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OPC Director Testifies on Legislation to Expand Agency’s Authority

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

OPC Director Testifies on Legislation to Expand Agency’s Authority

Bill enhances Police Complaints Board’s capacity to review citizen complaints

(Washington, DC)  – Christian J. Klossner, acting executive director of the Office of Police Complaints (OPC), testified in support of legislation that would expand the agency’s police oversight authority at a July 2, 2014, hearing before the city council’s Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety.

The legislation, entitled “The Police Monitoring Enhancement Amendment Act of 2013,” Bill #20-0063, will allow the Police Complaints Board (PCB), OPC’s governing body, to review and publicly report on the number, types, dispositions, and disciplinary outcomes of citizen complaints of police misconduct filed with the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) and the D.C. Housing Authority Office of Public Safety (OPS).

District law allows an individual to file a police misconduct complaint with MPD or OPS, which will investigate the complaint internally; with OPC, which will conduct an independent investigation; or with both OPC and the relevant law enforcement agency.  Each year, OPC issues an annual report detailing the number, types, and outcomes of citizen complaints it receives.

“This legislation will allow OPC to supplement the information the agency reports about the complaints it receives with information about the full universe of citizen complaints against MPD and OPS officers,” said Klossner.  “With fuller information, PCB will be able to create more targeted and meaningful recommendations for improving policing in the District.”

The bill incorporates many of the recommendations issued by PCB in its September 2008 report “Monitoring Citizen Complaints that are Investigated by the Metropolitan Police Department and the DC Housing Authority Police Department.”  Visit www.policecomplaints.dc.gov for more information on PCB’s September 2008 report.

Visit www.dccouncil.washington.dc.us to view OPC’s testimony on the “Police Monitoring Enhancement Act of 2013,” Bill #20-0063 (agency testimony begins at the 3:38 mark).