Filing a Complaint.

The Tulsa Police Department investigates all citizen complaints against its officers and employees, but they must be made within one year of the occurrence for a fast and thorough response with measured resolution.  If a complaint is made after a year, it is considered based on each case.  To file a complaint a victim must: 

  1. Fill out the complaint form which is accessible online and can be printed and mailed to Tulsa Police Department, 600 Civic Center, Tulsa, OK 74103;
  2. Delivered to the Internal Affairs Department in Suite 305 at the same address;
  3. Delivered to Tulsa Police Uniform Divisions in Mingo Valley, Gilcrease, or Riverside;
  4. Made via telephone call to 918-596-9379;
  5. Write a personal letter to the Chief of Police Chuck Jordan;
  6. Made anonymously to the Internal Affairs hotline at 918-596-1355;
  7. or sent online to [email protected]

Internal Affairs Involvement.

The Tulsa Police Department Internal Affairs Unit is charged with upholding the public trust by performing thorough, unbiased investigations of alleged employee misconduct especially investigations of actions of excessive force, sexual harassment, false arrest and wrongful imprisonment, wrongful search and seizure, and racial and gender discrimination, while seeking the truth ensuring that all persons involved are treated with respect and their rights are protected.

Mediation of Parties.

A review process has been established with the Tulsa Police Department because sometimes citizens make allegations without knowledge to internal policies and procedures based on the state and federal laws and city ordinance guidelines that police officers must follow during citizen encounters. Through the complaint process, a formal meeting is set up with the officer involved, the supervisor of that officer and the citizen who made the complaint in order to discuss the incident and determine if the officer acted in accordance with the policies and procedures set forth by the Tulsa Police Department in compliance to all federal and state laws that guide police action.

Actions of Police Misconduct to be Reported.

If you feel you, or someone you know, has had their civil rights or freedoms violated by actions of police brutality, you should contact a lawyer.  The most common violations occur through actions involving:

  • Excessive Force – utilizing more physical force than necessary to subdue a criminal causing bodily harm or death.
  • Sexual Harassment/Misconduct – unwelcome sexual advances, requests or demands for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature by law enforcement in the course of their job.
  • False Arrest and Wrongful Imprisonment – unlawful restraint of a person’s freedom of movement by another acting in perceived accordance with the law.
  • Wrongful Search and Seizure Activity – protection from “unreasonable searches and seizures” notwithstanding probable cause enabling a search warrant.
  • Racial and Gender Discrimination – bias-based policing is the intentional practice by an individual law enforcement officer who incorporates prejudicial judgments based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, economic status, religious beliefs, or age that are inappropriately applied in the performance of his/her duties.

Complaint Process and Types of Resolution.

Complaints are not always made directly by the victim, but sometimes on their behalf by other citizen or agencies who have knowledge of the abuse of power involved, or through internal measures of other officers who have witnessed police abuse.  When the complaint is received it is reviewed regarding the nature and severity of the complaint and where it will be assigned for internal review.  It may be assigned to the employee’s direct supervisor or an internal affairs investigator.  When the investigation has been completed, recommendations will be made based on the findings that were reviewed with the employee’s chain of command.  The Chief of Police reviews all complaints, reviews and recommendation to make a final determination as to the disposition of the complaint.  Dispositions can be:

  1. Unfounded – The allegation has no merit; evidence exists to either disprove or discredit the allegation.
  2. Exonerated – The incident did occur, and the officer acted within established policies, procedures, and/or operating guidelines.
  3. Not Sustained – Insufficient evidence exists to either prove or disprove the allegation.
  4. Sustained – The incident did occur, and the officer was found to be in violation.
  5. Withdrawn – The officer’s actions were explainable and the citizen chose of his/her own accord to withdrawal the complaint.
  6. Closed – No allegations against known personnel exists and/or no reasonable means of identifying the subject(s) of the allegation exists.

Contact Legal Counsel.

If you feel that your complaint was not taken seriously or reviewed in accordance with the Tulsa Police Department Complaint process, you should contact legal counsel to see if you have a solid law suit against the Tulsa Police Department or the officer who carried out the misconduct.

Sources:

https://www.tulsapolice.org/

https://www.tulsapolice.org/media/165177/IA_Annual_Report_2017.pdf

https://www.usconstitution.net/xconst_Am4.html

https://www.tulsapolice.org/media/161292/public_policy_manual121217.pdf