Complainant alleges that an Austin Police officer's demeanor changed when the Spanish-speaking complainant spoke English and could have shown more professionalism. The Office of Police Oversight recommends that this allegation receive a B classification.
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NOTICE OF FORMAL
ICMS #: 2020-1824
January 8, 2021
, filed a complaint alleging: I was pulled over by Officer
. During the interaction Officer
speaking English, but I felt more comfortable speaking in Spanish. When I replied in Spanish the
officer also responded in Spanish. Officer
proceeded to ask questions about car
insurance, and a form of ID. When Officer
asked who the car belonged to I shifted to
English and said "my car." After this, the officer’s entire demeanor changed. It was clear that he
was entirely bothered that I chose to speak in Spanish first when according to the officer my
English "seemed to be good enough." From there, tension could be felt by Officer
the remainder of the interaction. Officer
let his personal emotions get in the way of being
an unbiased peace officer. Officer could have shown more professionalism had he not made that
remark that made it seem like speaking Spanish was unlawful. In addition, upon looking over my
ticket, I noticed Officer
put my gender as M where my passport clearly states F. The
officer's reaction was inadequate being that he clearly understands and speaks Spanish himself.
This notice of formal complaint is a request for Internal Affairs to initiate an investigation in
order to determine if the employee conduct is within compliance of APD policy, Civil Service
Rules, and Municipal Civil Service Rules.
Recommended Administrative Policies to Review (to include but not limited to):
301.1 RESPONSIBILITY TO THE COMMUNITY PURPOSE AND SCOPE
All persons deserve protection by fair and impartial law enforcement and should be able to
expect similar police response to their behavior wherever it occurs. Employees will serve the
public through direction, counseling, assistance, and protection of life and property. Employees
will be held accountable for the manner in which they exercise the authority of their office or
position. Employees will respect the rights of individuals and perform their services with
honesty, sincerity, courage, and sound judgment.
301.2 IMPARTIAL ATTITUDE AND COURTESY
Employees are expected to act professionally, treat all persons fairly and equally, and perform
all duties impartially, objectively, and equitably without regard to personal feelings, animosities,
friendships, financial status, sex, creed, color, race, religion, age, political beliefs, sexual
orientation, gender identity or gender expression or social or ethnic background.
402.2 INCIDENT REPORTING
A well-written report can help make a case just as easily as a poorly written report can ruin a case.
Employees have the responsibility to write clear, factual, and complete reports.
Recommended Classification: The OPO is permitted to make a preliminary recommendation
on the classification of administrative cases.
The OPO recommends that this allegation receive an B classification.