A new system is in place to comment about the Lubbock Police force. It's called a Citizen Commendation/Complaint Form.
"We don't want people to be disenfranchised by our complaint process or condemnation process," Lt. Greg Stevens said.
Before this week, to formally compliment or complain about a Lubbock Police officer you had to go in person to the Lubbock Police Department. However, City Councilman Todd Klein says for some that can be intimidating.
"I discovered their point of entry was simply going down there and then having to speak to somebody and they felt like in those isolated cases - because it doesn't occur that often, but where it did - that they weren't completely comfortable having to go down there and sit in somebody else's office," Klein explained.
Over the past couple months Klein, city staff along with former Lubbock Police Chief Claude Jones and current Police Chief Dale Holton worked together to develop a Citizen Commendation/Complaint form.
"It's a better point of entry as customer, as a citizen, to contact your police when you've got either a commendation, something great you want them to hear about, or something that's a concern that you want them to know about," Klein added.
Last year, internal affairs launched 22 formal investigations within the Police Department. Some were due to management while others came from citizen complaints. At least four resulted in an officer losing their job.
So, while the form may provide a more comfortable way to make a complaint, Lt. Greg Stevens says, depending on the allegations you may still be contacted by an internal affairs officer.
"We're not going to start an investigation of a police officer we're not going to start an investigation just on assumption or word of mouth. We need to have some kind of fact to base that on," Stevens said.
The forms are available now at the Lubbock Police Department or you can access the form online by (clicking here).
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