconduct may make a complaint with the Salt River Police Department. The Salt River Police Department will investigate any employee actions that are contrary to Police Department policy or a violation of tribal, state or federal law or discourteous treatment.

How do you file a complaint?

Generally, complaints are filed through the supervisor of the involved employee. If you do not know the employee's supervisor, you may file the complaint with the Salt River Police Department's Professional Standards Bureau. A complaint may be filed in person, by telephone or mail. Be prepared to furnish essential information such as the employee's name, locations, report numbers, dates and times.

When making a complaint, relate the facts as you know them and be mindful that you will be asked specific questions regarding the incident.

Professional Standards Bureau telephone number: 480-850-8200.

What is the complaint process?

  1. After receipt of a complaint, the Professional Standards Bureau will notify the complainant by registered mail that the complaint was received and will be provided a tracking number.
  2. The investigating supervisor will interview witnesses and other parties who can provide pertinent information to the investigation.
  3. The supervisor will also collect, review and analyze (if available and applicable) audio recordings, video recordings, police reports, computer data or other sources of data.
  4. The supervisor will interview the employee named in the allegation.
  5. The supervisor, following established training, policy, procedures (that follow industry standards and best practices) and the law, will evaluate all facts of the investigation.
  6. The supervisor will make a finding on the allegation of misconduct.
  7. When the investigation is complete, it is reviewed by members of the employee's chain-of-command who will ensure that a proper investigation was conducted and that appropriate discipline, if any, is recommended.
  8. At the conclusion of the investigation the complainant will be sent a Notification of Findings letter by registered mail. This letter will contain the following:
    • Allegations and findings of the investigation
    • Brief definition of the various terms, i.e., unfounded, exonerated, etc.
    • Investigating supervisor's name and the contact phone number
    • Complaint control number and statement that the complaint will be filed in the Professional Standards Bureau for a minimum of five years should any future questions or concerns arise
    • Survey letter enclosed with law enforcement commissioners names and telephone numbers

Who investigates a complaint?

In most cases, the supervisor of the employee will conduct an inquiry into the alleged misconduct. In more serious allegations, the Professional Standards Bureau will conduct and prepare the investigation. The Professional Standards Bureau tracks the progress of all internal investigations.

After the complaint has been investigated, what are the outcomes of the investigation?

The disposition will be one of the following:

Unfounded It is found that the reported misconduct did not occur or did not occur as alleged.
Exonerated The incident occurred, but the conduct was lawful and proper.
Unresolved There is insufficient evidence to either prove or disprove the allegation. The inquiry into this allegation is inactivated pending development of further information.
Sustained The allegation is supported by sufficient evidence to justify a reasonable conclusion that the alleged misconduct occurred.

What will you be told about the findings of a complaint?

You will be advised of the investigation's findings and whether disciplinary action will be taken. Tribal, state, and federal personnel laws govern an employee's privacy rights.

What if I want to commend a Police employee?

When you receive service from the Salt River Police Department that you feel is worthy of praise, we would like to hear about it. The best way to commend a Salt River Police Department employee is to either telephone us at 480-850-8200 or write a brief letter (or e-mail message) describing the incident and the actions you felt were noteworthy. Please include the employee's name (if known), date, time and location of the event.

Commendations are forwarded through the Office of the Chief to the employee with a copy placed in his or her personnel file. Although our employees do not expect to be thanked for everything they do, recognition of exceptional service is always appreciated. Your input helps us to know if we are doing a good job and fulfilling our mission statement of service, respect, pride and dedication.

Our pledge to you ... Service, Respect, Pride and Dedication.