Mayor & Council
Ruffin Hall, City Manager
May 25, 2016
Staff Response to Police Accountability Community Task Force (PACT) Policy Recommendations
Please find attached the response to PACT's policy recommendations from City staff. The attached memo was compiled by the Raleigh Police Department (RP) in conjunction with the City Attorney's Office. It responds to the following four broad areas of concern raised by the group: Accountability: 1) Community Oversight Board 2)
Anti-Bias Policing Policy
Officer Training/Crisis Intervention Training
Written Consent to Search Forms
Deprioritization of Marijuana Enforcement
Body Worn Camera Program
Community Policing: 7)
Relationship Building/Community Relations
The report indicates that we are currently addressing most, if not all, of the four broad areas through existing protocols and standard operating procedures within RPD. However, best practices in law enforcement suggest that traditional policing, while often effective in practice, yields greater positive results when it is transparent and community oriented. In an attempt to build trust, enhance transparency, promote a high quality of life and create safer neighborhoods, staff remains committed to working with the community on the proposed policy recommendations.
To that end, we propose two approaches in response to the group's recommendations. First, staff is continuing to review several concepts listed in the PACT memorandum for additional consideration: •
Police Oversight Board and approval requirements from the NC General Assembly;
Training related to non-bias policing and crisis intervention;
Utilizing written consent forms when conducting searches;
Communicating to citizens the right to refuse a search;
Evaluating other law enforcement agencies' procedures for filing complaints;
Continuing the City's efforts to implement body worn cameras;
Conducting annual reviews of bias data on all officers to ensure equity;
Elevating the current RPD Internship Program to recruit and retain officers of color; and
Continuing to foster community relations through enhanced community policing practices.
Second, staff plans to reach out to members of PACT to review our response through a face to face discussion. A meeting to go over these concepts and the City's response will give both parties an opportunity to ask questions and gain a better understanding of the issues we all face.
As you know, growing population pressures, such as urbanization and increased density, amplify the demand for establishing safe neighborhoods in the City of Raleigh. This is a task and charge that we take very seriously. We are interested in having a collaborative conversation on how we might move forward together. Staff will provide additional updates to the Mayor and Council as needed. Please let us know if you have any questions.
CITY OF RALEIGH NORTH CAROLINA
Marche11 Adams-David, Assistant City Manager
Deputy Chief J.C. Perry Raleigh Police Dept.
May 25, 2016
Response to Police Accountability Community Task Force (PACT)
MESSAGE: This memorandum provides a response to policy recommendations made to the Raleigh City Council by PACT last month, a coalition of community-based groups. The coalition mentioned four broad, but specific areas it felt should be addressed. They are as follows: Accountability: PACT recommended the creation of a Community Oversight Board that would have the power to investigate, subpoena, and discipline officers. This issue was recently addressed by the City Attorney during a meeting of the Raleigh City Council. As indicated by the City Attorney, the formation of such a board would require legislative action. The Raleigh Police Department has long had an Internal Affairs Unit that promptly and thoroughly investigates allegations of police misconduct. Oversight of the Internal Affairs Unit is directly handled by the Major of the Professional Standards Division, Deputy Chief of Police, and the Chief of Police. This comprehensive system has worked to ensure officer accountability and police integrity for many years. Citizen complaints, uses of force, and policy violations are formally tracked, and discipline is administered to those officers who have violated departmental directives and/or NC general statutes. Disciplinary measures range from verbal warnings up to and including termination and criminal prosecution. Any investigations conducted by the Internal Affairs Unit that concern potential criminal violations are reviewed by the Wake County District Attorney's Office, and it is the DA's Office that determines if charges are appropriate. The NC State Bureau of Investigation handles all investigations related to police shootings and in-custody deaths, and the SBI's findings concerning those incidents are presented directly to the District Attorney. It is the District Attorney that ultimately determines whether or not charges are appropriate. Like many metro police departments, the Raleigh Police Department has a non-biased policing policy, RPD D.O.I. 1100-04. It specifically defines the strictly limited circumstances in which race or other identifiable group descriptors can be used as a factor to establish reasonable suspicion or probable cause. The policy also reinforces procedures that direct officers to conduct themselves in ways that serve to assure the public that we are providing service and enforcing
_ laws in a fair and equitable manner. All investigative detentions, traffic stops, arrests, searches and seizures of property by officers' Must be based on a standard of reasonable suspicion or probable cause as required by the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution and statutory authority. Officers must be able to articulate specific facts, circumstances and conclusions that support any law enforcement action taken. Officers are prohibited from considering race, national or ethnic origin, or other identifiable group descriptors in establishing either reasonable suspicion or probable cause. Officers may take into account the reported race, national or ethnic origin, or other identifiable group descriptors of specific suspect or suspects only when they have credible, reliable, locally-relevant information that links a person of a specific race to a particular criminal incident or links a specific series of crimes in an area to a group of individuals of a particular race/ethnicity as long as the description includes more than race/ethnicity or group characteristic. This directive reflects our core values of fairness and integrity. Every sworn officer is required to read this policy every year pursuant to guidelines established by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA). In addition to the information noted above, the department has conducted the following training: • Every police recruit receives approximately 50 hours of legal instruction on the laws of arrest, search and seizure from our Police Attorney during the Constitutional Law block in the police academy. The topic of non-biased policing is woven into that curriculum. • Every sworn officer must attend a mandatory legal update training session each year, which is also taught by the Police Attorney. • All officers receive a mandatory two-hour block of training on Juvenile-Minority Sensitivity each year. This training is taught by departmental staff members, who have been certified as instructors by the North Carolina Criminal Justice Education and Training Standards Commission. • When there is a complaint, the department reviews officers' stop-and-search data in order to determine if there are any areas of concern that require attention or intervention. • The department is currently evaluating additional uses and methods of review for stopand-search data. • Chief Deck-Brown teaches a four-hour block on Ethics to every police recruit, and a twohour block to all sworn officers during mandated annual in-service training. • Police recruits receive eight hours of training on the topic of Law Enforcement Communication, which pertains to communicating and interacting with all segments of society. • All RPD szervisors were recently required to attend a two-day Franklin Covey workshop on7i-verlIty--c'entered lead_ershjp—That was provided by the Carolinas Institute for Comm y pff o the U.S. Department of Justice. • In 2014, all departmental personnel were mandated to attend cultural awareness training that was taught by a member of the Sikh community in conjunction with the RPD Training Staff. • Additional diversity and cultural awareness training is being planned for the dept. Equity: PACT called for improving officer training and expanding Crisis Intervention Training. As noted above, Raleigh Police Officers receive considerable training during the police academy and throughout their respective careers. The NC Education and Training Standards Commission currently requires police recruits to receive 616 hours of training before they can be tested for Basic Law Enforcement (BLET) certification. The Raleigh Police Department Academy
provides approximately 1100 hours to every RPD recruit. The department also has a RealityBased Training Unit that regularly trains and tests officers in "real world" circumstances and scenarios in order to improve potential deficiencies and enhance performance. The Raleigh Police Department was a statewide leader in the adoption of the Crisis Intervention Training Program. and we remain actively involved. The CIT Program involves a dynamic partnership with Wake County Law Enforcement Agencies, Alliance Behavioral Health Care and NAMI of Wake County. The program consists of 36 hours of classroom study covering a wide range of mental health topics geared towards the kinds of situations officers may encounter. Deescalation training is a key component, reinforcing and broadening the training provided to recruits in the Raleigh Police Academy. As a part of their training, officers participate in onsite visits to the facilities of local mental health service providers. CIT certification also requires each officer to shadow a mental health professional at UNC Wakebrook. Classroom instructors include many of the CIT partners and mental health care providers in the curriculum. The Raleigh Police Department also provides instructors, including those who teach de-escalation techniques and suicide assessment. The latter course is taught by Dr. Jularme Erickson, the RPD's Staff Psychologist. The Raleigh Police Department's strong commitment to the CIT program is evidenced by the fact that a total of 242 officers have completed the training.iAlso, the department recently had 12 officers trained in the newly developed Veterans in Crisis Program, which includes an additional 16 hours of instruction focus on addressing the specific needs of veterans and the unique challenges inherent in serving them. Finally, the Raleigh Police Department created the region's first CIT refresher course, and officers throughout Wake County have begun to attend. The CIT refresher program has received praise and support from both NAMI and Alliance Behavioral Health Care. PACT called for ending bias in stops and searches by requiring written consent search forms. With respect to all searches, RPD officers are governed by the US Constitution, NC General Statutes, and RPD D.O.I. 1110-08, which states that: "Consent searches are a legal and useful tool for law enforcement and can expedite an encounter, benefiting all involved, but they must be conducted in a manner that is fair, reasonable, and in compliance with state and federal law. Accordingly, consent to search must be given freely and voluntarily and cannot be coerced. Officers shall not ask for consent to search an individual, vehicle, or premises based on race, religion, or ethnicity. Consent is a statement made voluntarily to an officer giving permission to search. The person granting consent must be: the person being searched; the registered owner or person in apparent control of a vehicle being searched; or a person who is in apparent control of the premises. Courts consider the totality of the circumstances to determine the validity of a consent search. A person has the right to refuse to give consent to search. The scope of the consent search must be objectively reasonable given the totality of the circumstances. A person giving consent may limit the scope or duration of the search, and consent may be withdrawn at any time during the search. If the consent is revoked, then the search must cease unless the officer has other authority justifying a search. Officers are not required to notify the consenting person of these rights prior to requesting consent, unless the person inquires, and then the officer must answer truthfully. If consent is obtained from a person to search a residence and another person with equal authority over the property is present and objects to the consent search, then the officer may not search pursuant to consent." Per departmental policy, officers should have the consenting person sign a Consent to Search Form prior to initiating a consent search whenever possible. If written consent is not available,
officers should document exactly what the consenting person said, and note any witnesses or the use of a recording device, or the dash camera of a vehicle (if applicable) to document consent. The RPD is currently in the process of reviewing and evaluating the aforementioned policy. The use of body worn cameras will also factor heavily into the discussion on consent searches in the near future. PACT called for deprioritizine marijuana enforcement. Quite frankly, it is not appropriate for a law enforcement agency or individual law enforcement personnel to make decisions about which laws will be enforced and when. Currently, marijuana is a controlled substance in North Carolina. As such, possessing or selling it constitutes a statutory violation and subjects those charged to penalties prescribed by the law. Any decision to alter the enforcement of controlled substance violations would involve a host of considerations, including the NC General Assembly's adoptions of amendments to state statutes. It should be noted that charges in the vast majority of cases involving simple possession of marijuana, a misdemeanor, are most often handled via the issuance of a citation rather that a physical arrest. Transparency: PACT called for the implementation of a body-worn camera pro eram that protects the rights and privacy of citizens and provides access to the video footage. The City of Raleigh recently authorized the RPD to move forward with a body-worn camera program. The department is currently in the process of receiving and reviewing proposals from vendors across the country. Officers will soon be testing products before a final product is selected. The department is also in the process of crafting a comprehensive policy based upon significant benchmarking and reviewing best practices. The policy will address such things, including but not limited to: privacy, retention, and redaction. Raleigh City Council will review and approve each policy prior to its implementation. It should be noted that a subcommittee of the NC General Assembly has prepared draft legislation that, if adopted in its present or an amended form, would enact statutory provisions affecting the retention and disclosure of body-worn and in-car camera images. The Department's closest current parallel to body-worn camera video is the video recorded by in-car cameras. The Department has not publicly released in-car camera video. ; However, in-car video is available to criminal defendants in relevant cases via the discovery process, and it becomes a public record if it is viewed in open court. In addition, in-car video recordings may be provided in civil proceedings under court orders signed by judges presiding in courts of competent jurisdiction.
The Raleigh Police Department continues to build on its decades-long foundation of community policing. Officers are strategically assigned to geographical areas commonly referred to as beats. Community policing begins with beat officers, who are expected to engage residents and business owners alike in an effort to solve problems, effectively communicate about matters of concern, and collaborate on a variety of contemporary issues that affect them. The RPD has six dedicated community-policing teams that are assigned to each of the patrol districts. The officers assigned to community policing work collaboratively with stakeholders throughout the community to improve the quality of life for our citizens. PACT recommended that we implement an internship program designed to recruit and retain officers of color. RPD has had such a program for many years. Currently, we have 14 interns assigned to the police department.
Universities that have participated in our internship program include Shaw University, NC Central University, and Saint Augustine's College. Upon successful completion of the program, these students are actively recruited to join the police department. To that end, RPD has a dedicated Recruiting Unit that has prioritized its focus on diversity. Recruiting officers frequently visit historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in an effort to achieve a highly diverse workforce. PACT recommended that officers normally assigned to nighttime patrol be required to engage in daytime patrol to enhance their familiarity with their assigned neighborhoods. RPD Field Operations officers currently rotate schedules. As such, they spend an equal amount of time on day and nighttime patrol.