April 16, 2020

Formal complaint: Prohibited speech, expression and conduct

Complainant filed an online complaint alleging that an Austin police officer wrote a rude and unprofessional post on an app.

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The City of Austin is committed to compliance with the American Disabilities Act. Reasonable modifications and equal access to communications will be provided upon request. NOTICE OF FORMAL COMPLAINT ICMS #: 2020-0399 April 16, 2020 Complaint: From OPO online complaint form: I’m not sure if there is anything that can be done but Officer had a post on the app that some of us found a little bit rude/not the right choice of words. I DO have a screen shot but I’m not sure how to attach it. His post said “Not sure what bothers me the most the ignorance of those asking and commenting or the arrogance of those offering. Go ahead and spread the virus, I mean after all no one is going to die... not only is there no cure for the virus but we currently do not have a cure for stupid.” We feel that this wording, especially from an Officer, is not comforting. His response is insulting. I of course understand it is impossible to be professional at all times but it is not necessary or okay to tell people that they are ignorant for asking questions and not knowing things. He needs to be reminded about how to handle situations. 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): 972.4 PROHIBITED SPEECH, EXPRESSION AND CONDUCT (b) Speech or expression that, while not made pursuant to an official duty, is significantly linked to, or related to, the Austin Police Department and tends to compromise or damage the mission, function, reputation or professionalism of the Austin Police Department or its employees. (e) Speech or expression that is contrary to the canons of the Law Enforcement Code of Ethics as adopted by the Austin Police Department 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 A classification.

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