Police Accountabillity Project

What is the Police Accountability Project?

Over 30 years, Policeabuse.com has been investigating complaints of police misconduct. The investigations include four Emmy award and four Edward R. Murrow award winning reports on how the police respond to citizen complaints. We have assisted the public with fling more than 20,000 complaints of police, misconduct. Our investigations have changed laws and resulted in many police departments changing policies and training on the receipt of citizen complaints.

Our investigations and data demonstrate that some police precincts routinely ignore complaints. And, in many instances, some police officers threaten and intimidate citizens who are trying to report police misconduct. The result is that citizens have no confidence in the police complaint reporting system.

But, that is now about to change. Policeabuse.com has initiated a comprehensive project to collect complaints of police misconduct and to deliver them to appropriate public officials and law enforcement agencies. The project is called the Police Accountability Project. The goal of the project is to restore trust and confidence in local law enforcement through the development of a state-of-the-art reporting system which allows citizens to safely report complaints of misconduct.

A new concept in community policing to restore accountability, trust and transparency and ultimately save lives

There is universal agreement among law enforcement experts and community leaders that there is a significant lack of trust between local police and many members of the communities that they serve. This is especially true in minority neighborhoods where an erosion of confidence in the police has led to a lack of communication and a distrustful environment where ultimately no one’s interests are served. To restore trust, efforts must be undertaken to give citizens confidence that they may safely report complaints and to monitor police activities in their communities without interference. The Police Accountability Project involves two essential components to improve police community relations: Safe Reporting and Effective Monitoring.

Other key components of the project are listed below:

1. A national database of police misconduct complaint allegations
2. Using the Policeabuse.com Mobile App/Website for safe complaint reporting directly to the police, the Department of Justice and relevant members of Congress.
3. Eyewitnesses empowered by technology through the Policeabuse.com app. We encourage citizens to improve police conduct through citizen monitoring.
4. Making police encounters safe-using our app emergency alert system. Upon activation, all app users within the zip code receive an alert with a detailed map and directions to any other user being detained by the police.
5. Organizations Sharing Data-Data tracking of officer complaints shared with local community groups.

Safe Reporting

Citizens may safely report complaints of police misconduct to the police department and to the Department of Justice directly through the Policeabuse.com Mobile App. In an emergency, the App will allow citizens to record up to 30 minutes of audio or four minutes of video. The audio and video is uploaded to Policeabuse.com automatically to ensure the user’s safety. Documents may also be delivered and attached to complaints. Effective Monitoring

Traditional community policing involves the police working with communities to prevent crime through active engagement, which includes community members sharing information with the police. Through the Police Accountability Project, citizens are encouraged to monitor police activities from a safe distance (without interfering with the traffic stop) and report any police misconduct. Police officials may also download the app to receive early warning notifications from citizens who are reporting concerns about officer behavior.

Sharing data about complaints

Community-based organizations receive reports on complaints free of charge. The identities of officers accused of serious offenses will be made available to public officials. A police rating system will allow citizens to anonymously report on the overall performance of a law enforcement agency.

Community-based organizations may subscribe as members of the Police Accountability Project and receive data on complaints occurring within their geographic location. Complaint summaries will be sent to members monthly.

A key goal of the project is to inform public officials about the pervasiveness of police misconduct across a range of cities and geographic regions in the United States. Consequently, as part of the project certain members of Congress will receive email notifications of serious complaints alleging excessive force, racial profiling or sexual misconduct by an officer.