(Washington, DC) – The District of Columbia’s Office of Police Complaints (OPC) and its governing body, the Police Complaints Board (PCB), today released the agency’s Fiscal Year 2013 Annual Report.
OPC worked on 768 complaints, closing 456 of them. The agency also closed more complaints than it received for the third straight year.
In addition, 21 complaints were adjudicated this fiscal year, reflecting a 50 percent increase from the number adjudicated in Fiscal Year 2012. At least one allegation of misconduct was sustained in 15 of those 21 complaints.
Through OPC’s mediation program, the agency continues to provide an effective and meaningful alternative resolution process for some allegations of police misconduct. In Fiscal Year 2013, OPC mediated 29 complaints. Twenty of those matters resulted in an agreement between the citizen complainant and the police officer.
As part of its work investigating police misconduct complaints, OPC conducted over 730 interviews, which included nearly 350 police officers and more than 375 citizens. The agency produced almost 300 investigative reports.
The agency also released two policy reports that were accompanied by recommendations for improvements in policing. One report proposed ways to address unconstitutional entries and searches of private homes made by MPD police officers. The second report focused on improving the safety of bicyclists through better reporting, record-keeping, and enforcement by MPD with respect to bike-motor vehicle crashes.
OPC continued its outreach efforts throughout each of the District’s eight wards. Agency representatives participated in community fairs and conducted presentations at various high schools, summer camps, neighborhood associations, and community groups.
OPC also hosted visitors from other nations, including representatives from Bahrain’s Ombudsman Office of the Ministry of Interior, the first such office in the Arab world, and the Police Ombudsman for Northern Ireland. In addition, leading academics from Australia and Germany with an interest in police accountability issues also came to OPC for meetings. During all of the sessions, agency staff provided information about OPC’s investigative process, community outreach, and mediation program, as well as an overview of the history of police oversight in the United States.
“OPC continues to rely on a variety of ways to enhance police accountability in the District,” said Philip K. Eure, OPC’s executive director. “Our annual report allows readers access to important information about the agency’s work, which, in turn, promotes transparency and increases the public’s confidence in law enforcement.”
To view a full copy of PCB’s 2013 Annual Report, visit the agency’s website at www.policecomplaints.dc.gov.