Professionalism in Law Enforcement
If a Bedford Police Department employee has done a good job and you want to say thanks, you may elect to do one of the following:
- Ask to speak with the employee’s supervisor and verbally communicate your praise
- Write a letter to the Chief of Police explaining your appreciation for the employee’s actions (address: Bedford Police Department, 2121 L. Don Dodson Dr., Bedford, TX 76021)
- Submit an electronic Compliment Form
Your comments will be forwarded through the employee's chain of command and will also be read by the Office of the Chief of Police. After the review, a copy of your comments will be placed in the employee's personnel file and the original document provided to the employee.
The department recognizes the importance of protecting the community from employees who have demonstrated acts of misconduct or have shown they are unfit for law enforcement work, the need to protect employees from false allegations of misconduct, and the opportunity to periodically assess the effectiveness of our policies and procedures. These objectives can only be accomplished through a consistent, thorough, and objective investigative process.
The Professional Standards Division of the police department is responsible for administering the Complaint Process. Should you believe an employee has been involved in misconduct or are dissatisfied with our service you may register a complaint by:
- Contacting Professional Standards during regular business hours at 817-952-2440
- Contacting Dispatch after hours at 817-952-2127 to reach the on-duty supervisor
- Visiting the Bedford Police Department, located at 2121 L. Don Dodson Dr. in Bedford
- Download the online Complaint Form, complete it, and either email it to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail it to the Bedford Police Department, Attn: Professional Standards/Internal Affairs, 2121 L. Don Dodson Dr., Bedford, TX 76021
IMPORTANT: Texas law requires all complaints against police officers to be in writing and signed by the person making the complaint. Complaints must generally be made within 30-days of the incident unless special circumstances exist. The person who was wronged must file the complaint; other persons may give statements as witnesses. Notarization of the complaint form is not required in most circumstances. The Bedford Police Department will provide notary services if required.
Complaint Investigation Policy
Internal Affairs Investigators are strictly an investigative unit and review the case facts and then report these findings to the Chief of Police. Their goal is to ensure a fair and expeditious investigation is completed in accordance with local, state, and federal laws as well as according to City of Bedford and Police Department policies.
When a complaint is received, it is reviewed to determine the nature of the allegations. The most serious type of complaints is investigated by Internal Affairs, including bias-based profiling complaints. Complaints comparatively less serious in nature are forwarded to the individual officer's first line supervisor or a division lieutenant for investigation. In every case, the person making the complaint will be contacted during the investigation for additional information and will be notified by mail of the final disposition.
If there are allegations that a crime has occurred and evidence exists to support the claim, the primary investigation is assumed by the Criminal Investigation Division or another Law Enforcement agency first. Once the criminal investigation is completed, the internal investigation will resume and report its independent findings to the Chief of Police.
How is a Complaint Classified?
When an investigation is concluded, the complaint will be classified into one of the following categories:
- Unfounded–The incident did not happen or did not involve an employee of the police department
- Not Sustained–There is insufficient evidence to prove or disprove the complaint
- Sustained–The allegation of misconduct is true
- Exonerated–The incident happened but the employee acted lawfully and/or properly under the specific circumstances of this incident
What If the Complainant is Unsatisfied?
If you are unsatisfied with the final ruling of your complaint, you may discuss the decision with Police Chief Jeff Williams by calling 817-952-2440 or emailing Jeff.Williams@bedfordtx.gov.
Bias-Based Policing Complaints
Bedford Police Department Policy 401: Bias-Based Policing requires the department to provide public education on the racial profiling complaint process. For the Bedford Police Department, this process is the same as the department’s Complaint Process, except where complaints alleging bias-based policing must be received within 90 days of the act, or when the complainant can show good cause for not making the complaint within the specified time limit.