FILING AN INDIVIDUAL COMPLAINT WITH THE POLICE REVIEW COMMISSION (PRC)
The PRC investigates complaints alleging misconduct by members of the Berkeley Police Department. To file a formal complaint, you must complete and submit the PRC Complaint Form to the PRC Office. To obtain the form, contact the PRC Office at (510) 981-4950 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Or, you may download each form by clicking on the links below:
--Individual Complaint Process
--What to Expect at Community Mediation information
Mail or bring the completed Complaint Form to the PRC Office: 1947 Center Street, 1st Floor, Berkeley, CA 94704. Read and retain the informational materials for your records.
Documentos en Espanol (Estos formularios aun no estan disponibles.)
Comision de Revision Policial - Berkeley
Paquete de Denuncia (Estos formularios aun no estan disponibles.)
--Formulario de Denuncia
--Informacion sobre el Proceso de Denuncia
--Informacion del Servicio de Mediacion
Usted puede enviar el Formulario de Denuncia despues de completarlo a la oficina de PRC: 1947 Center Street, 1st Floor, Berkeley, CA 94704. Lea y retenga para sus records la informacion adicional.
Note: These forms are in pdf format. To read pdf applications, download Adobe Acrobat Reader for free at www.adobe.com/prodindex/acrobat/readstep.html
- A complaint must be filed within 90 days of the date of the incident. If your complaint is filed between 91 and 180 days after the incident date, you must submit a Late File Form with your complaint form. Six commissioners will decide whether good cause has been shown to accept the complaint. Complaints filed after 180 days of the incident will not be accepted.
- Exceptions: The 90 days may be tolled (temporarily suspended) for persons who were incapacitated or in some other way prevented from filing a complaint; these persons should discuss possible tolling of the 90-day period with PRC staff. Persons with pending criminal charges related to the incident may delay filing a PRC complaint until their criminal case is resolved; these persons should consult an attorney before filing.
- A copy of the complaint and Notice of Allegations will be sent to the Internal Affairs Bureau of the Berkeley Police Department.
- In most cases, you will have the option of choosing mediation instead of an investigation. PRC staff will discuss this option with you.
- A complaint must allege facts that, if true, would establish that misconduct occurred. Any complaint that does not allege such facts or that is frivolous or retaliatory will be closed.
You may represent yourself or obtain a representative, but one is not required. The groups on this page may be helpful and provide assistance and referrals.
As a complainant, you have certain responsibilities.
- You must be available for an interview with a PRC Investigator. It is preferable that an interview be conducted when you file your complaint. If the PRC Investigator is not available, or if your schedule does not permit, you should make an appointment for an interview when you file your complaint.
- You should provide contact information for any witnesses to the incident.
- You must inform PRC staff if you move or change your phone or message number. Your case will be recommended for closure if the PRC Investigator cannot contact you.
- You must attend the Board of Inquiry hearing.
- Within one month of filing the complaint, you should receive a copy of the formal allegations of misconduct under investigation. These are the only allegations that will be investigated and heard by the PRC. If you have questions about the allegations, please discuss your concerns with PRC staff.
- A Report of Investigation will usually be prepared within 80 days of the date of filing the complaint.
- You will be contacted before the hearing is scheduled, and will receive a written notice at least a week before the hearing date with information about hearing procedures. The Board of Inquiry is a three-member panel of commissioners who will hear testimony from you, the subject officer(s), and any witnesses. The subject officer(s) or their representative(s) will have an opportunity to cross-examine you. The commissioners will ask questions as appropriate.
- The Board of Inquiry's findings will be mailed to the parties soon after the hearing. You have the right to appeal to the full Commission for a new hearing within 15 days of the mailing of the decision, if "...there is newly discovered evidence...or, if it is shown that there was substantial procedural error likely to have affected the outcome." (PRC Regulations, Section VIII.F.)
- The findings are then sent to the City Manager and the Chief of Police, and may be considered in any disciplinary action.
- If you have any questions about this process, please call (510) 981-4950; or, send an e-mail to email@example.com.