The Aurora Police Department in Illinois is dedicated to the community through service, partnerships and innovation that will enhance all citizens’ quality of life. Public service is the priority as the department addresses crime trends with respect to all members of the community through the integrity of officer and employee interactions and relationships with community members by dedicating energy and time to improve professional standards of excellence through training, technology, innovation and leadership that will empower shared community purpose.
Governing State Law.
Illinois State Law Statute 720 ILCS 6/7-5 regarding a peace officer’s use of force in making arrest states that a peace officer or any person he has directed to assist him/her does not need to retreat or desist from efforts to make a lawful arrest. The use of force reasonably necessary to effect the arrest is justified, but deadly force is not justified unless the peace officer believes that it is necessary to prevent death or great bodily harm to himself or another person. A person is not authorized to use force to resist an arrest which he knows is being made either by a peace officer or by a private person summoned and directed by a peace officer to make the arrest, even if he believes that the arrest is unlawful and the arrest in fact is unlawful. Deadly force within the meaning of sections 7-5 and 7-6 includes firing in the direction of the subject without the intent to kill or inflict bodily harm, firing at a vehicle carrying the subject of arrest, and a peace officer’s discharge using ammunition designed to disable or control an individual without causing death or great bodily harm. The use of force by law enforcement officers is necessary and permitted under circumstances that preserve life and reduce or avoid bodily injury. The officer’s goal at all times it to control or regain control of the encounter situation while protecting the community form ill-effects it might cause. The use of force is an officer’s last option to restore safety when other practices do not work.
De-escalation training is part of the Illinois Police Training Act under Statute 50 ILCS 705 but only speaks to encounters dealing with mentally ill subjects. The de-escalation policy should be utilized for all scenarios as the stressful situation could trigger temporary mental instability and would be necessary in keeping control of the situation. The portion of the training act speaks to:
“Crisis intervention team training; mental health awareness training.
- The Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board shall develop and approve a standard curriculum for certified training programs in crisis intervention addressing specialized policing responses to people with mental illnesses. The Board shall conduct Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training programs that train officers to identify signs and symptoms of mental illness, to de-escalate situations involving individuals who appear to have a mental illness and connect that person in crisis to treatment. Officers who have successfully completed this program shall be issued a certificate attesting to their attendance of a Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) training program.
- The Board shall create an introductory course incorporating adult learning models that provides law enforcement officers with an awareness of mental health issues including a history of the mental health system, types of mental health illness including signs and symptoms of mental illness and common treatments and medications, and the potential interactions law enforcement officers may have on a regular basis with these individuals, their families, and service providers including de-escalating a potential crisis situation.”
File a Complaint.
Complaints for police misconduct including the most common types of police brutality 1) excessive force; 2) sexual harassment/misconduct; 3) illegal search and seizure activity; 4) bias-based profiling and 5) false arrest/wrongful imprisonment, should be made to the Aurora Police Department who will conduct a thorough investigation and apprise you of the outcome of the investigation. If the claim is found to be true, the Aurora police Department cannot inform you of the disciplinary action that was taken. Investigations that do not have a base will be dropped. A signed and notarized complaint form must be delivered to the department for the investigation to occur, and the complainant may have to cooperate with the investigation and agree to appear in a civil or criminal hearing if necessary.
Seek Legal Counsel.
If you have been a victim of excessive force, or a witness to an encounter where an Aurora Police Officer exhibited actions of misconduct by using excessive force, you should make a formal complaint to the department and contact legal counsel to see if there should be a follow up case to remedy the situation. If you feel that your complaint was not taken seriously or reviewed in accordance with the Aurora Illinois Police Department guidelines, you should contact legal counsel to see if you have an action against the officer who carried out the misconduct.