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Professional Standards Unit

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Professional Standards Unit

The Professional Standards Unit investigates citizens' complaints and conducts internal investigations assigned by the Chief of Police. This unit is also responsible for numerous administrative reports dealing with police activities. The Professional Standards Unit conducts staff inspections to insure policies are being followed by every unit of the department.

To commend, compliment or file a complaint regarding the performance of a Roanoke Police Department employee, notify a Police Department Supervisor by:
  • Visiting the Police Department in person.
  • Calling the Roanoke Police Department’s non-emergency number at (540) 853-2212.
  • Mailing comments to 348 Campbell Avenue, SW, Roanoke, VA 24016
  • Contacting the Professional Standards Unit during regular business hours, M-F, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. at 853-2085.
  • E-mailing the Professional Standards Unit at psu@roanokeva.gov.

Processing Commendation for Employees:

When a commendation is received verbally by the Police Department, a Citizen Commendation form will be completed by the receiving supervisor and forwarded through the chain of command to the Chief of Police. Letters of commendation are made a part of the employee’s personnel file.

Processing Complaints Against Employees:

It is the policy of the Roanoke Police Department to take appropriate actions to resolve all complaints concerning alleged misconduct or criminal activity lodged against members and/or employees of the department concerning alleged misconduct or criminal activity. Such complaints may be submitted orally or in written form through the completion of the departmental citizen's complaint fact sheet. Complaints concerning juveniles may be initiated by a parent or guardian, but the juvenile must be available for interview. All complaints received even though they may be anonymous will be given full attention by departmental personnel. Officers have the same rights as citizens against self incrimination in criminal cases. All complaints received by any means are handled by completing the following steps:

1. Persons desiring to file a complaint complete a fact sheet.
a. Complainant secures a fact sheet at the Police Department and completes and signs the form.
b. Complainant speaks with a supervisor at the Police Department who in turn fills out the form for the complainant and has them sign the form if not an anonymous complaint.

2. Upon completion of the fact sheet, the complainant is provided with a copy of the sheet as written documentation of the complaint.

3. Departmental Supervisors receiving the fact sheet forward the remaining copies of the complaint to the Division Commander through the chain of command for review and assignment.

4. The complaint is then assigned to the appropriate personnel for investigation.

5. All necessary investigative steps are taken which will include an interview with the complainant. When the investigator assigned completes the process, the completed form is forwarded to the appropriate Administrative Officer for review and necessary administrative action.

6. The complainant will be notified at the earliest possible time as to the results of the investigation. This notification will be in written form.

Any intentionally false, misleading or untrue statements, accusations, or allegations made in regard to employees of the Police Department may lead to civil or criminal sanctions.

Investigations Conducted During 2013

Case Disposition
Definition
2012
2013
Sustained
The allegation is supported, in whole or in part by credible evidence. The allegation is true; the action of the agency or the officer/employee was inconsistent with the agency policy.
13
10
Not Sustained
Insufficient evidence to confirm or refute allegation.
5
6
Unfounded
Either the allegation demonstrated is false or there is no credible evidence to support it.
4
0
Exonerated
The allegation is not supported by facts. The action of the agency or the officer/employee was consistent with the agency policy.
23
29
Investigation Terminated
Complainant requested the investigation end.
7
9
Pending
Investigation is finished, but requires review by Command Staff and the Disciplinary Review Board.
0
0
Policy Failure
The allegation is true. The action of the agency or officer/employee was not governed by existing agency policy.
0
0
Total Number of Complaints
52 allegations resulting from a total of 39 complaints
54 allegations resulting from a total of 29 complaints