Complaint Process

Types of Complaints

There are 2 types of complaints that may be made against members of the police department:

  • Informal Complaints: Informal complaints typically involve employee behavior, such as rudeness, offensive language, or procedural errors. These complaints are usually investigated by the immediate supervisor. Informal complaints may be made in person, by telephone, or by letter.
  • Formal Complaints: Formal complaints typically involve more serious alleged acts, such as criminal behavior or other serious allegations of misconduct. These complaints must be reduced to writing (as required by the Texas Legislature) with a notarized signature from the complainant.

The Complaint Process

You may call 972-292-6010 or come to the Police Department at any time and ask to speak with an on-duty supervisor. The supervisor may be able to quickly resolve your concerns. If not, the supervisor will assist you through the process of filing your complaint so that a more formal review of the complaint can occur.

The supervisor will prepare a written explanation of your grievance and collect any related documents or statements. The supervisor will then forward the complaint--through the chain of command--to Police Administration. After a detailed review, the complaint will then be assigned to be fully investigated.

The Investigation Process

Once the complaint has been assigned to an internal investigator, several actions will commence. The investigator will interview all significant witnesses and subjects involved in the complaint. The investigator will review all available documents, audio, and video recordings related to the complaint, as well as any other pertinent available information.

Several investigation techniques are available to be utilized by the investigator including the use of a polygraph. In most circumstances, no employee will be required to take a polygraph examination until the person making the complaint has taken and passed his or her test.

Internal investigations regarding employee complaints are taken very seriously and will be completed in a timely manner. There are many variables involved specific to each complaint; therefore, an estimate of when the investigation will be concluded and the complaint resolved is difficult to predict.

Once the complaint has been fully investigated, the findings are summarized into a report. The report is then forwarded to the Chief of Police for review and a final disposition.

If an allegation is sustained, the person making the complaint will be informed by a letter from the Chief of Police. The letter will include the investigations findings and the subsequent appropriate action that was taken if applicable.

All complaints and resulting investigative findings are confidential. City policy and rules regulate access to sensitive information.

Complaint Dispositions

The final disposition of each allegation in the complaint will be classified in one of the following ways:

  • Sustained: The allegation is substantiated;
  • Unfounded: The allegation is false or not factual;
  • Exonerated: The incident occurred but the member acted lawfully and properly;
  • Not sustained: The allegation is not substantiated and there is not sufficient evidence to prove or disprove the allegation.