Texas State Law Requirements
Texas State Law requires that all complaints against police officers must be in writing and signed by the person making the complaint. Just as citizens who are arrested must be notified of the charges against them, the police officer must be given a copy of the complaint before any disciplinary action may be taken. Complaints must be made by the person aggrieved. Other persons may give statements as witnesses.
The Internal Affairs Division will conduct a thorough investigation of your complaint and you will be advised of the results.
Traffic citations issued or differences of opinions between police officers over the issuance of traffic citations as to the guilt or innocence of persons arrested will not be investigated unless there is a specific allegation of misconduct against officers.
Sometimes people make false complaints against police officers. Citizens should be aware that this is a violation of the Texas Penal Code. Section 37.02 (PERJURY) provides punishment for those individuals adjudged guilty of committing an offense, if with intent to deceive and had knowledge of the statements meaning; he makes a false statement under oath or swears to the truth of a false statement previously made and the statement is required or authorized by law to be made under oath.
A person convicted under this section can be confined in jail for a term of not more than (1) year and a fine not to exceed $4,000. This information is not intended to intimidate citizens or prevent them from making valid complaints. It is the intent of the department to persuade individuals from seeking retribution by filing false complaints against police officers.
What Happens When A Complaint Is Found To Be True?
When the investigation of a complaint reveals that the charges are true and should be sustained against a police employee, the Chief of Police notifies the employee and the Chief may take one of the following actions, depending on the nature of the violation:
1. Verbal Reprimand
2. Written Reprimand
3. Time Off Without Compensation
What Happens If The Complaint Is Not True?
Police employees must be afforded certain rights the same as with all citizens, and complaints must be supported by sufficient evidence.
If there is not sufficient evidence to sustain the complaints, the officer is notified and continues on duty. If he/she was removed from duty during the investigation he/she will be paid for that time.
Can An Officer Appeal The Complaint?
Yes. Just as citizens charged with a criminal offense have the right to appeal the court's decision, police officers also have the right to appeal administrative actions taken against them. The City of Hutto has established procedures for officers to follow in their appeals process, just as the Police Department has established procedures for insuring that complaints by citizens against officers are thoroughly and honestly investigated.
What If You Are Not Satisfied With The Decision?
If you are not satisfied with the results of the investigation by the Internal Affairs Division, you may appeal to the following:
The Office of the Chief of Police
401 West Front Street
Hutto, Texas 78634
The Office of the City Manager
401 West Front Street
Hutto, Texas 78634
The Hutto Police Department is vitally concerned with the welfare of all Hutto citizens and in taking action where employees have proven derelict in their duties or are guilty of misconduct. If it becomes necessary for you to make a complaint, you can be assured that it will be given a fair and thorough investigation.
If you have occasion to see an employee doing outstanding work, tell him/her or drop us a note. The Hutto Police Department is made up of individuals who are dedicated to serving and protecting the health, welfare, and safety of you and our entire community.
Download and print a complaint form. If the information on the form is completed prior to arriving at the Hutto Police Department, DO NOT SIGN the form. It must be notarized and it cannot be notarized if the document is already signed.