June 26, 2020

Formal Complaint: Purpose and scope, obedience to orders and other policy violations

Complainant alleges that an APD officer may have violatied policy while conducting a traffic stop when he came close to her without a mask despite her mentioning that her husband was high-risk. The OPO recommends that this allegation receive a B classification.

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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 #: 2020-0653 June 26, 2020 Complaint: , complainant, alleges that an Austin Police Department Officer may have violated policy while conducting a traffic stop in which she was the driver. She states as follows: “The officer stopped me so I turned down my window. I noticed he didn’t have a mask and he came very close to me. I had a mask and sunglasses. I went only to pick up my husband’s food for the night. He came very close to the window. I told him that my husband was high risk. He has an illness that doesn’t have any treatment. The only treatment is a liver transplant. I was thinking he was going to put the mask on, but he didn’t. He went to his car but he didn’t come back with a mask. I was really afraid at that moment. When I came home, I told my husband and he said it was very inadequate for service for an officer in the States. My husband’s doctor said that he can’t by any means contract this disease. I repeated to the officer two times about my husband.” 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 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. 110.4.3 OBEDIENCE TO ORDERS The Department is an organization with a clearly defined hierarchy of authority. This is necessary because obedience of a superior's lawful command is essential for the safe and prompt performance of law enforcement operations. This section also applies to orders received by an employee in the field training program from a Field Training Officer (FTO). 110.4.4 INSUBORDINATION Employees will not be insubordinate. The willful disobedience of, or deliberate refusal to obey any lawful order of a supervisor is insubordination. Defying the authority of any supervisor by obvious disrespect, arrogant or disrespectful conduct, ridicule, or challenge to orders issued is considered insubordination whether done in or out of the supervisor's presence. 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 801.3 UNIFORM GUIDELINES Sworn employees wear a uniform to be identified as the law enforcement authority in society. The uniform also serves to identify the wearer as a source of assistance in an emergency, crisis or other time of need. Some civilian employees also wear a uniform to be identified as part of a specific assignment (e.g., crime scene, victim services). (a) All sworn employees shall possess and maintain a serviceable uniform and the necessary equipment to perform uniformed field duty at all times. 900.1.1 RESPONSIBILITY TO KNOW AND COMPLY The rules of conduct set forth in this order do not serve as an all-inclusive list of requirements, limitations, or prohibitions on employee conduct and activities; employees are required to know and comply with all Department policies, procedures, and written directives. Recommended Classification: The OPO is permitted to make a preliminary recommendation on the classification of administrative cases. The OPO recommends that this allegation receive a B classification.
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