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Metro Transit Police Department Policy Manual

MTPD Officers on the LTR

Chief's Preface

The Metro Transit Police Department believes that having a well-informed public is key to our success. To that end, we have put a copy of our policy manual online so that it’s easily accessible to anyone who wants to see it.

Our policy manual was developed to guide Transit Police officers in the performance of their law enforcement mission. The policies have been established through the review and inclusion of ever-changing legal and best-practice principles in the law enforcement profession. The policies are updated as necessary to reflect changes in the law, best practices, officer responsibilities and department goals and objectives.

This policy manual, together with an officer’s training and professional discretion, provides Transit Police officers with the tools they need to carry out their responsibilities.

Law Enforcement Code of Ethics

As a law enforcement officer, my fundamental duty is to serve the community; to safeguard lives and property; to protect the innocent against deception, the weak against oppression or intimidation and the peaceful against abuse or disorder; and to respect the constitutional rights of all to liberty, equality and justice.

I will keep my private life unsullied as an example to all and will behave in a manner that does not bring discredit to me or to my agency. I will maintain courageous calm in the face of danger, scorn or ridicule; develop self-restraint; and be constantly mindful of the welfare of others. Honest in thought and deed both in my personal and official life, I will be exemplary in obeying the law and the regulations of my department. Whatever I see or hear of a confidential nature or that is confided to me in my official capacity will be kept ever secret unless revelation is necessary in the performance of my duty.

I will never act officiously or permit personal feelings, prejudices, political beliefs, aspirations, animosities or friendships to influence my decisions. With no compromise for crime and with relentless prosecution of criminals, I will enforce the law courteously and appropriately without fear or favor, malice or ill will, never employing unnecessary force or abuse and never accepting gratuities.

I recognize the badge of my office as a symbol of public faith, and I accept it as a public trust to be held so long as I am true to the ethics of police service. I will never engage in acts of corruption or bribery, nor will I condone such acts by other police officers. I will cooperate with all legally authorized agencies and their representatives in the pursuit of justice.

I know that I alone am responsible for my own standard of professional performance and will take every reasonable opportunity to enhance and improve my level of knowledge and competence.

I will constantly strive to achieve these objectives and ideals, dedicating myself to my chosen profession... law enforcement.

Mission Statement and Core Values

Mission:

Protecting our community through innovation and problem solving.

Core Values:

  • Innovation - We achieve a continuing standard of excellence through problem solving.
  • Partnerships - We work in partnerships with transit and the community to prevent crime and disorder.
  • Ethics - We hold ourselves to the highest ethical standards and treat all we encounter with courtesy, dignity and respect.
  • Diversity - We embrace diversity within our community and promote it within our organization.
  • Education - We support continuous learning and the development of our staff, department and the community.

100 - Law Enforcement Authority

100.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to affirm the authority of the members of the Metro Transit Police Department to perform their functions based on established legal authority.

100.2 PEACE OFFICER POWERS

Licensed officers of this department are peace officers pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 626.81(c).

100.2.1 ARREST AUTHORITY WITHIN THE JURISDICTION OF THE METRO TRANSIT POLICE DEPARTMENT

Arrest authority of a full-time officer or part-time officer extends to any place within the jurisdiction of the department at all times (Minn. Stat. § 629.34, Subd. 1 and Minn. Stat. § 629.40):

  1. The person is being arrested for a felony.
  2. The person is being arrested for a non-felony crime that was attempted or committed in the officer’s presence.
  3. The person is being arrested for a non-felony crime that was not attempted or committed in the officer’s presence but an arrest is permitted by statute (e.g., domestic abuse, restraining order and no contact order violations).
  4. The person is a juvenile committed to the custody of the commissioner of corrections and committed a felony after he/she escaped from custody (Minn. Stat. § 609.485).
  5. There is reasonable cause to believe that the person to be arrested has committed or attempted to commit theft from a merchant (Minn. Stat. § 629.366).

The arrest authority pursuant to a warrant is applicable only while on-duty. The arrest authority of a part-time peace officer is applicable only while on-duty (Minn. Stat. § 629.34, Subd. 1(b)).

100.2.2 ARREST AUTHORITY OUTSIDE THE JURISDICTION OF THE METRO TRANSIT POLICE DEPARTMENT

Full-time, on-duty officers may make an arrest outside the jurisdiction of the Metro Transit Police Department anytime the officer may by law make an arrest for a criminal offense and the person to be arrested escapes from custody or flees out of the officer’s jurisdiction (Minn. Stat. § 629.40):

  1. A full-time officer’s arrest authority when off-duty and outside the jurisdiction of the department is limited to circumstances that would permit the officer to use deadly force under Minn. Stat. § 609.066 (see the Use of Force Policy). Under any other circumstances, the full-time off-duty officer is limited to the same power as are members of the general public.
  2. An officer making an arrest under this subsection should, as soon as practicable after making the arrest, notify the agency having jurisdiction where the arrest was made.

100.2.3 GRANTING AUTHORITY TO OTHERS

An officer may summon the aid of private persons when making an arrest pursuant to a warrant (Minn. Stat. § 629.30).

100.3 INTERSTATE PEACE OFFICER POWERS

Peace officer powers may be extended within other states:

  1. As applicable under interstate compacts and memorandums of understanding in compliance with the laws of each state.
  2. When an officer enters Iowa or Wisconsin in fresh pursuit of a felony subject (Iowa Code § 806.1; Wis. Stat. § 976.04).
  3. When an officer enters North Dakota or South Dakota in pursuit of a subject who committed any offense (N.D.C.C. § 29-06-05; SDCL 23A-3-9; SDCL 23A-3-10).

Whenever an officer makes an arrest in another state, the officer shall take the offender to a magistrate or judge in the county where the arrest occurred as soon as practicable (Iowa Code § 806.2; N.D.C.C. § 29-06-06; SDCL 23A-3-12; Wis. Stat. § 976.04).

100.4 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to limit its members to only exercise the authority granted to them by law.

While this department recognizes the power of peace officers to make arrests and take other enforcement action, officers are encouraged to use sound discretion in the enforcement of the law. This department does not tolerate abuse of law enforcement authority.

100.5 CONSTITUTIONAL REQUIREMENTS

All employees shall observe and comply with every person’s clearly established rights under the United States and Minnesota Constitutions.

102 - Chief Executive Officer

102.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Minnesota Legislature acting through the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST Board) has mandated that all peace officers employed within the State of Minnesota shall hold a POST Board license (Minn. Stat. § 626.846).

102.1.1 CHIEF LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER REQUIREMENTS

Any chief law enforcement officer of this department, as defined in Minn. R. 6700.0100, shall as a condition of employment hold a license as a peace officer with the POST Board (Minn. R. 6700.0800; Minn. R. 6700.0501). The peace officer license shall be renewed every three years as required by Minn. R. 6700.1000.

104 - Oath of Office

104.1 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that, when appropriate, department members affirm the oath of their office as an expression of commitment to the constitutional rights of those served by the Department and the dedication of its members to their duties (Minn. Stat. § 358.05).

104.2 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Officers of this department are sworn to uphold the federal and state constitutions and to enforce federal, state and local laws.

104.3 OATH OF OFFICE

Upon employment, all employees shall be required to affirm, sign and date the oath of office expressing commitment and intent to respect constitutional rights in discharging the duties of the position, regardless of whether law mandates such an oath. The oath shall be as follows:

I, (employee name), do solemnly swear or affirm that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of the State of Minnesota, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of (applicable position or office) within and for the Metro Transit Police Department and State of Minnesota.

104.4 MAINTENANCE OF RECORDS

Oaths mandated by law shall be filed as required by law (Minn. Stat. § 387.01; Minn. Stat. § 387.14). Other oaths shall be maintained consistent with other personnel employment records.

106 - Policy Manual

106.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The manual of the Metro Transit Police Department is hereby established and shall be referred to as the Policy Manual or the manual. The manual is a statement of the current policies, rules and guidelines of this department. All members are to conform to the provisions of this manual.

All prior and existing manuals, orders and regulations that are in conflict with this manual are rescinded, except to the extent that portions of existing manuals, procedures, orders and other regulations that have not been included herein shall remain in effect, provided that they do not conflict with the provisions of this manual.

106.2 POLICY

Except where otherwise expressly stated, the provisions of this manual shall be considered as guidelines. It is recognized that the work of law enforcement is not always predictable and circumstances may arise which warrant departure from these guidelines. It is the intent of this manual to be viewed from an objective standard, taking into consideration the sound discretion entrusted to members of this department under the circumstances reasonably available at the time of any incident.

106.2.1 DISCLAIMER

The provisions contained in the Policy Manual are not intended to create an employment contract nor any employment rights or entitlements. The policies contained within this manual are for the internal use of the Metro Transit Police Department and shall not be construed to create a higher standard or duty of care for civil or criminal liability against the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit, its officials or members. Violations of any provision of any policy contained within this manual shall only form the basis for department administrative action, training or discipline. The Metro Transit Police Department reserves the right to revise any policy content, in whole or in part.

106.3 AUTHORITY

The Chief of Police shall be considered the ultimate authority for the content and adoption of the provisions of this manual and shall ensure compliance with all applicable federal, state and local laws. The Chief of Police or the authorized designee is authorized to issue Interim Directives, which shall modify those provisions of the manual to which they pertain. Interim Directives shall remain in effect until such time as they may be permanently incorporated into the manual.

106.4 DEFINITIONS

The following words and terms shall have these assigned meanings throughout the Policy Manual, unless it is apparent from the content that they have a different meaning:

Adult - Any person 18 years of age or older.

CFR - Code of Federal Regulations.

Child - Any person under the age of 18 years.

Metropolitan Area - The Metropolitan Area of Metro Transit.

Non-licensed - Employees and volunteers who are not licensed peace officers.

Department/MTPD - The Metro Transit Police Department.

DPS - The Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

DVS - The Minnesota Department of Driver and Vehicle Services.

Employee/personnel - Any person employed by the Department.

Manual - The Metro Transit Police Department Policy Manual.

May - Indicates a permissive, discretionary or conditional action.

Member - Any person employed or appointed by the Metro Transit Police Department including:

  • Full- and part-time employees
  • Licensed peace officers
  • Reserve, auxiliary officers
  • Non-licensed employees
  • Volunteers.

Officer - Those employees, regardless of rank, who are licensed peace officer employees of the Metro Transit Police Department.

On-duty - A member’s status during the period when he/she is actually engaged in the performance of his/her assigned duties.

Order - A written or verbal instruction issued by a superior.

Peace officer - An employee of the Department who is required to be certified by POST pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 626.84, Subd. 1 or otherwise holds a peace officer license. The term includes licensed full-time and part-time officers who perform the duties of a peace officer.

POST - The Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training.

Rank - The title of the classification held by an officer.

Shall or will - Indicates a mandatory action.

Should - Indicates a generally required or expected action, absent a rational basis for failing to conform.

Supervisor - A person in a position of authority that may include responsibility for hiring, transfer, suspension, promotion, discharge, assignment, reward or discipline of other department members, directing the work of other members or having the authority to adjust grievances. The supervisory exercise of authority may not be merely routine or clerical in nature but requires the use of independent judgment.

The term "supervisor" may also include any person (e.g., officer-in-charge, lead or senior worker) given responsibility for the direction of the work of others without regard to a formal job title, rank or compensation.

When there is only one department member on-duty, that person may also be the supervisor, except when circumstances reasonably require the notification or involvement of the member’s off-duty supervisor or an on-call supervisor.

USC - United States Code.

106.5 ISSUING THE POLICY MANUAL

An electronic version of the Policy Manual will be made available to all members on the department network for viewing and printing. No changes shall be made to the manual without authorization from the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.

Each member shall acknowledge that he/she has been provided access to, and has had the opportunity to review the Policy Manual and Interim Directives. Members shall seek clarification as needed from an appropriate supervisor for any provisions that they do not fully understand.

106.6 PERIODIC REVIEW OF THE POLICY MANUAL

The Chief of Police will ensure that the Policy Manual is periodically reviewed and updated as necessary.

106.7 REVISIONS TO POLICIES

All revisions to the Policy Manual will be provided to each member on or before the date the policy becomes effective. Each member will be required to acknowledge that he/she has reviewed the revisions and shall seek clarification from an appropriate supervisor as needed.

Members are responsible for keeping abreast of all Policy Manual revisions.

Each Captain will ensure that members under his/her command are aware of any Policy Manual revision.

All department members suggesting revision of the contents of the Policy Manual shall forward their written suggestions to their Captains, who will consider the recommendations and forward them to the command staff as appropriate.

200 - Organizational Structure and Responsibility

200.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The organizational structure of the Department is designed to create an efficient means to accomplish the mission and goals and to provide for the best possible service to the public.

200.2 DIVISIONS

The Chief of Police is responsible for administering and managing the Metro Transit Police Department. There are two divisions in the Police Department as follows:

  • Administration Division
  • Patrol Division

200.2.1 ADMINISTRATION DIVISION

The Administration Division is commanded by a Captain or Lieutenant whose primary responsibility is to provide general management, direction and control for the Administration Division, including management of the Department budget. The Administration Division consists of Support Services and Administrative Services.

200.2.2 PATROL DIVISION

The Patrol Division is commanded by a Captain, whose primary responsibility is to provide general management, direction and control for the Patrol Division. The Patrol Division consists of Uniformed Patrol.

200.3 COMMAND PROTOCOL

200.3.1 SUCCESSION OF COMMAND

The Chief of Police exercises command over all personnel in the Department. During planned absences the Deputy Chief shall act with the authority of the Chief of Police. For circumstances in which the Chief of Police and Deputy Chief are absent, the Chief of Police will designate a person to serve as the acting commander of the Police Department.

Except when designated as above, the order of command authority in the absence or unavailability of the Chief of Police is as follows:

  1. Deputy Chief
  2. Patrol Division Captain
  3. Administration Division Captain (or Lieutenant)
  4. Shift Supervisor
  5. Other designee

Metro Transit Police Department

Policy Manual

Organizational Structure and Responsibility

200.3.2 UNITY OF COMMAND

The principles of unity of command ensure efficient supervision and control within the Department. Generally, each employee shall be accountable to one supervisor at any time for a given assignment or responsibility. Except where specifically delegated authority may exist by policy or special assignment, any supervisor may temporarily direct any subordinate if an operational necessity exists.

200.3.3 ORDERS

Members shall respond to and make a good faith and reasonable effort to comply with the lawful order of superior officers and other proper authority.

200.3.4 UNLAWFUL AND CONFLICTING ORDERS

No member is required to obey any order that outwardly appears to be in direct conflict with any federal law, state law or local ordinance. If the legality of an order is in doubt, the affected member shall ask the issuing supervisor to clarify the order or confer with a higher authority. Responsibility for refusal to obey rests with the member, who shall subsequently be required to justify the refusal.

Unless it would jeopardize the safety of any individual, members who are presented with an order that is in conflict with a previous order, department policy or other directive, shall respectfully inform the issuing supervisor of the conflict. The issuing supervisor is responsible for either resolving the conflict or clarifying that the order is intended to countermand the previous order or directive, in which case the member is obliged to comply. Members who are compelled to follow a conflicting order after having given the issuing supervisor the opportunity to correct the conflict are not held accountable for disobedience of the order or directive that was initially issued.

The person countermanding the original order shall notify, in writing, the person issuing the original order, indicating the action taken and the reason therefore.

204 - Interim Directive and Special Orders

204.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Interim Directives and Special Orders establish an interdepartmental communication that may be used by the Chief of Police to make immediate changes to policy and procedure consistent with the current Memorandum of Understanding or other collective bargaining agreement. Interim Directives will immediately modify or change and supersede sections of this manual to which they pertain.

204.1.1 INTERIM DIRECTIVES PROTOCOL

Interim Directives will be incorporated into the manual as required upon approval of staff. Interim Directives will modify existing policies or create a new policy as appropriate and will be rescinded upon incorporation into the manual.

All existing Interim Directives have now been incorporated in the updated Policy Manual as of the below revision date.

Any Interim Directives issued after publication of the manual shall be numbered consecutively starting with the last two digits of the year, followed by the number “01.” For example, 10-01 signifies the first Interim Directive for the year 2010.

204.1.2 SPECIAL ORDERS PROTOCOL

Special Orders establish a temporary policy or procedure on a given subject for a specific length of time. Special Orders are issued to the organization as a whole, to a division, to a unit or to an individual thereof and are temporary in nature. Special Orders become inoperative with the passing of the incident or situation that caused the order's issuance.

204.2 RESPONSIBILITIES

204.2.1 STAFF

The staff shall review and approve revisions of the Policy Manual, which will incorporate changes originally made by Interim Directive.

204.2.2 CHIEF OF POLICE

The Chief of Police or designee shall issue all Interim Directives and Special Orders.

204.3 ACCEPTANCE OF INTERIM DIRECTIVES AND SPECIAL ORDERS

All employees are required to read and obtain any necessary clarification of all Interim Directives or special orders. All employees are required to acknowledge in writing the receipt and review of any new Interim Directive or special order.

Signed acknowledgment forms and/or e-mail receipts showing an employee's acknowledgment will be maintained by the Training Coordinator.

206 - Emergency Operations Plan

206.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Metropolitan Transit Police Department and Metropolitan Council have prepared, in compliance with the Minnesota Emergency Management Act of 1996 (Minn. Stat. § 12.09), an Emergency Operations Plan Manual. This manual is for the guidance and use by all employees in the event of a major disaster, civil disturbance, mass arrest or other emergency event. The manual provides for a strategic response to all hazards by all employees and assigns specific responsibilities in the event the plan is activated.

206.2 ACTIVATING THE EMERGENCY OPERATIONS PLAN

The Emergency Operations Plan can be activated in a number of ways. For the Police Department, the Chief of Police, the highest ranking official on-duty or an on-scene responder may activate the Emergency Operations Plan in response to a major emergency.

206.2.1 RECALL OF PERSONNEL

In the event that the Emergency Operations Plan is activated, all employees of the Metro Transit Police Department are subject to immediate recall. Employees may also be subject to recall during extraordinary circumstances as deemed necessary by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.

Failure to promptly respond to an order to report for duty may result in discipline.

206.3 LOCATION OF MANUALS

The manual for employees is available in Administration and the Shift Supervisor's office as well as on the intranet at the following link:

http://metnet/mt/Safety/Emergency%20Plans/Forms/AllItems.aspx

206.4 PLAN REVIEW

The Administration Division Supervisor, or Emergency Manager if on staff, shall annually review the Emergency Operation Plan and recommend updates when applicable. The annual review, update, and approval of the plan and supporting documents must be in accord with the guidance provided by the Department of Public Safety, Division of Emergency Management and should incorporate a full or partial exercise, tabletop or command staff discussion (Min. Stat. § 299J.10).

206.5 PLAN TRAINING

The Department shall provide training in the Emergency Operations Plan for all supervisors and other appropriate personnel. All supervisors should familiarize themselves with the Emergency Operations Plan and the roles police personnel will play when the plan is implemented.

208 - Training

208.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

It is the policy of this department to administer a training program that will meet the standards of POST continuing education and provide for the professional growth and continued development of its personnel. By doing so, the Department seeks to ensure its personnel possess the knowledge and skills necessary to provide a professional level of service that meets the needs of the public.

208.2 PHILOSOPHY

The Department seeks to provide ongoing training and encourages all personnel to participate in advanced training and formal education on a continual basis. Training is provided within the confines of funding, requirements of a given assignment, staffing levels and legal mandates. Whenever reasonably possible, the Department will use courses certified by the Minnesota Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) or other regulatory or nationally recognized entities.

208.3 OBJECTIVES

The objectives of the Training Program are to:

  1. Enhance the level of law enforcement service to the public.
  2. Increase the technical expertise and overall effectiveness of Department personnel.
  3. Provide for continued professional development of Department personnel.
  4. Assist in compliance with POST rules and regulations concerning law enforcement training.

208.4 TRAINING PLAN

It is the responsibility of the Training Coordinator to develop, review, update and maintain a training plan and to ensure that mandated basic, in-service and Department-required training is completed by all employees. The plan shall include a systematic and detailed method for recording and logging all training for all personnel. While updates and revisions may be made to any portion of the training plan at any time it is deemed necessary, the Training Coordinator shall review the entire training plan on an annual basis. The plan will include information on curriculum, training material, training facilities, course and student scheduling. The plan will address State required minimum mandated training for licensing of peace officers or hiring of non-licensed employees. The plan will also include training for volunteers that is determined to be relevant and helpful to their actions as volunteers for the Department.

Training listed may be provided in basic training programs. The Training Coordinator is responsible for ensuring members of the Department have been trained as required.

208.4.1 STATE MANDATED TRAINING

State training requirements include, but are not limited to, 48 hours of POST-approved law enforcement related courses every three years.

208.4.2 TRAINING PROCEDURES

  1. All employees assigned to attend training shall attend as scheduled unless excused by the Training Coordinator. Excused absences from mandatory training should be limited to the following:
    1. Court appearances
    2. First choice vacation
    3. Sick leave
    4. Physical limitations preventing the employee's participation.
    5. Emergency situations
  2. When an employee is unable to attend mandatory training, that employee shall:
    1. Notify the Training Coordinator as soon as possible but no later than one hour prior to the start of training.
    2. Make arrangements through his/her supervisor and the Training Coordinator to attend the required training on an alternate date.

208.5 TRAINING NEEDS ASSESSMENT

The Professional Standards Unit will conduct an annual training-needs assessment and complete a report of the training-needs assessment, including recommendations from the Training Committee. The training-needs assessment report will be provided to the Chief of Police. Upon review and approval by the Chief of Police, the needs assessment will form the basis for the training plan for the ensuing fiscal year.

208.6 TRAINING COMMITTEE

The Training Coordinator shall establish a Training Committee, which will serve to assist with identifying training needs for the Department.

The Training Committee shall be comprised of at least three members, with one member of the committee acting as the chairperson. That person will be selected by the Training Committee members. Members should be elected based on their abilities at post-incident evaluation and at assessing related training needs. The Training Coordinator may remove or replace members of the committee at his/her discretion.

The Training Committee should review certain incidents to determine whether training would likely improve future outcomes or reduce or prevent the recurrence of the undesirable issues related to the incident. Specific incidents the Training Committee should review include, but are not limited to:

  1. Any incident involving the death or serious injury of an employee.
  2. Incidents involving a high risk of death, serious injury or civil liability.
  3. Incidents identified by a supervisor as appropriate to review to identify possible training needs.

The Training Committee should convene on a regular basis as determined by the Training Coordinator to review the identified incidents. The committee shall determine by consensus whether a training need exists and then submit written recommendations of its findings to the Training Coordinator. The recommendation should not identify specific facts of any incidents, such as identities of employees involved or the date, time and location of the incident, but should focus on the type of training being recommended.

The Training Coordinator will consider the recommendations of the committee and determine what training should be addressed, taking into consideration the mission of the Department and available resources.

208.7 TRAINING RECORDS

The Training Coordinator is responsible for the creation, filing and storage of all training records in compliance with POST standards. Training records shall be retained as long as the employee's personnel file is retained.

208.8 REPORTING TRAINING TO POST

The POST Board distributes license renewals directly to licensed peace officers and requires the licensee to report completed continuing education courses from the previous license period. Officers are responsible for responding to these requests in a timely manner and otherwise maintaining their licensed status.

208.9 DAILY TRAINING BULLETINS

The Lexipol Daily Training Bulletins (DTBs) are contained in a web-accessed system that provides training on the Metro Transit Police Department policy manual and other important topics. Generally, one training bulletin is available for each day of the month. However, the number of DTBs may be adjusted by the Training Coordinator.

Personnel assigned to participate in DTBs shall only use login credentials assigned to them by the Training Coordinator or designee. Personnel should not share their password with others and should frequently change their password to protect the security of the system. After each session, employees should logoff the system to prevent unauthorized access. The content of the DTBs is copyrighted material and shall not be shared with others outside of the Department.

Employees who are assigned to participate in the DTB program should complete each DTB at the beginning of their shift, or as otherwise directed by their supervisor. Employees should not allow uncompleted DTBs to build up over time. Personnel may be required to complete DTBs missed during extended absences (e.g., vacation, medical leave) upon returning to duty. Although the DTB system can be accessed from any Internet active computer, employees shall only take DTBs as part of their on-duty assignment unless directed otherwise by a supervisor.

The Training Coordinator will be responsible for monitoring the progress of personnel to ensure compliance with this policy.

208.10 CLASSROOM DISCRIMINATION

The Training Coordinator shall ensure that procedures for the investigation and resolution of allegations of classroom discrimination are developed and implemented, and include the required elements (Minn. R. 6700.0900; Minn. R. 6700.0902).

212 - Electronic Mail

212.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the proper use and application of the electronic mail (email) system provided by the Department / Metropolitan Council. Email is a communication tool available to employees to enhance efficiency in the performance of job duties. It is to be used in accordance with generally accepted business practices, Metropolitan Council policy and current law (e.g., Minnesota Data Practices Act). Messages transmitted over the email system must only be those that involve official business activities or contain information essential to employees for the accomplishment of business-related tasks and/or communication directly related to the business, administration or practices of the Department.

212.2 EMAIL RIGHT OF PRIVACY

All email messages, including attachments, transmitted over the Department / Metropolitan Council computer network or accessed through a web browser accessing the Department / Metropolitan Council system are considered Department / Metropolitan Council records and, therefore, are the property of the Department / Metropolitan Council. The Department / Metropolitan Council has the right to access, audit and disclose for whatever reason, all messages, including attachments, transmitted or received through its email system or placed into its storage.

Unless it is encrypted, the email system is not a confidential system since all communications transmitted on, to or from the system are the property of the Department / Metropolitan Council. Therefore, the email system is not appropriate for confidential or personal communication. If a communication must be private, an alternative method to communicate the message should be used instead of email. Employees using the Department / Metropolitan Council email system shall have no expectation of privacy concerning communications utilizing the system.

212.3 PROHIBITED USE OF EMAIL

The Department / Metropolitan Council email system shall not be used for personal purposes unless that use is authorized in writing by the Chief of Police.

Sending derogatory, defamatory, obscene, disrespectful, sexually suggestive and harassing or any other inappropriate messages on the email system is prohibited, will constitute just cause for discipline, and will result in discipline, up to and including termination of employment

Email messages addressed to the entire department are only to be used for official business- related items that are of particular interest to all users and must be approved by the Chief of Police or designee. Personal advertisements or announcements are not permitted.

It is a violation of this policy to transmit a message under another user's name or email address or to use the password of another to log onto the system. Users are required to log off the network or lock the workstation when their computer is unattended. This added security measure would minimize the misuse of an individual's email, name and/or password.

212.4 EMAIL RECORD MANAGEMENT

Email may, depending upon the individual content, be a public record under the Minnesota Data Practices Act and must be managed in accordance with the established records retention schedule and in compliance with state law.

The Custodian of Records shall ensure that email messages are retained and recoverable as outlined in the Records Maintenance and Release Policy.

214 - Administrative Communications

214.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Administrative communications of this department are governed by the following policies.

214.2 PERSONNEL ORDERS

Personnel Orders may be issued periodically by the Chief of Police or designee, to announce and document all promotions, transfers, hiring of new personnel, separations, individual and group awards and commendations or other changes in status. Such orders are personnel data under Minn. Stat. §13.43 and shall be treated accordingly.

214.3 CORRESPONDENCE

In order to ensure that the letterhead and name of the Department are not misused, all official external correspondence shall be on Department letterhead. All Department letterhead shall bear the signature element of the Chief of Police. Official correspondence and use of letterhead requires approval of a supervisor. Department letterhead may not be used for personal use or purposes.

Internal correspondence should use appropriate memorandum forms. These may be from line employee to employee, supervisor to employee or any combination of employees.

214.4 SURVEYS

All surveys made in the name of the Department shall be authorized by the Chief of Police or their designee.

214.5 OTHER COMMUNICATIONS

Interim Directives, Administrative Announcements and other communications necessary to ensure the effective operation of the Department shall be promulgated by the Chief of Police or their designee.

220 - Retiree Concealed Firearms

220.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for the issuance, denial, suspension or revocation of Metro Transit Police Department identification cards under the Law Enforcement Officers’ Safety Act (LEOSA) (18 USC § 926C).

220.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to provide identification cards to qualified former or retired full time officers as provided in this policy.

220.3 LEOSA

The Chief of Police may issue an identification card for LEOSA purposes to any former officer of this department who (18 USC § 926C(c)):

  1. Separated from service in good standing from this department as an officer.
  2. Before such separation, had regular employment as an officer for an aggregate of 10 years or more or, if employed as an officer for less than 10 years, separated from service after completing any applicable probationary period of such service, due to a service-connected disability, as determined by this department.
  3. Has not been disqualified for reasons related to mental health.
  4. Has not entered into an agreement with this department where the officer acknowledges that he/she is not qualified to receive a firearm qualification certificate for reasons related to mental health.
  5. Is not prohibited by federal law from receiving or possessing a firearm.

220.3.1 LEOSA IDENTIFICATION CARD FORMAT

The LEOSA identification card should contain a photograph of the former officer and identify him/ her as having been employed as an officer.

If the Metro Transit Police Department qualifies the former officer, the LEOSA identification card or separate certification should indicate the date the former officer was tested or otherwise found by the Department to meet the active duty standards for qualification to carry a firearm.

220.3.2 AUTHORIZATION

Any qualified former law enforcement officer, including a former officer of this department, may carry a concealed firearm under 18 USC § 926C when he/she is:

  1. In possession of photographic identification that identifies him/her as having been employed as a law enforcement officer, and one of the following:
    1. An indication from the person’s former law enforcement agency that he/she has, within the past year, been tested or otherwise found by the law enforcement agency to meet agency-established active duty standards for qualification in firearms training to carry a firearm of the same type as the concealed firearm.
    2. A certification, issued by either the state in which the person resides or by a certified firearms instructor who is qualified to conduct a firearms qualification test for active duty law enforcement officers within that state, indicating that the person has, within the past year, been tested or otherwise found to meet the standards established by the state or, if not applicable, the standards of any agency in that state.
  2. Not under the influence of alcohol or another intoxicating or hallucinatory drug or substance.
  3. Not prohibited by federal law from receiving a firearm.
  4. Not in a location prohibited by Minnesota law or by a private person or entity on his/her property if such prohibition is permitted by Minnesota law.

220.4 PERSONS ELIGIBLE TO ATTEND QUALIFICATION

Retired Metro Transit Police Department officers that were employed by the Department in a full time capacity, may attend designated qualification sessions administered/sponsored by the Metro Transit Police Department Training Unit. Eligible retirees shall contact the Training Coordinator in advance to obtain qualification schedules (e.g. dates, times and locations).

220.5 FORMER OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

A former officer with a card issued under this policy shall immediately notify the Shift Supervisor of his/her arrest or conviction in any jurisdiction, or that he/she is the subject of a court order, in accordance with the Reporting of Employee Convictions and Court Orders Policy.

220.5.1 RESPONSIBILITIES UNDER LEOSA

In order to obtain or retain a LEOSA identification card, the former officer shall:

  1. Sign a waiver of liability of the Department for all acts taken related to carrying a concealed firearm, acknowledging both his/her personal responsibility as a private person for all acts taken when carrying a concealed firearm as permitted by LEOSA and also that these acts were not taken as an employee or former employee of the Department.
  2. Remain subject to all applicable department policies and federal, state and local laws.
  3. Demonstrate good judgment and character commensurate with carrying a loaded and concealed firearm.
  4. Successfully pass an annual criminal history background check indicating that he/she is not prohibited by law from receiving or possessing a firearm.

220.6 DENIAL, SUSPENSION OR REVOCATION

A LEOSA identification card may be denied or revoked upon a showing of good cause as determined by the Department. In the event that an identification card is denied, suspended or revoked, the former officer may request a review by the Chief of Police. The decision of the Chief of Police is final.

220.7 FIREARM QUALIFICATIONS

The Training Coordinator may provide former officers from this department an opportunity to qualify. Written evidence of the qualification and the weapons used will be provided and will contain the date of the qualification. The Training Coordinator will maintain a record of the qualifications and weapons used.

300 - Use of Force

300.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines on the reasonable use of force. While there is no way to specify the exact amount or type of reasonable force to be applied in any situation, every member of this department is expected to use these guidelines to make such decisions in a professional, impartial and reasonable manner.

300.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Deadly force - Force reasonably anticipated and intended to create a substantial likelihood of causing death or very serious injury.

Force - The application of physical techniques or tactics, chemical agents or weapons to another person. It is not a use of force when a person allows him/herself to be searched, escorted, handcuffed or restrained.

300.2 POLICY

The use of force by law enforcement personnel is a matter of critical concern, both to the public and to the law enforcement community. Officers are involved on a daily basis in numerous and varied interactions and, when warranted, may use reasonable force in carrying out their duties.

Officers must have an understanding of, and true appreciation for, their authority and limitations. This is especially true with respect to overcoming resistance while engaged in the performance of law enforcement duties.

The Department recognizes and respects the value of all human life and dignity without prejudice to anyone. Vesting officers with the authority to use reasonable force and to protect the public welfare requires monitoring, evaluation and a careful balancing of all interests.

300.2.1 DUTY TO INTERCEDE

Any officer present and observing another officer using force that is clearly beyond that which is objectively reasonable under the circumstances shall, when in a position to do so, intercede to prevent the use of unreasonable force. An officer who observes another employee use force that exceeds the degree of force permitted by law should promptly report these observations to a supervisor.

300.3 USE OF FORCE

Officers shall use only that amount of force that reasonably appears necessary given the facts and circumstances perceived by the officer at the time of the event to accomplish a legitimate law enforcement purpose. Officers are encouraged to use de-escalation when/if the facts and circumstances are deemed reasonable.

The reasonableness of force will be judged from the perspective of a reasonable officer on the scene at the time of the incident. Any evaluation of reasonableness must allow for the fact that

officers are often forced to make split-second decisions about the amount of force that reasonably appears necessary in a particular situation, with limited information and in circumstances that are tense, uncertain and rapidly evolving.

Given that no policy can realistically predict every possible situation an officer might encounter, officers are entrusted to use well-reasoned discretion in determining the appropriate use of force in each incident.

It is also recognized that circumstances may arise in which officers reasonably believe that it would be impractical or ineffective to use any of the tools, weapons or methods provided by the Department. Officers may find it more effective or reasonable to improvise their response to rapidly unfolding conditions that they are confronting. In such circumstances, the use of any improvised device or method must nonetheless be reasonable and utilized only to the degree that reasonably appears necessary to accomplish a legitimate law enforcement purpose.

While the ultimate objective of every law enforcement encounter is to avoid or minimize injury, nothing in this policy requires an officer to retreat or be exposed to possible physical injury before applying reasonable force.

300.3.1 USE OF FORCE TO EFFECT AN ARREST

An officer may use reasonable force (Minn. Stat. § 609.06 and Minn. Stat. § 629.33):

  1. In effecting a lawful arrest.
  2. In the execution of a legal process.
  3. In enforcing an order of the court.
  4. In executing any other duty imposed by law.
  5. In preventing the escape, or to retake following the escape, of a person lawfully held on a charge or conviction of a crime.
  6. In restraining a person with a mental illness or a person with a developmental disability from self-injury or injury to another.
  7. In self defense or defense of another.

An officer who makes or attempts to make an arrest need not retreat or desist from his/her efforts by reason of resistance or threatened resistance of the person being arrested; nor shall such officer be deemed the aggressor or lose his/her right to self-defense by the use of reasonable force to effect the arrest or to prevent escape or to overcome resistance.

300.3.2 FACTORS USED TO DETERMINE THE REASONABLENESS OF FORCE

When determining whether to apply force and evaluating whether an officer has used reasonable force, a number of factors should be taken into consideration, as time and circumstances permit. These factors include, but are not limited to:

  1. Immediacy and severity of the threat to officers or others.
  2. The conduct of the individual being confronted, as reasonably perceived by the officer at the time.
  3. Officer/subject factors (age, size, relative strength, skill level, injuries sustained, level of exhaustion or fatigue, the number of officers available vs. subjects).
  4. The effects of drugs or alcohol.
  5. Subject’s mental state or capacity.
  6. Proximity of weapons or dangerous improvised devices.
  7. The degree to which the subject has been effectively restrained and his/her ability to resist despite being restrained.
  8. The availability of other options and their possible effectiveness.
  9. Seriousness of the suspected offense or reason for contact with the individual.
  10. Training and experience of the officer.
  11. Potential for injury to officers, suspects and others.
  12. Whether the person appears to be resisting, attempting to evade arrest by flight or is attacking the officer.
  13. The risk and reasonably foreseeable consequences of escape.
  14. The apparent need for immediate control of the subject or a prompt resolution of the situation.
  15. Whether the conduct of the individual being confronted no longer reasonably appears to pose an imminent threat to the officer or others.
  16. Prior contacts with the subject or awareness of any propensity for violence.
  17. Any other exigent circumstances.

300.3.3 PAIN COMPLIANCE TECHNIQUES

Pain compliance techniques may be effective in controlling a physically or actively resisting individual. Officers may only apply those pain compliance techniques for which they have successfully completed department-approved training. Officers utilizing any pain compliance technique should consider:

  1. The degree to which the application of the technique may be controlled given the level of resistance.
  2. Whether the person can comply with the direction or orders of the officer.
  3. Whether the person has been given sufficient opportunity to comply.

The application of any pain compliance technique shall be discontinued once the officer determines that compliance has been achieved.

300.3.4 CAROTID CONTROL

The proper application of the carotid control hold may be effective in restraining a violent or combative individual. However, due to the potential for injury, the use of the carotid control hold is subject to the following:

  1. The officer shall have successfully completed department-approved training in the use and application of the carotid control hold.
  2. The carotid control hold may only be used when circumstances perceived by the officer at the time indicate that such application reasonably appears necessary to control a person in any of the following circumstances:

     

    1. The subject is violent or physically resisting.
    2. The subject, by words or actions, has demonstrated an intention to be violent and reasonably appears to have the potential to harm officers, him/herself or others.
  3. The application of a carotid control hold on the following individuals should generally be avoided unless the totality of the circumstances indicates that other available options reasonably appear ineffective, or would present a greater danger to the officer, the subject or others, and the officer reasonably believes that the need to control the individual outweighs the risk of applying a carotid control hold:

     

    1. Females who are known to be pregnant
    2. Elderly individuals
    3. Obvious juveniles
  4. Any individual who has had the carotid control hold applied, and he/she was rendered unconscious, shall be promptly examined by paramedics or other qualified medical personnel and should be monitored until examined by paramedics or other appropriate medical personnel.
  5. The officer shall inform any person receiving custody, or any person placed in a position of providing care, that the individual has been subjected to the carotid control hold and whether the subject lost consciousness as a result.
  6. Any officer attempting or applying the carotid control hold shall promptly notify a supervisor of the use or attempted use of such hold.
  7. The use or attempted use of the carotid control hold shall be thoroughly documented by the officer in any related reports.

A carotid control hold (or vascular neck restraint) is different from a "choke" hold. Vascular compression affects veins and arteries whereas a "choke" compresses the airway, windpipe or throat etc. A "choke" hold is considered deadly force.

300.4 DEADLY FORCE

Use of deadly force is justified in the following circumstances:

  1. An officer may use deadly force to protect him/herself or others from what he/she reasonably believes would be an imminent threat of death or serious bodily injury.
  2. An officer may use deadly force to stop a fleeing subject when the officer has probable cause to believe that the person has committed, or intends to commit, a felony involving the infliction or threatened infliction of serious bodily injury or death, and the officer reasonably believes that there is an imminent risk of serious bodily injury or death to any other person if the subject is not immediately apprehended. Under such circumstances, a verbal warning should precede the use of deadly force, where feasible.

    Imminent does not mean immediate or instantaneous. An imminent danger may exist even if the suspect is not at that very moment pointing a weapon at someone. For example, an imminent danger may exist if an officer reasonably believes any of the following:
    1. The person has a weapon or is attempting to access one and it is reasonable to believe the person intends to use it against the officer or another.
    2. The person is capable of causing serious bodily injury or death without a weapon and it is reasonable to believe the person intends to do so.

300.4.1 SHOOTING AT OR FROM MOVING VEHICLES

Shots fired at or from a moving vehicle are rarely effective. Officers should move out of the path of an approaching vehicle instead of discharging their firearm at the vehicle or any of its occupants. An officer should only discharge a firearm at a moving vehicle or its occupants when the officer reasonably believes there are no other reasonable means available to avert the threat of the vehicle, or if deadly force other than the vehicle is directed at the officer or others.

Officers should not shoot at any part of a vehicle in an attempt to disable the vehicle.

300.5 REPORTING THE USE OF FORCE

Any use of force by a member of this department shall be documented promptly, completely and accurately in an appropriate report, depending on the nature of the incident. The officer should articulate the factors perceived and why he/she believed the use of force was reasonable under the circumstances. To collect data for purposes of training, resource allocation, analysis and related purposes, the Department may require the completion of additional report forms, as specified in department policy, procedure or law.

300.5.1 NOTIFICATION TO SUPERVISORS

Supervisory notification shall be made as soon as practicable following the application of force in any of the following circumstances:

  1. The application caused a visible injury.
  2. The application would lead a reasonable officer to conclude that the individual may have experienced more than momentary discomfort.
  3. The individual subjected to the force complained of injury or continuing pain.
  4. The individual indicates intent to pursue litigation.
  5. Any application of an Conducted Energy Device (CED) or control device.
  6. Any application of a restraint device other than handcuffs, shackles or belly chains.
  7. The individual subjected to the force was rendered unconscious.
  8. An individual was struck or kicked.
  9. An individual alleges any of the above has occurred.

300.6 MEDICAL CONSIDERATION

Prior to booking or release, medical assistance shall be obtained for any person who exhibits signs of physical distress, who has sustained visible injury, expresses a complaint of injury or continuing pain, or who was rendered unconscious. Any individual exhibiting signs of physical distress after an encounter should be continuously monitored until he/she can be medically assessed.

Based upon the officer’s initial assessment of the nature and extent of the subject’s injuries, medical assistance may consist of examination by fire personnel, paramedics, hospital staff or medical staff at the jail. If any such individual refuses medical attention, such a refusal shall be fully documented in related reports and, whenever practicable, should be witnessed by another officer and/or medical personnel. If a recording is made of the contact or an interview with the individual, any refusal should be included in the recording, if possible.

The on-scene supervisor, or if not available, the primary handling officer shall ensure that any person providing medical care or receiving custody of a person following any use of force is informed that the person was subjected to force. This notification shall include a description of the force used and any other circumstances the officer reasonably believes would be potential safety or medical risks to the subject (e.g., prolonged struggle, extreme agitation, impaired respiration).

Persons who exhibit extreme agitation, violent irrational behavior accompanied by profuse sweating, extraordinary strength beyond their physical characteristics and imperviousness to pain (sometimes called “excited delirium”), or who require a protracted physical encounter with multiple officers to be brought under control, may be at an increased risk of sudden death. Calls involving these persons should be considered medical emergencies. Officers who reasonably suspect a medical emergency should request medical assistance as soon as practicable and have medical personnel stage away if appropriate.

300.7 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITY

When a supervisor is able to respond to an incident in which there has been a reported application of force, the supervisor is expected to:

  1. Obtain the basic facts from the involved officers. Absent an allegation of misconduct or excessive force, this will be considered a routine contact in the normal course of duties.
  2. Ensure that any injured parties are examined and treated.
  3. When possible, separately obtain a recorded interview with the subject upon whom force was applied. The fact that a recorded interview was conducted should be documented in a report and the recording should be retained until all potential for civil litigation has expired.
  4. Once any initial medical assessment has been completed or first aid has been rendered, ensure that photographs have been taken of any areas involving visible injury or complaint of pain, as well as overall photographs of uninjured areas. These photographs should be retained until all potential for civil litigation has expired.
  5. Identify any witnesses not already included in related reports.
  6. Review and approve all related reports.
  7. Determine if there is any indication that the subject may pursue civil litigation.

     

    1. If there is an indication of potential civil litigation, the supervisor should complete and route a notification of a potential claim through the appropriate channels.
  8. Evaluate the circumstances surrounding the incident and initiate an administrative investigation if there is a question of policy non-compliance or if for any reason further investigation may be appropriate.

In the event that a supervisor is unable to respond to the scene of an incident involving the reported application of force, the supervisor is still expected to complete as many of the above items as circumstances permit.

300.7.1 SHIFT SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITY

The Shift Supervisor shall review each use of force by any personnel within his/her command to ensure compliance with this policy and to address any training issues.

300.8 TRAINING

Officers will receive training on this policy, including the learning objectives as provided by POST, at least annually (Minn. Stat. § 626.8452, Subd. 3).

302 - Use of Force Review Boards

302.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes a process for the Metro Transit Police Department to administratively review the use of force by its employees.

The purpose of the Use of Force Review Board is to review such incidents and determine whether policy, training, weapon or equipment issues should be addressed. The Board shall only forward a report to the Chief of Police recommending policy changes, training needs, weapons or equipment upgrades.

302.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will objectively evaluate the use of force by its members to ensure that their authority is used lawfully, appropriately and is consistent with training and policy.

302.3 REMOVAL FROM LINE DUTY ASSIGNMENTS

Generally, whenever an employee's actions or use of force in an official capacity, or while using department equipment, results in death or very serious injury to another, that employee will be placed in a temporary administrative assignment pending an administrative review. The Chief of Police may exercise discretion and choose not to place an employee in an administrative assignment in any case.

302.4 REVIEW BOARD

The Use of Force Review Board will meet on a quarterly basis or be convened as necessary to review the following:

  • Any incident where an officer discharges any firearm, on- or off-duty, including accidental discharges. This does not include firearms training, euthanizing injured animals or during legally recognized recreational activity.
  • Any incident where an officer has had force used against them which has caused death, great bodily harm or serious injury.
  • Any incident where the officer has used force which resulted in death, great bodily harm or serious injury.
  • Any incident where an officer has been disarmed.
  • Any other incident with an unusual occurrence and/or critical incident.

The Chief of Police may request the Use of Force Review Board to investigate the circumstances surrounding any use of force incident.

302.4.1 COMPOSITION OF THE BOARD

The Training Coordinator should select five Use of Force Review Board members from the following, as appropriate:

  • Representatives from each training discipline (e.g. Use of Force, Taser, Firearms etc)
  • Non-administrative supervisor
  • A peer officer

The Training Coordinator will serve as chairperson on the Use of Force Review Board.

302.4.2 RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE BOARD

The Use of Force Review Board is empowered to conduct an administrative review and inquiry into the circumstances of an incident. This review will be separate and distinct from any investigation (criminal or internal) of the incident.

The board does not have the authority to recommend discipline.

The Chief of Police will determine whether the board should delay its review until after completion of any criminal investigation, review by any prosecutorial body, filing of criminal charges, the decision not to file criminal charges or any other action. The board should be provided all relevant available material from these proceedings for its consideration.

The review shall be based upon those facts which were reasonably believed or known by the officer at the time of the incident, applying any legal requirements, department policies, procedures and approved training to those facts. Facts later discovered but unknown to the officer at the time shall neither justify nor call into question an officer's decision regarding the use of force.

At the conclusion of any review, copies of all relevant reports and information will be gathered by the Training Coordinator, compiled into a written report and filed with the Chief of Police. The report shall be for the exclusive and sole use of the Chief of Police. The Chief of Police will determine how the report and recommendations are to be used.

306 - Handcuffing and Restraints

306.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for the use of handcuffs and other restraints during detentions and arrests.

306.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department authorizes the use of restraint devices in accordance with this policy, the Use of Force Policy and department training. Restraint devices shall not be used to punish, to display authority or as a show of force.

306.3 USE OF RESTRAINTS

Only members who have successfully completed Metro Transit Police Department-approved training on the use of restraint devices described in this policy are authorized to use these devices.

When deciding whether to use any restraint, officers should carefully balance officer safety concerns with factors that include, but are not limited to:

  • The circumstances or crime leading to the arrest.
  • The demeanor and behavior of the arrested person.
  • The age and health of the person.
  • Whether the person is known to be pregnant.
  • Whether the person has a hearing or speaking disability. In such cases, consideration should be given, safety permitting, to handcuffing to the front in order to allow the person to sign or write notes.
  • Whether the person has any other apparent disability.

306.3.1 RESTRAINT OF DETAINEES

Situations may arise where it may be reasonable to restrain an individual who may, after brief investigation, be released without arrest. Unless arrested, the use of restraints on detainees should continue only for as long as is reasonably necessary to assure the safety of officers and others. When deciding whether to remove restraints from a detainee, officers should continuously weigh the safety interests at hand against the continuing intrusion upon the detainee.

306.3.2 RESTRAINT OF PREGNANT PERSONS

Persons who are known to be pregnant should be restrained in the least restrictive manner that is effective for officer safety.

No person who is in labor shall be handcuffed or restrained except in extraordinary circumstances and only when a supervisor makes an individualized determination that such restraints are necessary to prevent escape or injury.

306.3.3 RESTRAINT OF JUVENILES

A juvenile under 14 years of age should not be restrained unless he/she is suspected of a dangerous felony or when the officer has a reasonable suspicion that the juvenile may resist, attempt escape, injure him/herself, injure the officer or damage property.

306.3.4 NOTIFICATIONS

Whenever an officer transports a person with the use of restraints other than handcuffs, the officer shall inform the jail staff upon arrival at the jail that restraints were used. This notification should include information regarding any other circumstances the officer reasonably believes would be potential safety concerns or medical risks to the subject (e.g., prolonged struggle, extreme agitation, impaired respiration) that may have occurred prior to, or during transportation to the jail.

306.4 HANDCUFFS OR PLASTIC CUFFS

Handcuffs, including temporary nylon or plastic cuffs, may be used only to restrain a person's hands to ensure officer safety.

Although recommended for most arrest situations, handcuffing is discretionary and not an absolute requirement of the Department. Officers should consider handcuffing any person they reasonably believe warrants that degree of restraint. However, officers should not conclude that in order to avoid risk every person should be handcuffed, regardless of the circumstances.

In most situations handcuffs should be applied with the hands behind the person's back. When feasible, handcuffs should be double-locked to prevent tightening, which may cause undue discomfort or injury to the hands or wrists.

In situations where one pair of handcuffs does not appear sufficient to restrain the individual or may cause unreasonable discomfort due to the person's size, officers should consider alternatives, such as using an additional set of handcuffs or multiple plastic cuffs.

Handcuffs should be removed as soon as it is reasonable or after the person has been searched and is safely confined within a detention facility.

306.5 SPIT HOODS

Spit hoods/masks/socks are temporary protective devices designed to prevent the wearer from biting and/or transferring or transmitting fluids (saliva and mucous) to others.

Spit hoods may be placed upon persons in custody when the officer reasonably believes the person will bite or spit, either on a person or in an inappropriate place. They are generally used during application of a physical restraint, while the person is restrained, or during or after transport.

Officers utilizing spit hoods should ensure that the spit hood is fastened properly to allow for adequate ventilation and that the restrained person can breathe normally. Officers should provide assistance during the movement of restrained individuals due to the potential for impaired or distorted vision on the part of the individual. Officers should avoid comingling individuals wearing spit hoods with other detainees.

Spit hoods should not be used in situations where the restrained person is bleeding profusely from the area around the mouth or nose, or if there are indications that the person has a medical condition, such as difficulty breathing or vomiting. In such cases, prompt medical care should be obtained. If the person vomits while wearing a spit hood, the spit hood should be promptly removed and discarded. Persons who have been sprayed with oleoresin capsicum (OC) spray should be thoroughly decontaminated including hair, head and clothing prior to application of a spit hood.

Those who have been placed in a spit hood should be continually monitored and shall not be left unattended until the spit hood is removed. Spit hoods shall be discarded after each use.

306.6 AUXILIARY RESTRAINT DEVICES

Auxiliary restraint devices include transport belts, waist or belly chains, transportation chains, leg irons and other similar devices. Auxiliary restraint devices are intended for use during long-term restraint or transportation. They provide additional security and safety without impeding breathing, while permitting adequate movement, comfort and mobility.

Only department-authorized devices may be used. Any person in auxiliary restraints should be monitored as reasonably appears necessary.

306.7 LEG RESTRAINT DEVICES

Leg restraints may be used to restrain the legs of a violent or potentially violent person when it is reasonable to do so during the course of detention, arrest or transportation. Only restraint devices approved by the department shall be used. The RIPP Hobble is authorized for use by members of this Department.

In determining whether to use the leg restraint, officers should consider:

  1. Whether the officer or others could be exposed to injury due to the assaultive or resistant behavior of a suspect.
  2. Whether it is reasonably necessary to protect the suspect from his/her own actions (e.g., hitting his/her head against the interior of the patrol unit, running away from the arresting officer while handcuffed, kicking at objects or officers).
  3. Whether it is reasonably necessary to avoid damage to property (e.g., kicking at windows of the patrol unit).

306.7.1 GUIDELINES FOR USE OF LEG RESTRAINTS

When applying leg restraints the following guidelines should be followed:

  1. If practicable, officers should notify a supervisor of the intent to apply the leg restraint device. In all cases, a supervisor shall be notified as soon as practicable after the application of the leg restraint device.
  2. Once applied, absent a medical or other emergency, restraints should remain in place until the officer arrives at the jail or other facility or the person no longer reasonably appears to pose a threat.
  3. Once secured, the person should be placed in a seated or upright position, secured with a seat belt, and shall not be placed on his/her stomach for an extended period, as this could reduce the person's ability to breathe.
  4. The restrained person should be continually monitored by an officer while in the leg restraint. The officer should ensure that the person does not roll onto and remain on his/her stomach.
  5. The officer should look for signs of labored breathing and take appropriate steps to relieve and minimize any obvious factors contributing to this condition.
  6. When transported by ambulance/paramedic unit, the restrained person should be accompanied by an officer when requested by medical personnel. The transporting officer should describe to medical personnel any unusual behaviors or other circumstances the officer reasonably believes would be potential safety or medical risks to the subject (e.g., prolonged struggle, extreme agitation, impaired respiration).

306.8 REQUIRED DOCUMENTATION

If an individual is restrained and released without an arrest, the officer shall document the details of the detention and the need for handcuffs or other restraints.

If an individual is arrested, the use of restraints other than handcuffs shall be documented in the related report. The officer should include, as appropriate:

  1. The amount of time the suspect was restrained.
  2. How the suspect was transported and the position of the suspect.
  3. Observations of the suspect's behavior and any signs of physiological problems.
  4. Any known or suspected drug use or other medical problems.

308 - Control Devices

308.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for the use and maintenance of control devices that are described in this policy.

308.2 POLICY

In order to control subjects who are violent or who demonstrate the intent to be violent, the Metro Transit Police Department authorizes officers to use control devices in accordance with the guidelines in this policy and the Use of Force Policy.

308.3 ISSUING, CARRYING AND USING CONTROL DEVICES

Control devices described in this policy may be carried and used by members of this department only if the device has been issued by the Department or approved by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.

Only officers who have successfully completed department-approved training in the use of any control device are authorized to carry and use the device.

Control devices may be used when a decision has been made to control, restrain or arrest a subject who is violent or who demonstrates the intent to be violent, and the use of the device appears reasonable under the circumstances. When reasonable, a verbal warning and opportunity to comply should precede the use of these devices.

When using control devices, officers should carefully consider potential impact areas in order to minimize injuries and unintentional targets.

308.4 RESPONSIBILITIES

308.4.1 SHIFT SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

The Shift Supervisor may authorize the use of a control device by selected personnel or members of specialized units who have successfully completed the required training.

308.4.2 ARMORER RESPONSIBILITIES

The Training Coordinator shall control the inventory and issuance of all Department-issued control devices and shall ensure that all damaged, inoperative, outdated or expended control devices or munitions are properly disposed of, repaired or replaced.

Every control device will be periodically inspected by the Training Coordinator or the designated instructor for a particular control device. The inspection shall be documented.

308.4.3 USER RESPONSIBILITIES

All normal maintenance, charging or cleaning shall remain the responsibility of personnel using the various devices.

Any damaged, inoperative, outdated or expended control devices or munitions, along with documentation explaining the cause of the damage, shall be returned to the Training Coordinator for disposition. Damage to Department-issued property shall be documented and forwarded through the chain of command, when appropriate, explaining the cause of damage.

308.5 BATON GUIDELINES

The need to immediately control a suspect must be weighed against the risk of causing serious injury. The head, neck, throat, spine, heart, kidneys and groin should not be intentionally targeted except when the officer reasonably believes the suspect poses an imminent threat of serious bodily injury or death to the officer or others. Strikes to the above listed areas are considered deadly force.

When carrying a baton, uniformed personnel shall carry the baton in its authorized holder on the equipment belt. Plainclothes and non-field personnel may carry the baton as authorized and in accordance with the needs of their assignment or at the direction of their supervisor.

308.6 TEAR GAS GUIDELINES

Tear gas may be used for crowd control, crowd dispersal or against barricaded suspects based on the circumstances. Only the Shift Supervisor, Incident Commander or Crisis Response Unit Commander may authorize the delivery and use of tear gas, and only after evaluating all conditions known at the time and determining that such force reasonably appears justified and necessary.

When practicable, fire personnel should be alerted or summoned to the scene prior to the deployment of tear gas to control any fires and to assist in providing medical aid or gas evacuation if needed.

308.7 OLEORESIN CAPSICUM (OC) GUIDELINES

As with other control devices, oleoresin capsicum (OC) spray and pepper projectiles may be considered for use to bring under control an individual or groups of individuals who are engaging in, or are about to engage in violent behavior. Pepper projectiles and OC spray should not be used against individuals or groups who merely fail to disperse or do not reasonably appear to present a risk to the safety of officers or the public (i.e. passively resisting individuals or groups).

308.7.1 OC SPRAY

Uniformed personnel carrying OC spray shall carry the device in its holster on the equipment belt. Plainclothes and non-field personnel may carry OC spray as authorized, in accordance with the needs of their assignment or at the direction of their supervisor.

308.7.2 PEPPER PROJECTILE SYSTEMS

Pepper projectiles are plastic spheres that are filled with a derivative of OC powder. Because the compressed gas launcher delivers the projectiles with enough force to burst the projectiles on impact and release the OC powder, the potential exists for the projectiles to inflict injury if they strike the head, neck, spine or groin. Therefore, personnel deploying a pepper projectile

system should not intentionally target those areas, except when the officer reasonably believes the suspect poses an imminent threat of serious bodily injury or death to the officer or others.

Officers encountering a situation that warrants the use of a pepper projectile system shall notify a supervisor as soon as practicable. A supervisor shall respond to all pepper projectile system incidents where the suspect has been hit or exposed to the chemical agent. The supervisor shall ensure that all notifications and reports are completed as required by the Use of Force Policy.

Each deployment of a pepper projectile system shall be documented. This includes situations where the launcher was directed toward the suspect, whether or not the launcher was used. Unintentional discharges shall be promptly reported to a supervisor and documented on the appropriate report form. Only non-incident use of a pepper projectile system, such as training and product demonstrations, is exempt from the reporting requirement.

308.7.3 TREATMENT FOR OC SPRAY EXPOSURE

Persons who have been sprayed with or otherwise affected by the use of OC should be promptly provided with medical attention (e.g. fresh air, seated upright, cool water etc) to address the affected areas. Those persons who complain of further severe effects shall be examined by appropriate medical personnel.

308.8 POST-APPLICATION NOTICE

Whenever tear gas or OC has been introduced into a residence, building interior, vehicle or other enclosed area, officers should provide the owners or available occupants with notice of the possible presence of residue that could result in irritation or injury if the area is not properly cleaned. Such notice should include advisement that clean up will be at the owner’s expense. Information regarding the method of notice and the individuals notified should be included in related reports.

308.9 KINETIC ENERGY PROJECTILE GUIDELINES

This department is committed to reducing the potential for violent confrontations. Kinetic energy projectiles, when used properly, are less likely to result in death or serious physical injury and can be used in an attempt to de-escalate a potentially deadly situation.

308.9.1 DEPLOYMENT AND USE

Only department-approved kinetic energy munitions shall be carried and deployed. Approved munitions may be used to compel an individual to cease his/her actions when such munitions present a reasonable option.

Officers are not required or compelled to use approved munitions in lieu of other reasonable tactics if the involved officer determines that deployment of these munitions cannot be done safely. The safety of hostages, innocent persons and officers takes priority over the safety of subjects engaged in criminal or suicidal behavior.

Circumstances appropriate for deployment include, but are not limited to, situations in which:

  1. The suspect is armed with a weapon and the tactical circumstances allow for the safe application of approved munitions.
  2. The suspect has made credible threats to harm him/herself or others.
  3. The suspect is engaged in riotous behavior or is throwing rocks, bottles or other dangerous projectiles at people and/or officers.
  4. There is probable cause to believe that the suspect has already committed a crime of violence and is refusing to comply with lawful orders.

308.9.2 DEPLOYMENT CONSIDERATIONS

Before discharging projectiles, the officer should consider such factors as:

  1. Distance and angle to target.
  2. Type of munitions employed.
  3. Type and thickness of subject’s clothing.
  4. The subject’s proximity to others.
  5. The location of the subject.
  6. Whether the subject’s actions dictate the need for an immediate response and the use of control devices appears appropriate.

A verbal warning of the intended use of the device should precede its application, unless it would otherwise endanger the safety of officers or when it is not practicable due to the circumstances. The purpose of the warning is to give the individual a reasonable opportunity to voluntarily comply and to warn other officers and individuals that the device is being deployed.

Officers should keep in mind the manufacturer’s recommendations and their training regarding effective distances and target areas. However, officers are not restricted solely to use according to manufacturer recommendations. Each situation must be evaluated on the totality of circumstances at the time of deployment.

The need to immediately incapacitate the subject must be weighed against the risk of causing serious injury or death. The head and neck should not be intentionally targeted, except when the officer reasonably believes the suspect poses an imminent threat of serious bodily injury or death to the officer or others.

308.9.3 SAFETY PROCEDURES

Shotguns specifically designated for use with kinetic energy projectiles will be specially marked in a manner that makes them readily identifiable as such.

Officers will inspect the shotgun and projectiles at the beginning of each shift to ensure that the shotgun is in proper working order and the projectiles are of the approved type and appear to be free from defects.

When it is not deployed, the shotgun will be unloaded and properly and securely stored in the vehicle. When deploying the kinetic energy projectile shotgun, the officer shall visually inspect the kinetic energy projectiles to ensure that conventional ammunition is not being loaded into the shotgun.

Absent compelling circumstances, officers who must transition from conventional ammunition to kinetic energy projectiles will employ the two-person rule for loading. The two-person rule is a safety measure in which a second officer watches the unloading and loading process to ensure that the weapon is completely emptied of conventional ammunition.

308.10 TRAINING FOR CONTROL DEVICES

The Training Coordinator shall ensure that all personnel who are authorized to carry a control device have been properly trained and certified to carry the specific control device and are re- trained or re-certified as necessary.

  1. Proficiency training shall be monitored and documented by a certified, control-device weapons or tactics instructor.
  2. All training and proficiency for control devices will be documented in the officer's training file.
  3. Officers who fail to demonstrate proficiency with the control device or knowledge of this agency's Use of Force Policy will be provided remedial training. If an officer cannot demonstrate proficiency with a control device or knowledge of this agency's Use of Force Policy after remedial training, the officer will be restricted from carrying the control device and may be subject to discipline.

308.11 REPORTING USE OF CONTROL DEVICES AND TECHNIQUES

Any application of a control device or technique listed in this policy shall be documented in the related incident report and reported pursuant to the Use of Force Policy.

309 - Conducted Energy Device

309.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for the issuance and use of the Conducted Energy Device (CED).

309.2 POLICY

The TASER device is intended to control a violent or potentially violent individual, while minimizing the risk of serious injury. The appropriate use of such a device should result in fewer serious injuries to officers and suspects.

309.3 ISSUANCE AND CARRYING TASER DEVICES

Only members who have successfully completed department-approved training may be issued and carry the TASER device.

TASER devices are issued for use during a member's current assignment. Those leaving a particular assignment may be required to return the device to the department's inventory.

Officers shall only use the TASER device and cartridges that have been issued by the Department. Uniformed officers who have been issued the TASER device shall wear the device in an approved holster on their person. Non-uniformed officers may secure the TASER device in the driver's compartment of their vehicle.

Members carrying the TASER device should perform a spark test on the unit prior to every shift.

When carried while in uniform, officers shall carry the TASER device in a weak-side holster on the side opposite the duty weapon.

  1. All TASER devices shall be clearly and distinctly marked to differentiate them from the duty weapon and any other device.
  2. Whenever practicable, officers should carry two or more cartridges on their person when carrying the TASER device.
  3. Officers shall be responsible for ensuring that their issued TASER device is properly maintained and in good working order.
  4. Officers should not hold both a firearm and the TASER device at the same time.

309.4 VERBAL AND VISUAL WARNINGS

A verbal warning of the intended use of the TASER device should precede its application, unless it would otherwise endanger the safety of officers or when it is not practicable due to the circumstances. The purpose of the warning is to:

  1. Provide the individual with a reasonable opportunity to voluntarily comply.
  2. Provide other officers and individuals with a warning that the TASER device may be deployed.

If, after a verbal warning, an individual is unwilling to voluntarily comply with an officer's lawful orders and it appears both reasonable and feasible under the circumstances, the officer may, but is not required to, display the electrical arc (provided that a cartridge has not been loaded into the device), or the laser in a further attempt to gain compliance prior to the application of the TASER device. The aiming laser should never be intentionally directed into the eyes of another as it may permanently impair his/her vision.

The fact that a verbal or other warning was given or the reasons it was not given shall be documented by the officer deploying the TASER device in the related report.

309.5 DOCUMENTATION

Officers shall document all TASER device discharges in the related arrest/crime report and the TASER device report form. Notification shall also be made to a supervisor in compliance with the Use of Force Policy. Unintentional discharges, pointing the device at a person, laser activation and arcing the device will also be documented on the report form.

309.5.1 TASER DEVICE FORM

Items that shall be included in the TASER device report form are:

  1. The type and brand of TASER device and cartridge and cartridge serial number.
  2. Date, time and location of the incident.
  3. Whether any display, laser or arc deterred a subject and gained compliance.
  4. The number of TASER device activations, the duration of each cycle, the duration between activations, and (as best as can be determined) the duration that the subject received applications.
  5. The range at which the TASER device was used.
  6. The type of mode used (probe or drive-stun).
  7. Location of any probe impact.
  8. Location of contact in drive-stun mode.
  9. Description of where missed probes went.
  10. Whether medical care was provided to the subject.
  11. Whether the subject sustained any injuries.
  12. Whether any officers sustained any injuries.

The Training Coordinator should periodically analyze the report forms to identify trends, including deterrence and effectiveness. The Training Coordinator should also conduct audits of data downloads and reconcile TASER device report forms with recorded activations. If requested, TASER device information and statistics, with identifying information removed, should periodically be made available to the public.

309.5.2 REPORTS

The officer should include the following in the arrest/crime report:

  1. Identification of all personnel firing TASER devices
  2. Identification of all witnesses
  3. Medical care provided to the subject
  4. Observations of the subject's physical and physiological actions
  5. Any known or suspected drug use, intoxication or other medical problems

309.6 MEDICAL TREATMENT

Metro Transit Police Department officers may carefully remove TASER device darts from a person's body following routine application of the TASER device. Used TASER device probes shall be treated as a sharps biohazard, similar to a used hypodermic needle, and handled appropriately. Universal precautions should be taken.

All persons who have been struck by TASER device probes or who have been subjected to the electric discharge of the device shall be medically assessed prior to booking. Additionally, any such individual who falls under any of the following categories should, as soon as practicable, be examined by paramedics or other qualified medical personnel:

  1. The person is suspected of being under the influence of controlled substances and/or alcohol.
  2. The person may be pregnant.
  3. The person reasonably appears to be in need of medical attention.
  4. The TASER device probes are lodged in a sensitive area (e.g., groin, female breast, head, face, neck).
  5. The person requests medical treatment.

Any individual exhibiting signs of distress or who is exposed to multiple or prolonged applications (i.e., more than 15 seconds) shall be transported to a medical facility for examination or medically evaluated prior to booking. If any individual refuses medical attention, such a refusal should be witnessed by another officer and/or medical personnel and shall be fully documented in related

reports. If an audio recording is made of the contact or an interview with the individual, any refusal should be included, if possible.

The transporting officer shall inform any person providing medical care or receiving custody that the individual has been subjected to the application of the TASER device.

309.7 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

A supervisor should review each incident where a person has been exposed to an activation of the TASER device. The supervisor shall complete a supplement under the related case report.

309.8 TRAINING

Personnel who are authorized to carry the TASER device shall be permitted to do so only after successfully completing the initial department-approved training. Any personnel who have not carried the TASER device as a part of their assignment for a period of six months or more shall be recertified by a department-approved TASER device instructor prior to again carrying or using the device.

Proficiency training for personnel who have been issued TASER devices should occur every year. A reassessment of an officer's knowledge and/or practical skill may be required at any time if deemed appropriate by the Training Coordinator. All training and proficiency for TASER devices will be documented in the officer's training file.

Command staff, supervisors and investigators should receive TASER device training as appropriate for the investigations they conduct and review.

Officers who do not carry TASER devices should receive training that is sufficient to familiarize them with the device and with working with officers who use the device.

The Training Coordinator is responsible for ensuring that all members who carry TASER devices have received initial and annual proficiency training. Periodic audits should be used for verification.

Application of TASER devices during training could result in injury to personnel and should not be mandatory for certification.

The Training Coordinator should ensure that all training includes:

  1. A review of this policy.
  2. A review of the Use of Force Policy.
  3. Performing weak-hand draws or cross-draws to reduce the possibility of accidentally drawing and firing a firearm.
  4. Target area considerations, to include techniques or options to reduce the accidental application of probes near the head, neck, chest and groin.
  5. Handcuffing a subject during the application of the TASER device and transitioning to other force options.
  6. De-escalation techniques.
  7. Restraint techniques that do not impair respiration following the application of the TASER device.
  8. A review of in-custody death prevention techniques.

309.9 DOWNLOADING DEVICE INFORMATION

The Department will designate an employee who will ensure each TASER Device is downloaded annually to retrieve deployment information and to ensure the internal clock of the TASER Device is appropriately set. All TASER Device deployment information will be maintained by the Department for no less than the period of time established by the Metro Transit Police Department records retention schedule, after which they may be considered for disposal.

TASER Devices may be downloaded following a particular incident if the Administration determines that it may be necessary.

310 - Officer-Involved Shootings and Deaths

310.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to establish policy and procedures for the investigation of an incident in which a person is injured or dies as the result of an officer-involved shooting or dies as a result of other action of an officer.

In other incidents not covered by this policy, the Chief of Police may decide that the investigation will follow the process provided in this policy.

310.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Critical Incident - An incident involving any of the following situations occurring in the line of duty:

  1. The use of Deadly Force by or against a Metro Transit Police Officer.
  2. Death or Great Bodily Harm to a Metro Transit Police Officer.
  3. Death or Great Bodily Harm to a person who is in the custody or control of a Metro Transit Police Officer.
  4. Any action by a Metro Transit Police Officer that causes or is intended to cause Death or Great Bodily Harm.

Deadly Force - Force which the actor uses with the purpose of causing, or which the actor should reasonably know creates a substantial risk of causing, death or great bodily harm. The intentional discharge of a firearm, other than a firearm loaded with less lethal munitions and used by a peace officer within the scope of official duties, in the direction of another person, or at a vehicle in which another person is believed to be, constitutes deadly force. "Less lethal munitions" means projectiles which are designed to stun, temporarily incapacitate, or cause temporary discomfort to a person. (Minn. Stat. § 609.066 Subd. 1).

Great Bodily Harm - Bodily injury which creates a high probability of death, or which causes serious permanent disfigurement, or which causes a permanent or protracted loss or impairment of the function of any bodily member or organ or other serious bodily harm. (Minn. Stat. § 609.02 Subd. 8).

310.2 TYPES OF INVESTIGATIONS

Officer-involved shootings and deaths involve several separate investigations. The investigations may include:

  • A criminal investigation of the suspect’s actions.
  • A criminal investigation of the involved officer’s actions.
  • An administrative investigation as to policy compliance by involved officers.
  • A civil investigation to determine potential liability.

310.3 CONTROL OF INVESTIGATIONS

Investigators from surrounding agencies may be assigned to work on the criminal investigation of officer-involved shootings and deaths. This may include at least one investigator from the agency that employs the involved officer.

Jurisdiction is determined by the location of the shooting or death and the agency employing the involved officer. The following scenarios outline the jurisdictional responsibilities for investigating officer-involved shootings and deaths.

310.3.1 CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION OF SUSPECT ACTIONS

The investigation of any possible criminal conduct by the suspect is controlled by the agency in whose jurisdiction the suspect’s crime occurred. For example, the Minneapolis Police Department would control the investigation if the suspect’s crime occurred in the City of Minneapolis .

If multiple crimes have been committed in multiple jurisdictions, identification of the agency that will control the investigation may be reached in the same way as with any other crime. The investigation may be conducted by the agency in control of the criminal investigation of the involved officer, at the discretion of the Chief of Police and with concurrence from the other agency.

310.3.2 POST ADMINISTRATIVE INVESTIGATIONS

The Minnesota POST Board may require an administrative investigation based on a complaint alleging a violation of a statute or rule that the board is empowered to enforce. An officer-involved shooting may result in such an allegation. Any such complaint assigned to this department shall be completed and a written summary submitted to the POST executive director within 30 days of the order for inquiry (Minn. Stat. § 214.10 Subd. 10).

310.4 INVESTIGATION PROCESS

The following procedures are guidelines used in the investigation of an officer-involved shooting or death:

310.4.1 UNINVOLVED OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon arrival at the scene of an officer-involved shooting or death, the first uninvolved MTPD officer will be the officer-in-charge and will assume the responsibilities of a supervisor until properly relieved. This officer should, as appropriate:

  1. Secure the scene and identify and eliminate hazards for all those involved.
  2. Take reasonable steps to obtain emergency medical attention for injured individuals.
  3. Request additional resources from the Department or other agencies.
  4. Coordinate a perimeter or pursuit of suspects.
  5. Check for injured persons and evacuate as needed.
  6. Brief the supervisor upon arrival.

310.4.2 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon arrival at the scene, the first uninvolved MTPD supervisor should ensure completion of the duties as outlined above, plus:

  1. Attempt to obtain a brief overview of the situation from any uninvolved officers.

     

    1. In the event that there are no uninvolved officers who can supply adequate overview, the supervisor should attempt to obtain a brief voluntary overview from one involved officer.
  2. If necessary, the supervisor may administratively order any MTPD officer to immediately provide public safety information necessary to secure the scene, identify injured parties and pursue suspects.
    1. Public safety information shall be limited to such things as outstanding suspect information, number and direction of any shots fired, perimeter of the incident scene, identity of known or potential witnesses and any other pertinent information.
    2. The initial on-scene supervisor should not attempt to order any involved officer to provide any information other than public safety information.
  3. Provide all available information to the Shift Supervisor and Transit Control Center. If feasible, sensitive information should be communicated over secure networks.
  4. Take command of and secure the incident scene with additional MTPD members until properly relieved by another supervisor or other assigned personnel or investigator.
  5. As soon as practicable, ensure that involved officers are transported (separately, if feasible) to a suitable location for further direction.
    1. Each involved MTPD officer should be given an administrative order not to discuss the incident with other involved officers or MTPD members pending further direction from a supervisor.
    2. When an involved officer’s weapon is taken or left at the scene for other than officer- safety reasons (e.g., evidence), ensure that he/she is provided with a comparable replacement weapon or transported by other officers.

310.4.3 SHIFT SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon learning of an officer-involved shooting or death, the Shift Supervisor shall be responsible for coordinating all aspects of the incident until he/she is relieved by the Chief of Police, Deputy Chief of Police or a Captain.

All outside inquiries about the incident shall be directed to the Shift Supervisor.

310.4.4 NOTIFICATIONS

The following persons shall be notified as soon as practicable:

  • Chief of Police
  • Deputy Chief of Police
  • Patrol Captain

     

  •  
  • Criminal Investigations Supervisor
  • Supervisor from the local jurisdiction over the incident
  • Critical Incident rollout team
  • Outside agency investigators (if appropriate)
  • Professional Standards Unit / Internal Affairs Unit supervisor
  • Civil liability response team (e.g. General Counsel, Risk Management etc)
  • Psychological/peer support personnel
  • Chaplain
  • Medical Examiner (if necessary)
  • Involved officer’s agency representative (if requested)
  • Public Information Officer (Notification will be made by the Chief of Police or designee)

     

310.4.5 INVOLVED OFFICERS

The following shall be considered for the involved officer:

  1. Any request for legal or union representation will be accommodated.

     

    1. Involved MTPD officers shall not be permitted to meet collectively or in a group with an attorney or any representative prior to providing a formal interview or report.
    2. Requests from involved non-MTPD officers should be referred to their employing agency.
  2. Discussions with licensed attorneys will be considered privileged as attorney-client communications.
  3. Discussions with agency representatives/employee groups will be privileged only as to the discussion of non-criminal information.
  4. A licensed psychotherapist shall be provided by the Department to each involved MTPD officer. A licensed psychotherapist may also be provided to any other affected MTPD members, upon request.

     

    1. Interviews with a licensed psychotherapist will be considered privileged.
    2. An interview or session with a licensed psychotherapist may take place prior to the member providing a formal interview or report. However, involved members shall not be permitted to consult or meet collectively or in a group with a licensed psychotherapist prior to providing a formal interview or report.
    3. A separate fitness-for-duty exam may also be required (see the Fitness for Duty Policy).
  5. Communications with peer counselors are privileged and shall not be disclosed without the permission of the involved officer. The peer counselor, however, may disclose information that he/she reasonably believes indicates that the officer may be a danger to self or others, as long as the information is used only for the purpose of eliminating the danger. Such

information or opinion is not admissible in any personnel or occupational licensing matter involving the officer (Minn. Stat. § 181.973).

Care should be taken to preserve the integrity of any physical evidence present on the involved officer's equipment or clothing, such as blood or fingerprints, until investigators or lab personnel can properly retrieve it.

Each involved MTPD officer shall be given reasonable paid administrative leave following an officer-involved shooting or death. In most cases, a minimum of three days and a maximum of seven days shall be considered as reasonable. The Chief of Police must approve paid administrative leave time extending beyond the seven day maximum. It shall be the responsibility of the Shift Supervisor to make schedule adjustments to accommodate such leave.

310.4.6 MONITORING OFFICERS The monitoring officer(s) shall:

  1. Assume control of the involved officer as directed by the on-scene supervisor.
  2. Bring the involved officer to a department vehicle and accompany the involved officer to the police department or the location determined by the supervisor.
  3. The monitoring officer shall check in with the Investigations Supervisor or his/her designee once at the determined location.
  4. Remain with the involved officer at the determined location until advised by the Investigations Supervisor that you are relieved of that duty.
  5. The monitoring officer will allow a union representative or designee access to the involved officer(s) until a formal statement is given or legal counsel is present. This access shall be continually monitored to ensure that details of the investigation are not discussed with anyone other than legal counsel and/or the involved officer's union representative.
  6. The monitoring officer will write a report detailing his/her actions, including who had access to the involved officer, length of time of the contact and specifically document whether the involved officer spoke with anyone about the incident while in his/her company.
  7. Upon request of the involved officer(s), ensure that the involved officer(s) is afforded the opportunity to meet with legal counsel in a confidential setting.

310.5 CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION

This Department will utilize the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) to conduct an independent criminal investigation into the circumstances of any officer-involved shooting or death.

If available, investigative personnel from this departmentoffice may be assigned to partner with investigators from outside agencies or the DistrictCountyAttorney's Office to avoid duplicating efforts in related criminal investigations.

Once public safety issues have been addressed, criminal investigators should be given the opportunity to obtain a voluntary statement from involved officers and to complete their interviews. The following shall be considered for the involved officer:

  1. agencyAcronym supervisors and InternalAffairsUnit / Internal Affairs Unit personnel should not participate directly in any voluntary interview of agencyAcronym officers. This will not prohibit such personnel from monitoring interviews or providing the criminal investigators with topics for inquiry.
  2. If requested, any involved officer will be afforded the opportunity to consult individually with a representative of his/her choosing or an attorney prior to speaking with criminal investigators. However, in order to maintain the integrity of each involved officer’s statement, involved officers shall not consult or meet with a representative or an attorney collectively or in groups prior to being interviewed.
  3. If any involved officer is physically, emotionally or otherwise not in a position to provide a voluntary statement when interviewed by criminal investigators, consideration should be given to allowing a reasonable period for the officer to schedule an alternate time for the interview.
  4. Any voluntary statement provided by an involved officer will be made available for inclusion in any related investigation, including administrative investigations. However, no administratively coerced statement will be provided to any criminal investigators unless the officer consents.

310.5.1 REPORTS BY INVOLVED MTPD OFFICERS

In the event that suspects remain outstanding or subject to prosecution for related offenses, this department shall retain the authority to require involved MTPD officers to provide sufficient information for related criminal reports to facilitate the apprehension and prosecution of those individuals.

While the involved MTPD officer may write the report, it is generally recommended that such reports be completed by assigned investigators, who should interview all involved officers as victims/witnesses. Since the purpose of these reports will be to facilitate criminal prosecution, statements of involved officers should focus on evidence to establish the elements of criminal activities by suspects. Care should be taken not to duplicate information provided by involved officers in other reports.

Nothing in this section shall be construed to deprive an involved MTPD officer of the right to consult with legal counsel prior to completing any such criminal report.

Reports related to the prosecution of criminal suspects will be processed according to normal procedures but should also be included for reference in the investigation of the officer-involved shooting or death.

310.5.2 WITNESS IDENTIFICATION AND INTERVIEWS

Because potential witnesses to an officer-involved shooting or death may become unavailable or the integrity of their statements compromised with the passage of time, a supervisor should

take reasonable steps to promptly coordinate with criminal investigators to utilize available law enforcement personnel for the following:

  1. Identification of all persons present at the scene and in the immediate area.
    1. When feasible, a recorded statement should be obtained from those persons who claim not to have witnessed the incident but who were present at the time it occurred.
    2. Any potential witness who is unwilling or unable to remain available for a formal interview should not be detained absent reasonable suspicion to detain or probable cause to arrest. Without detaining the individual for the sole purpose of identification, attempts to identify the witness prior to his/her departure should be made whenever feasible.
  2. Witnesses who are willing to provide a formal interview should be asked to meet at a suitable location where criminal investigators may obtain a recorded statement. Such witnesses, if willing, may be transported by a member of the Department.
    1. A written, verbal or recorded statement of consent should be obtained prior to transporting a witness. When the witness is a minor, consent should be obtained from the parent or guardian, if available, prior to transportation.

Promptly contacting the suspect’s known family and associates to obtain any available and untainted background information about the suspect’s activities and state of mind prior to the incident.

310.5.3 INVESTIGATIVE PERSONNEL

Once notified of an officer-involved shooting or death, it shall be the responsibility of the designated Investigation Division supervisor to assign appropriate investigative personnel to handle the investigation of related crimes. Department investigators will be assigned to work with investigators from the outside agency and may be assigned to separately handle the investigation of any related crimes not being investigated by the outside agency.

All related department reports, except administrative and/or privileged reports, will be forwarded to the designated Investigation Division supervisor for approval. Privileged reports shall be maintained exclusively by members who are authorized such access. Administrative reports will be forwarded to the appropriate Supervisor .

310.6 ADMINISTRATIVE INVESTIGATION

In addition to all other investigations associated with an officer-involved shooting or death, this department will conduct an internal administrative investigation of involved MTPD officers to determine conformance with department policy. This investigation will be conducted under the supervision of the Professional Standards Unit / Internal Affairs Unit and will be considered a confidential officer personnel file.

Interviews of members shall be subject to department policies and applicable laws (Personnel Complaints Policy; Minn. Stat. § 626.89).

  1. Any officer involved in a shooting or death may be requested or administratively compelled to provide a blood sample for alcohol/drug screening in accordance with the drug and alcohol testing guidelines in the Drug and Alcohol-Free Workplace Policy adopted under the authority of Minn. Stat. § 181.950 to Minn. Stat. § 181.957. Absent consent from the officer, such compelled samples and the results of any such testing shall not be disclosed to any criminal investigative agency.
  2. If any officer has voluntarily elected to provide a statement to criminal investigators, the assigned administrative investigator should review that statement before proceeding with any further interview of that involved officer.
    1. If a further interview of the officer is deemed necessary to determine policy compliance, care should be taken to limit the inquiry to new areas with minimal, if any, duplication of questions addressed in the voluntary statement. The involved officer shall be provided with a copy of his/her prior statement before proceeding with any subsequent interviews.
  3. In the event that an involved officer has elected not to provide criminal investigators with a voluntary statement, the assigned administrative investigator shall conduct an administrative interview to determine all relevant information .
    1. Although this interview should not be unreasonably delayed, care should be taken to ensure that the officer’s physical and psychological needs have been addressed before commencing the interview.
    2. The interview must be taken at the MTPD or at a place agreed to by the interviewer and the involved officer.
    3. The interview must be of reasonable duration and provide the involved officer reasonable periods for rest and personal necessities. When practicable, the interview must be held during the involved officer’s regularly scheduled work shift. If not, the involved officer must be compensated at his/her current pay rate.
    4. If requested, the officer shall have the opportunity to select an uninvolved representative or an attorney, or both, to be present during the interview. However, in order to maintain the integrity of each individual officer’s statement, involved officers shall not consult or meet with a representative collectively or in groups prior to being interviewed.
    5. Administrative interviews shall be recorded electronically or otherwise by the investigator. The officer may also record the interview. A complete copy or transcript of the interview must be provided to the involved officer upon written request without charge or undue delay.
    6. The officer shall be informed of the nature of the investigation. If an officer refuses to answer questions, he/she should be given his/her Garrity rights and ordered to provide full and truthful answers to all questions. The officer shall be informed in writing or on the record that the interview will be for administrative purposes only and that the statement cannot be used criminally.
    7. The Professional Standards Unit / Internal Affairs Unit shall compile all relevant information and reports necessary for the Department to determine compliance with applicable policies.
    8. Regardless of whether the use of force is an issue in the case, the completed administrative investigation shall be submitted to the Use of Force Review Board, which will restrict its findings as to whether there was compliance with the Use of Force Policy.
    9. Any other indications of potential policy violations shall be determined in accordance with standard disciplinary procedures.

310.7 CIVIL LIABILITY RESPONSE

A member of this department may be assigned to work exclusively under the direction of the legal counsel for the Department to assist in the preparation of materials deemed necessary in anticipation of potential civil litigation.

All materials generated in this capacity shall be considered attorney work product and may not be used for any other purpose. The civil liability response is not intended to interfere with any other investigation but shall be given reasonable access to all other investigations.

310.8 AUDIO AND VIDEO RECORDINGS

Any officer involved in a shooting or death may be permitted to review available Mobile Audio/ Video (MAV), body-worn video, or other video or audio recordings prior to providing a recorded statement or completing reports.

Upon request, non-law enforcement witnesses who are able to verify their presence and their ability to contemporaneously perceive events at the scene of an incident may also be permitted to review available MAV, body-worn video, or other video or audio recordings with the approval of assigned investigators or a supervisor.

Any MAV, body-worn and other known video or audio recordings of an incident should not be publicly released during an ongoing investigation without consulting the prosecuting attorney or Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, as appropriate.

310.9 DEBRIEFING

Following an officer-involved shooting or death, the Metro Transit Police Department should conduct both a critical incident/stress debriefing and a tactical debriefing.

310.9.1 CRITICAL INCIDENT/STRESS DEBRIEFING

A critical incident/stress debriefing should occur as soon as practicable. The Patrol Captain is responsible for organizing the debriefing. Notes and recorded statements should not be taken because the sole purpose of the debriefing is to help mitigate the stress-related effects of a traumatic event (Minn. Stat. § 181.973).

The debriefing is not part of any investigative process. Care should be taken not to release or repeat any communication made during a debriefing unless otherwise authorized by policy, law or a valid court order.

Attendance at the debriefing shall only include those members of the Department directly involved in the incident, which can include support personnel (e.g., dispatchers, other non-sworn). Family or other support personnel may attend with the concurrence of those involved in the incident. The debriefing shall be closed to the public and should be closed to all other members of the Department, including supervisory and Professional Standards Unit / Internal Affairs Unit personnel.

310.9.2 TACTICAL DEBRIEFING

A tactical debriefing should take place to identify any training or areas of policy that need improvement. The Chief of Police should identify the appropriate participants. This debriefing should not be conducted until all involved members have provided recorded or formal statements to criminal and/or administrative investigators.

310.10 MEDIA RELATIONS

Any media release shall be prepared with input and concurrence from the supervisor and department representative responsible for each phase of the investigation. Releases will be available to the Chief of Police or designee and Public Information Officer in the event of inquiries from the media.

No involved MTPD officer shall make any comment to the media unless he/she is authorized by the Chief of Police or designee.

Department members receiving inquiries regarding officer-involved shootings or deaths occurring in other jurisdictions shall refrain from public comment and will direct those inquiries to the agency having jurisdiction and primary responsibility for the investigation.

310.11 REPORTING

If an officer discharges a firearm in the course of duty, the Chief of Police shall notify the Commissioner of Public Safety within 30 days of the reason for and the circumstances surrounding the discharge of the firearm (Minn. Stat.§ 626.553).

312 - Firearms

312.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for issuing firearms, the safe and legal carrying of firearms, firearms maintenance and firearms training.

This policy does not apply to issues related to the use of firearms that are addressed in the Use of Force or Officer-Involved Shootings and Deaths policies.

This policy only applies to those members who are authorized to carry firearms.

312.1.1 AUTHORIZATION TO CARRY FIREARMS

All licensed personnel shall successfully complete department training regarding the use of force, deadly force and the use of firearms before being issued a firearm or being authorized to carry a firearm in the course of their duties (Minn. Stat. § 626.8452, Subd. 3; Minn. Stat. § 626.8463).

312.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will equip its members with firearms to address the risks posed to the public and department members by violent and sometimes well-armed persons. The Department will ensure firearms are appropriate and in good working order and that relevant training is provided as resources allow.

312.3 AUTHORIZED FIREARMS, AMMUNITION AND OTHER WEAPONS

Members shall only use firearms that are issued or approved by the Department and have been thoroughly inspected by the Armorer. Except in an emergency or as directed by a supervisor, no firearm shall be carried by a member who has not qualified with that firearm at an authorized department range.

All other weapons not provided by the Department, including, but not limited to, edged weapons, chemical or electronic weapons, impact weapons or any weapon prohibited or restricted by law or that is not covered elsewhere by department policy, may not be carried by members in the performance of their official duties without the express written authorization of the member’s Captain. This exclusion does not apply to the carrying of a single folding pocketknife that is not otherwise prohibited by law.

312.3.1 HANDGUNS

The authorized department-issued handgun is the Glock 17.

The following additional handguns are approved for on-duty use by part-time sworn officers:

  1. Handgun
    1. Beretta, Colt, Glock, H&K, Kahr, Kel Tec, Ruger, Sig Sauer, Smith & Wesson, Springfield and Walther.
  2. Caliber
    1. 1. 9mm, .357 SIG, .40 and .45.
    2. In addition to the above calibers, .38 Special, .357 Magnum and .380 are authorized for secondary weapons.

All handguns must either be double action or have a de-cocking mechanism. The handgun must have a manufacturer's specified barrel length between 2 1/2 and 5 1/2 inches. Other barrel lengths must be pre-approved by the Training Coordinator. For officers choosing Smith & Wesson semi- automatics, only second generation (three digit model number) or newer will be approved.

312.3.2 PATROL RIFLES

The authorized department-issued patrol rifle is the Smith and Wesson M&P 15 / Bushmaster M4.

Members may deploy the patrol rifle in any circumstance where the member can articulate a reasonable expectation that the rifle may be needed. Examples of some general guidelines for deploying the patrol rifle may include, but are not limited to:

  1. Situations where the member reasonably anticipates an armed encounter.
  2. When a member is faced with a situation that may require accurate and effective fire at long range.
  3. Situations where a member reasonably expects the need to meet or exceed a suspect's firepower.
  4. When a member reasonably believes that there may be a need to fire on a barricaded person or a person with a hostage.
  5. When a member reasonably believes that a suspect may be wearing body armor.
  6. When authorized or requested by a supervisor.
  7. When needed to euthanize an animal.

When not deployed, the patrol rifle shall be properly secured in a locking weapons rack in the patrol vehicle with the:

  • Chamber empty
  • Bolt forward
  • 20 or 30 round magazine (loaded with 18 or 28 rounds) inserted into the magazine well
  • Dust cover closed
  • Selector switch in the safe position

312.3.3 PERSONALLY OWNED DUTY FIREARMS

Members desiring to carry an authorized but personally owned duty firearm must receive written approval from the Chief of Police or the authorized designee. Once approved, personally owned duty firearms are subject to the following restrictions:

  1. The firearm shall be in good working order and on the department list of approved firearms.
  2. The firearm shall be inspected by the Armorer prior to being carried and thereafter shall be subject to inspection whenever it is deemed necessary.
  3. Prior to carrying the firearm, members shall qualify under range supervision and thereafter shall qualify in accordance with the department qualification schedule. Members must demonstrate proficiency and safe handling, and that the firearm functions properly.
  4. Members shall provide written notice of the make, model, color, serial number and caliber of the firearm to the Armorer, who will maintain a list of the information.

312.3.4 AUTHORIZED SECONDARY HANDGUN

Members desiring to carry department or personally owned secondary handguns are subject to the following restrictions:

  1. The handgun shall be in good working order and on the department list of approved firearms.
  2. Only one secondary handgun may be carried at a time.
  3. The purchase of the handgun and ammunition shall be the responsibility of the member unless the handgun and ammunition are provided by the Department.
  4. The handgun shall be carried concealed at all times and in such a manner as to prevent unintentional cocking, discharge or loss of physical control.
  5. The handgun shall be inspected by the Armorer prior to being carried and thereafter shall be subject to inspection whenever it is deemed necessary.
  6. Ammunition shall be the same as department issue. If the caliber of the handgun is other than department issue, the Chief of Police or the authorized designee shall approve the ammunition.
  7. Prior to carrying the secondary handgun, members shall qualify under range supervision and thereafter shall qualify in accordance with the department qualification schedule. Members must demonstrate proficiency and safe handling, and that the handgun functions properly.
  8. Members shall provide written notice of the make, model, color, serial number and caliber of a secondary handgun to the Armorer, who will maintain a list of the information.

312.3.5 AUTHORIZED OFF-DUTY FIREARMS

The carrying of firearms by members while off-duty is permitted by the Chief of Police but may be rescinded should circumstances dictate (e.g., administrative leave). Members who choose to carry a firearm while off-duty, based on their authority as peace officers, will be required to meet the following guidelines:

  1. A personally owned firearm shall be used, carried and inspected in accordance with the Personally Owned Firearms requirements in this policy.
    1. The purchase of the personally owned firearm and ammunition shall be the responsibility of the member.
  2. The firearm shall be carried concealed at all times and in such a manner as to prevent unintentional cocking, discharge or loss of physical control.
  3. It will be the responsibility of the member to submit the firearm to the Armorer for inspection prior to being personally carried. Thereafter the firearm shall be subject to periodic inspection by the Armorer.
  4. Prior to carrying any off-duty firearm, the member shall demonstrate to the Armorer that he/ she is proficient in handling and firing the firearm and that it will be carried in a safe manner.
  5. The member will successfully qualify with the firearm prior to it being carried.
  6. Members shall provide written notice of the make, model, color, serial number and caliber of the firearm to the Armorer, who will maintain a list of the information.
  7. If a member desires to use more than one firearm while off-duty, he/she may do so, as long as all requirements set forth in this policy for each firearm are met.
  8. Members shall only carry department-authorized ammunition
  9. When armed, officers shall carry their badges and Metro Transit Police Department identification cards under circumstances requiring possession of such identification.

312.3.6 AMMUNITION

Members shall carry only department-authorized ammunition. Subject to availability, members shall be issued fresh duty ammunition in the specified quantity for all department-issued firearms during the member’s firearms qualification. The current rotation is every other year. Replacements for unserviceable or depleted ammunition issued by the Department shall be dispensed by the Armorer when needed, in accordance with established policy.

Members carrying personally owned authorized firearms of a caliber differing from department- issued firearms shall be responsible for obtaining fresh duty ammunition in accordance with the above, at their own expense. Replacements for unserviceable or depleted ammunition issued by the Department shall be dispensed by the Armorer when needed, in accordance with established policy.

312.4 EQUIPMENT

Firearms carried on- or off-duty shall be maintained in a clean, serviceable condition. Maintenance and repair of authorized personally owned firearms are the responsibility of the individual member.

312.4.1 REPAIRS OR MODIFICATIONS

Each member shall be responsible for promptly reporting any damage or malfunction of an assigned firearm to a supervisor or the Armorer.

Firearms that are the property of the Department or personally owned firearms that are approved for department use may be repaired or modified only by a person who is department-approved

and certified as an armorer or gunsmith in the repair of the specific firearm. Such modification or repair must be authorized in advance by the Armorer.

Any repairs or modifications to the member’s personally owned firearm shall be done at his/her expense and must be approved by the Armorer.

312.4.2 HOLSTERS

Only department-approved holsters shall be used and worn by members. Members shall periodically inspect their holsters to make sure they are serviceable and provide the proper security and retention of the handgun.

312.4.3 TACTICAL LIGHTS

Tactical lights may only be installed on a firearm carried on- or off-duty after they have been examined and approved by the Armorer. Once the approved tactical lights have been properly installed on any firearm, the member shall qualify with the firearm to ensure proper functionality and sighting of the firearm prior to carrying it.

312.4.4 OPTICS OR LASER SIGHTS

Optics or laser sights may only be installed on a firearm carried on- or off-duty after they have been examined and approved by the Armorer. Any approved sight shall only be installed in strict accordance with manufacturer specifications. Once approved sights have been properly installed on any firearm, the member shall qualify with the firearm to ensure proper functionality and sighting of the firearm prior to carrying it.

Except in an approved training situation, a member may only sight in on a target when the member would otherwise be justified in pointing a firearm at the target.

312.5 SAFE HANDLING, INSPECTION AND STORAGE

Members shall maintain the highest level of safety when handling firearms and shall consider the following:

  1. Members shall not unnecessarily display or handle any firearm.
  2. Members shall be governed by all rules and regulations pertaining to the use of the range and shall obey all orders issued by the Firearms Instructor. Members shall not dry fire or practice quick draws except under instructor supervision while at the range.
  3. Members shall not clean, repair, load or unload a firearm anywhere in the Department, except where clearing barrels are present.
  4. Rifles removed from vehicles or storage shall be loaded and unloaded using clearing barrels.
  5. Members shall not place or store any firearm or other weapon on department premises except where the place of storage is locked. No one shall carry firearms into a jail or any part thereof when securing or processing an arrestee, but shall place all firearms in a secured location.
  6. Members shall not use any automatic firearm, heavy caliber rifle, gas or other type of chemical weapon or firearm from the armory, except with approval of a supervisor.
  7. Any firearm authorized by the Department to be carried on- or off-duty that is determined by a member to be malfunctioning or in need of service or repair shall not be carried. It shall be promptly presented to the Department or a Armorer approved by the Department for inspection and repair. Any firearm deemed in need of repair or service by the Armorer will be immediately removed from service. If the firearm is the member’s primary duty firearm, a replacement firearm will be issued to the member until the duty firearm is serviceable.

312.5.1 INSPECTION AND STORAGE

Handguns shall be inspected regularly and upon access or possession by another person. Rifles shall be inspected at the beginning of the shift by the member to whom the weapon is issued. The member shall ensure that the firearm is carried in the proper condition and loaded with approved ammunition. Inspection of the rifle shall be done while standing outside of the patrol vehicle. All firearms shall be pointed in a safe direction or into clearing barrels.

Personally owned firearms may be safely stored in lockers at the end of the shift. Department- owned firearms shall be stored appropriately. Handguns may remain loaded if they are secured in an appropriate holster. Rifles shall be unloaded in a safe manner and then stored appropriately.

312.5.2 STORAGE AT HOME

Members shall ensure that all firearms and ammunition are locked and secured while in their homes, vehicles or any other area under their control, and in a manner that will keep them inaccessible to children and others who should not have access. Members shall not permit department-issued firearms to be handled by anyone not authorized by the Department to do so. Members should be aware that negligent storage of a firearm could result in civil and criminal liability (Minn. Stat. § 609.666; Minn. Stat. § 609.378).

312.5.3 ALCOHOL AND DRUGS

Firearms shall not be carried by any member, either on- or off-duty, who has consumed an amount of an alcoholic beverage, taken any drugs or medication, or has taken any combination thereof that would tend to adversely affect the member’s senses or judgment.

312.6 FIREARMS TRAINING AND QUALIFICATIONS

All members who carry a firearm while on-duty are required to successfully complete training with their duty firearms. In addition to regular training, all members will qualify at least annually with their duty firearms (Minn. Stat. § 626.8452). Members will qualify with off-duty and secondary firearms at least once a year. Training and qualifications must be on an approved range course.

At least annually, all members carrying a firearm should receive practical training designed to simulate field situations including low-light shooting.

312.6.1 NON-CERTIFICATION OR NON-QUALIFICATION

If any member fails to meet minimum standards for firearms training or qualification for any reason, including injury, illness, duty status or scheduling conflict, that member shall submit a memorandum to his/her immediate supervisor prior to the end of the required training or qualification period.

Those who fail to meet minimum standards or qualify on their first shooting attempt shall be provided remedial training and will be subject to the following requirements:

  1. Additional range assignments may be scheduled to assist the member in demonstrating consistent firearm proficiency.
  2. Members shall be given credit for a range training or qualification when obtaining a qualifying score or meeting standards after remedial training.
  3. No range credit will be given for the following:
    1. Unauthorized range make-up
    2. Failure to meet minimum standards or qualify after remedial training

Members who repeatedly fail to meet minimum standards will be removed from field assignment and may be subject to disciplinary action.

312.7 FIREARM DISCHARGE

Except during training or recreational use, any member who discharges a firearm intentionally or unintentionally, on- or off-duty, shall make a verbal report to his/her supervisor as soon as circumstances permit. If the discharge results in injury or death to another person, additional statements and reports shall be made in accordance with the Officer-Involved Shootings and Deaths Policy. If a firearm was discharged as a use of force, the involved member shall adhere to the additional reporting requirements set forth in the Use of Force Policy.

In all other cases, written reports shall be made as follows:

  1. If on-duty at the time of the incident, the member shall file a written report with his/her Captain or provide a recorded statement to investigators prior to the end of shift, unless otherwise directed.
  2. If off-duty at the time of the incident, a written report shall be submitted or recorded statement provided no later than the end of the next regularly scheduled shift, unless otherwise directed by a supervisor.

312.7.1 DESTRUCTION OF ANIMALS

Members are authorized to use firearms to stop an animal in circumstances where the animal reasonably appears to pose an imminent threat to human safety and alternative methods are not reasonably available or would likely be ineffective.

In circumstances where there is sufficient advance notice that a potentially dangerous animal may be encountered, department members should develop reasonable contingency plans for dealing with the animal (e.g., fire extinguisher, Taser® device, oleoresin capsicum (OC) spray, animal control officer). Nothing in this policy shall prohibit any member from shooting a dangerous animal if circumstances reasonably dictate that a contingency plan has failed or becomes impractical.

312.7.2 INJURED ANIMALS

With the approval of a supervisor, a member may euthanize an animal that is so badly injured that human compassion requires its removal from further suffering and where other dispositions are impractical.

312.7.3 WARNING AND OTHER SHOTS

Warning shots are prohibited. Shots fired for the purpose of summoning aid are discouraged and may not be discharged unless the member reasonably believes that they appear necessary, effective and reasonably safe.

312.7.4 REPORTING FIREARMS DISCHARGE

The Chief of Police shall notify the Commissioner of Public Safety within 30 days of an on-duty firearm discharge, except when the discharge is in the course of training or destruction of animals (described in this policy). The notification shall contain information concerning the reason for and circumstances surrounding the discharge (Minn. Stat. § 626.553).

312.8 ARMORER / FIREARMS INSTRUCTOR DUTIES

The range will be under the exclusive control of the Armorer / Firearms Instructor. All members attending will follow the directions of the Armorer. The Armorer will maintain a roster of all members attending the range and will submit the roster to the Training Supervisor after each range date. Failure of any member to sign in and out with the Armorer may result in non-participation or non- qualification.

The range shall remain operational and accessible to department members during hours established by the Department.

The Armorer has the responsibility of making periodic inspection, at least once a year, of all duty firearms carried by members of this department to verify proper operation. The Armorer has the authority to deem any department-issued or privately owned firearm unfit for service. The member will be responsible for all repairs to his/her personally owned firearm; it will not be returned to service until inspected and approved by the Armorer.

The Armorer has the responsibility for ensuring each member meets the minimum requirements during training shoots and, on at least a yearly basis, can demonstrate proficiency in the care, cleaning and safety of all firearms the member is authorized to carry.

The Armorer shall complete and submit to the Training Supervisor documentation of the courses provided. Documentation shall include the qualifications of each instructor who provides the training, a description of the training provided and, on a form that has been approved by the Department, a list of each member who completes the training. The Armorer should keep accurate records of all training shoots, qualifications, repairs, maintenance or other records as directed by the Training Supervisor.

312.9 FLYING WHILE ARMED

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) has imposed rules governing law enforcement officers flying armed on commercial aircraft. The following requirements apply to personnel who intend to be armed while flying on a commercial air carrier or flights where screening is conducted (49 CFR 1544.219):

  1. Officers wishing to fly while armed must be flying in an official capacity, not for vacation or pleasure and must have a need to have the firearm accessible, as determined by the Department based on the law and published TSA rules.
  2. Officers must carry their Metro Transit Police Department identification card, bearing the officer's name, a full-face photograph, identification number, the officer's signature and the signature of the Chief of Police or the official seal of the Department and must present this identification to airline officials when requested. The officer should also carry the standard photo identification needed for passenger screening by airline and TSA officials (e.g., driver’s license, passport).
  3. The Metro Transit Police Department must submit a National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (NLETS) message prior to the officer’s travel. If approved, TSA will send the Metro Transit Police Department an NLETS message containing a unique alphanumeric identifier. The officer must present the message on the day of travel to airport personnel as authorization to travel while armed.
  4. An official letter signed by the Chief of Police authorizing armed travel may also accompany the officer. The letter should outline the officer’s need to fly armed, detail his/her itinerary and include that the officer has completed the mandatory TSA training for a law enforcement officer flying while armed.
  5. Officers must have completed the mandated TSA security training covering officers flying while armed. The training shall be given by the department-appointed instructor.
  6. It is the officer’s responsibility to notify the air carrier in advance of the intended armed travel. This notification can be accomplished by early check-in at the carrier’s check-in counter.
  7. Any officer flying while armed should discreetly contact the flight crew prior to take-off and notify them of his/her assigned seat.
  8. Discretion must be used to avoid alarming passengers or crew by displaying a firearm. The officer must keep the firearm concealed on his/her person at all times. Firearms are not permitted in carry-on luggage and may not be stored in an overhead compartment.
  9. Officers should resolve any problems associated with flying armed through the flight captain, ground security manager, TSA representative or other management representative of the air carrier.
  10. Officers shall not consume alcoholic beverages while aboard an aircraft, or within eight hours prior to boarding an aircraft.

312.10 CARRYING FIREARMS OUT OF STATE

Qualified, active, full-time officers of this department are authorized to carry a concealed firearm in all other states subject to the following conditions (18 USC § 926B):

  1. The officer shall carry his/her Metro Transit Police Department identification card whenever carrying such weapon.
  2. The officer is not the subject of any current disciplinary action.
  3. The officer may not be under the influence of alcohol or any other intoxicating or hallucinatory drug.
  4. The officer will remain subject to this and all other department policies (including qualifying and training).

Officers are cautioned that individual states may enact local regulations that permit private persons or entities to prohibit or restrict the possession of concealed firearms on their property, or that prohibit or restrict the possession of firearms on any state or local government property, installation, building, base or park. Federal authority may not shield an officer from arrest and prosecution in such locally restricted areas.

Active law enforcement officers from other states are subject to all requirements set forth in 18 USC § 926B.

314 - Vehicle Pursuits

314.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Vehicle pursuits expose innocent citizens, law enforcement officers and fleeing violators to the risk of serious injury or death. The primary purpose of this policy is to provide officers with guidance in balancing the safety of the public and themselves against law enforcement's duty to apprehend violators of the law. Another purpose of this policy is to minimize the potential for pursuit-related collisions. Vehicular pursuits require officers to exhibit a high degree of common sense and sound judgment. Officers must not forget that the immediate apprehension of a suspect is generally not more important than the safety of the public and pursuing officers (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 1).

314.1.1 PHILOSOPHY

Deciding whether to pursue a motor vehicle is a critical decision that must be made quickly and under difficult and unpredictable circumstances. In recognizing the risk to public safety created by vehicle pursuits, no officer or supervisor shall be criticized or disciplined for deciding not to engage in a vehicle pursuit due to the risk involved. This includes circumstances where Department policy would permit the initiation or continuation of the pursuit. It is recognized that vehicle pursuits are not always predictable and decisions made pursuant to this policy will be evaluated according to the totality of the circumstances reasonably available at the time of the pursuit (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 1).

Officers must remember that the most important factors to the successful conclusion of a pursuit are proper self-discipline and sound professional judgment. Officers conduct during the course of a pursuit must be objectively reasonable; that is, what a reasonable officer would do under the circumstances. An individual’s unreasonable desire to apprehend a fleeing suspect at all costs has no place in professional law enforcement pursuit (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (2)).

314.2 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Blocking or vehicle intercept - A slow-speed coordinated maneuver where two or more law enforcement vehicles simultaneously intercept and block the movement of a suspect vehicle, the driver of which may be unaware of the impending enforcement stop, with the goal of containment and preventing a pursuit. Blocking is not a moving or stationary road block.

Boxing-in - A tactic designed to stop a violator's vehicle by surrounding it with law enforcement vehicles and then slowing all vehicles to a stop.

Pursuit Intervention Technique (PIT) - A low-speed maneuver intended to terminate the pursuit by causing the violator's vehicle to spin out and come to a stop.

Ramming - The deliberate act of impacting a violator's vehicle with another vehicle to functionally damage or otherwise force the violator's vehicle to stop.

Roadblocks - A tactic designed to stop a violator's vehicle by intentionally placing a vehicle or other immovable object in the path of the violator's vehicle.

Spikes or tack strips - A device that extends across the roadway and is designed to puncture the tires of the pursued vehicle.

Terminate - When the officer discontinues the use of all emergency equipment, slows the marked squad car to the posted speed limit and turns off the pursuit route at the next available intersection or exit point.

Vehicle pursuit - An event in which a peace officer initiates a vehicular stop and a driver resists the signal or order to stop by increasing speed, taking evasive action or otherwise refusing to stop the vehicle.

314.3 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

It is the policy of this department that a vehicle pursuit shall be conducted with at least one flashing red warning lamp visible from the front and a siren that is sounded when necessary to warn pedestrians or other drivers (Minn. Stat. § 169.17 and Minn. Stat. § 169.68).

Operating an emergency vehicle in a pursuit with emergency lights and siren does not relieve the operator of an authorized emergency vehicle of the duty to drive with due regard for the safety of all persons, and does not protect the driver from the consequences of a reckless disregard for the safety of others.

314.3.1 WHEN TO INITIATE A PURSUIT

Officers are authorized to initiate a pursuit when it is reasonable to believe that a suspect is attempting to evade arrest or detention by fleeing in a vehicle that has been given a signal to stop by a peace officer.

The following factors individually and collectively shall be considered in deciding whether to initiate or continue a pursuit (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2(2); Minn. R. § 6700.2701):

  1. Seriousness of the known or reasonably suspected crime and its relationship to community safety.
  2. The importance of protecting the public and balancing the known or reasonably suspected offense and the apparent need for immediate capture against the risks to officers, innocent motorists and others.
  3. Apparent nature of the fleeing suspect (e.g., whether the suspect represents a serious threat to public safety).
  4. The identity of the suspect has been verified and there is comparatively minimal risk in allowing the suspect to be apprehended at a later time.
  5. Safety of the public in the area of the pursuit, including the type of area, time of day, the amount of vehicular and pedestrian traffic (e.g., school zones) and the speed of the pursuit relative to these factors.
  6. Pursuing officer's familiarity with the area of the pursuit, the quality of radio communications between the pursuing units and the dispatcher/supervisor, and the driving capabilities of the pursuing officers under the conditions of the pursuit.
  7. Weather, traffic and road conditions that unreasonably increase the danger of the pursuit when weighed against the risks resulting from the suspect's escape.
  8. Performance capabilities of the vehicles used in the pursuit in relation to the speeds and other conditions of the pursuit.
  9. Vehicle speeds.
  10. Other persons in or on the pursued vehicle (e.g., passengers, co-offenders and hostages).
  11. Age of the suspect and occupants.
  12. Availability of other resources, such as aircraft assistance.
  13. The police unit is carrying passengers other than on-duty police officers. Pursuits should not be undertaken with a prisoner in the pursuit vehicle unless exigent circumstances exist, and then only after the need to apprehend the suspect is weighed against the safety of the prisoner in transport. A unit containing more than a single prisoner should not participate in a pursuit.

314.3.2 WHEN TO TERMINATE A PURSUIT

Pursuits should be discontinued whenever the totality of objective circumstances known or which reasonably ought to be known to the officer or supervisor during the pursuit indicates that the present risks of continuing the pursuit reasonably appear to outweigh the risks resulting from the suspect's escape.

The above factors on when to initiate a pursuit are expressly included herein and will apply equally to the decision to discontinue as well as the decision to initiate a pursuit. Officers and supervisors must objectively and continuously weigh the seriousness of the offense against the potential danger to innocent motorists, themselves and the public when electing to continue a pursuit. In the context of this policy, the term “terminate” shall be construed to mean discontinue or to stop chasing the fleeing vehicle.

In addition to the factors listed above, the following factors should be considered when deciding whether to terminate a pursuit (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (2); Minn. R. § 6700.2701):

  1. Distance between the pursuing officers and the fleeing vehicle is so great that further pursuit would be futile or require the pursuit to continue for an unreasonable time or distance.
  2. Pursued vehicle's location is no longer definitely known.
  3. Officer's pursuit vehicle sustains damage or a mechanical failure that renders it unsafe to drive
  4. ursuit vehicle suffers an emergency equipment failure that causes the vehicle to no longer qualify for emergency operation use.
  5. Extended pursuits of violators for misdemeanors not involving abuse or risk of serious harm (independent of the pursuit) are discouraged.
  6. Hazards to uninvolved bystanders or motorists.
  7. If the identity of the offender is known and it does not reasonably appear that the need for immediate capture outweighs the risks associated with continuing the pursuit, officers should strongly consider discontinuing the pursuit and apprehending the offender at a later time.
  8. When radio communications are broken or inadequate.
  9. When the danger that the continued pursuit poses to the public, the officers or the suspect is too great, balanced against the risk of allowing the suspect to remain at large.
  10. When directed to terminate the pursuit by a supervisor.

314.3.3 SPEED LIMITS

The speed of a pursuit is a factor that should be evaluated on a continuing basis by the officer and supervisor. Evaluation of vehicle speeds shall take into consideration public safety, officer safety and the safety of the occupants of the fleeing vehicle.

Should high vehicle speeds be reached during a pursuit, officers and supervisors shall also consider these factors when determining the reasonableness of the speed of the pursuit:

  1. Pursuit speeds have become unreasonably unsafe for the surrounding conditions.
  2. Pursuit speeds have exceeded the driving ability of the officer.
  3. Pursuit speeds are beyond the capabilities of the pursuit vehicle thus making its operation unsafe.

314.4 PURSUIT UNITS

Pursuit units should be limited to three vehicles (two units and a supervisor). However, the number of units involved will vary with the circumstances (Minn. R. § 6700.2701 (B)).

An officer or supervisor may request additional units to join a pursuit if, after assessing the factors outlined above, it appears that the number of officers involved would be insufficient to safely arrest the suspect(s). All other officers shall stay out of the pursuit but should remain alert to its progress and location. Any officer who drops out of a pursuit may then, if necessary, proceed to the termination point at legal speeds, following the appropriate rules of the road.

Distinctively marked patrol vehicles should replace unmarked vehicles involved in a pursuit whenever practicable.

314.4.1 VEHICLES WITHOUT EMERGENCY EQUIPMENT

Vehicles not equipped with red light and siren are prohibited from initiating or joining in any pursuit. Officer(s) in such vehicles may provide support to pursuing units as long as their vehicle is operated in compliance with all traffic laws.

314.4.2 PRIMARY UNIT RESPONSIBILITIES

The initial pursuing officer will be designated as the primary pursuit unit and will be responsible for the conduct of the pursuit unless it is unable to remain reasonably close enough to the violator’s vehicle. The primary responsibility of the officer initiating the pursuit is the apprehension of the suspect(s) without unreasonable danger to him/herself or other persons (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (4)).

The primary unit should notify Transit Control Center, commencing with a request for priority radio traffic, that a vehicle pursuit has been initiated, and as soon as practicable provide information including, but not limited to:

  1. Reason for the pursuit.
  2. Location and direction of travel.
  3. Speed of the fleeing vehicle.
  4. Description of the fleeing vehicle and license number, if known.
  5. Number of occupants.
  6. The identity or description of the known occupants.
  7. Weather, road and traffic conditions.
  8. Identity of other agencies involved in the pursuit.
  9. Information concerning the use of firearms, threat of force, injuries, hostages or other unusual hazards.
  10. Request for medical assistance for any person injured in the course of the pursuit (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (6); Minn. R. § 6700.2701).

Unless relieved by a supervisor or secondary unit, the officer in the primary unit shall be responsible for broadcasting the progress of the pursuit. Unless circumstances reasonably indicate otherwise, the primary unit should relinquish the responsibility of broadcasting the progress of the pursuit to a secondary unit or aircraft joining the pursuit to minimize distractions and allow the primary unit to concentrate foremost on safe pursuit tactics (Minn. R. § 6700.2701).

314.4.3 SECONDARY UNITS RESPONSIBILITIES

The second officer in the pursuit is responsible for the following (Minn. R. § 6700.2701):

  1. Immediately notifying the dispatcher of entry into the pursuit.
  2. Remaining at a safe distance behind the primary unit unless directed to assume the role of primary officer, or if the primary unit is unable to continue the pursuit.

     

     

  3. Broadcasting the progress of the pursuit unless the situation indicates otherwise.
  4. Serve as backup to the primary unit once the subject has been stopped.

314.4.4 PURSUIT DRIVING TACTICS

The decision to use or not use specific driving tactics requires the same assessment of considerations outlined in the factors to be considered concerning pursuit initiation and termination. The following are tactics for units involved in the pursuit (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (2)):

  1. Officers, considering their driving skills and vehicle performance capabilities, will space themselves from other involved vehicles such that they are able to see and avoid hazards or react safely to maneuvers by the fleeing vehicle.
  2. Officers may proceed past a red or stop signal or stop sign but only after slowing down and utilizing a flashing red lamp or siren as may be necessary for safe operation (Minn. Stat. § 169.03, Subd. 2).
  3. As a general rule, officers should not pursue a vehicle driving the wrong way on a roadway, highway or freeway. In the event the pursued vehicle does so, the following tactics should be considered:

     

    1. Request assistance from an available air unit.
    2. Maintain visual contact with the pursued vehicle by paralleling on the correct side of the roadway.
    3. Request other units to observe exits available to the suspect(s).
  4. Notify the Minnesota State Patrol or other law enforcement agency if it appears the pursuit may enter their jurisdiction.
  5. Officers involved in a pursuit should not attempt to pass other units unless the situation indicates otherwise or they are requested to do so by the primary unit, and a clear understanding of the maneuver process exists between the involved officers.

314.4.5 TACTICS/PROCEDURES FOR UNITS NOT INVOLVED IN THE PURSUIT

There should be no paralleling of the pursuit route. Officers are authorized to use emergency equipment at intersections along the pursuit path to clear intersections of vehicular and pedestrian traffic to protect the public. Officers should remain in their assigned area and should not become involved with the pursuit unless directed otherwise by a supervisor.

Non-pursuing personnel needed at the termination of the pursuit should respond in a non- emergency manner, observing the rules of the road.

The primary unit, secondary unit and supervisor should be the only units operating under emergency conditions (emergency lights and siren) unless other units are assigned to the pursuit.

314.4.6 PURSUIT TRAILING

In the event the initiating unit from this agency relinquishes control of the pursuit to another unit or jurisdiction, that initiating unit may, with permission of a supervisor, trail the pursuit to the termination point in order to provide necessary information and assistance for the arrest of the suspect(s).

The term "trail" means to follow the path of the pursuit at a safe speed while obeying all traffic laws and without activating emergency equipment. If the pursuit is at a slow rate of speed, the trailing unit will maintain sufficient distance from the pursuit units so as to clearly indicate an absence of participation in the pursuit.

314.4.7 AIRCRAFT ASSISTANCE

When available, aircraft assistance should be requested. Once the air unit has established visual contact with the pursued vehicle, it should assume control over the pursuit. The primary and secondary ground units should consider whether the participation of an aircraft warrants their continued involvement in the pursuit (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (4)).

The air unit should coordinate the activities of resources on the ground, report progress of the pursuit and provide officers and supervisors with details of upcoming traffic congestion, road hazards or other pertinent information to evaluate whether to continue the pursuit. If ground units are not within visual contact and the air unit determines that it is unsafe to continue the pursuit, the air unit should recommend terminating the pursuit.

314.5 SUPERVISORY CONTROL AND RESPONSIBILITIES

It is the policy of this department that available supervisory and management control will be exercised over all vehicle pursuits involving officers from this department (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (4); Minn. R. § 6700.2701).

The field supervisor of the officer initiating the pursuit, or if unavailable, the nearest field supervisor will be responsible for the following:

  1. Upon becoming aware of a pursuit, immediately notify involved officers and Transit Control Center of supervisory presence and ascertaining all reasonably available information to continuously assess the situation and risk factors associated with the pursuit in order to ensure that the pursuit is conducted within established Department guidelines.
  2. Engage in the pursuit, when appropriate, to provide on-scene supervision.
  3. Exercise management and control of the pursuit even if not engaged in it.
  4. Ensure that no more than the number of required law enforcement units needed are involved in the pursuit under the guidelines set forth in this policy.
  5. Direct that the pursuit be terminated if, in his/her judgment, it is not justified to continue the pursuit under the guidelines of this policy.
  6. Ensure that aircraft assistance is requested if available.
  7. Ensure that the proper radio channel is being used.
  8. Ensure the notification and/or coordination of outside agencies if the pursuit either leaves or is likely to leave the jurisdiction of this agency.
  9. Control and manage MTPD units when a pursuit enters another jurisdiction.
  10. Prepare a post-pursuit critique and analysis of the pursuit for training purposes.

314.5.1 SHIFT SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon becoming aware that a pursuit has been initiated, the Shift Supervisor should monitor and continually assess the situation and ensure the pursuit is conducted within the guidelines and requirements of this policy. The Shift Supervisor has the final responsibility for the coordination, control and termination of a vehicle pursuit and shall be in overall command (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (4); Minn. R. § 6700.2701).

The Shift Supervisor shall review all pertinent reports for content and forward them to the Captain.

314.6 COMMUNICATIONS

If the pursuit is confined within the Metropolitan Transit Police Department area limits, radio communications will be conducted on the primary channel unless instructed otherwise by a supervisor or communications dispatcher. If the pursuit leaves the jurisdiction of this department or such is imminent, involved units should, whenever available, switch radio communications to an emergency channel most accessible by participating agencies and units (e.g. local agency channel and/or P-Tac 1) (Minn. R. § 6700.2701).

314.6.1 TRANSIT CONTROL CENTER RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon notification that a pursuit has been initiated, Transit Control Center will be responsible for the following (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (4)):

  1. Coordinate pursuit communications of the involved units and personnel.
  2. Notify and coordinate with other involved or affected agencies as practicable.
  3. Ensure that a field supervisor is notified of the pursuit.
  4. Assign an incident number and log all pursuit activities.
  5. Broadcast pursuit updates as well as other pertinent information as necessary.
  6. Notify the Shift Supervisor as soon as practicable.

314.6.2 LOSS OF PURSUED VEHICLE

When the pursued vehicle is lost, the primary unit should broadcast pertinent information to assist other units in locating the vehicle. The primary unit will be responsible for coordinating any further search for either the pursued vehicle or suspects fleeing on foot.

314.7 INTER-JURISDICTIONAL CONSIDERATIONS

When a pursuit enters another agency's jurisdiction, the primary officer or supervisor, taking into consideration distance traveled, unfamiliarity with the area and other pertinent facts, should determine whether to request the other agency to assume the pursuit. Unless entry into another jurisdiction is expected to be brief, it is generally recommended that the primary officer or supervisor ensure that notification is provided to the dispatcher and to each outside jurisdiction into which the pursuit is reasonably expected to enter, regardless of whether such jurisdiction is expected to assist (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2 (5); Minn. R. § 6700.2701).

If a pursuit from another agency enters the Department’s jurisdiction, if aware, the Transit Control Center should update the on-duty supervisor.

314.7.1 ASSUMPTION OF PURSUIT BY ANOTHER AGENCY

Metro Transit Police Department officers will discontinue the pursuit when another agency has assumed the pursuit unless continued assistance of the Metro Transit Police Department is requested by the agency assuming the pursuit. Upon discontinuing the pursuit, the primary unit may proceed upon request, with or at the direction of a supervisor, to the termination point to assist in the investigation.

The role and responsibilities of officers at the termination of a pursuit initiated by this department shall be coordinated with appropriate consideration of the units from the agency assuming the pursuit.

Notification of a pursuit in progress should not be construed as a request to join the pursuit. Requests to or from another agency to assume a pursuit should be specific. Because of communication limitations between local agencies, a request for another agency's assistance will mean that its personnel will assume responsibilities for the pursuit. For the same reasons, when a pursuit leaves another jurisdiction and a request for assistance is made to this department, the other agency should relinquish control.

314.7.2 PURSUITS EXTENDING INTO THIS JURISDICTION

The agency that initiates a pursuit shall be responsible for conducting the pursuit. Units from this department should not join a pursuit unless specifically requested to do so by the agency whose peace officers are in pursuit. An exception to being specifically requested to join a pursuit, is if the initiating agency has only a single unit in the pursuit. Under this circumstance, and if authorized by a supervisor, a unit from this department may join the pursuit until sufficient units from the initiating agency join the pursuit.

When a request is made for this department to assist or take over a pursuit from another agency that has entered this jurisdiction, the supervisor should consider these additional following factors:

  1. Ability to maintain the pursuit.
  2. Circumstances serious enough to continue the pursuit.
  3. Adequate staffing to continue the pursuit.
  4. The public's safety within this jurisdiction.
  5. Safety of the pursuing officers.

As soon as practicable, the Shift Supervisor should review a request for assistance from another agency. The Shift Supervisor, after consideration of the above factors, may decline to assist in or assume the other agency's pursuit.

Assistance to a pursuing outside agency by officers of this department will terminate when the supervisor orders the termination or when the pursuing peace officers have sufficient assistance from other sources. Ongoing participation from this department may continue only until sufficient assistance is present.

In the event that a pursuit from another agency terminates within the Metro Transit Police Department's jurisdiction, officers shall provide appropriate assistance to peace officers from the outside agency including, but not limited to, scene control, coordination and completion of supplemental reports and any other assistance requested or needed.

314.8 PURSUIT INTERVENTION

Pursuit intervention is an attempt to terminate the ability of a suspect to continue to flee in a motor vehicle through tactical application of technology, road spikes, blocking, boxing, PIT (Pursuit Intervention Technique), ramming or roadblock procedures.

314.8.1 WHEN USE AUTHORIZED

Use of pursuit intervention tactics should be employed only after approval of a supervisor. In deciding whether to use intervention tactics, officers/supervisors should balance the risks of allowing the pursuit to continue with the potential hazards arising from the use of each tactic to the public, the officers and persons in or on the pursued vehicle. With these risks in mind, the decision to use any intervention tactic should be reasonable in light of the circumstances apparent to the officer at the time of the decision (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 2; Minn. R. § 6700.2701).

It is imperative that officers act within legal bounds using good judgment and accepted practices.

314.8.2 USE OF FIREARMS

The use of firearms to disable a pursued vehicle is not generally an effective tactic and involves all the dangers associated with discharging firearms. Officers should not utilize firearms during an ongoing pursuit unless the conditions and circumstances meet the requirements authorizing the use of deadly force. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit any officer from using a firearm to stop a suspect from using a vehicle as a deadly weapon.

314.8.3 INTERVENTION STANDARDS

Any pursuit intervention tactic, depending upon the conditions and circumstances under which it is used, may present dangers to the officers, the public or anyone in or on the vehicle being pursued. Certain applications of intervention tactics may be construed to be a use of force, including deadly force, and are subject to Department policies guiding such use. Officers who have not received Department-approved training in the application and use of any intervention tactic or

equipment shall consider these facts and requirements prior to deciding how, when, where and if an intervention tactic should be employed.

  1. Blocking or vehicle intercept should only be considered in cases involving felony suspects or impaired drivers who pose a threat to public safety when officers reasonably believe that attempting a conventional enforcement stop will likely result in the driver attempting to flee in the vehicle. Because of the potential risks involved, this technique should only be employed by officers who have received training in such tactics and after giving consideration to the following:
    1. The need to immediately stop the suspect vehicle or prevent it from leaving substantially outweighs the risks of injury or death to occupants of the suspect vehicle, officers or other members of the public.
    2. All other reasonable intervention techniques have failed or reasonably appear ineffective.
    3. Employing the blocking maneuver does not unreasonably increase the risk to officer safety.
    4. The target vehicle is stopped or traveling at a low speed.
    5. At no time should civilian vehicles be used to deploy this technique.
  2. Only those officers trained in the use of the PIT will be authorized to use this procedure and only then with approval of a supervisor upon consideration of the circumstances and conditions presented at the time, including the potential for risk of injury to officers, the public and occupants of the pursued vehicle.
  3. Ramming a fleeing vehicle should be done only after other reasonable tactical means at the officer's disposal have been exhausted. This tactic should be reserved for situations where there does not appear to be another reasonable alternative method. This policy is an administrative guide to direct officers in their decision-making process before ramming another vehicle. When ramming is used as a means to stop a fleeing vehicle, the following factors should be present:
    1. The suspect is an actual or suspected felon, who reasonably appears to represent a serious threat to the public if not apprehended.
    2. The suspect is driving with willful or wanton disregard for the safety of other persons or is driving in a reckless and life-endangering manner.
    3. If there does not reasonably appear to be a present or immediately foreseeable serious threat to the public, the use of ramming is not authorized.
  4. As with all intervention techniques, pursuing officers should obtain supervisor approval before attempting to box a suspect vehicle during a pursuit. The use of such a technique must be carefully coordinated with all involved units, taking into consideration the circumstances and conditions apparent at the time, as well as the potential risk of injury to officers, the public and occupants of the pursued vehicle.
  5. Spike strips should be deployed only when it is reasonably apparent that only the pursued vehicle will be affected by their use. Prior to the deployment of spike strips, the officer shall notify pursuing units and the supervisor of the intent and location. Officers should carefully consider the limitations of such devices as well as the potential risks to officers, the public and occupants of the pursued vehicle. If the pursued vehicle is a motorcycle, a vehicle transporting hazardous materials or a school bus transporting children officers and supervisors should weigh the potential consequences against the need to immediately stop the vehicle.
  6. Because roadblocks involve a potential for serious injury or death to occupants of the pursued vehicle if the suspect does not stop, the intentional placement of roadblocks in the direct path of a pursued vehicle is generally discouraged and should not be deployed without prior approval of a supervisor, and only then under extraordinary conditions when all other reasonable intervention techniques have failed or reasonably appear ineffective and the need to immediately stop the pursued vehicle substantially outweighs the risks of injury or death to occupants of the pursued vehicle, officers or other members of the public.

314.8.4 CAPTURE OF SUSPECTS

Proper self-discipline and sound professional judgment are the keys to a successful conclusion of a pursuit and apprehension of evading suspects. Officers shall use only that amount of force that reasonably appears necessary under the circumstances to properly perform their lawful duties.

Unless relieved by a supervisor, the primary officer should coordinate efforts to apprehend the suspect(s) following the pursuit. Officers should consider safety of the public and the involved officers when formulating plans to contain and capture the suspect.

314.9 REPORTING AND REVIEW REQUIREMENTS

All appropriate reports shall be completed to comply with appropriate local and state regulations. The Records Supervisor shall ensure the appropriate forms are filed with the Department of Public Safety within 30 days (Minn. Stat. § 626.5532):

  1. The primary officer shall complete appropriate crime/arrest reports.
  2. The primary officer or supervisor shall complete the appropriate pursuit report.
  3. After first obtaining available information, the on-duty field supervisor shall promptly complete a Supervisor's Log or interoffice memorandum, briefly summarizing the pursuit to the Chief of Police or designee. This memo should minimally contain the following information (Minn. Stat. § 626.5532):
    1. Date and time of pursuit.
    2. Length of pursuit in distance and time.
    3. Involved units and officers.
    4. Initial reason and circumstances surrounding the pursuit.
    5. Starting and termination points.
    6. Alleged offense, charges filed or disposition: arrest, citation or other release.
    7. Arrestee information should be provided if applicable.
    8. Injuries and/or property damage.
    9. Medical treatment.
    10. The outcome of the pursuit.
    11. Name of supervisor handling or at the scene.
    12. A preliminary determination that the pursuit appears to be in compliance with this policy or additional review and/or follow-up is warranted.
  4. After receiving copies of reports, logs and other pertinent information, the Chief of Police or designee shall conduct or assign the completion of a post-pursuit review as appropriate to the circumstances.
  5. Annually, the Chief of Police should direct a documented review and analysis of Department vehicle pursuits to minimally include policy suitability, policy compliance and training needs.

314.9.1 REGULAR AND PERIODIC PURSUIT TRAINING

In addition to initial and supplementary training on pursuits, all licensed non-exempt employees will participate, no less than annually, in regular and periodic training on this policy and the importance of vehicle safety and protecting the public at all times. Training will include a recognition of the need to balance the known offense and the need for immediate capture against the risks to officers and others.

The Training Coordinator shall ensure the frequency and content of emergency vehicle operations and vehicle pursuit training meets or exceeds that required by law (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 5; Minn. R. § 6700.2702).

314.9.2 POLICY REVIEW

Each licensed member of this department shall certify in writing that they have received, read and understand this policy initially and upon any amendments.

314.9.3 YEARLY CERTIFICATION

This policy shall be reviewed and certified to the state annually that it complies with requirements of any new or revised model policy adopted by the state (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 3).

314.9.4 PUBLIC DISCLOSURE

Copies of the current pursuit policy shall be made available to the public on request.

316 - Officer Response to Calls

316.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The State of Minnesota finds that emergency vehicle operations are an integral part of law enforcement’s commitment to public safety. This policy provides for the safe and appropriate response to all emergency and non-emergency situations (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458 Subd. 1).

316.2 RESPONSE TO CALLS

316.2.1 RESPONSE TO EMERGENCY CALLS

Officers responding to an emergency call shall proceed immediately as appropriate. Officers responding to an emergency call shall sound the siren or display at least one lighted red light to the front of the vehicle. Whenever practicable, during an emergency call response the officer should continuously operate emergency lighting equipment and sound the siren (Minn. Stat. § 169.03 et seq.; Minn. Stat. § 169.17).

Responding with a red light, emergency lighting and/or siren does not relieve the operator of an authorized emergency vehicle or a law enforcement vehicle of the duty to drive with due regard for the safety of all persons and does not protect the driver from the consequences of his/her reckless disregard for the safety of others. The use of any other warning equipment without emergency lights and siren does not provide an exemption under Minnesota law (Minn. Stat. § 169.17).

Officers should only respond with a red light, emergency lights and/or siren when so dispatched or when circumstances reasonably indicate an emergency response is appropriate. Officers not responding with a red light, emergency lights and/or siren shall observe all traffic laws.

316.2.2 LIGHTING EXEMPTION OF LAW ENFORCEMENT VEHICLES

An officer may operate a vehicle without lights as otherwise required when (Minn. Stat. § 169.541):

  1. It is reasonable for the officer to do so under the circumstances.
  2. The officer reasonably believes that operating the vehicle without lights is necessary to investigate a criminal violation or suspected criminal violation of state laws, rules or orders, or local laws, ordinances or regulations; and
  3. There are no conditions of limited or reduced visibility (defined in Minn. Stat. § 84.87; Minn. Stat. § 84.928; Minn. Stat. § 169.48-169.65; Minn. Stat. § 86B.511); and the officer is not driving:
    1. On an interstate highway.
    2. At speeds greater than what is reasonable and prudent under existing weather, road and traffic conditions.
    3. Faster than the posted speed limit.
    4. In situations where the peace officer is an active participant in the pursuit of a motor vehicle in violation of Minn. Stat. § 609.487.

316.3 REQUESTING EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE

Requests for emergency assistance should be limited to those situations where the involved personnel reasonably believe that there is an imminent threat to the safety of officers, or assistance is needed to prevent imminent serious harm to a citizen. Where a situation has stabilized and emergency response is not required, the requesting officer shall promptly notify Transit Control Center.

If circumstances permit, the requesting officer should give the following information:

  • The unit number
  • The location
  • The reason for the request and type of emergency
  • The number of units required

316.3.1 NUMBER OF UNITS PARTICIPATING

Normally, only those units reasonably necessary should respond to an emergency as an emergency call response. The Shift Supervisor or the field supervisor should monitor all emergency responses and reduce or enhance the response as warranted.

316.4 RESPONSIBILITIES OF RESPONDING OFFICERS

Officers shall exercise sound judgment and care with due regard for life and property when responding to an emergency call. During a response to an emergency call officers may (Minn. Stat. § 169.03; Minn. Stat. § 169.17):

  1. Proceed cautiously past a red or stop signal or stop sign but only after slowing down and utilizing a red light or siren as may be necessary for safe operation.
  2. Exceed any speed limits, provided this does not endanger life or property.
  3. Disregard regulations governing direction of movement or turning in specified directions as authorized by law.
  4. Disregard regulations governing parking or standing when using a warning lamp.

The decision to continue an emergency call response is at the discretion of the officer. If, in the officer's judgment, the roadway conditions or traffic congestion does not permit such a response without unreasonable risk, the officer may elect to respond to the call without the use of red lights and siren at the legal speed limit. In such an event, the officer should immediately notify Transit Control Center. An officer shall also discontinue an emergency call response when directed by a supervisor or as otherwise appropriate.

Upon determining that an emergency call response is appropriate, an officer shall immediately give the location from which he/she is responding.

When emergency vehicles are on the scene of an emergency and pose any hazard, or when the vehicle operators seek exemption to park, stop or stand contrary to any law or ordinance pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 169.541, adequate warning lights shall be operated whenever practicable.

316.5 COMMUNICATIONS RESPONSIBILITIES

A dispatcher shall ensure acknowledgment and response of assisting units when an officer requests emergency assistance or when the available information reasonably indicates that the public is threatened with serious injury or death and an immediate law enforcement response is needed. In all other circumstances, the dispatcher shall obtain authorization from the Shift Supervisor prior to assigning an emergency response. The dispatcher shall:

  1. Attempt to assign the closest available unit to the location requiring assistance.
  2. Immediately notify the Shift Supervisor (if applicable).
  3. Confirm the location from which the unit is responding.
  4. Notify and coordinate outside emergency services (e.g., local agency police, fire and ambulance).
  5. Continue to obtain and broadcast information as necessary concerning the response, and monitor the situation until it is stabilized or terminated.
  6. Control all radio communications during the emergency and coordinate assistance under the direction of the Shift Supervisor.

316.6 SUPERVISORY RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon being notified that an emergency response has been initiated, the Shift Supervisor shall verify the following:

  1. The proper response has been initiated.
  2. No more than those units reasonably necessary under the circumstances are involved in the response.
  3. Affected outside jurisdictions are being notified as practicable.

The Shift Supervisor shall, whenever practicable, monitor the response until it has been stabilized or terminated and assert control by directing units into or out of the response if necessary. If, in the supervisor's judgment, the circumstances require additional units to be assigned an emergency response, the supervisor may do so.

It is the supervisor's responsibility to terminate an emergency response that, in his/her judgment, is inappropriate due to the circumstances.

When making the decision to authorize an emergency call response, the Shift Supervisor should consider the following:

  • The type of call or crime involved.
  • The necessity of a timely response.
  • Traffic and roadway conditions.
  • The location of the responding units.

316.7 FAILURE OF EMERGENCY EQUIPMENT

If the emergency equipment on the vehicle should fail to operate, the officer must terminate the emergency call response and respond accordingly. The officer shall notify the Shift Supervisor and the Transit Control Center of the equipment failure so that another unit may be assigned to the emergency response.

316.8 TRAINING

The Training Coordinator shall ensure the frequency and content of emergency vehicle operations training meets or exceeds that required by law (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458).

318 - Canines

318.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes guidelines for the use of canines to augment law enforcement services to the community including, but not limited to, locating individuals and contraband and apprehending criminal offenders.

318.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that teams of handlers and canines meet and maintain the appropriate proficiency to effectively and reasonably carry out legitimate law enforcement objectives.

318.3 ASSIGNMENT

Canine teams should be assigned to assist and supplement the Patrol Division. However, they may be assigned by the Shift Supervisor to other functions such as routine calls for service based on the current operational needs.

Canine teams should generally not be assigned to handle routine matters that will take them out of service for extended periods of time and then only with the approval of the Shift Supervisor.

318.4 CANINE COORDINATOR

The canine coordinator shall be appointed by and directly responsible to the Patrol Captain or the authorized designee.

The responsibilities of the coordinator include, but are not limited to:

  1. Reviewing all canine use reports to ensure compliance with policy and to identify training issues and other needs of the program.
  2. Maintaining liaison with the vendor kennel(s).
  3. Maintaining liaison with command staff and functional supervisors.
  4. Maintaining liaison with other agency canine coordinators.
  5. Maintaining accurate records to document canine activities.
  6. Recommending and overseeing the procurement of equipment and services for the teams of handlers and canines.
  7. Scheduling all canine-related activities.
  8. Ensuring the canine teams are scheduled for regular training to maximize their capabilities.

318.5 REQUESTS FOR CANINE TEAMS

Patrol Division members are encouraged to request the use of a canine. Requests for a canine team from department units outside of the Patrol Division shall be reviewed by the Shift Supervisor.

318.5.1 OUTSIDE AGENCY REQUEST

All requests for canine assistance from outside agencies must be approved by the Shift Supervisor and are subject to the following:

  1. Canine teams shall not be used for any assignment that is not consistent with this policy.
  2. The canine handler shall have the authority to decline a request for any specific assignment that he/she deems unsuitable.
  3. Calling out off-duty canine teams is discouraged.
  4. It shall be the responsibility of the canine handler to coordinate operations with agency personnel in order to minimize the risk of unintended injury.
  5. It shall be the responsibility of the canine handler to complete all necessary reports or as directed.

318.5.2 PUBLIC DEMONSTRATIONS

All public requests for a canine team shall be reviewed and, if appropriate, approved by the canine coordinator prior to making any resource commitment. The canine coordinator is responsible for obtaining resources and coordinating involvement in the demonstration to include proper safety protocols. Canine handlers shall not demonstrate any apprehension work unless authorized to do so by the canine coordinator.

318.6 APPREHENSION GUIDELINES

A canine may be used to locate and apprehend a suspect if the canine handler reasonably believes that the individual has either committed, is committing or threatening to commit any serious offense and if any of the following conditions exist:

  1. There is a reasonable belief the suspect poses an imminent threat of violence or serious harm to the public, any officer or the handler.
  2. The suspect is physically resisting or threatening to resist arrest and the use of a canine reasonably appears to be necessary to overcome such resistance.
  3. The suspect is believed to be concealed in an area where entry by other than the canine would pose a threat to the safety of officers or the public.

It is recognized that situations may arise that do not fall within the provisions set forth in this policy. Such events require consideration of the totality of the circumstances and the use of an objective reasonableness standard applied to the decision to use a canine.

Absent a reasonable belief that a suspect has committed, is committing or threatening to commit a serious offense mere flight from a pursuing officer without any of the above conditions shall not serve as the basis for the use of a canine to apprehend a suspect.

Use of a canine to locate and apprehend a suspect wanted for a lesser criminal offense than those identified above requires approval from the Shift Supervisor. Absent a change in circumstances that present an imminent threat to officers the canine or the public, such canine use should be conducted on-leash or under conditions that minimize the likelihood the canine will bite or otherwise injure the individual.

In all applications once the suspect has been located and no longer reasonably appears to present a threat or risk of escape the handler should secure the canine as soon as it becomes reasonably practicable. If the canine has apprehended the suspect with a secure bite, the handler should promptly command the canine to release the suspect.

318.6.1 PREPARATION FOR DEPLOYMENT

Prior to the use of a canine to search for or apprehend any suspect the canine handler and/or the supervisor on-scene should carefully consider all pertinent information reasonably available at the time. The information should include, but is not limited to:

  1. The nature and seriousness of the suspected offense.
  2. Whether violence or weapons were used or are anticipated.
  3. The degree of resistance or threatened resistance, if any, the suspect has shown.
  4. The suspect’s known or perceived age.
  5. The potential for injury to officers or the public caused by the suspect if the canine is not utilized.
  6. Any potential danger to the public and/or other officers at the scene if the canine is released.
  7. The potential for the suspect to escape or flee if the canine is not utilized.

As circumstances permit the canine handler should make every reasonable effort to communicate and coordinate with other involved members to minimize the risk of unintended injury.

It is the canine handler’s responsibility to evaluate each situation and determine whether the use of a canine is appropriate and reasonable. The canine handler shall have the authority to decline the use of the canine whenever he/she deems deployment is unsuitable.

A supervisor who is sufficiently apprised of the situation may prohibit deploying the canine.

Unless otherwise directed by a supervisor assisting members should take direction from the handler in order to minimize interference with the canine.

318.6.2 WARNINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

Unless it would increase the risk of injury or escape a clearly audible warning announcing that a canine will be used if the suspect does not surrender should be made prior to releasing a canine. The handler should allow a reasonable time for a suspect to surrender and should quiet the canine momentarily to listen for any verbal response to the warning. If reasonably feasible, other members should be in a location opposite the warning to verify that the announcement could be heard. If available, warnings given in other languages should be used as necessary.

If a warning is not to be given, the canine handler when reasonably practicable should first advise the supervisor of his/her decision before releasing the canine. In the event of an apprehension the handler shall document in any related report how the warning was given and, if none was given, the reasons why.

318.6.3 REPORTING DEPLOYMENTS, BITES AND INJURIES

Whenever a canine deployment results in a bite or causes injury to an intended suspect a supervisor should be promptly notified and the injuries documented in a canine use report. The injured person shall be promptly treated by emergency medical services personnel and, if appropriate, transported to an appropriate medical facility for further treatment. The deployment and injuries should also be included in any related incident or arrest report.

Any unintended bite or injury caused by a canine, whether on- or off-duty, shall be promptly reported to the canine coordinator. Unintended bites or injuries caused by a canine should be documented in an administrative report, not in a canine use report.

If an individual alleges an injury, either visible or not visible, a supervisor shall be notified and both the individual’s injured and uninjured areas shall be photographed as soon as reasonably practicable after first tending to the immediate needs of the injured party. Photographs shall be retained as evidence in accordance with current department evidence procedures. The photographs shall be retained until the criminal proceeding is completed and the time for any related civil proceeding has expired.

Canines used by law enforcement agencies are generally exempt from dangerous dog registration, impoundment and reporting requirements (Minn. Stat. § 347.51, Subd. 4).

318.7 NON-APPREHENSION GUIDELINES

Properly trained canines may be used to track or search for non-criminals (e.g., lost children, individuals who may be disoriented or in need of medical attention). The canine handler is responsible for determining the canine’s suitability for such assignments based on the conditions and the particular abilities of the canine. When the canine is deployed in a search or other non- apprehension operation the following guidelines apply.

  1. Absent a change in circumstances that present an immediate threat to officers the canine or the public, such applications should be conducted on-leash or under conditions that minimize the likelihood the canine will bite or otherwise injure the individual, if located.
  2. Unless otherwise directed by a supervisor assisting members should take direction from the handler in order to minimize interference with the canine.
  3. Throughout the deployment the handler should periodically give verbal assurances that the canine will not bite or hurt the individual and encourage the individual to make him/herself known.
  4. Once the individual has been located the canine should be placed in a down-stay or otherwise secured as soon as it becomes reasonably practicable.

318.7.1 ARTICLE DETECTION

A canine trained to find objects or property related to a person or crime may be used to locate or identify articles. A canine search should be conducted in a manner that minimizes the likelihood of unintended bites or injuries.

318.7.2 NARCOTICS DETECTION

A canine trained in narcotics detection may be used in accordance with current law and under certain circumstances, including:

  1. The search of vehicles, buildings, bags and other articles.
  2. Assisting in the search for narcotics during a search warrant service.
  3. Obtaining a search warrant by using the narcotics-detection trained canine in support of probable cause.

A narcotics-detection trained canine will not be used to search a person for narcotics unless the canine is trained to passively indicate the presence of narcotics.

318.7.3 BOMB/EXPLOSIVE DETECTION

Because of the high risk of danger to the public and officers when a bomb or other explosive device is suspected, the use of a canine team trained in explosive detection may be considered. When available an explosive-detection canine team may be used in accordance with current law and under certain circumstances, including:

  1. Assisting in the search of a building, structure, area, vehicle or article where an actual or suspected explosive device has been reported or located.
  2. Assisting with searches at transportation facilities and vehicles (e.g., buses, airplanes and trains).
  3. Preventive searches at special events, VIP visits, official buildings and other restricted areas. Searches of individuals should remain minimally intrusive and shall be strictly limited to the purpose of detecting explosives.
  4. Assisting in the search of scenes where an explosion has occurred and an explosive device or secondary explosive device is suspected.

At no time will an explosive-detection trained canine be used to render a suspected device safe or clear.

318.8 HANDLER SELECTION

The minimum qualifications for the assignment of canine handler include:

  1. An officer who is currently off probation.
  2. Residing in an adequate residence (may require a single family home, minimum 5-foot high fence with locking gates for apprehension dogs).
  3. A garage that can be secured and accommodate a canine vehicle.
  4. Living within 45 minutes response time to the MTPD.
  5. Agreeing to be assigned to the position for a minimum of three years.

318.9 HANDLER RESPONSIBILITIES

The canine handler shall ultimately be responsible for the health and welfare of the canine and shall ensure that the canine receives proper nutrition, grooming, training, medical care, affection and living conditions.

The canine handler will be responsible for the following:

  1. Except as required during appropriate deployment, the handler shall not expose the canine to any foreseeable and unreasonable risk of harm.
  2. The handler shall maintain all department equipment under his/her control in a clean and serviceable condition.
  3. When not in service the handler shall maintain the canine vehicle in a locked garage, away from public view.
  4. When a handler is off-duty for an extended number of days the assigned canine vehicle should be stored at the Metro Transit Police Department facility.
  5. Handlers shall permit the canine coordinator to conduct spontaneous on-site inspections of affected areas of their homes as well as their canine vehicles to verify that conditions and equipment conform to this policy.
  6. Any changes in the living status of the handler that may affect the lodging or environment of the canine shall be reported to the canine coordinator as soon as possible.
  7. When off-duty the canine shall be in a kennel provided by the MTPD at the home of the handler. When a canine is kenneled at the handler’s home the gate shall be secured with a lock. When off-duty the canine may be let out of the kennel while under the direct control of the handler.
  8. The canine should be permitted to socialize in the home with the handler’s family for short periods of time and under the direct supervision of the handler.
  9. Under no circumstances will the canine be lodged at another location unless approved by the canine coordinator or Shift Supervisor.
  10. When off-duty the handler shall not involve the canine in any law enforcement activity or official conduct unless approved in advance by the canine coordinator or Shift Supervisor.
  11. Whenever a canine handler is off-duty for an extended number of days it may be necessary to temporarily relocate the canine. In those situations the handler shall give reasonable notice to the canine coordinator so that appropriate arrangements can be made.

318.9.1 CANINE IN PUBLIC AREAS

The canine should be kept on a leash when in areas that allow access to the public. Exceptions to this rule would include specific law enforcement operations for which the canine is trained.

  1. A canine shall not be left unattended in any area to which the public may have access.
  2. When the canine vehicle is left unattended all windows and doors shall be secured in such a manner as to prevent unauthorized access to the dog. The handler shall also ensure the unattended vehicle remains inhabitable for the canine.

318.10 HANDLER COMPENSATION

The canine handler shall be available for call-out under conditions specified by the canine coordinator.

The canine handler shall be compensated for time spent in the care, feeding, grooming and other needs of the canine in accordance with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), and according to the terms of the memorandum of understanding (29 USC § 207).

318.11 CANINE INJURY AND MEDICAL CARE

In the event that a canine is injured or there is an indication that the canine is not in good physical condition the injury or condition will be reported to the canine coordinator or Shift Supervisor as soon as practicable and appropriately documented.

All medical attention shall be rendered by the designated canine veterinarian, except during an emergency where treatment should be obtained from the nearest available veterinarian. All records of medical treatment shall be maintained in the handler’s personnel file.

318.12 TRAINING

Before assignment in the field each canine team shall be trained and certified to meet current nationally recognized standards or other recognized and approved certification standards. Cross- trained canine teams or those canine teams trained exclusively for the detection of narcotics and/ or explosives also shall be trained and certified to meet current nationally recognized standards or other recognized and approved certification standards established for their particular skills.

The canine coordinator shall be responsible for scheduling periodic training for all departmentmembers in order to familiarize them with how to conduct themselves in the presence of department canines.

All canine training should be conducted while on-duty unless otherwise approved by the canine coordinator or Shift Supervisor.

318.12.1 CONTINUED TRAINING

Each canine team shall thereafter be recertified to a current nationally recognized standard or other recognized and approved certification standards on an annual basis. Additional training considerations are as follows:

  1. If applicable, canine teams should receive training as defined in the current contract with the Metro Transit Police Department canine training provider.
  2. Canine handlers are encouraged to engage in additional training with approval of the canine coordinator.
  3. To ensure that all training is consistent no handler, trainer or outside vendor is authorized to train to a standard that is not reviewed and approved by this department.

318.12.2 FAILURE TO SUCCESSFULLY COMPLETE TRAINING

Any canine team failing to graduate or obtain certification shall not be deployed in the field for tasks the team is not certified to perform until graduation or certification is achieved. When reasonably practicable pending successful certification the canine handler shall be temporarily reassigned to regular patrol duties.

  • TRAINING RECORDS

     

    All canine training records shall be maintained in the canine handler’s and the canine’s training file. These files shall be maintained by the handler and Canine Unit coordinator.

    318.12.4 TRAINING AIDS

    Training aids are required to effectively train and maintain the skills of canines. Officers possessing, using or transporting controlled substances or explosives for canine training purposes must comply with federal and state requirements regarding the same. Alternatively, the Metro Transit Police Department may work with outside trainers with the applicable licenses or permits.

    318.12.5 CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE TRAINING AIDS

    Officers acting in the performance of their official duties may possess or transfer controlled substances for the purpose of narcotics-detection canine training in compliance with federal laws and if they comply with applicable state requirements (21 USC § 823(f)).

    The Chief of Police or the authorized designee may authorize a member to seek a court order to allow controlled substances seized by the Metro Transit Police Department to be possessed by the member or a narcotics-detection canine trainer who is working under the direction of this department for training purposes provided the controlled substances are no longer needed as criminal evidence.

    As an alternative, the Chief of Police or the authorized designee may request narcotics training aids from another law enforcement agency.

    These procedures are not required if the canine handler uses commercially available synthetic substances that are not controlled narcotics.

    318.12.6 CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE PROCEDURES

    Due to the responsibilities and liabilities involved with possessing readily usable amounts of controlled substances and the ever-present danger of the canine’s accidental ingestion of these controlled substances, the following procedures shall be strictly followed:

    1. All controlled substance training samples shall be weighed and tested prior to dispensing to the individual canine handler or trainer.
    2. The weight and test results shall be recorded and maintained by the Canine Unit coordinator.
    3. Any person possessing controlled substance training samples pursuant to court order or DEA registration shall maintain custody and control of the controlled substances and shall keep records regarding any loss of, or damage to, those controlled substances.
    4. All controlled substance training samples will be inspected, weighed and tested quarterly. The results of the quarterly testing shall be recorded and maintained by the canine coordinator with a copy forwarded to the dispensing agency.
    5. All controlled substance training samples will be stored in locked, airtight and watertight cases at all times except during training. The locked cases shall be secured in the trunk of the canine handler’s assigned patrol vehicle during transport and stored in an appropriate locked container. There are no exceptions to this procedure.
    6. The canine coordinator shall periodically inspect every controlled substance training sample for damage or tampering and take any appropriate action.
    7. Any unusable controlled substance training samples shall be returned to the Property and Evidence or to the dispensing agency.
    8. All controlled substance training samples shall be returned to the dispensing agency upon the conclusion of the training or upon demand by the dispensing agency.

    318.12.7 EXPLOSIVE TRAINING AIDS

    Officers may possess, transport, store or use explosives or destructive devices in compliance with state and federal laws (Minn. Stat. § 609.668, Subd. 3(a)(1)); 18 USC § 842; 27 CFR 555.41).

    Explosive training aids designed specifically for canine teams should be used whenever reasonably feasible. Due to the safety concerns in the handling and transportation of explosives, inert or non-hazardous training aids should be employed whenever feasible. The use of explosives or destructive devices for training aids by canine teams is subject to the following:

    1. All explosive training aids when not in use shall be properly stored in a secure facility appropriate for the type of materials.
    2. An inventory ledger shall be maintained to document the type and quantity of explosive training aids that are stored.
    3. The canine coordinator shall be responsible to verify the explosive training aids on hand against the inventory ledger once each quarter.
    4. Only members of the canine team shall have access to the explosive training aids storage facility.
    5. A primary and secondary custodian will be designated to minimize the possibility of loss of explosive training aids during and after the training. Generally the handler will be designated as the primary custodian while the trainer or authorized second person on-scene will be designated as the secondary custodian.
    6. Any lost or damaged explosive training aids shall be promptly reported to the canine coordinator who will determine if any further action will be necessary. Any loss of explosives will be reported to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

320 - Domestic Abuse

320.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide the guidelines necessary to deter, prevent and reduce domestic abuse through vigorous enforcement and to address domestic abuse as a serious crime against society. The policy specifically addresses the commitment of this department to take enforcement action when appropriate, to provide assistance to victims and to guide officers in the investigation of domestic abuse.

320.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Court order - All forms of orders related to domestic abuse, that have been issued by a court of this state or another, whether civil or criminal, regardless of whether service has been made.

Domestic abuse - Commission of any of the following if committed against a family or household member by another family or household member (Minn. Stat. § 518B.01 Subd. 2):

  1. Actual or fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, or assault
  2. Terroristic threats (Minn. Stat. § 609.713)
  3. Criminal sexual conduct (Minn. Stat. § 609.342 to Minn. Stat. § 609.3451)
  4. Interference with an emergency call (Minn. Stat. § 609.78)

320.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department's response to incidents of domestic abuse and violations of related court orders shall stress enforcement of the law to protect the victim and shall communicate the philosophy that domestic abuse is criminal behavior. It is also the policy of this department to facilitate victims' and offenders' access to appropriate civil remedies and community resources whenever feasible.

320.3 OFFICER SAFETY

The investigation of domestic abuse cases often places officers in emotionally charged and sometimes highly dangerous environments. No provision of this policy is intended to supersede the responsibility of all officers to exercise due caution and reasonable care in providing for the safety of any officers and parties involved.

INVESTIGATIONS

The following guidelines should be followed by officers when investigating domestic abuse cases:

  1. Calls of reported, threatened, imminent or ongoing domestic abuse and the violation of any court order are of extreme importance and should be considered among the highest response priorities. This includes incomplete 9-1-1 calls.
  2. When practicable, officers should obtain and document statements from the victim, the suspect and any witnesses, including children, in or around the household or location of occurrence.
  3. Officers should list the full name and date of birth (and school if available) of each child who was present in the household at the time of the offense. The names of other children who may not have been in the house at that particular time should also be obtained for follow-up.
  4. When practicable and legally permitted, video or audio record all significant statements and observations.
  5. All injuries should be photographed, regardless of severity, taking care to preserve the victim's personal privacy. Where practicable, photographs should be taken by a person of the same sex. Victims whose injuries are not visible at the time of the incident should be asked to contact the Investigation Division in the event that the injuries later become visible.
  6. Officers should request that the victim complete and sign an authorization for release of medical records related to the incident when applicable.
  7. If the suspect is no longer at the scene, officers should make reasonable efforts to locate the suspect to further the investigation, provide the suspect with an opportunity to make a statement and make an arrest or seek an arrest warrant if appropriate.
  8. Seize any firearms or other dangerous weapons in the home, if appropriate and legally permitted, for safekeeping or as evidence.
  9. When completing an incident or arrest report for violation of a court order, officers should include specific information that establishes that the offender has been served, including the date the offender was served, the name of the agency that served the order and the provision of the order that the subject is alleged to have violated. When reasonably available, the arresting officer should attach a copy of the order to the incident or arrest report.
  10. Officers should take appropriate enforcement action when there is probable cause to believe an offense has occurred. Factors that should not be used as sole justification for declining to take enforcement action include:
    1. Marital status of suspect and victim.
    2. Whether the suspect lives on the premises with the victim.
    3. Claims by the suspect that the victim provoked or perpetuated the violence.
    4. The potential financial or child custody consequences of arrest.
    5. The physical or emotional state of either party.
    6. Use of drugs or alcohol by either party.
    7. Denial that the abuse occurred where evidence indicates otherwise.
    8. A request by the victim not to arrest the suspect.
    9. Location of the incident (public/private).
    10. Speculation that the complainant may not follow through with the prosecution.
    11. The racial, cultural, social, professional position or sexual orientation of the victim or suspect.

320.4.1 IF A SUSPECT IS ARRESTED

If a suspect is arrested, officers should:

  1. Advise the victim that there is no guarantee the suspect will remain in custody.
  2. Provide the victim’s contact information to the jail staff to enable notification of the victim upon the suspect’s release from jail (Minn. Stat. § 629.72 Subd. 6).
  3. Advise the victim whether any type of court order will be in effect when the suspect is released from jail.

320.4.2 IF NO ARREST IS MADE

If no arrest is made, the officer should:

  1. Advise the parties of any options, including but not limited to:
    1. Voluntary separation of the parties.
    2. Appropriate resource referrals (e.g., counselors, friends, relatives, shelter homes, victim witness unit).
  2. Document the resolution in a report.

320.5 VICTIM ASSISTANCE

Victims may be traumatized or confused. Officers should:

  1. Recognize that a victim's behavior and actions may be affected.
  2. Provide the victim with the department's domestic abuse information handout, even if the incident may not rise to the level of a crime.
  3. Alert the victim to any available victim advocates, shelters and community resources.
  4. Stand by for a reasonable amount of time when an involved person requests law enforcement assistance while removing essential items of personal property.
  5. Seek medical assistance as soon as practicable for the victim if he/she has sustained injury or complains of pain.
  6. Ask the victim whether he/she has a safe place to stay. Assist in arranging to transport the victim to an alternate shelter if the victim expresses a concern for his/her safety or if the officer determines that a need exists.
  7. Make reasonable efforts to ensure that children or dependent adults who are under the supervision of the suspect or victim are being properly cared for.
  8. Seek or assist the victim in obtaining an emergency order if appropriate.

320.6 DISPATCH ASSISTANCE

All calls of domestic abuse, including incomplete 9-1-1 calls, should be dispatched as soon as practicable.

Dispatchers are not required to verify the validity of a court order before responding to a request for assistance. Officers should request that dispatchers check whether any of the involved persons are subject to the terms of a court order.

320.7 FOREIGN COURT ORDERS

Various types of orders may be issued in domestic abuse cases. Any foreign court order properly issued by a court of another state, Indian tribe or territory shall be enforced by officers as if it were the order of a court in this state. An order should be considered properly issued when it reasonably appears that the issuing court has jurisdiction over the parties and reasonable notice and opportunity to respond was given to the party against whom the order was issued (18 USC

§ 2265). An otherwise valid out-of-state court order shall be enforced, regardless of whether the order has been properly registered with this state.

320.8 VERIFICATION OF COURT ORDERS

Determining the validity of a court order, particularly an order from another jurisdiction, can be challenging. Therefore, in determining whether there is probable cause to make an arrest for a violation of any court order, officers should carefully review the actual order when available, and, where appropriate and practicable:

  1. Ask the subject of the order about his/her notice or receipt of the order, his/her knowledge of its terms and efforts to respond to the order.
  2. Check available records or databases that may show the status or conditions of the order.
  3. Contact the issuing court to verify the validity of the order.
  4. Contact a law enforcement official from the jurisdiction where the order was issued to verify information.

Officers should document in an appropriate report their efforts to verify the validity of an order, regardless of whether an arrest is made. Officers should contact a supervisor for clarification when needed.

320.9 LEGAL MANDATES AND RELEVANT LAWS

Minnesota law provides for the following:

320.9.1 STANDARDS FOR ARRESTS

Officers investigating a domestic abuse report should consider the following:

  1. An officer has the authority to arrest a person without a warrant, including at the person’s residence, if the peace officer has probable cause to believe that the person has, within the preceding 72 hours, exclusive of the day probable cause was established, assaulted, threatened with a dangerous weapon or placed in fear of immediate bodily harm any person covered by the “family or household member” definition, even if the assault did not rise to the level of a felony or did not take place in the presence of the peace officer (Minn. Stat. § 629.34; Minn. Stat. § 629.341).
  2. Officers should generally not make dual arrests but may make an arrest of a primary aggressor. Where there are allegations that each party assaulted the other, the officer shall determine whether there is sufficient evidence to conclude that one of the parties was the primary aggressor based on the following criteria and the officer’s judgment (Minn. Stat. § 629.342, Subd. 2):
    1. Comparative extent of any injuries inflicted
    2. Fear of physical injury because of past or present threats
    3. Actions taken in self-defense or to protect oneself
    4. History of domestic abuse perpetrated by one party against the other
    5. Existence or previous existence of an order for protection
  3. An officer shall not issue a citation in lieu of arrest and detention to an individual charged with any of the following offenses (Minn. Stat. § 629.72):
    1. Stalking
    2. Domestic abuse
    3. Violation of an order for protection
    4. Violation of a domestic abuse no contact order
  4. The Shift Supervisor will determine whether a person arrested on a charge of stalking any person, domestic abuse, violation of an order for protection, violation of a domestic abuse no contact order or violation of a court-ordered transfer of firearms will be held in custody or be issued a citation in lieu of continued detention and released after booking. The person shall be held in custody whenever the Shift Supervisor determines that it reasonably appears the release of the person (Minn. Stat. § 629.72):
    1. Poses a threat to the alleged victim or another family or household member.
    2. Poses a threat to public safety.
    3. Involves a substantial likelihood that the arrested person will fail to appear at subsequent proceedings.
  5. Officers shall arrest and take into custody, without a warrant, a person whom the peace officer has probable cause to believe has violated a court order issued pursuant to Minn.

    Stat. § 518B.01 or Minn. Stat. § 629.75. Such an arrest shall be made even if the violation of the order did not take place in the presence of the peace officer, if the officer can verify the existence of the order. If the person is not released on citation in lieu of continuing detention, the person shall be held in custody for these violations for at least 36 hours unless released by a court (Minn. Stat. § 518B.01; Minn. Stat. § 629.75).
  6. An arrest for a violation of an order of protection may be made regardless of whether the excluded party was invited back to the residence (Minn. Stat. § 518B.01, Subd. 18).
  7. Following an arrest, an officer should contact the local domestic abuse program by phone as soon as possible and provide the name and address of the victim and a brief factual account of events associated with the action.
  8. An officer shall arrest and take into custody a person whom the officer has probable cause to believe has violated a harassment restraining order, pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 609.748, if the officer can verify the existence of the order.
  9. Officers are authorized to make an arrest without a warrant when there is probable cause to believe the person has violated the provisions of any other no contact or restraining order issued by a court, even if the offense did not rise to the level of a felony (Minn. Stat. § 629.34). While conducting a domestic abuse investigation officers shall attempt to verify whether there has been a court order issued.
  10. Officers should consider whether other offenses have been committed that may not qualify as a domestic abuse including, but not limited to, burglary, felony assault, terroristic threats, kidnapping, false imprisonment, witness tampering, trespassing, criminal damage to property, disorderly conduct or assault.

320.9.2 REPORTS AND RECORDS

  1. Officers should include information related to the following in a report, as applicable (Minn. Stat. § 629.341):
    1. Names, addresses, telephone numbers of all involved persons
    2. Condition of clothing
    3. Description of the scene, including any property damage
    4. Evidence of physical injury, including strangulation
    5. Presence of elderly victims or persons with disabilities
    6. Facts related to any person who may have been a primary aggressor
    7. Excited utterances of the victim and the suspect
    8. Demeanor of the victim and the suspect
    9. Medical records, including the victim’s statements to paramedics, nurses and doctors
    10. Detailed statements of interviews of witnesses, including children, who may have been present, noting any language barriers
    11. A detailed explanation of the reasons for the officer’s decision not to arrest or seek an arrest warrant
    12. Evidence of any prior domestic abuse, related convictions, including dates
    13. Any existing orders for protection, harassment restraining order or no contact orders
    14. Identifying information of a specific court order violated, including county of origin, the file number and the provision allegedly violated
  2. Domestic abuse reports should be forwarded to the appropriate prosecutor for review and consideration of criminal charges, even when no arrest is made or warrant requested.
  3. If a child was present at the scene of a domestic abuse incident or was the victim of domestic abuse, the officer should determine whether the child has been subjected to physical abuse, sexual abuse or neglect, and comply with the mandatory reporting requirements of Minn. Stat. § 626.556.

     

    1. The officer shall also attempt to verify whether there has been an order for protection issued under Minn. Stat. § 260C.201 and take appropriate action.
  4. Fees will not be charged for the release of reports related to domestic abuse, as directed in Minn. Stat. § 13.82.

320.9.3 SERVICE OF COURT ORDERS

Officers, when reasonably safe and in a position to do so, shall serve copies or short forms of court orders as directed in Minn. Stat. § 518B.01 and Minn. Stat. § 609.748.

320.9.4 COURT-ORDERED FIREARM SURRENDERS

Although not required, this department generally will accept firearms surrendered by a court order from an abusing party or defendant. A decision to refuse a surrendered firearm should be approved by a supervisor.

Firearms will normally be surrendered at the Metro Transit Police Department; however, when encountering someone in the field who wishes to surrender a firearm, officers should make reasonable efforts to accommodate the request.

Surrendered firearms should be collected and submitted to the Property and Evidence in accordance with the Property and Evidence Policy.

322 - Search and Seizure

322.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Both the federal and state Constitutions provide every individual with the right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. This policy provides general guidelines for Metro Transit Police Department personnel to consider when dealing with search and seizure issues.

322.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to respect the fundamental privacy rights of individuals. Members of this department will conduct searches in strict observance of the constitutional rights of persons being searched. All seizures by this department will comply with relevant federal and state law governing the seizure of persons and property.

The Department will provide relevant and current training to officers as guidance for the application of current law, local community standards and prosecutorial considerations regarding specific search and seizure situations, as appropriate.

322.3 SEARCHES

The U.S. Constitution generally provides that a valid warrant is required in order for a search to be valid. There are, however, several exceptions that permit a warrantless search.

Examples of law enforcement activities that are exceptions to the general warrant requirement include, but are not limited to, searches pursuant to the following:

  • Valid consent
  • Incident to a lawful arrest
  • Legitimate community caretaking interests
  • Vehicle searches under certain circumstances
  • Exigent circumstances

Certain other activities are recognized by federal and state courts and by certain statutes as legitimate law enforcement activities that also do not require a warrant. Such activities may include seizure and examination of abandoned property, and observations of activities and property located on open public areas.

Because case law regarding search and seizure is constantly changing and subject to interpretation by the courts, each member of this department is expected to act in each situation according to current training and his/her familiarity with clearly established rights as determined by case law.

Whenever practicable, officers are encouraged to contact a supervisor to resolve questions regarding search and seizure issues prior to electing a course of action.

322.4 SEARCH PROTOCOL

Although conditions will vary and officer safety and other exigencies must be considered in every search situation, the following guidelines should be followed whenever circumstances reasonably permit:

  1. Members of this department will strive to conduct searches with dignity and courtesy.
  2. Officers should explain to the person being searched the reason for the search and how the search will be conducted.
  3. Searches should be carried out with due regard and respect for private property interests and in a manner that minimizes damage. Property should be left in a condition as close as reasonably possible to its pre-search condition.
  4. In order to minimize the need for forcible entry, an attempt should be made to obtain keys, combinations or access codes when a search of locked property is anticipated.
  5. When the person to be searched is of the opposite sex as the searching officer, a reasonable effort should be made to summon an officer of the same sex as the subject to conduct the search. When it is not practicable to summon an officer of the same sex as the subject, the following guidelines should be followed:

     

    1. Another officer or a supervisor should witness the search.
    2. The officer should not search areas of the body covered by tight-fitting clothing, sheer clothing or clothing that could not reasonably conceal a weapon.

322.5 DOCUMENTATION

Officers are responsible to document any search and to ensure that any required reports are sufficient including, at minimum, documentation of the following:

  • Reason for the search
  • Any efforts used to minimize the intrusiveness of any search (e.g., asking for consent or keys)
  • What, if any, injuries or damage occurred
  • All steps taken to secure property
  • The results of the search, including a description of any property or contraband seized
  • If the person searched is the opposite sex, any efforts to summon an officer of the same sex as the person being searched and the identification of any witness officer

Supervisors shall review reports to ensure the reports are accurate, that actions are properly documented and that current legal requirements and department policy have been met.

324 - Temporary Custody of Juveniles

324.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines consistent with the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act for juveniles taken into temporary custody by members of the Metro Transit Police Department (42 USC § 5633; Minn. Stat. § 260B.176; Minn. Stat. § 260C.176).

This policy does not apply to secure detention facilities, shelter care facilities or the juvenile portion of an adult facility authorized to hold juveniles, but rather applies to the temporary custody of a juvenile before a juvenile is released, delivered to a court or delivered to any of these other facilities (Minn. Stat. § 260B.176 Subd. 3).

324.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Custodian or Guardian - A person who is under a legal obligation or who is in fact providing care and support for a minor (Minn. Stat. § 260B.007 Subd. 13; Minn. Stat. § 260C.007 Subd. 13).

Juvenile non-offender - An abused, neglected, dependent or alien juvenile who may be legally held for his/her own safety or welfare. This includes those held as runaways (Minn. Stat. § 260C.175), truancy violators (Minn. Stat. § 260C.143) and juveniles 15 years old or younger in custody related to their engaging in prostitution or related activities (Minn. Stat. § 260B.007 Subd. 6(c)). This also includes any juvenile who may have initially been contacted for an offense that would not subject an adult to arrest (e.g., fine-only offense) but was taken into custody for his/her protection or for purposes of reuniting the juvenile with a parent, guardian or other responsible person.

Juvenile offender - A juvenile 17 years of age or younger who is alleged to have committed an offense that would subject an adult to arrest (a non-status offense). It also includes possession of a handgun in violation of Minn. Stat. § 624.713 (28 CFR 31.303). This does not include a juvenile petty offender under Minn. Stat. § 260B.007.

Non-secure custody - When a juvenile is held in the presence of an officer or other custody employee at all times and is not placed in a locked room, cell or behind any locked doors. Juveniles in non-secure custody may be handcuffed but not to a stationary or secure object. Personal supervision through direct visual monitoring and audio two-way communication is maintained. Monitoring through electronic devices such as video does not replace direct visual observation.

Secure custody - When a juvenile offender is held in a locked room, a set of rooms or a cell. Secure custody also includes being physically secured to a stationary object.

Examples of secure custody include:

  1. A juvenile left alone in an unlocked room within the secure perimeter of the adult temporary holding area.
  2. A juvenile handcuffed to a rail.
  3. A juvenile placed in a room that contains doors with delayed egress devices that have a delay of more than 30 seconds.
  4. A juvenile being processed in a secure booking area when an unsecure booking area is available.
  5. A juvenile left alone in a secure booking area after being photographed and fingerprinted.
  6. A juvenile placed in a cell within the adult temporary holding area whether or not the cell door is locked.

Sight and sound separation - Located or arranged to prevent physical, visual or auditory contact.

Status offender - A juvenile suspected of committing a criminal violation of the law that would not be a criminal violation but for the age of the offender. Examples may include underage possession of tobacco or curfew violation. A juvenile in custody on a court order or warrant based upon a status offense is also a status offender. Juvenile petty offenders taken into custody should be considered a status offender for purposes of this policy (Minn. Stat. § 260B.007; Minn. Stat. § 260B.143).

324.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department is committed to releasing juveniles from temporary custody as soon as reasonably practicable and keeping juveniles safe while they are in temporary custody at the Metro Transit Police Department. Juveniles should be held in temporary custody only for as long as reasonably necessary for processing, transfer or release.

324.3 JUVENILES WHO SHOULD NOT BE HELD

Juveniles who exhibit any of the following conditions should not be held at the Metro Transit Police Department:

  1. Unconscious
  2. Seriously injured
  3. A known suicide risk or obviously severely emotionally disturbed
  4. Significantly intoxicated
  5. Extremely violent or continuously violent

Officers taking custody of a juvenile who exhibits any of the above conditions should take reasonable steps to provide medical attention or mental health assistance and notify a supervisor of the situation.

These juveniles should not be held at the Metro Transit Police Department unless they have been evaluated by a qualified medical and/or mental health professional.

If the officer taking custody of the juvenile believes the juvenile may be a suicide risk, the juvenile shall be under continuous direct supervision until evaluation, release or a transfer is completed.

324.3.1 SUICIDE PREVENTION OF JUVENILES IN CUSTODY

The arresting officer should be alert to potential symptoms based upon exhibited behavior that may indicate the juvenile is a suicide risk. These symptoms may include depression, refusal to communicate, verbally threatening to kill him/herself or any unusual behavior that may indicate the juvenile may harm him/herself while in custody.

CUSTODY OF JUVENILES

Officers should take custody of a juvenile and temporarily hold the juvenile at the Metro Transit Police Department when there is no other lawful and practicable alternative to temporary custody. Refer to the Child Abuse Policy for additional information regarding detaining a juvenile that is suspected of being a victim.

No juvenile should be held in temporary custody at the Metro Transit Police Department without authorization of the arresting officer's supervisor or the Shift Supervisor.

Any juvenile taken into custody shall be released to the care of the juvenile’s parent or other responsible adult or transferred to a juvenile custody facility or to other authority as soon as practicable and in no event shall a juvenile be held beyond six hours from the time of his/her entry into the Metro Transit Police Department (42 USC § 5633).

324.4.1 CUSTODY OF JUVENILE NON-OFFENDERS

Non-offenders taken into protective custody in compliance with the Child Abuse Policy should generally not be held at the Metro Transit Police Department. Custodial arrangements should be made for non-offenders as soon as reasonably possible (Minn. Stat. § 260B.175; Minn. Stat. § 260C.143; Minn. Stat. § 260C.176). Juvenile non-offenders may not be held in secure custody (42 USC § 5633).

Juveniles detained for truancy violations may be released to a truancy service center, released to the superintendent or teacher at their school of enrollment, or released to a parent or legal guardian (Minn. Stat. § 260C.143; Minn. Stat. § 260A.04 Subd. 3).

324.4.2 CUSTODY OF JUVENILE STATUS OFFENDERS

Status offenders should generally be released by citation or with a warning rather than taken into temporary custody. However officers may take custody of a status offender if requested to do so by a parent or legal guardian in order to facilitate reunification (e.g., transported home or to the station to await a parent). Juvenile status offenders may not be held in secure custody (42 USC § 5633).

324.4.3 CUSTODY OF JUVENILE OFFENDERS

Juvenile offenders should be held in non-secure custody while at the Metro Transit Police Department unless another form of custody is authorized by this policy or is necessary due to exigent circumstances.

Generally juvenile offenders may be taken into custody under the authority of Minn. Stat. § 260B.175 when a court order authorizes the custody, when the juvenile has committed an offense that would warrant the arrest of an adult or it is reasonably believed that the child has violated the terms of probation, parole or other field supervision.

An officer who takes a juvenile offender of any age or gender into custody or could take the juvenile into custody under Minn. Stat. § 260B.175 is authorized to perform a protective pat-down search of the juvenile offender in order to protect the officer’s safety (Minn. Stat. § 260B.175 Subd. 4).

The parent, guardian or custodian of the juvenile shall be notified as soon as possible when a juvenile offender is taken into custody. Juvenile offenders shall be released to the custody of a parent, guardian, custodian or other suitable person unless there is reason to believe that the juvenile would (Minn. Stat. § 260B.176):

  1. Endanger him/herself or others.
  2. Not return for a court hearing.
  3. Run away from or otherwise not remain in the care or control of his/her parent, guardian or custodian.
  4. Face immediate endangerment to his/her health or welfare.

If a juvenile offender is not released to a parent, guardian, custodian or other suitable person, the officer taking the juvenile offender into custody shall notify the court as soon as possible of the detention of the juvenile and the reasons for detention (Minn. Stat. § 260B.176).

324.4.4 SCHOOL NOTIFICATION

Minnesota law requires that the Chief of Police or the authorized designee notify the superintendent or chief administrative officer of a juvenile’s school of an incident occurring within our jurisdiction if (Minn. Stat. § 260B.171 Subd. 5):

  1. There is probable cause to believe a juvenile has committed an offense that would be a crime if committed as an adult, where the victim is a student or staff member and the notice is reasonably necessary for the protection of the victim.
  2. There is probable cause to believe a juvenile has committed certain serious crimes regardless of whether the victim is a student or staff member.
  3. The juvenile is taken into protective custody and methamphetamine manufacture or storage is involved (see the Child Abuse Policy for guidelines) (see also, Minn. Stat. § 260C.171)

However the department is not required to notify the school if it is determined that notice would jeopardize an ongoing investigation.

324.5 ADVISEMENTS

When a juvenile is taken into custody on a warrant the juvenile and his/her parent, guardian or custodian, if present, shall immediately be informed of the existence of the warrant for immediate custody and, as soon as practicable, of the reasons why the juvenile is being taken into custody (Minnesota Rules of Juvenile Delinquency Procedure 4.03, Subd. 10).

If it is determined that a juvenile taken into custody is going to be placed into a secure detention facility or a shelter care facility, the officer shall advise both the juvenile and the juvenile’s parent, guardian or custodian as soon as possible (Minn. Stat. § 260B.176 Subd. 3; Minn. Stat. § 260C.176 Subd. 3):

  1. Of the reasons for custody and the reasons for placement.
  2. Of the location of the facility unless there is reason to believe that disclosure would place the juvenile’s health and welfare in immediate endangerment. If so, the disclosure shall not be made (Minn. Stat. § 260B.176 Subd. 5).
  3. That the juvenile’s parent, guardian or custodian and attorney or guardian ad litem may make an initial visit to the facility at any time. Subsequent visits may also be made on a reasonable basis.
  4. That the juvenile may telephone parents and an attorney or guardian ad litem immediately after being admitted to the facility and thereafter on a reasonable basis.
  5. That the juvenile may not be detained for acts under Minn. Stat. § 260B.007 Subd. 6 for longer than 36 hours excluding weekends and holidays unless a petition has been filed pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 260B.178.
  6. That the juvenile may not be detained under Minn. Stat. § 260C.175 Subd. 1, clause (1) or (2), item (ii) longer than 72 hours at a shelter care facility excluding weekends and holidays unless a petition has been filed pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 260C.178.
  7. That the juvenile may not be detained for acts under Minn. Stat. § 260B.007 Subd. 6 for longer than 24 hours in an adult jail or municipal lockup excluding weekends and holidays or longer than six hours if the adult jail or municipal lockup is a standard metropolitan statistical area, unless a petition has been filed pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 260B.178 and a motion made to refer the juvenile for adult prosecution.
  8. Of the date, time and place of the detention hearing, if this information is available.
  9. That the juvenile and the juvenile’s parent, guardian or custodian have the right to be present and to be represented by counsel at the detention hearing and that if they cannot afford counsel it will be appointed at public expense.

324.6 JUVENILE CUSTODY LOGS

Any time a juvenile is held in custody at the Department the custody shall be promptly and properly documented in the juvenile custody log, including:

  1. Identifying information about the juvenile being held.
  2. Date and time of arrival and release from the Metro Transit Police Department.
  3. Shift Supervisor notification and approval to temporarily hold the juvenile.
  4. Any charges for which the juvenile is being held and classification of the juvenile as a juvenile offender, status offender or non-offender.
  5. Any changes in status.
  6. Time of all welfare checks.
  7. Any medical and other screening requested and completed.
  8. Circumstances that justify any secure custody.
  9. Any other information that may be required by other authorities, such as compliance inspectors or a local juvenile court authority.

The Shift Supervisor shall initial the log to approve the custody including any secure custody and shall also initial the log when the juvenile is released.

324.7 NO-CONTACT REQUIREMENTS

Sight and sound separation shall be maintained between all juveniles and adults while in custody at the Department (42 USC § 5633). There should also be sight and sound separation between non-offenders and juvenile or status offenders.

In situations where brief or accidental contact may occur (e.g., during the brief time a juvenile is being fingerprinted and/or photographed in booking) a member of the Metro Transit Police Department shall maintain a constant, immediate presence with the juvenile or the adult to minimize any contact. If inadvertent or accidental contact does occur, reasonable efforts shall be taken to end the contact.

324.8 TEMPORARY CUSTODY REQUIREMENTS

Members and supervisors assigned to monitor or process any juvenile at the Metro Transit Police Department shall ensure the following:

  1. The Shift Supervisor should be notified if it is anticipated that a juvenile may need to remain at the Metro Transit Police Department more than four hours. This will enable the Shift Supervisor to ensure no juvenile is held at the Metro Transit Police Department more than six hours.
  2. A staff member of the same sex shall supervise personal hygiene activities and care such as changing clothing or using the restroom without direct observation to allow for privacy.
  3. Personal visual checks and significant incidents/activities shall be noted on the log.
  4. There shall be no viewing devices such as peep holes or mirrors of which the juvenile is not aware. Therefore an employee should inform a juvenile under his/her care that the juvenile will be monitored at all times unless he/she is using the toilet. This does not apply to surreptitious and legally obtained recorded interrogations.
  5. Juveniles shall have reasonable access to toilets and wash basins.
  6. Food should be provided if a juvenile has not eaten within the past four hours or is otherwise in need of nourishment including any special diet required for the health of the juvenile.
  7. Juveniles shall have reasonable access to a drinking fountain or water.
  8. Juveniles shall have reasonable opportunities to stand and stretch, particularly if handcuffed or restrained in any way.
  9. Juveniles should have privacy during family, guardian and/or lawyer visits.
  10. Juveniles should be permitted to remain in their personal clothing unless the clothing is taken as evidence or is otherwise unsuitable or inadequate for continued wear while in custody.
  11. Blankets should be provided as reasonably necessary.
  12. Adequate shelter, heat, light and ventilation should be provided without compromising security or enabling escape.
  13. Juveniles shall have adequate furnishings including suitable chairs or benches.
  14. Juveniles shall have the right to the same number of telephone calls as an adult in custody.
  15. No discipline may be administered to any juvenile nor may juveniles be subjected to corporal or unusual punishment, humiliation or mental abuse.

324.9 USE OF RESTRAINT DEVICES

Juvenile offenders may be handcuffed in accordance with the Handcuffing and Restraints Policy. A juvenile offender may be handcuffed at the Metro Transit Police Department when the juvenile presents a heightened risk. However non-offenders and status offenders should not be handcuffed unless they are combative or threatening.

Restraints shall only be used after less restrictive measures have failed and with the approval of the Shift Supervisor. Restraints shall only be used so long as it reasonably appears necessary for the juvenile's protection or the protection of others.

Juveniles in restraints shall be kept away from other unrestrained juveniles or monitored in such a way as to protect the juvenile from abuse.

324.10 PERSONAL PROPERTY

The officer taking custody of a juvenile offender or status offender at the Metro Transit Police Department shall ensure a thorough search of the juvenile’s property is made and all property is removed from the juvenile especially those items that could compromise safety, such as pens, pencils and belts.

The personal property of a juvenile should be placed in a property bag. The property should be inventoried in the juvenile’s presence and sealed into the bag. The property should be kept in a monitored or secure location until the juvenile is released from the custody of the Metro Transit Police Department.

324.11 SECURE CUSTODY

Only juvenile offenders 14 years of age or older may be placed in secure custody. Shift Supervisor approval is required before placing a juvenile offender in secure custody.

Secure custody should only be used for juvenile offenders when there is a reasonable belief that the juvenile is a serious risk of harm to him/herself or others.

Members of this department should not use secure custody for convenience when non-secure custody is or later becomes a reasonable option.

When reasonably practicable handcuffing one hand of a juvenile offender to a fixed object while otherwise maintaining the juvenile in non-secure custody should be considered as the method of secure custody rather than the use of a locked enclosure. An employee must be present at all times to ensure the juvenile's safety while secured to a stationary object.

Generally juveniles should not be secured to a stationary object for more than 60 minutes. Supervisor approval is required to secure a juvenile to a stationary object for longer than 60 minutes and every 30 minutes thereafter. Supervisor approval should be documented.

324.11.1 LOCKED ENCLOSURES

A thorough inspection of the area shall be conducted before placing a juvenile into the enclosure. A second inspection shall be conducted after removing the juvenile. Any damage noted to the room should be photographed and documented in the crime report.

The following requirements shall apply to a juvenile offender who is held inside a locked enclosure:

  1. The juvenile shall constantly be monitored by an audio/video system during the entire custody.
  2. Juveniles shall have constant auditory access to department members.
  3. Initial placement into and removal from a locked enclosure shall be logged.
  4. Random personal visual checks of the juvenile by a staff member no less than every 15 minutes shall occur.
    1. All checks shall be logged.
    2. The check should involve questioning the juvenile as to his/her well-being (sleeping juveniles or apparently sleeping juveniles should be awakened).
    3. Requests or concerns of the juvenile should be logged.
  5. Males and females shall not be placed in the same locked room.
  6. Juvenile offenders should be separated according to severity of the crime (e.g., felony or misdemeanor).
  7. Restrained juveniles shall not be mixed in a cell or room with unrestrained juveniles.

324.12 SUICIDE ATTEMPT, DEATH OR SERIOUS INJURY OF A JUVENILE

The Shift Supervisor will ensure procedures are in place to address the suicide attempt, death or serious injury of any juvenile held at the Metro Transit Police Department. The procedures will address:

  1. Immediate notification of the on-duty supervisor, Chief of Police and Criminal Investigations Division Supervisor.
  2. Notification of the parent, guardian or person standing in loco parentis, of the juvenile.
  3. Notification of the appropriate prosecutor.
  4. Notification of the local prosecuting attorney.
  5. Evidence preservation.

324.13 INTERVIEWING OR INTERROGATING JUVENILE SUSPECTS

No interview or interrogation of a juvenile should occur unless the juvenile has the apparent capacity to consent and does consent to an interview or interrogation.

324.14 RESTRICTION ON PHOTOGRAPHING

Photographing of juveniles taken into custody will only occur with the consent of the juvenile court, except when the photograph is taken related to a violation of driving while impaired or is taken pursuant to the laws of arrest (Minn. Stat. § 260B.171 Subd. 5; Minn. Stat. § 260B.175; Minn. Stat. § 169A.20).

326 - Adult Abuse

326.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for the investigation and reporting of suspected abuse of certain adults who may be more vulnerable than others. This policy also addresses mandatory notification for Metro Transit Police Department members as required by law.

326.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Adult abuse - Any offense or attempted offense involving violence or neglect of an adult victim when committed by a person responsible for the adult’s care, or any other act that would mandate reporting or notification to a social service agency or law enforcement.

326.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will investigate all reported incidents of alleged adult abuse and ensure proper reporting and notification as required by law.

326.3 MANDATORY NOTIFICATION

Members of the Metro Transit Police Department shall notify the entity responsible for receiving such reports when they have reason to believe that a vulnerable adult is being or has been maltreated, or has sustained a physical injury which is not reasonably explained. Members shall also report suspected negligent care by a service or health care provider that resulted in injury or harm requiring the care of a physician (Minn. Stat. § 626.557).

For purposes of notification, a vulnerable adult is a person age 18 or older who has physical, mental or emotional disabilities that make it difficult for the person to care for or to protect him/ herself from maltreatment. It also refers to adults who reside at a facility, or receive care at a facility or through home care (Minn. Stat. § 626.5572).

Maltreatment includes abuse, neglect and financial exploitation. Abuse can be physical, emotional or sexual. Financial exploitation may include any instance where vulnerable adults’ money, assets or property are not used for their benefit or are stolen or kept from them (see Minn. Stat. § 626.5572 for full definitions).

326.3.1 NOTIFICATION PROCEDURE

Oral notification should be made as soon as possible, but in all cases within 24 hours (Minn. Stat.

§ 626.557; Minn. Stat. § 626.5572). To the extent possible, the following should be included in the notification:

  1. The identity the vulnerable adult and any caregiver
  2. The nature and extent of the suspected maltreatment
  3. Any evidence of previous maltreatment
  4. The name and addresses of the person initiating the report or other witnesses
  5. The time, date, and location of the incident
  6. Any other information that might be helpful in investigating the suspected maltreatment

If notification of maltreatment is first made to the Metro Transit Police Department, the member receiving the notification shall complete and forward the intake form to the entity responsible for receiving such reports.

326.4 QUALIFIED INVESTIGATORS

Qualified investigators should be available to investigate cases of adult abuse. These investigators should:

  1. Conduct interviews in appropriate interview facilities.
  2. Be familiar with forensic interview techniques specific to adult abuse investigations.
  3. Present all cases of alleged adult abuse to the prosecutor for review.
  4. Coordinate with other enforcement agencies, social service agencies and facility administrators as needed.
  5. Provide referrals to therapy services, victim advocates, guardians and support for the victim and family as appropriate.
  6. Participate in or coordinate with multidisciplinary investigative teams as applicable (Minn. Stat. § 626.5571).

326.5 INVESTIGATIONS AND REPORTING

All reported or suspected cases of adult abuse require investigation and a report, even if the allegations appear unfounded or unsubstantiated. Investigations should be initiated a soon as possible, but in all cases within 24 hours (Minn. Stat. § 626.557).

Investigations and reports related to suspected cases of adult abuse should address, as applicable:

  1. The overall basis for the contact. This should be done by the investigating officer in all circumstances where a suspected adult abuse victim is contacted.
  2. Any relevant statements the victim may have made and to whom he/she made the statements.
  3. If a person is taken into protective custody, the reasons, the name and title of the person making the decision, and why other alternatives were not appropriate.
  4. Documentation of any visible injuries or any injuries identified by the victim. This should include photographs of such injuries, if practicable.
  5. Whether the victim was transported for medical treatment or a medical examination.
  6. Whether the victim identified a household member as the alleged perpetrator, and a list of the names of any other potential victims or witnesses who may reside in the residence.
  7. Identification of any prior related reports or allegations of abuse, including other jurisdictions, as reasonably known.
  8. Previous addresses of the victim and suspect.
  9. Other potential witnesses who have not yet been interviewed, such as relatives or others close to the victim’s environment.

Any unexplained death of an adult who was in the care of a guardian or caretaker should be considered as potential adult abuse and investigated similarly.

Assigned members shall initiate an investigation of vulnerable adult abuse as soon as possible, but in all cases within 24 hours when there is reason to believe a crime has been committed (Min. Stat. § 626.557).

326.6 PROTECTIVE CUSTODY

Before taking an adult abuse victim into protective custody when facts indicate the adult may not be able to care for him/herself, the officer should make reasonable attempts to contact an appropriate protective services agency. Generally, removal of an adult abuse victim from his/her family, guardian or other responsible adult should be left to the welfare authorities when they are present or have become involved in an investigation.

Generally, members of this department should remove an adult abuse victim from his/her family or guardian without a court order only when no other effective alternative is reasonably available and immediate action reasonably appears necessary to protect the victim. Prior to taking an adult abuse victim into protective custody, the officer should take reasonable steps to deliver the adult to another qualified legal guardian, unless it reasonably appears that the release would endanger the victim or result in abduction. If this is not a reasonable option, the officer shall ensure that the adult is delivered to an appropriate protective services agency or medical facility.

Whenever practicable, the officer should inform a supervisor of the circumstances prior to taking an adult abuse victim into protective custody. If prior notification is not practicable, officers should contact a supervisor promptly after taking the adult into protective custody.

When adult abuse victims are under state control, have a state-appointed guardian or there are other legal holdings for guardianship, it may be necessary or reasonable to seek a court order on behalf of the adult victim to either remove the adult from a dangerous environment (protective custody) or restrain a person from contact with the adult.

326.7 INTERVIEWS

326.7.1 PRELIMINARY INTERVIEWS

Absent extenuating circumstances or impracticality, officers should audio record the preliminary interview with a suspected adult abuse victim. Officers should avoid multiple interviews with the victim and should attempt to gather only the information necessary to begin an investigation. When practicable, investigating officers should defer interviews until a person who is specially trained in such interviews is available.

326.7.2 DETAINING VICTIMS FOR INTERVIEWS

An officer should not detain an adult involuntarily who is suspected of being a victim of abuse solely for the purpose of an interview or physical exam without his/her consent or the consent of a guardian unless one of the following applies:

  1. Exigent circumstances exist, such as:
    1. A reasonable belief that medical issues of the adult need to be addressed immediately.
    2. A reasonable belief that the adult is or will be in danger of harm if the interview or physical exam is not immediately completed.
    3. The alleged offender is a family member or guardian and there is reason to believe the adult may be in continued danger.
  2. A court order or warrant has been issued.

326.8 MEDICAL EXAMINATIONS

When an adult abuse investigation requires a medical examination, the investigating officer should obtain consent for such examination from the victim, guardian, agency or entity having legal custody of the adult. The officer should also arrange for the adult’s transportation to the appropriate medical facility.

In cases where the alleged offender is a family member, guardian, agency or entity having legal custody and is refusing to give consent for the medical examination, officers should notify a supervisor before proceeding. If exigent circumstances do not exist or if state law does not provide for officers to take the adult for a medical examination, the supervisor should consider other government agencies or services that may obtain a court order for such an examination.

326.9 DRUG-ENDANGERED VICTIMS

A coordinated response by law enforcement and social services agencies is appropriate to meet the immediate and longer-term medical and safety needs of an adult abuse victim who has been exposed to the manufacturing, trafficking or use of narcotics.

326.9.1 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES The Investigation Division supervisor should:

  1. Work with professionals from the appropriate agencies, including the applicable adult protective services agency, other law enforcement agencies, medical service providers and local prosecutors, to develop community-specific procedures for responding to situations where there are adult abuse victims endangered by exposure to methamphetamine labs or the manufacture and trafficking of other drugs.
  2. Activate any available interagency response when an officer notifies the Investigation Division supervisor that he/she has responded to a drug lab or other narcotics crime scene where an adult abuse victim is present or where evidence indicates that an adult abuse victim lives.
  3. Develop a report format or checklist for use when officers respond to drug labs or other narcotics crime scenes. The checklist will help officers document the environmental, medical, social and other conditions that may affect the adult.

326.9.2 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Officers responding to a drug lab or other narcotics crime scene where an adult abuse victim is present or where there is evidence that an adult abuse victim lives should:

  1. Document the environmental, medical, social and other conditions of the adult, using photography as appropriate and the checklist or form developed for this purpose.
  2. Notify the Investigation Division supervisor so an interagency response can begin.

326.10 STATE MANDATES AND OTHER RELEVANT LAWS

Minnesota requires or permits the following:

326.10.1 RECORDS SECTION RESPONSIBILITIES

The Records Section is responsible for:

  1. Providing a copy of the adult abuse report to the applicable entity in the county responsible for receiving such reports as required by law.
  2. Retaining the original adult abuse report with the initial case file.

326.10.2 RELEASE OF REPORTS

Information related to incidents of adult abuse or suspected adult abuse shall be confidential and may only be disclosed pursuant to state law and the Records Maintenance and Release Policy (Minn. Stat. § 626.557).

326.11 TRAINING

The Department should provide training on best practices in adult abuse investigations to members tasked with investigating these cases. The training should include:

  1. Participating in multidisciplinary investigations, as appropriate.
  2. Conducting interviews.
  3. Availability of therapy services for adults and families.
  4. Availability of specialized forensic medical exams.
  5. Cultural competence (including interpretive services) related to adult abuse investigations.
  6. Availability of victim advocates or other support.

328 - Discriminatory Harassment

328.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy is intended to prevent department members from being subjected to discrimination or sexual harassment.

328.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to creating and maintaining a work environment that is free of all forms of discriminatory harassment, including sexual harassment and retaliation. The Department will not tolerate, discrimination against employees in hiring, promotion, discharge, compensation, fringe benefits and other privileges of employment. The Department will take preventive and corrective action to address any behavior that violates this policy or the rights it is designed to protect.

The non-discrimination policies of the Department may be more comprehensive than state or federal law. Conduct that violates this policy may not violate state or federal law but still could subject a member to discipline. Employees may also refer to Metropolitan Council Policy 4-2-1 on Discrimination, Harassment and Inappropriate Behavior for additional information.

328.3 DISCRIMINATION PROHIBITED

328.3.1 DISCRIMINATION

The Department prohibits all forms of discrimination, including any employment-related action by a member that adversely affects an applicant or member and is based on race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin or ancestry, genetic information, disability, military service, sexual orientation and other classifications protected by law.

Discriminatory harassment, including sexual harassment, is verbal or physical conduct that demeans or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual based upon that individual’s protected class. It has the effect of interfering with an individual’s work performance or creating a hostile or abusive work environment.

Conduct that may, under certain circumstances, constitute discriminatory harassment, can include making derogatory comments, crude and offensive statements or remarks, making slurs or off-color jokes, stereotyping, engaging in threatening acts, making indecent gestures, pictures, cartoons, posters or material, making inappropriate physical contact, or using written material or department equipment and/or systems to transmit or receive offensive material, statements or pictures. Such conduct is contrary to department policy and to the department’s commitment to an environment that is free of discrimination.

328.3.2 SEXUAL HARASSMENT

The Department prohibits all forms of discrimination and discriminatory harassment, including sexual harassment. It is unlawful to harass an applicant or a member because of that person’s sex.

Sexual harassment includes, but is not limited to, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors or other verbal, visual or physical conduct of a sexual nature when:

  1. Submission to such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment, position or compensation.
  2. Submission to, or rejection of, such conduct is used as the basis for any employment decisions affecting the member.
  3. Such conduct has the purpose or effect of substantially interfering with a member's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment.

328.3.3 ADDITIONAL CONSIDERATIONS

Discrimination and discriminatory harassment do not include actions that are in accordance with established rules, principles or standards including:

  1. Acts or omission of acts based solely upon bona fide occupational qualifications under the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) or the Minnesota Department of Human Rights.
  2. Bona fide requests or demands by a supervisor that a member improve his/her work quality or output, that the member report to the job site on time, that the member comply with Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit rules or regulations, or any other appropriate work- related communication between supervisor and member.

328.3.4 RETALIATION

Retaliation is treating a person differently or engaging in acts of reprisal or intimidation against the person because he/she has engaged in protected activity, filed a charge of discrimination, participated in an investigation or opposed a discriminatory practice. Retaliation will not be tolerated.

328.4 RESPONSIBILITIES

This policy applies to all department personnel. All members shall follow the intent of these guidelines in a manner that reflects department policy, professional law enforcement standards and the best interest of the Department and its mission.

Members are encouraged to promptly report any discriminatory, retaliatory or harassing conduct or known violations of this policy to a supervisor. Any member who is not comfortable with reporting violations of this policy to his/her immediate supervisor may bypass the chain of command and make the report to a higher ranking supervisor or manager. Complaints may also be filed with the Chief of Police, Director of Human Resources or the General Manager.

Any member who believes, in good faith, that he/she has been discriminated against, harassed, subjected to retaliation, or who has observed harassment or discrimination, is encouraged to promptly report such conduct in accordance with the procedures set forth in this policy.

Supervisors and managers receiving information regarding alleged violations of this policy shall determine if there is any basis for the allegation and shall proceed with resolution as stated below.

328.4.1 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITY

Each supervisor and manager shall:

  1. Continually monitor the work environment and strive to ensure that it is free from all types of unlawful discrimination, including sexual harassment and retaliation.
  2. Take prompt, appropriate action within their work units to avoid and minimize the incidence of any form of discrimination, harassment or retaliation.
  3. Ensure that their subordinates understand their responsibilities under this policy.
  4. Ensure that members who make complaints or who oppose any unlawful employment practices are protected from retaliation and that such matters are kept confidential to the extent possible.
  5. Notify the Chief of Police or Director of Human Resources in writing of the circumstances surrounding any reported allegations or observed acts of discrimination, harassment or retaliation no later than the next business day.

328.4.2 SUPERVISOR'S ROLE

Because of differences in individual values, supervisors and managers may find it difficult to recognize that their behavior or the behavior of others is discriminatory, harassing or retaliatory. Supervisors and managers shall be aware of the following considerations:

  1. Behavior of supervisors and managers should represent the values of the Department and professional law enforcement standards.
  2. False or mistaken accusations of discrimination, harassment or retaliation can have negative effects on the careers of innocent members.
  3. Supervisors and managers must act promptly and responsibly in the resolution of such situations.
  4. Supervisors and managers shall make a timely determination regarding the substance of any allegation based upon all available facts.

Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent supervisors or managers from discharging supervisory or management responsibilities, such as determining duty assignments, evaluating or counseling members or issuing discipline, in a manner that is consistent with established procedures.

328.5 INVESTIGATION OF COMPLAINTS

Various methods of resolution exist. During the pendency of any such investigation, the supervisor of the involved members should take prompt and reasonable steps to mitigate or eliminate any continuing abusive or hostile work environment. It is the policy of the Department that all complaints of discrimination or harassment shall be fully documented and investigated in a prompt and thorough manner. The participating or opposing member should be protected against retaliation, and the complaint and related investigation should be kept confidential to the extent possible.

328.4.2 SUPERVISORY RESOLUTION

Members who believe they are experiencing discrimination, harassment or retaliation should be encouraged to inform the individual that his/her behavior is unwelcome, offensive, unprofessional or inappropriate. However, if the member feels uncomfortable, threatened or has difficulty expressing his/her concern, or if this does not resolve the concern, assistance should be sought from a supervisor or manager who is a rank higher than the alleged transgressor.

328.5.2 FORMAL INVESTIGATION

If the complaint cannot be satisfactorily resolved through the process described above, a formal investigation will be conducted.

The person assigned to investigate the complaint will have full authority to investigate all aspects of the complaint. Investigative authority includes access to records and the cooperation of any members involved. No influence will be used to suppress any complaint and no member will be subject to retaliation or reprisal for filing a complaint, encouraging others to file a complaint or for offering testimony or evidence in any investigation.

Formal investigation of the complaint will be confidential to the extent possible and will include, but not be limited to, details of the specific incident, frequency, dates of occurrences and names of any witnesses. Witnesses will be advised regarding the prohibition against retaliation, and that a disciplinary process, up to and including termination, may result if retaliation occurs.

Members who believe they have been discriminated against, harassed or retaliated against because of their protected status are encouraged to follow the chain of command but may also file a complaint directly with the Chief of Police, Director of Human Resources or the General Manager.

328.5.3 ALTERNATIVE COMPLAINT PROCESS

No provision of this policy shall be construed to prevent any member from seeking legal redress outside the Department. Members who believe that they have been harassed, discriminated or retaliated against are entitled to bring complaints of employment discrimination to federal, state and/or local agencies responsible for investigating such allegations. Specific time limitations apply to the filing of such charges. Members are advised that proceeding with complaints under the provisions of this policy does not in any way affect those filing requirements.

328.6 NOTIFICATION OF DISPOSITION

The complainant and/or victim will be notified in writing of the disposition of the investigation and the actions taken to remedy or address the circumstances giving rise to the complaint.

328.7 DOCUMENTATION OF COMPLAINTS

All complaints or allegations shall be thoroughly documented on forms and in a manner designated by the Chief of Police. The outcome of all reports shall be:

  • Approved by the Chief of Police, the General Manager or Director if more appropriate.
  • Maintained for the period established in the department’s retention schedule.

328.8 TRAINING

All new members shall be provided with a copy of this policy as part of their orientation. The policy shall be reviewed with each new member. The member shall certify by signing the prescribed form that he/she has been advised of this policy, is aware of and understands its contents and agrees to abide by its provisions during his/her term of employment.

All members shall receive annual training on the requirements of this policy and shall certify by signing the prescribed form that they have reviewed the policy, understand its contents and agree that they will continue to abide by its provisions.

328.8.1 QUESTIONS OR CLARIFICATION

Members with questions regarding what constitutes discrimination, sexual harassment or retaliation are encouraged to contact a supervisor, a manager, the Chief of Police, the Director of Human Resources or the General Manager for further information, direction or clarification.

330 - Child Abuse

330.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for the investigation of suspected child abuse. This policy also addresses when Metro Transit Police Department members are required to notify the county social services agency of suspected child abuse.

330.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Child - Unless otherwise specified by a cited statute, a child is any person under the age of 18 years.

Child abuse - Any offense or attempted offense involving violence or neglect with a child victim when committed by a person responsible for the child’s care or any other act that would mandate notification to a social service agency (Minn. Stat. § 626.556; Minn. Stat. § 626.5561).

330.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will investigate all reported incidents of alleged criminal child abuse and ensure the county social services agency is notified as required by law.

330.3 MANDATORY NOTIFICATION

Members of the Metro Transit Police Department shall notify the county social services agency when they have reason to believe any of the following may have occurred or when someone reports any of the following (Minn. Stat. § 626.556):

  1. A child is being neglected or has been neglected within the preceding three years.
  2. A child is being physically abused or has been physically abused within the preceding three years by a person responsible for the child's care.
  3. A child is being sexually abused, threatened with sexual abuse or has been sexually abused within the preceding three years by a person responsible for the child's care, by a person who has a significant relationship to the child or by a person in a position of authority.
  4. A woman is pregnant and has used a controlled substance for a non-medical purpose during the pregnancy, including, but not limited to, tetrahydrocannabinol (marijuana), or has consumed alcoholic beverages during the pregnancy in any way that is habitual or excessive (Minn. Stat. § 626.5561).

Notification is mandatory for any acts of neglect, physical abuse and sexual abuse that constitute a crime, whether or not the suspect had any relationship to or responsibility for the child (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 10a).

For purposes of notification, physical abuse includes injuries, mental injuries or injuries that cannot be reasonably explained (e.g., punching, kicking, burning). Sexual abuse includes criminal sexual conduct and prostitution offenses. Neglect includes failure to supply a child with necessary clothing, shelter, medical care, etc. See Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 2 for full definitions of physical abuse, sexual abuse and neglect.

330.3.1 NOTIFICATION PROCEDURE

Notification should occur as follows (Minn. Stat. § 626.556):

  1. The member tasked with the investigation shall call the county social services agency and report the alleged abuse as soon as possible but always within 24 hours. The time of the call and the name of the person should be documented.
  2. Notification, when possible, should include:
    1. The child’s current location and whether the child is in immediate danger.
    2. A description of when and where the incident occurred and what happened to the child.
    3. A description of the injuries or present condition of the child.
    4. The names and addresses of the child, parents or caregivers.
    5. Whether there were any witnesses to the incident and their names.
    6. Any additional information about the child, family or caregivers that may be helpful.
    7. Whether the incident occurred in a licensed facility or a school and what actions the facility employees may have taken.
    8. Whether there are immediate family, relative or community resources that would offer protection or support to the child.
  3. Forms that may be required by the county social services agency or other written notification shall be completed and faxed or delivered to the county social services agency as soon as possible but always within 72 hours, exclusive of weekends and holidays.
  4. Approved investigation reports should be forwarded to the county social services agency as soon as practical.
  5. When the child abuse occurred at a facility or by a person from a facility that requires a state license (e.g., foster homes, group homes, day care), notification shall also be made to the agency responsible for licensing the facility (Minn. Stat. § 626.556).

330.4 QUALIFIED INVESTIGATORS

Qualified investigators should be available for child abuse investigations. These investigators should:

  1. Conduct interviews in child appropriate interview facilities.
  2. Be familiar with forensic interview techniques specific to child abuse investigations.
  3. Present all cases of alleged child abuse to the prosecutor for review.
  4. Coordinate with other enforcement agencies, social service agencies and school administrators as needed.
  5. Provide referrals to therapy services, victim advocates, guardians and support for the child and family as appropriate.
  6. Participate in or coordinate with multidisciplinary investigative teams as applicable.

330.5 INVESTIGATIONS AND REPORTING

In all reported or suspected cases of child abuse, a report will be written. Officers shall write a report even if the allegations appear unfounded or unsubstantiated.

Investigations and reports related to suspected cases of child abuse should address, as applicable:

  1. The overall basis for the contact. This should be done by the investigating officer in all circumstances where a suspected child abuse victim was contacted.
  2. The exigent circumstances that existed if officers interviewed the child victim without the presence of a parent or guardian.
  3. Any relevant statements the child may have made and to whom he/she made the statements.
  4. If a child was taken into protective custody, the reasons, the name and title of the person making the decision, and why other alternatives were not appropriate.
  5. Documentation of any visible injuries or any injuries identified by the child. This should include photographs of such injuries, if practicable.
  6. Whether the child victim was transported for medical treatment or a medical examination.
  7. Whether the victim identified a household member as the alleged perpetrator, and a list of the names of any other children who may reside in the residence.
  8. Identification of any prior related reports or allegations of child abuse, including other jurisdictions, as reasonably known.
  9. Previous addresses of the victim and suspect.
  10. Other potential witnesses who have not yet been interviewed, such as relatives or others close to the victim's environment.

All cases of the unexplained death of a child should be investigated as thoroughly as if it had been a case of suspected child abuse (e.g., a sudden or unexplained death of an infant).

330.6 PROTECTIVE CUSTODY

Before taking any child into protective custody, the officer should make reasonable attempts to contact the county social services agency. Generally, removal of a child from his/her family, guardian or other responsible adult should be left to the child welfare authorities when they are present or have become involved in an investigation.

Generally, members of this department should remove a child from his/her parent or guardian without a court order only when no other effective alternative is reasonably available and immediate action reasonably appears necessary to protect the child. Prior to taking a child into protective custody, the officer should take reasonable steps to deliver the child to another qualified parent or legal guardian, unless it reasonably appears that the release would endanger the child or result in abduction. If this is not a reasonable option, the officer shall ensure that the child is delivered to the county social services agency.

Whenever practicable, the officer should inform a supervisor of the circumstances prior to taking a child into protective custody. If prior notification is not practicable, officers should contact a supervisor promptly after taking a child into protective custody.

Children may only be removed from a parent or guardian in the following situations (Minn. Stat. § 260C.175):

  1. When a court has issued an order for removal.
  2. When a child is found in surroundings or conditions that pose an imminent threat to the child's health or welfare or that a peace officer reasonably believes pose an imminent threat to the child's health or welfare.
  3. If an Indian child is a resident of a reservation or is domiciled on a reservation but temporarily located off the reservation, taking the child into custody under this clause shall be consistent with the Indian Child Welfare Act (25 USC § 1922).

330.6.1 NOTICE TO PARENT OR CUSTODIAN

Whenever an officer takes a child into protective custody, the officer shall notify the parent or custodian that he/she may request that the child be placed with a relative or a designated caregiver instead of in a shelter care facility. The officer also shall give the parent or custodian a list, published by the Minnesota Department of Human Services, of names, addresses and telephone numbers of social services agencies that offer child welfare services. If the parent or custodian was not present when the child was removed from the residence, the list shall be left with an adult who is on the premises or left in a conspicuous place on the premises if no adult is present. If the officer has reason to believe the parent or custodian is not able to read and understand English, the officer must provide a list that is written in the language of the parent or custodian (Minn. Stat.

§ 260C.175; Minn. Stat. § 260C.181).

The above notifications may be made by the county social services agency representative if he/ she is at the scene.

330.6.2 SAFE PLACE FOR NEWBORNS

A person may leave an unharmed newborn less than seven days old with the staff of a hospital, urgent care facility or ambulance service without being subject to prosecution (Minn. Stat. § 609.3785). The responsible social service agency is charged with addressing these matters but may contact law enforcement if child abuse is suspected (Minn. Stat. § 145.902; Minn. Stat. § 609.3785).

330.7 INTERVIEWS

330.7.1 PRELIMINARY INTERVIEWS

Absent extenuating circumstances or impracticality, officers should record the preliminary interview with suspected child abuse victims. Officers should avoid multiple interviews with a child victim and should attempt to gather only the information necessary to begin an investigation. When practicable, investigating officers should defer interviews until a person who is specially trained in such interviews is available. Generally, child victims should not be interviewed in the home or location where the alleged abuse occurred.

330.7.2 DETAINING ABUSE VICTIMS FOR INTERVIEW

An officer should not detain a child involuntarily who is suspected of being a victim of child abuse solely for the purpose of an interview or physical exam without the consent of a parent or guardian unless one of the following applies:

  1. Exigent circumstances exist, such as:
    1. A reasonable belief that medical issues of the child need to be addressed immediately.
    2. A reasonable belief that the child is or will be in danger of harm if the interview or physical exam is not immediately completed.
    3. The alleged offender is the custodial parent or guardian and there is reason to believe the child may be in continued danger.
  2. A court order or warrant has been issued.

330.7.3 NOTIFICATION TO PARENTS

Generally, officers should cooperate with parents and guardians and seek consent prior to conducting interviews of children. However, when reasonably necessary, state law grants officers the authority to interview a child who is the alleged victim of abuse or neglect, and any other children who currently reside or have resided with the alleged victim, without parental consent (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 10).

The interview may take place at school or at any facility or other place where the alleged victim or other children might be found, or the child may be transported to, and the interview conducted at, a place that is appropriate for the interview and has been designated by the local welfare agency or law enforcement agency. The interview may take place outside the presence of the alleged offender or parent, legal custodian, guardian or school official (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 10).

The officer shall notify the parent, legal custodian or guardian that the interview occurred as soon as reasonably practicable after the interview, unless the juvenile court has determined that reasonable cause exists to withhold the information (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 10).

330.7.4 INTERVIEWS AT SCHOOL

If officers assigned to investigate a report of maltreatment determine that an interview should take place on school property, written notification of the intent to interview the child on school property must be received by school officials prior to the interview. The notification shall include the name of the child to be interviewed, the purpose of the interview and a reference to the statutory authority to conduct an interview on school property (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 10).

The investigating officer shall determine who may attend the interview, although school officials may set reasonable conditions as to the time, place and manner of the interview (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 10).

330.7.5 DOCUMENTING AND RECORDING INTERVIEWS

Any statement made by an alleged child abuse victim during the course of a criminal investigation shall be documented. The documentation of the interview must contain, at a minimum (Minn. Stat. § 626.561):

  1. The date, time, place and duration of the interview.
  2. The identity of the persons present at the interview.
  3. A summary of the information obtained during the interview if it was not audio recorded.

Members should follow the written guidelines of the county attorney's office regarding recording interviews of a child abuse victim.

330.8 MEDICAL EXAMINATIONS

If the child has been the victim of abuse that requires a medical examination, the investigating officer should obtain consent for such examination from the appropriate parent, guardian or agency having legal custody of the child. The officer should also arrange for the child's transportation to the appropriate medical facility.

In cases where the alleged offender is the custodial parent or guardian and is refusing consent for the medical examination, officers should notify a supervisor before proceeding. If exigent circumstances do not exist or if state law does not provide for officers to take the child for a medical examination, the notified supervisor should consider obtaining a court order for such an examination.

330.9 DRUG-ENDANGERED CHILDREN

A coordinated response by law enforcement and social services agencies is appropriate to meet the immediate and longer-term medical and safety needs of children exposed to the manufacturing, trafficking or use of narcotics.

330.9.1 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES The Investigation Division supervisor should:

  1. Work with professionals from the appropriate agencies, including the county social services agency, other law enforcement agencies, medical service providers and local prosecutors to develop community specific procedures for responding to situations where there are children endangered by exposure to methamphetamine labs or the manufacture and trafficking of other drugs.
  2. Activate any available interagency response when an officer notifies the Investigation Division supervisor that the officer has responded to a drug lab or other narcotics crime scene where a child is present or where evidence indicates that a child lives there.
  3. Develop a report format or checklist for use when officers respond to drug labs or other narcotics crime scenes. The checklist will help officers document the environmental, medical, social and other conditions that may affect the child.

330.9.2 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Officers responding to a drug lab or other narcotics crime scene where a child is present or where there is evidence that a child lives should:

  1. Document the environmental, medical, social and other conditions of the child using photography as appropriate and the checklist or form developed for this purpose.
  2. Notify the Investigation Division supervisor so an interagency response can begin.p>

330.9.3 SCHOOL NOTIFICATION

If a juvenile is taken into protective custody after being found in an area where methamphetamine was being manufactured or attempted to be manufactured, or where any chemical substances, paraphernalia or waste products related to methamphetamine are stored, the officer who took the juvenile into custody shall notify the chief administrative officer of the juvenile’s school (Minn. Stat. § 260C.171, Subd. 6).

330.10 STATE MANDATES AND OTHER RELEVANT LAWS

Minnesota requires or permits the following:

330.10.1 RELEASE OF REPORTS

Information related to incidents of child abuse or suspected child abuse shall be confidential and may only be disclosed pursuant to state law and the Records Maintenance and Release Policy (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 11).

330.10.2 CHILD MORTALITY REVIEW PANELS

Child mortality review panels are entitled to access all investigative information of law enforcement agencies regarding the death of a child. This department shall cooperate fully with any such team and investigation (Minn. Stat. § 256.01, Subd. 12).

330.10.3 COORDINATION WITH SOCIAL SERVICES

In every case of child abuse that would require notification to a local county social services agency, the investigating officer shall coordinate the planning and execution of the investigation and assessment efforts to avoid a duplication of fact-finding efforts and multiple interviews. The investigating officer shall prepare a report separate from the social services agency (Minn. Stat. § 626.556, Subd. 10).

330.10.4 NOTIFICATION PROCESS

The Patrol Supervisor is responsible for ensuring the mandatory notifications to the county social service agency are carried out. This should be achieved, in part, by establishing and reviewing related procedures and through ongoing training (Minn. Stat. § 626.556).

330.10.5 COURT-ORDERED FIREARM SURRENDERS

Although not required, this department generally will accept firearms surrendered by a court order from an abusing party or defendant. A decision to refuse a surrendered firearm should be approved by a supervisor.

Firearms will normally be surrendered at the Metro Transit Police Department; however, when encountering someone in the field who wishes to surrender a firearm, officers should make reasonable efforts to accommodate the request.

Surrendered firearms should be collected and submitted to the Property and Evidence in accordance with the Property and Evidence Policy.

330.11 TRAINING

The Professional Standards Unit should provide training on best practices in child abuse investigations to members tasked with investigating these cases. The training should include:

  1. Participating in multidisciplinary investigations, as appropriate.
  2. Conducting forensic interviews.
  3. Availability of therapy services for children and families.
  4. Availability of specialized forensic medical exams.
  5. Cultural competence (including interpretive services) related to child abuse investigations.
  6. Availability of victim advocate or guardian ad litem support.

332 - Missing Persons

332.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance for handling missing person investigations.

332.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Endangered - A person the Department has confirmed is missing and there is sufficient evidence to indicate that the person is at risk of physical injury or death. Examples include (Minn. Stat. § 299C.52):

  1. The person is missing because of a confirmed abduction or under circumstances that indicate the person's disappearance was not voluntary.
  2. The person is missing under known dangerous circumstances.
  3. The person is missing more than 30 days.
  4. The person is under the age of 21 and at least one other factor is applicable.
  5. There is evidence that the person is in need of medical attention or prescription medication.
  6. The person does not have a pattern of running away or disappearing.
  7. The person is mentally impaired.
  8. There is evidence that a non-custodial parent may have abducted the person.
  9. The person has been the subject of past threats or acts of violence.
  10. There is evidence that the person is lost in the wilderness, backcountry or outdoors where survival is precarious and search-and-rescue efforts are critical.
  11. Any other factor the Department deems to indicate the person may be at risk of physical injury or death, including a determination by another law enforcement agency that the person is missing and endangered.
  12. There is sufficient evidence that a child is with a person who presents a threat of immediate physical injury to the child or physical or sexual abuse of the child.

Missing person - Any person who is reported missing to law enforcement when that person’s location is unknown. This includes any person under the age of 18 or who is certified or known to be mentally incompetent (Minn. Stat. § 299C.52).

Missing person networks - Databases or computer networks that are available to law enforcement and are suitable for obtaining information related to missing person investigations. This includes the National Crime Information Center (NCIC), the Minnesota Justice Information Services (MNJIS), the Minnesota Missing and Unidentified Persons Clearinghouse and the Minnesota Crime Alert Network.

332.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department does not consider any report of a missing person to be routine and assumes that the missing person is in need of immediate assistance until an investigation reveals otherwise. Priority shall be given to missing person cases over property- related cases. Members will initiate an investigation into all reports of missing persons, regardless of the length of time the person has been missing.

332.3 REQUIRED FORMS AND BIOLOGICAL SAMPLE COLLECTION KITS

The Investigation Division supervisor shall ensure the following forms and kits are developed and available:

  • Missing person report form
  • Missing person investigation checklist that provides investigation guidelines and resources that could be helpful in the early hours of a missing person investigation
  • Missing person school notification form
  • Medical records release form
  • Biological sample collection kits

332.4 ACCEPTANCE OF REPORTS

Any member encountering a person who wishes to report a missing person or runaway shall render assistance without delay. This can be accomplished by accepting the report via telephone or in person and initiating the investigation. Those members who do not take such reports or who are unable to give immediate assistance shall promptly dispatch or alert a member who can take the report.

A report shall be accepted in all cases and regardless of where the person was last seen, where the person resides or any question of jurisdiction.

332.5 INITIAL INVESTIGATION

Officers or other members conducting the initial investigation of a missing person should take the following investigative actions as applicable:

  1. Respond to a dispatched call as soon as practicable. Obtain a detailed description of the missing person, as well as a description of any related vehicle and/or abductor.
  2. Interview the reporting party and any witnesses to determine whether the person qualifies as a missing person and, if so, whether the person may be endangered (Minn. Stat. § 299C.53, Subd. 1(b)). Interviews should be conducted separately, if practicable.
  3. Consult with the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) if the person is determined to be an endangered missing person (Minn. Stat. § 299C.53, Subd. 1(b)).
  4. Canvass the last known area where the missing person was seen, if known. A search of the location where the incident took place, if known, should also be conducted and a search warrant obtained if necessary.
  5. Determine when, where and by whom the missing person was last seen. Interview the person who last had contact with the missing person.
  6. Notify a supervisor immediately if there is evidence that a missing person is either endangered or may qualify for a public alert, or both (see the Public Alerts Policy).
  7. Broadcast a “Be on the Look-Out” (BOLO) bulletin if the person is under 18 years of age or there is evidence that the missing person is endangered. The BOLO should be broadcast as soon as practicable but in no event more than one hour after determining the missing person is under 18 years of age or may be endangered.
  8. Relay known details to all on-duty personnel as well as other local or surrounding law enforcement agencies using local and state databases.
  9. Ensure that entries are made into the appropriate missing person networks:
    1. Immediately, when the missing person is endangered.
    2. In all other cases, as soon as practicable, but not later than two hours from the time of the initial report.
  10. Complete the appropriate report forms accurately and completely and initiate a search as applicable under the facts.
  11. Collect and/or review:
    1. A photograph and fingerprint card of the missing person, if available (Minn. Stat. § 299C.54, Subd. 2).
    2. A voluntarily provided biological sample of the missing person, if available (e.g., toothbrush, hairbrush).
    3. Any documents that may assist in the investigation, such as court orders regarding custody.
    4. Any other evidence that may assist in the investigation, including personal electronic devices (e.g., cell phones, computers).
  12. When circumstances permit and if appropriate, attempt to determine the missing person's location through his/her telecommunications carrier.
  13. Contact the appropriate agency if the report relates to a missing person report previously made to another agency and that agency is actively investigating the report. When this is not practicable, the information should be documented in an appropriate report for transmission

to the appropriate agency. If the information relates to an endangered missing person, the member should notify a supervisor and proceed with reasonable steps to locate the missing person.

332.5.1 CRIME SCENE INVESTIGATION AND MANAGEMENT

If a crime scene is identified, it should be secured and a command post or operation base located at a reasonable distance from the crime scene. Staff and assign the responsibilities for command post supervisor, media specialist, search coordinator, investigative coordinator, communication officer and support unit coordinator. Provide two liaison officers (one at the command post and one at the crime scene). The role of the liaison at the home will include facilitating support and advocacy for the family.

The investigation of the scene and the crime should consider various elements, including:

  1. Establishing the ability to “trap and trace” all incoming calls. Consider setting up a separate telephone line or cellular telephone for department use and follow-up on all leads.
  2. Compiling a list of known sex offenders in the region.
  3. In cases of infant abduction, investigating claims of home births made in the area.
  4. In cases involving children, obtaining child protective agency records for reports of child abuse.
  5. Reviewing records for previous incidents related to the missing person and prior law enforcement activity in the area, including prowlers, indecent exposure, attempted abductions, etc.
  6. Obtaining the missing person’s medical and dental records, fingerprints and a biological sample when practicable or within 30 days.
  7. Creating a missing person profile with detailed information obtained from records and interviews with family and friends, describing the missing person’s heath, relationships, personality, problems, life experiences, plans, equipment, etc.
  8. Interviewing delivery personnel, employees of gas, water, electric and cable companies, taxi drivers, post office personnel, sanitation workers, etc.
  9. Determining if outside help is needed and the merits of utilizing local, state and federal resources related to specialized investigative needs, including:
    1. Investigative resources.
    2. Interpretive resources.
    3. Telephone services, such as traps, traces and triangulation.
    4. Media assistance from local and national sources.
  10. Using secure electronic communication information, such as the missing person’s cellular telephone number, e-mail address and information from social networking sites.
  11. Appointing an officer to communicate with the family/reporting party or their designee. The officer will be the primary point of contact for the family/reporting party or their designee, and should provide contact information and the family information packet (if available) to the family/reporting party or their designee.
  12. Providing general information to the family/reporting party or their designee about the handling of the missing person case or about any intended efforts, only to the extent that disclosure would not adversely affect the department’s ability to locate or protect the missing person or to apprehend or criminally prosecute any person in connection to the case.

332.6 REPORT PROCEDURES AND ROUTING

Members should complete all missing person reports and forms promptly and advise the appropriate supervisor as soon as a missing person report is ready for review.

332.6.1 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

The responsibilities of the supervisor shall include, but are not limited to:

  1. Reviewing and approving missing person reports upon receipt.

     

    1. The reports should be promptly sent to the Records Section.
  2. Ensuring resources are deployed as appropriate.
  3. Initiating a command post as needed.
  4. Ensuring applicable notifications and public alerts are made and documented.
  5. Ensuring that records have been entered into the appropriate missing persons networks.
  6. Taking reasonable steps to identify and address any jurisdictional issues to ensure cooperation among agencies.
    1. If the case falls within the jurisdiction of another agency, the supervisor should facilitate transfer of the case to the agency of jurisdiction.

332.6.2 RECORDS SECTION RESPONSIBILITIES

The responsibilities of the Records Section receiving member shall include, but are not limited to:

  1. As soon as reasonable under the circumstances, notifying and forwarding a copy of the report to the agency of jurisdiction for the missing person’s residence in cases where the missing person is a resident of another jurisdiction.
  2. Notifying and forwarding a copy of the report to the agency of jurisdiction where the missing person was last seen.
  3. Notifying and forwarding a copy of the report to the agency of jurisdiction for the missing person’s intended or possible destination, if known.
  4. Forwarding a copy of the report to the Investigation Division.

     

     

  5. Coordinating with the NCIC Terminal Contractor for Minnesota to have the missing person record in the NCIC computer networks updated with additional information obtained from missing person investigations (42 USC § 5780).

332.7 INVESTIGATION DIVISION FOLLOW-UP

In addition to completing or continuing any actions listed above, the investigator assigned to a missing person investigation:

  1. Should ensure that the missing person’s school is notified within 10 days if the missing person is a juvenile.
    1. The notice shall be in writing and should also include a photograph.
    2. The investigator should meet with school officials as appropriate to stress the importance of including the notice in the child’s student file, along with the investigator’s contact information if the school receives a call requesting the transfer of the missing child’s files to another school.
  2. Should recontact the reporting person and/or other witnesses within 30 days of the initial report and within 30 days thereafter to determine if any additional information has become available.
  3. Shall review the case file to determine whether any additional information received on the missing person indicates that the person is endangered, and shall update applicable state or federal databases accordingly (Minn. Stat. § 299C.535(b); Minn. Stat. § 299C.535(c)).
  4. Shall attempt to obtain the following, if not previously obtained, if the person remains missing after 30 days (Minn. Stat § 299C.535(a)):
    1. Biological samples from family members and, if possible, from the missing person
    2. Dental information and X-rays
    3. Additional photographs and video that may aid the investigation or identification
    4. Fingerprints
    5. Any other specific identifying information
  5. Should consider contacting other agencies involved in the case to determine if any additional information is available.
  6. Shall verify and update the Minnesota Justice Information Services (MNJIS), the Minnesota Missing and Unidentified Persons Clearinghouse, NCIC and any other applicable missing person networks within 30 days of the original entry into the networks and every 30 days thereafter until the missing person is located (42 USC § 5780).
  7. Should continue to make reasonable efforts to locate the missing person and document these efforts at least every 30 days.
  8. Should consider taking certain actions if a person is missing after a prolonged period, generally exceeding 45 days. Those actions include:
    1. Developing a profile of the possible abductor.
    2. Using a truth verification device for parents, spouse and other key individuals.
    3. Reviewing all reports and transcripts of interviews, revisiting the crime scene, reviewing all photographs and videotapes, reinterviewing key individuals and reexamining all physical evidence collected.
    4. Reviewing all potential witness/suspect information obtained in the initial investigation and considering background checks on anyone of interest identified in the investigation.
    5. Periodically checking pertinent sources of information about the missing person for any activity, such as telephone, bank, Internet or credit card activity.
    6. Developing a time line and other visual exhibits.
    7. Critiquing the results of the ongoing investigation with appropriate investigative resources.
    8. Arranging for periodic media coverage.
    9. Considering the use of rewards and crime-stoppers programs.
    10. Maintaining contact with the family and/or the reporting party or designee, as appropriate.
  9. Shall maintain a close liaison with state and local child welfare systems and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) if the missing person is under the age of 21 and shall promptly notify NCMEC when the person is missing from a foster care family home or childcare institution (42 USC § 5780).
  10. Should make appropriate inquiry with the Medical Examiner.
  11. Should obtain and forward medical and dental records, photos, X-rays and biological samples, as applicable.
  12. Shall attempt to obtain the most recent photograph for persons under 18 years of age if it has not been obtained previously, forward the photograph to BCA (Minn. Stat. § 299C.54) and enter the photograph into applicable missing person networks (42 USC § 5780).
  13. Should consider making appropriate entries and searches in the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System (NamUs).
  14. In the case of an endangered missing person or a person who has been missing for an extended time, should consult with a supervisor regarding seeking federal assistance from the FBI and the U.S. Marshals Service (28 USC § 566).

WHEN A MISSING PERSON IS FOUND

When any person reported missing is found, the assigned investigator shall document the location of the missing person in the appropriate report, notify the reporting party and other involved agencies and refer the case for additional investigation if warranted.

The Records Supervisor shall ensure that, upon receipt of information that a missing person has been located, the following occurs:

  1. Notification is made to BCA.
  2. A missing child's school is notified.
  3. Entries are made in the applicable missing person networks.
  4. When a child is endangered, the fact that the child has been found shall be reported within 24 hours to BCA.
  5. Notification shall be made to any other law enforcement agency that took the initial report or participated in the investigation.

332.8.1 PERSONS FOUND ALIVE

Additional responsibilities related to missing persons who are found alive include:

  1. Verifying that the located person is the reported missing person.
  2. If appropriate, arranging for a comprehensive physical examination of the victim.
  3. Conducting a careful interview of the person, documenting the results of the interview and involving all appropriate agencies.
  4. Notifying the family/reporting party that the missing person has been located. In adult cases, if the located adult permits the disclosure of his/her whereabouts and contact information, the family/reporting party may be given this information.
  5. Depending on the circumstances of the disappearance, considering the need for reunification assistance, intervention, counseling or other services for either the missing person or family/reporting party.
  6. Performing a constructive post-case critique. Reassessing the procedures used and updating the Department policy and procedures as appropriate.

332.8.2 UNIDENTIFIED PERSONS

Members investigating a case of an unidentified person who is deceased or a living person who cannot assist in identifying him/herself should:

  1. Obtain a complete description of the person.
  2. Enter the unidentified person’s description into the NCIC Unidentified Person File.
  3. Use available resources, such as those related to missing persons, to identify the person.

332.8.3 DECEASED PERSONS

If a deceased person has been identified as a missing person, the Investigation Division shall attempt to locate family members and inform them of the death and the location of the deceased missing person's remains. All efforts to locate and notify family members shall be recorded in appropriate reports and properly retained (Minn. Stat. § 390.25, Subd. 2).

Additional investigation responsibilities include the following:

  1. Secure the crime scene if this department has jurisdiction.
  2. Contact the coroner, medical examiner or forensic anthropologist to arrange for body recovery and examination.
  3. Collect and preserve any evidence at the scene.
  4. Depending on the circumstances, consider the need for intervention, counseling or other services for the family/reporting party.
  5. Cancel alerts and remove the case from NCIC and other information systems; remove posters and other publications from circulation.
  6. Perform a constructive post-case critique. Reassess the procedures used and update the department policy and procedures as appropriate.

332.9 CASE CLOSURE

The Investigation Division supervisor may authorize the closure of a missing person case after considering the following:

  1. Closure is appropriate when the missing person is confirmed returned or evidence matches an unidentified person or body.
  2. If the missing person is a resident of Metro Transit or this department is the lead agency, the case should be kept under active investigation for as long as the person may still be alive. Exhaustion of leads in the investigation should not be a reason for closing a case.
  3. If this department is not the lead agency, the case can be made inactive if all investigative leads have been exhausted, the lead agency has been notified and entries are made in the applicable missing person networks, as appropriate.
  4. A missing person case should not be closed or reclassified because the person would have reached a certain age or adulthood or because the person is now the subject of a criminal or civil warrant.

332.10 TRAINING

Subject to available resources, the Training Coordinator should ensure that members of this department whose duties include missing person investigations and reports receive training that includes:

  1. The initial investigation:
    1. Assessments and interviews
    2. Use of current resources, such as Mobile Audio Video (MAV)
    3. Confirming missing status and custody status of minors
    4. Evaluating the need for a heightened response
    5. Identifying the zone of safety based on chronological age and developmental stage
  2. Briefing of department members at the scene.
  3. Identifying NCIC Missing Person File categories (e.g., disability, endangered, involuntary, juvenile and catastrophe).
  4. Verifying the accuracy of all descriptive information.
  5. Initiating a neighborhood investigation.
  6. Investigating any relevant recent family dynamics.
  7. Addressing conflicting information.
  8. Key investigative and coordination steps.
  9. Managing a missing person case.
  10. Additional resources and specialized services.
  11. Update procedures for case information and descriptions.
  12. Preserving scenes.
  13. Internet and technology issues (e.g., Internet use, cell phone use).
  14. Media relations.

334 - Public Alerts

334.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for alerting the public to important information and soliciting public aid when appropriate.

334.2 POLICY

Public alerts may be employed using the Emergency Alert System (EAS), local radio, television and press organizations and other groups to notify the public of incidents, or enlist the aid of the public, when the exchange of information may enhance the safety of the community. Various types of alerts may be available based upon each situation and the alert system’s individual criteria.

334.3 RESPONSIBILITIES

334.3.1 EMPLOYEE RESPONSIBILITIES

Employees of the Metro Transit Police Department should notify their supervisor, Shift Supervisor or Investigation Division Supervisor as soon as practicable upon learning of a situation where public notification, a warning or enlisting the help of the media and public could assist in locating a missing person, apprehending a dangerous person or gathering information.

334.3.2 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

A supervisor apprised of the need for a public alert is responsible to make the appropriate notifications based upon the circumstances of each situation. The supervisor shall promptly notify the Chief of Police, the Patrol Captain and the Public Information Officer when any public alert is generated.

The supervisor in charge of the investigation to which the alert relates is responsible for the following:

  1. Updating alerts
  2. Canceling alerts
  3. Ensuring all appropriate reports are completed
  4. Preparing an after-action evaluation of the investigation to be forwarded to the Patrol Captain and Deputy Chief

334.4 AMBER ALERTS

America's Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response (AMBER) Alert™ is the recruitment of public assistance to locate an abducted child via a widespread media alert. Utilizing the assistance of local radio, television and press affiliates, the public will be notified of the circumstances of a child's abduction and how it can assist law enforcement in the child's recovery. The goal of the AMBER Alert program is the safe return of an abducted child by establishing an effective

partnership between the community, the media and law enforcement through the Minnesota Crime Alert Network (Minn. Stat. § 299A.61 Subd. 1).

334.4.1 CRITERIA

Any non-familial case in which an individual is abducted and the public can assist will trigger the activation of either the AMBER Alert and/or the Minnesota Crime Alert Network (MCAN) to inform the public and request its assistance in locating the individual.

The criteria for issuance of an Amber Alert are as follows:

  1. A child 17 years of age or younger was abducted and there is reason to believe the victim is in imminent danger of serious bodily injury or death.
  2. There is information available to disseminate to the general public that could assist with the safe recovery of the victim and/or the apprehension of the suspect.

An AMBER Alert should not be requested if there is no information to distribute.

334.4.2PROCEDURE

The supervisor shall review the AMBER Alert checklist provided by the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) to determine whether the abduction meets the AMBER Alert criteria.

As soon as possible, Records Section personnel shall enter the child’s name and other critical data into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC), with appropriate flags.

If the AMBER Alert criteria is met, the supervisor, Shift Supervisor or Investigation Division supervisor will notify the Operations Center at the BCA. The BCA will determine whether an AMBER Alert will be issued and, if so, will activate the Minnesota Emergency Alert System (EAS) through the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (DPS) Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM).

BCA will manage press notifications through the EAS.

As additional information becomes available, the BCA shall be apprised and they will disseminate the information, as appropriate.

When the child is found, or the alert should be cancelled for other reasons, the Investigation Division supervisor shall immediately notify BCA with the pertinent information.

334.5 MINNESOTA CRIME ALERT NETWORK

MCAN is a statewide communications network that enables law enforcement agencies to quickly alert the public (Minn. Stat. § 299A.61). In cases where the AMBER Alert criteria are not met, MCAN can be activated to notify the public and request information on the case. Law enforcement agencies, businesses, schools and community members participate in the network.

334.5.1 CRITERIA

MCAN is available for disseminating information regarding the commission of crimes, including information on missing and endangered children or vulnerable adults, or attempts to reduce theft and other crime.

334.5.2 PROCEDURE

If a supervisor determines that a MCAN alert should be requested, the supervisor should contact the BCA Operations Center and provide the requested information.

The Public Information Officer should prepare a press release that includes all available information that might strengthen the assistance by the public or other law enforcement agencies. It should be updated with additional information as it becomes available and useful. All media releases should be coordinated with the BCA. In the event of a confirmed child abduction, whether or not an AMBER Alert or MCAN alert is activated, procedures designed to inform the media should be followed. Initial information to release may include, but is not limited to:

  1. The nature of the crime that has occurred.
  2. The victim’s identity, age and description, if relevant.
  3. Photograph if available.
  4. The suspect’s identity, age and description, if known.
  5. Pertinent vehicle description.
  6. Detail regarding location of incident, direction of travel and potential destinations, if known.
  7. Whether there is reason to believe the suspect has a relationship to the victim.
  8. Name and phone number of the Public Information Officer or other authorized individual to handle media liaison.
  9. A telephone number for the public to call with leads or information.

As additional information pertinent to the case becomes available, it shall be forwarded to the BCA.

336 - Victim and Witness Assistance

336.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that crime victims and witnesses receive appropriate assistance, that they are provided with information from government and private resources, and that the agency meets all related legal mandates.

336.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department is committed to providing guidance and assistance to the victims and witnesses of crime. The employees of the Metro Transit Police Department will show compassion and understanding for victims and witnesses and will make reasonable efforts to provide the support and information identified in this policy.

336.3 CRIME VICTIM LIAISON

The Chief of Police may appoint a member of the Department to serve as the crime victim liaison. The crime victim liaison will be the point of contact for individuals requiring further assistance or information from the Metro Transit Police Department regarding benefits from crime victim resources. This person shall also be responsible for maintaining compliance with all legal mandates related to crime victims and/or witnesses.

336.3.1 SPECIFIC VICTIM LIAISON DUTIES

The crime victim liaison shall assist the Minnesota Crime Victims Reparations Board in performing its duties and ensure that the Records Section forwards copies of requested reports to the board or other authorized organizations within 10 days of receipt, in compliance with the Records Maintenance and Release Policy. These reports include those maintained as confidential or not open to inspection under Minn. Stat. § 260B.171; Minn. Stat. § 260C.171 (Minn. Stat. § 611A.66).

336.4 CRIME VICTIMS

Officers should provide all victims with the applicable victim information handouts.

Officers should never guarantee a victim’s safety from future harm but may make practical safety suggestions to victims who express fear of future harm or retaliation. Officers should never guarantee that a person qualifies as a victim for the purpose of compensation or restitution but may direct him/her to the proper written department material or available victim resources.

336.5 VICTIM INFORMATION

The Administration Supervisor shall ensure that victim information handouts are available and current. These should include as appropriate:

  1. Shelters and other community resources for victims including domestic violence and sexual assault victims.
  2. Assurance that sexual assault victims will not incur out-of-pocket expenses for forensic medical exams, and information about evidence collection, storage and preservation in sexual assault cases (42 USC § 3796gg-4; 42 USC § 10603f).
  3. An advisement that a person who was arrested may be released on bond or some other form of release and that the victim should not rely upon an arrest as a guarantee of safety.
  4. A clear explanation of relevant court orders and how they can be obtained.
  5. Information regarding available compensation for qualifying victims of crime.
  6. VINE® information (Victim Information and Notification Everyday), including the telephone number and whether this free service is available to allow victims to check on an offender’s custody status and to register for automatic notification when a person is released from jail.
  7. Notice regarding U-Visa and T-Visa application processes.
  8. Resources available for victims of identity theft.
  9. A place for the officer’s name, badge number and any applicable case or incident number.
  10. Notices and information regarding the rights of crime victims, domestic abuse victims, and offender release as detailed in the following:
    1. Safe at Home address confidentiality program (Minn. Stat. § 5B.03)
    2. Offender release notification (Minn. Stat. § 244.052; Minn. Stat. § 244.053; Minn. Stat. § 611A.06; Minn. Stat. § 629.73)
    3. Tenancy issues (Minn. Stat. § 504B.205; Minn. Stat. § 504B.206)
    4. Victim and specific domestic violence victim information/Minnesota CHOICE (Minn. Stat. § 611A.02 et seq.; Minn. Stat. § 629.341; Minn. Stat. § 629.72)
  11. A notice that a decision to arrest is the officer’s and the decision to prosecute lies with the prosecutor, even when a victim requests no arrest or prosecution.
  12. Contact information for the Office of Justice Programs and the Emergency Fund and Crime Victims Reparations.

366.6 WITNESSES

Officers should never guarantee a witness’ safety from future harm or that his/her identity will always remain confidential. Officers may make practical safety suggestions to witnesses who express fear of future harm or retaliation.

Officers should investigate allegations of witness intimidation and take enforcement action when lawful and reasonable.

338 - Hate and Prejudice Crimes

338.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes and places a high priority on the rights of all individuals guaranteed under the constitution and the laws of this state. When such rights are infringed upon by violence, threats or other harassment, this department will utilize all available resources to see that justice is served under the law. This policy has been developed to meet or exceed the provisions of the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act, and provides members of this department with guidelines for identifying and investigating incidents and crimes that may be motivated by hatred or other bias.

338.1.1 FEDERAL JURISDICTION

The federal government also has the power to investigate and prosecute bias-motivated violence by providing the U.S. Department of Justice with jurisdiction over crimes of violence where the perpetrator has selected the victim because of the person's actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability (18 USC § 245).

338.2 DEFINITIONS

Hate or Prejudice Crime - Conduct that would constitute a crime and was committed because of the victim’s or another’s actual or perceived race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability (see generally Minn. Stat § 611A.79 Subd. 1).

338.3 PREVENTING AND PREPARING FOR LIKELY HATE OR PREJUDICE CRIMES

While it is recognized that not all crime can be prevented, this department is committed to taking a proactive approach to preventing and preparing for likely hate or prejudice crimes by among other things:

  1. Officers should make an affirmative effort to establish contact with persons and groups within the community who are likely targets of hate crimes to form and cooperate with prevention and response networks.
  2. Providing victim assistance and follow-up as outlined below, including community follow-up.
  3. Educating community and civic groups relating to hate crime laws.

338.4 PROCEDURE FOR INVESTIGATING HATE OR PREJUDICE CRIMES

Whenever any member of this department receives a report of a suspected hate or prejudice crime or other activity that reasonably appears to involve a potential hate or prejudice crime, the following should occur:

  1. Officers will be promptly assigned to contact the victim, witness or reporting party to investigate the matter further as circumstances may dictate.
  2. A supervisor should be notified of the circumstances as soon as practicable.
  3. Once “in progress” aspects of any such situation have been stabilized (e.g., treatment of victims or apprehension of present suspects), the assigned officers will take all reasonable steps to preserve available evidence that may tend to establish that a hate or prejudice crime was involved.
  4. The assigned officers will interview available witnesses, victims and others to determine what circumstances, if any, indicate that the situation may involve a hate or prejudice crime.
  5. Depending on the situation, the assigned officers or supervisor may request additional assistance from investigators or other resources to further the investigation.
  6. The assigned officers will include all available evidence indicating the likelihood of a hate or prejudice crime in the relevant reports. All related reports will be clearly marked as “Hate or Prejudice Crimes” and, absent prior approval of a supervisor, will be completed and submitted by the assigned officers before the end of the shift.
  7. The assigned officers will provide the victims of any suspected hate or prejudice crime with the brochure on hate and prejudice crimes authorized by the Department. Such brochures will also be available to members of the public upon request. The assigned officers should also make reasonable efforts to assist the victims by providing available information on local assistance programs and organizations as required by the Victim Assistance Policy.
  8. The assigned officers and supervisor should take reasonable steps to ensure that any such situation does not escalate further and provide information to the victim regarding legal aid, e.g., a possible Temporary Restraining Order through the courts, prosecuting attorney or Prosecuting Attorney.

338.5 INVESTIGATION DIVISION RESPONSIBILITIES

If a case is assigned to the Investigation Division, the assigned investigator will be responsible for following up on the reported hate or prejudice crime as follows:

  1. Coordinating further investigation with the prosecuting attorney and other appropriate law enforcement agencies, as appropriate.
  2. Maintaining contact with the victims and other involved individuals as needed.
  3. Maintaining statistical data and tracking of suspected hate or prejudice crimes as indicated or required by state law.

338.5.1 STATE HATE CRIME REPORTING

This department shall report hate or prejudice crime offenses in the form and manner and at regular intervals as prescribed by rules adopted by the Department of Public Safety. This shall be conducted by the Records Supervisor or assigned to the Investigation Division (Minn. Stat. § 626.5531, Subd. 2).

Reports are required to include (Minn. Stat. 626.5531, Subd. 1):

  1. The date of the offense.
  2. The location of the offense.
  3. Whether the target of the incident was a person, private property or public property.
  4. The crime committed.
  5. The type of bias and information about the offender and the victim that is relevant to that bias.
  6. Any organized group involved in the incident.
  7. The disposition of the case.
  8. Whether the determination that the offense was motivated by bias was based on the officer's reasonable belief or on the victim's allegation.
  9. Any additional information the superintendent deems necessary for the acquisition of accurate and relevant data.

338.5.2 FEDERAL HATE CRIME REPORTING

The Records Supervisor should include hate crime data reporting within the National Incident- Based Reporting System (NIBRS), Uniform Crime Report (UCR) and Summary Reporting System (SRS) reports pursuant to Records Section procedures and in compliance with (28 USC § 534 (a)). In most, if not all cases, this will be the responsibility of the local agency having jurisdiction over the case.

338.6 TRAINING

All members of this department will receive training on hate and prejudice crime recognition and investigation and will attend periodic training that incorporates a hate and prejudice crime training component (Minn. Stat. § 626.8451, Subd. 1 and Subd. 4).

340 - Standards of Conduct

340.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes standards of conduct that are consistent with the values and mission of the Metro Transit Police Department and are expected of all department members. The standards contained in this policy are not intended to be an exhaustive list of requirements and prohibitions but they do identify many of the important matters concerning conduct. In addition to the provisions of this policy, members are subject to all other provisions contained in this manual, as well as any additional guidance on conduct that may be disseminated by this department or a member’s supervisors.

340.1.1 POST

This policy incorporates the elements of the Peace Officer Standards and Training Board (POST) Model Policy regarding the professional conduct of peace officers. However, this policy shall apply to all members of this department including volunteer, part-time and auxiliary employees.

The provisions of this policy are in addition to collective bargaining agreements or any other applicable law (see generally Minn. R. 6700.1500).

The Department shall report annually to POST any data regarding the investigation and disposition of cases involving alleged misconduct of officers (Minn. Stat. § 626.8457, Subd. 3).

340.2 POLICY

The continued employment or appointment of every member of the Metro Transit Police Department shall be based on conduct that reasonably conforms to the guidelines set forth herein. Failure to meet the guidelines set forth in this policy, whether on- or off-duty, may be cause for disciplinary action (see generally Minn. R. 6700.2000 to Minn. R. 6700.2600).

340.3 DIRECTIVES AND ORDERS

Members shall comply with lawful directives and orders from any department supervisor or person in a position of authority, absent a reasonable and bona fide justification.

340.3.1 UNLAWFUL OR CONFLICTING ORDERS

Supervisors shall not knowingly issue orders or directives that, if carried out, would result in a violation of any law or department policy. Supervisors should not issue orders that conflict with any previous order without making reasonable clarification that the new order is intended to countermand the earlier order.

No member is required to obey any order that appears to be in direct conflict with any federal law, state law or local ordinance. Following a known unlawful order is not a defense and does not relieve the member from criminal or civil prosecution or administrative discipline. If the legality of an order is in doubt, the affected member shall ask the issuing supervisor to clarify the order or shall confer with a higher authority. The responsibility for refusal to obey rests with the member, who shall subsequently be required to justify the refusal.

Unless it would jeopardize the safety of any individual, members who are presented with a lawful order that is in conflict with a previous lawful order, department policy or other directive shall respectfully inform the issuing supervisor of the conflict. The issuing supervisor is responsible for either resolving the conflict or clarifying that the lawful order is intended to countermand the previous lawful order or directive, in which case the member is obliged to comply. Members who are compelled to follow a conflicting lawful order after having given the issuing supervisor the opportunity to correct the conflict, will not be held accountable for disobedience of the lawful order or directive that was initially issued.

The person countermanding the original order shall notify, in writing, the person issuing the original order, indicating the action taken and the reason.

340.3.2 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Supervisors and managers are required to follow all policies and procedures and may be subject to discipline for:

  1. Failure to be reasonably aware of the performance of their subordinates or to provide appropriate guidance and control.
  2. Failure to promptly and fully report any known misconduct of a member to his/her immediate supervisor or to document such misconduct appropriately or as required by policy.
  3. Directing a subordinate to violate a policy or directive, acquiesce to such a violation, or are indifferent to any such violation by a subordinate.
  4. The unequal or disparate exercise of authority on the part of a supervisor toward any member for malicious or other improper purpose.

340.4 GENERAL STANDARDS

Members shall conduct themselves, whether on- or off-duty, in accordance with the United States and Minnesota Constitutions and all applicable laws, ordinances and rules enacted or established pursuant to legal authority.

Members shall familiarize themselves with policies and procedures and are responsible for compliance with each. Members should seek clarification and guidance from supervisors in the event of any perceived ambiguity or uncertainty.

Discipline may be initiated for any good cause. It is not mandatory that a specific policy or rule violation be cited to sustain discipline. This policy is not intended to cover every possible type of misconduct.

340.5 CAUSES FOR DISCIPLINE

The following are illustrative of causes for disciplinary action. This list is not intended to cover every possible type of misconduct and does not preclude the recommendation of disciplinary action for violation of other rules, standards, ethics and specific action or inaction that is detrimental to efficient department service.

340.5.1 LAWS, RULES AND ORDERS

  1. Violation of, or ordering or instructing a subordinate to violate any policy, procedure, rule, order, directive, requirement or failure to follow instructions contained in department or Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit manuals.
  2. Disobedience of any legal directive or order issued by any department member of a higher rank.
  3. Violation of federal, state, local or administrative laws, rules or regulations.

340.5.2 ETHICS

  1. Using or disclosing one’s status as a member of the Metro Transit Police Department in any way that could reasonably be perceived as an attempt to gain influence or authority for non-department business or activity.
  2. The wrongful or unlawful exercise of authority on the part of any member for malicious purpose, personal gain, willful deceit or any other improper purpose.
  3. The receipt or acceptance of a reward, fee or gift from any person for service incident to the performance of the member's duties (lawful subpoena fees and authorized work permits excepted).
  4. Acceptance of fees, gifts or money contrary to the rules of this department and/or laws of the state.
  5. Offer or acceptance of a bribe or gratuity.
  6. Misappropriation or misuse of public funds, property, personnel or services.
  7. Any other failure to abide by the standards of ethical conduct.

340.5.3 DISCRIMINATION, OPPRESSION OR FAVORITISM

Discriminating against, oppressing or providing favoritism to any person because of age, race, color, creed, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, ancestry, marital status, physical or mental disability, medical condition or other classification protected by law, or intentionally denying or impeding another in the exercise or enjoyment of any right, privilege, power or immunity, knowing the conduct is unlawful.

340.5.4 RELATIONSHIPS

  1. Unwelcome solicitation of a personal or sexual relationship while on-duty or through the use of one’s official capacity.
  2. Engaging in on-duty sexual activity including, but not limited to, sexual intercourse, excessive displays of public affection or other sexual contact.
  3. Establishing or maintaining an inappropriate personal or financial relationship, as a result of an investigation, with a known victim, witness, suspect or defendant while a case is being investigated or prosecuted, or as a direct result of any official contact.
  4. Associating with or joining a criminal gang, organized crime and/or criminal syndicate when the member knows or reasonably should know of the criminal nature of the organization.

    This includes any organization involved in a definable criminal activity or enterprise, except as specifically directed and authorized by this department.
  5. Associating on a personal, rather than official basis with persons who demonstrate recurring involvement in serious violations of state or federal laws after the member knows, or reasonably should know of such criminal activities, except as specifically directed and authorized by this department.

340.5.5 ATTENDANCE

  1. Leaving the job to which the member is assigned during duty hours without reasonable excuse and proper permission and approval.
  2. Unexcused or unauthorized absence or tardiness.
  3. Excessive absenteeism or abuse of leave privileges.
  4. Failure to report to work or to place of assignment at time specified and fully prepared to perform duties without reasonable excuse.

340.5.6 UNAUTHORIZED ACCESS, DISCLOSURE OR USE

  1. Unauthorized and inappropriate intentional release of confidential or protected information, materials, data, forms or reports obtained as a result of the member’s position with this department.
  2. Disclosing to any unauthorized person any active investigation information.
  3. The use of any information, photograph, video or other recording obtained or accessed as a result of employment or appointment to this department for personal or financial gain or without the express authorization of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.
  4. Loaning, selling, allowing unauthorized use, giving away or appropriating any Metro Transit Police Department badge, uniform, identification card or department property for personal use, personal gain or any other improper or unauthorized use or purpose.
  5. Using department resources in association with any portion of an independent civil action. These resources include, but are not limited to, personnel, vehicles, equipment and non- subpoenaed records.

340.5.7 EFFICIENCY

  1. Neglect of duty.
  2. Unsatisfactory work performance including, but not limited to, failure, incompetence, inefficiency or delay in performing and/or carrying out proper orders, work assignments or the instructions of supervisors without a reasonable and bona fide excuse.
  3. Concealing, attempting to conceal, removing or destroying defective or incompetent work.
  4. Unauthorized sleeping during on-duty time or assignments.
  5. Failure to notify the Department within 24 hours of any change in residence address, contact telephone numbers or marital status.

340.5.8 PERFORMANCE

  1. Failure to disclose or misrepresenting material facts, or making any false or misleading statement on any application, examination form, or other official document, report or form, or during the course of any work-related investigation.
  2. The falsification of any work-related records, making misleading entries or statements with the intent to deceive or the willful and unauthorized removal, alteration, destruction and/or mutilation of any department record, public record, book, paper or document.
  3. Failure to participate in, or giving false or misleading statements, or misrepresenting or omitting material information to a supervisor or other person in a position of authority, in connection with any investigation or in the reporting of any department--related business.
  4. Being untruthful or knowingly making false, misleading or malicious statements that are reasonably calculated to harm the reputation, authority or official standing of this department or its members.
  5. Disparaging remarks or conduct concerning duly constituted authority to the extent that such conduct disrupts the efficiency of this department or subverts the good order, efficiency and discipline of this department or that would tend to discredit any of its members.
  6. Unlawful gambling or unlawful betting at any time or any place. Legal gambling or betting under any of the following conditions:

     

    1. While on department premises.
    2. At any work site, while on-duty or while in uniform, or while using any department equipment or system.
    3. Gambling activity undertaken as part of an officer’s official duties and with the express knowledge and permission of a direct supervisor is exempt from this prohibition.
  7. Improper political activity including:

     

    1. Unauthorized attendance while on-duty at official legislative or political sessions.
    2. Solicitations, speeches or distribution of campaign literature for or against any political candidate or position while on-duty or on department property except as expressly authorized by Metropolitan Area policy, the collective bargaining agreement, or the Chief of Police.
  8. Engaging in political activities during assigned working hours except as expressly authorized by Metropolitan Area policy, the collective bargaining agreement, or the Chief of Police.
  9. Any act on- or off-duty that brings discredit to this department.

340.5.9 CONDUCT

  1. Failure of any member to promptly and fully report activities on his/her part or the part of any other member where such activities resulted in contact with any other law enforcement agency or that may result in criminal prosecution or discipline under this policy.
  2. Unreasonable and unwarranted force to a person encountered or a person under arrest.
  3. Exceeding lawful peace officer powers by unreasonable, unlawful or excessive conduct.
  4. Unauthorized or unlawful fighting, threatening or attempting to inflict unlawful bodily harm on another.
  5. Engaging in horseplay that reasonably could result in injury or property damage.
  6. Discourteous, disrespectful or discriminatory treatment of any member of the public or any member of this department or the Metropolitan Area.
  7. Use of obscene, indecent, profane or derogatory language while on-duty or in uniform.
  8. Criminal, dishonest, or disgraceful conduct, whether on- or off-duty, that adversely affects the member’s relationship with this department.
  9. Unauthorized possession of, loss of, or damage to department property or the property of others, or endangering it through carelessness or maliciousness.
  10. Attempted or actual theft of department property; misappropriation or misuse of public funds, property, personnel or the services or property of others; unauthorized removal or possession of department property or the property of another person.
  11. Activity that is incompatible with a member’s conditions of employment or appointment as established by law or that violates a provision of any collective bargaining agreement or contract to include fraud in securing the appointment or hire.
  12. Initiating any civil action for recovery of any damages or injuries incurred in the course and scope of employment or appointment without first notifying the Chief of Police of such action.
  13. Any other on- or off-duty conduct which any member knows or reasonably should know is unbecoming a member of this department, is contrary to good order, efficiency or morale, or tends to reflect unfavorably upon this department or its members.

340.5.10 SAFETY

  1. Failure to observe or violating department safety standards or safe working practices.
  2. Failure to maintain current licenses or certifications required for the assignment or position (e.g., driver’s license, first aid).
  3. Failure to maintain good physical condition sufficient to adequately and safely perform law enforcement duties.
  4. Unsafe firearm or other dangerous weapon handling to include loading or unloading firearms in an unsafe manner, either on- or off-duty.
  5. Carrying, while on the premises of the work place, any firearm or other lethal weapon that is not authorized by the member’s appointing authority.
  6. Unsafe or improper driving habits or actions in the course of employment or appointment.
  7. Any personal action contributing to a preventable traffic collision.
  8. Concealing or knowingly failing to report any on-the-job or work-related accident or injury as soon as practicable but within 24 hours.

340.5.11 INTOXICANTS

  1. Reporting for work or being at work while intoxicated or when the member’s ability to perform assigned duties is impaired due to the use of alcohol, medication or drugs, whether legal, prescribed or illegal.
  2. Possession or use of alcohol at any work site or while on-duty, except as authorized in the performance of an official assignment. A member who is authorized to consume alcohol is not permitted to do so to such a degree that it may impair on-duty performance.
  3. Unauthorized possession, use of, or attempting to bring a controlled substance, illegal drug or non-prescribed medication to any work site.

342 - Information Technology Use

342.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for the proper use of department information technology resources, including computers, electronic devices, hardware, software and systems.

342.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Computer system - All computers (on-site and portable), electronic devices, hardware, software, and resources owned, leased, rented or licensed by the Metro Transit Police Department that are provided for official use by its members. This includes all access to, and use of, Internet Service Providers (ISP) or other service providers provided by or through the Department or department funding.

Hardware - Includes, but is not limited to, computers, computer terminals, network equipment, electronic devices, telephones, including cellular and satellite, pagers, modems or any other tangible computer device generally understood to comprise hardware.

Software - Includes, but is not limited to, all computer programs, systems and applications, including shareware. This does not include files created by the individual user.

Temporary file , permanent file or file - Any electronic document, information or data residing or located, in whole or in part, on the system including, but not limited to, spreadsheets, calendar entries, appointments, tasks, notes, letters, reports, messages, photographs or videos.

342.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that members shall use information technology resources, including computers, software and systems, that are issued or maintained by the Department in a professional manner and in accordance with this policy.

342.3 INSPECTION OR REVIEW

A supervisor or the authorized designee has the express authority to inspect or review the computer system, all temporary or permanent files, related electronic systems or devices, and any contents thereof, whether such inspection or review is in the ordinary course of his/her supervisory duties or based on cause.

Reasons for inspection or review may include, but are not limited to, computer system malfunctions, problems or general computer system failure, a lawsuit against the Department involving one of its members or a member’s duties, an alleged or suspected violation of any department policy, a request for disclosure of data, or a need to perform or provide a service.

The IT staff may extract, download or otherwise obtain any and all temporary or permanent files residing or located in or on the department computer system when requested by a supervisor or during the course of regular duties that require such information.

342.4 PRIVACY EXPECTATION

Members forfeit any expectation of privacy with regard to emails, texts or anything published, shared, transmitted or maintained through file-sharing software or any Internet site that is accessed, transmitted, received or reviewed on any department computer system.

The Department reserves the right to access, audit and disclose, for whatever reason, any message, including attachments, and any information accessed, transmitted, received or reviewed over any technology that is issued or maintained by the Department, including the department email system, computer network and/or any information placed into storage on any department system or device. This includes records of all keystrokes or Web-browsing history made at any department computer or over any department network. The fact that access to a database, service or website requires a username or password will not create an expectation of privacy if it is accessed through department computers, electronic devices or networks.

342.5 RESTRICTED USE

Members shall not access computers, devices, software or systems for which they have not received prior authorization or the required training. Members shall immediately report unauthorized access or use of computers, devices, software or systems by another member to their supervisors or Shift Supervisors.

Members shall not use another person’s access passwords, logon information and other individual security data, protocols and procedures unless directed to do so by a supervisor.

342.5.1 OFF-DUTY USE

Members shall only use technology resources provided by the Department while on-duty or in conjunction with specific on-call assignments unless specifically authorized by a supervisor. This includes the use of telephones, cell phones, texting, email or any other "off the clock" work-related activities. This also applies to personally owned devices that are used to access department resources.

Refer to the Personal Communication Devices Policy for guidelines regarding off-duty use of personally owned technology.

342.5.2 INTERNET USE

Internet access provided by or through the Department shall be strictly limited to department- related activities. Internet sites containing information that is not appropriate or applicable to department use and which shall not be intentionally accessed include, but are not limited to, adult forums, pornography, gambling, chat rooms and similar or related Internet sites. Certain exceptions may be permitted with the express approval of a supervisor as a function of a member’s assignment.

Downloaded information shall be limited to messages, mail and data files.

342.5.3 HARDWARE

Access to technology resources provided by or through the Department shall be strictly limited to department-related activities. Data stored on or available through department computer systems shall only be accessed by authorized members who are engaged in an active investigation or assisting in an active investigation, or who otherwise have a legitimate law enforcement or department-related purpose to access such data. Any exceptions to this policy must be approved by a supervisor.

342.5.4 SOFTWARE

Members shall not copy or duplicate any copyrighted or licensed software except for a single copy for backup purposes in accordance with the software company’s copyright and license agreement.

To reduce the risk of a computer virus or malicious software, members shall not install any unlicensed or unauthorized software on any department computer. Members shall not install personal copies of any software onto any department computer.

When related to criminal investigations, software program files may be downloaded only with the approval of the information systems technology (IT) staff and with the authorization of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.

No member shall knowingly make, acquire or use unauthorized copies of computer software that is not licensed to the Department while on department premises, computer systems or electronic devices. Such unauthorized use of software exposes the Department and involved members to severe civil and criminal penalties.

Introduction of software by members should only occur as part of the automated maintenance or update process of department- or Metropolitan Area-approved or installed programs by the original manufacturer, producer or developer of the software.

Any other introduction of software requires prior authorization from IT staff and a full scan for malicious attachments.

342.6 PROTECTION OF AGENCY SYSTEMS AND FILES

All members have a duty to protect the computer system and related systems and devices from physical and environmental damage and are responsible for the correct use, operation, care and maintenance of the computer system.

Members shall ensure department computers and access terminals are not viewable by persons who are not authorized users. Computers and terminals should be secured, users logged off and password protections enabled whenever the user is not present. Access passwords, logon information and other individual security data, protocols and procedures are confidential information and are not to be shared. Password length, format, structure and content shall meet the prescribed standards required by the computer system or as directed by a supervisor and shall be changed at intervals as directed by IT staff or a supervisor.

It is prohibited for a member to allow an unauthorized user to access the computer system at any time or for any reason. Members shall promptly report any unauthorized access to the computer system or suspected intrusion from outside sources (including the Internet) to a supervisor.

344 - Report Preparation

344.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Report preparation is a major part of each employee's job. The purpose of reports is to document sufficient information to refresh the employee's memory and to provide sufficient information for follow-up investigation and successful prosecution. Report writing is the subject of substantial formalized and on-the-job training.

344.1.1 REPORT PREPARATION

Employees should ensure that their reports are sufficient for their purpose and reasonably free of errors prior to submission. It is the responsibility of the assigned employee to complete and submit all reports taken during the shift before going off-duty, unless permission to hold the report has been approved by a supervisor. Generally, reports requiring prompt follow-up action on active leads, or arrest reports where the suspect remains in custody should not be held.

Handwritten reports must be prepared legibly. If the report is not legible, the submitting employee will be required by the reviewing supervisor to promptly make corrections and resubmit the report. Employees who dictate reports shall use appropriate grammar, as content is not the responsibility of the typist. Employees who generate reports on computers are subject to all requirements of this policy.

All reports shall accurately reflect the identity of the persons involved, all pertinent information seen, heard or assimilated by any other sense and any actions taken. Employees shall not suppress, conceal or distort the facts of any reported incident nor shall any employee make a false report orally or in writing. Generally, the reporting employee's opinions should not be included in reports unless specifically identified as such.

344.2 REQUIRED REPORTING

Written reports are required in all of the following situations on the appropriate Department- approved form (computerized RMS) unless otherwise approved by a supervisor.

344.2.1 CRIMINAL ACTIVITY

When a member responds to a call for service, or as a result of self-initiated activity becomes aware of any activity where a crime has occurred, the member shall document the incident regardless of whether a victim desires prosecution.

Activity to be documented in a written report includes:

  1. All arrests
  2. All felony crimes
  3. All incidents involving violations of crimes or ordinances motivated by bias (Minn. Stat. § 626.5531)
  4. Non-felony incidents involving threats or stalking behavior
  5. Situations covered by separate policy. These include:

     

    1. Use of Force Policy
    2. Domestic Abuse Policy
    3. Child Abuse Policy
    4. Adult Abuse Policy
    5. Hate or Prejudice Crimes Policy
    6. Suspicious Activity Reports Policy
  6. All misdemeanor crimes where the victim desires a report

Misdemeanor crimes where the victim does not desire a report shall be documented using the department-approved alternative reporting method (e.g., dispatch log).

344.2.2 NON-CRIMINAL ACTIVITY

The following incidents shall be documented using the appropriate approved report:

  1. Any time an officer points a firearm at any person
  2. Any use of force against any person by a member of this department (see the Use of Force Policy)
  3. Any firearm discharge (see the Firearms Policy)
  4. Any time a person is reported missing, regardless of jurisdiction (see the Missing Persons Policy)
  5. Any found property or found evidence
  6. Any traffic collisions above the minimum reporting level (see the Traffic Collisions Policy)
  7. Suspicious incidents that may indicate a potential for crimes against children or that a child’s safety is in jeopardy
  8. All protective custody detentions
  9. Suspicious incidents that may place the public or others at risk
  10. Whenever the employee believes the circumstances should be documented or at the direction of a supervisor
  11. Any watercraft collision or accident, drowning death and/or general water accident should be reported on the appropriate Department of Natural Resource Form (Minn. Stat. § 86B.105(a))

344.2.3 DEATH REPORTS

Reports shall be completed by the handling employee. All deaths shall be handled in compliance with the Death Investigations Policy.

344.2.4 INJURY OR DAMAGE BY METROPOLITAN COUNCIL / METRO TRANSIT PERSONNEL

Reports shall be taken if an injury occurs that is a result of an act of a Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit employee. Additionally, reports shall be taken involving damage to Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit property or Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit equipment if not completed by the local agency having jurisdiction over the case.

344.2.5 MISCELLANEOUS INJURIES

Any injury that is reported to this department shall require a report when:

  1. The injury is a result of a drug overdose.
  2. Attempted suicide.
  3. The injury is major or serious, whereas death could result.
  4. The circumstances surrounding the incident are suspicious in nature and it is desirable to record the event.

The above reporting requirements are not intended to be all-inclusive. A supervisor may direct an employee to document any incident he/she deems necessary.

344.2.6 ALTERNATE REPORTING FOR VICTIMS

Reports that may be submitted by the public via online or other self-completed reporting processes include:

  1. Lost property.
  2. Misdemeanor thefts of property, other than firearms or materials that threaten public safety, when there is no suspect information or serial number or ability to trace the item.
    1. Misdemeanor thefts of cellular telephones may be reported even though they have a serial number.
  3. Misdemeanor vandalism with no suspect information and no hate crime implications.
  4. Vehicle burglaries with no suspect information or evidence.
  5. Stolen vehicle attempts with no suspect information or evidence.
  6. Annoying telephone calls with no suspect information.
  7. Identity theft without an identifiable suspect.
  8. Online or email fraud solicitations without an identifiable suspect and if the financial loss classifies the crime as a misdemeanor.
  9. Hit-and-run vehicle collisions with no suspect or suspect vehicle.
  10. Supplemental property lists.

Members at the scene of one of the above incidents should not refer the reporting party to an alternate means of reporting without authorization from a supervisor. Members may refer victims to online victim assistance programs (e.g., Federal Communications Commission (FCC) website for identity theft, Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) website for computer crimes).

344.3 OPTIONAL REPORTING / CAD DISPOSITIONS

In March 2015, a report writing process was implemented that no longer requires officers to write on all incidents. This process included the new incident status of "Case Closed No Report Required."

If an incident is given a CAD disposition of: "Citation", "Cleared by Report", "Detox", "Transport" or "Fail to Clear", the case status will be "Open" and a written report is required. The other 12 CAD dispositions will have a case disposition of; "Case Closed No Report Required." An officer may still write a report on an incident with a status of "Case Closed No Report Required" if they choose. Once completed, that incident shall have the status changed to "Supervisor Review."

344.4 GENERAL POLICY OF EXPEDITIOUS REPORTING

In general, all employees and supervisors shall act with promptness and efficiency in the preparation and processing of all reports. An incomplete report, unorganized reports or reports delayed without supervisory approval are not acceptable. Reports shall be processed according to established priorities or according to special priority necessary under exceptional circumstances.

344.4.1 GENERAL POLICY OF HANDWRITTEN REPORTS

Some incidents and report forms lend themselves to block print rather than typing. In general, the narrative portion of those reports where an arrest is made or when there is a long narrative should be typed or dictated.

Supervisors may require, with the foregoing general policy in mind, block printing or typing of reports of any nature for Department consistency.

344.4.2 GENERAL USE OF OTHER HANDWRITTEN FORMS

County, state and federal agency forms may be block printed as appropriate. In general, the form itself may make the requirement for typing apparent.

344.5 REPORT CORRECTIONS

Supervisors shall review reports for content and accuracy. If a correction is necessary, the reviewing supervisor shall notify the employee by stating the reasons for rejection. The original report and the corrections needed should be returned to the reporting employee for correction as soon as practicable. This will be done by creating a "task" for the employee in the RMS. It shall be the responsibility of the originating employee to ensure that any report returned for correction is processed in a timely manner.

344.6 REPORT CHANGES OR ALTERATIONS

Reports that have been approved by a supervisor and submitted to the Records Section for filing and distribution shall not be modified or altered except by way of a supplemental report. Reviewed reports that have not yet been submitted to the Records Section may be corrected or modified by the authoring employee only with the knowledge and authorization of the reviewing supervisor.

344.7 ELECTRONIC SIGNATURES

The Metro Transit Police Department has established an electronic signature procedure for use by all employees of the Metro Transit Police Department. The Systems Administrator shall be responsible for maintaining the electronic signature system, for ensuring that each employee creates a unique, confidential password for his/her electronic signature and that the use of electronic signatures otherwise complies with the law.

  • Employees may only use their electronic signature for official reports or other official communications.
  • Each employee shall be responsible for the security and use of his/her electronic signature and shall promptly notify a supervisor if the electronic signature has or may have been compromised or misused.

344.8 FIREARM INJURY REPORTING FROM HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

Members receiving a report from a health professional of a bullet or gunshot wound, powder burns or any other injury arising from, or caused by, the discharge of any gun, pistol or any other firearm shall thoroughly investigate the facts surrounding the incident (Minn. Stat. § 626.52, Subd. 2; Minn. Stat. § 626.553, Subd. 1).

The Records Section shall ensure that the report received from the health professional is forwarded to the commissioner of the Department of Health (Minn. Stat. § 626.53, Subd. 2). If the injury resulted from a hunting incident, the Records Section shall ensure that the findings of the investigation are forwarded to the commissioner of the Department of Natural Resources using the form provided by the commissioner (Minn. Stat. § 626.553, Subd. 1).

346 - Media Relations

346.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for media releases and media access to scenes of disasters, criminal investigations, emergencies and other law enforcement activities.

346.2 RESPONSIBILITIES

The ultimate authority and responsibility for the release of information to the media shall remain with the Chief of Police. However, in situations not warranting immediate notice to the Chief of Police and in situations where the Chief of Police has given prior approval, Captains, Shift Supervisors and designated Public Information Officer(s) may prepare and release information to the media in accordance with this policy and the applicable law.

346.2.1 MEDIA REQUEST

Any media request for information or access to a law enforcement situation shall be referred to the designated Department media representative, or if unavailable, to the first available supervisor. Prior to releasing any information to the media, employees shall consider the following:

  1. At no time shall any employee of this department make any comment or release any official information to the media without prior approval from a supervisor or the designated Department media representative.
  2. In situations involving multiple law enforcement agencies, every reasonable effort should be made to coordinate media releases with the authorized representative of each involved agency prior to the release of any information by this department.
  3. Under no circumstance should any member of this department make any comment(s) to the media regarding any law enforcement incident not involving this department without prior approval of the Chief of Police.

346.3 MEDIA ACCESS

Authorized members of the media shall be provided access to scenes of disasters, criminal investigations, emergencies and other law enforcement activities subject to the following conditions:

  1. The media representative shall produce valid press credentials that shall be prominently displayed at all times while in areas otherwise closed to the public.
  2. Media representatives may be prevented from interfering with emergency operations and criminal investigations.

     

    1. Reasonable effort should be made to provide a safe staging area for the media that is near the incident and that will not interfere with emergency or criminal investigation operations. All information released to the media should be coordinated through the department Public Information Officer or other designated spokesperson.
  3. No member of this department shall be required to submit to media visits or interviews without the consent of the involved employee.
  4. Media interviews with individuals who are in custody shall not be permitted unless in compliance with a jail facility policy. Exceptions are only permitted with the approval of the Chief of Police and the express written consent of the person in custody.

A tactical operation should be handled in the same manner as a crime scene, except the news media shall be permitted within the outer perimeter of the scene, subject to any restrictions as determined by the supervisor in charge. Department members shall not jeopardize a tactical operation in order to accommodate the news media. All comments to the media shall be coordinated through a supervisor or the Public Information Officer.

346.3.1 TEMPORARY FLIGHT RESTRICTIONS

Whenever the presence of media or other aircraft poses a threat to public or officer safety or significantly hampers incident operations, the field supervisor should consider requesting a Temporary Flight Restriction (TFR). All requests for a TFR should be routed through the Shift Supervisor. The TFR request should include specific information regarding the perimeter and altitude necessary for the incident and should be requested through the appropriate control tower. If the control tower is not known, the Federal Aviation Administration should be contacted (14 CFR 91.137).

346.3.2 PROVIDING ADVANCE INFORMATION

To protect the safety and rights of officers and other persons, advance information about planned actions by law enforcement personnel, such as movement of persons in custody or the execution of an arrest or search warrant, should not be disclosed to the news media nor should media representatives be invited to be present at such actions except with the prior approval of the Chief of Police.

Any exceptions to the above should only be considered for the furtherance of legitimate law enforcement purposes. Prior to approving any exception, the Chief of Police will consider, at minimum, whether the release of information or presence of the media would unreasonably endanger any individual, prejudice the rights of any person or is otherwise prohibited by law.

346.4 SCOPE OF INFORMATION SUBJECT TO RELEASE

The Department will maintain a daily information log of significant law enforcement activities that shall be made available, upon request, to media representatives through the Shift Supervisor. This log will consist of data classified as public and should generally contain the following information (Minn. Stat. § 13.82):

  1. The date, time, location, case number, type of crime, extent of injury or loss and names of individuals (except confidential informants) involved in crimes occurring within this jurisdiction, unless the release of such information would endanger the safety of any individual or jeopardize the successful completion of any ongoing investigation.
  2. The date, time, location, case number, name, birth date and charges for each person arrested by this department, unless the release of such information would endanger the safety of any individual or jeopardize the successful completion of any ongoing investigation.
  3. The time and location of other significant law enforcement activities or requests for service with a brief summary of the incident subject to the restrictions of this policy and applicable law.

Any requests for copies of related reports or additional information not contained in this log shall be referred to the designated media representative, the custodian of records, or if unavailable, to the Shift Supervisor. Such requests will generally be processed in accordance with the provisions of the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act (Minn. Stat. § 13.03).

346.4.1 STATE RESTRICTED INFORMATION

It shall be the responsibility of the authorized employee dealing with media requests to ensure that restricted information is not inappropriately released to the media by this department (see the Records Maintenance and Release Policy and the Personnel Records Policy). When in doubt, authorized and available legal counsel should be obtained.

348 - Court Appearance and Subpoenas

348.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes the guidelines for department members who must appear in court. It will allow the Metro Transit Police Department to cover any related work absences and keep the Department informed about relevant legal matters.

348.2 POLICY

Metro Transit Police Department members will respond appropriately to all subpoenas and any other court-ordered appearances.

348.3 SUBPOENAS

Only department members authorized to receive a subpoena on behalf of this department or any of its members may do so (Minn. R. Civ. P. 45.02; Minn. R. Crim. P. 22.03).

A court notice from a prosecutor or other government attorney may be served by delivery to the member’s workstation or mail box. Members shall check for delivery of such documents during each shift worked.

Subpoenas shall not be accepted in a civil action in which the member or Department is not a party without properly tendered fees pursuant to applicable law (Minn. Stat. § 357.23; Minn. R. Civ. P. 45.03).

348.4 FAILURE TO APPEAR

Any member who fails to comply with the terms of any properly served subpoena or court-ordered appearance may be subject to discipline. This includes properly served orders to appear that were issued by a state administrative agency.

348.5 STANDBY

To facilitate standby agreements, members are required to provide and maintain current information on their addresses and contact telephone numbers with the Department.

If a member on standby changes his/her location during the day, the member shall notify the designated department member of how he/she can be reached. Members are required to remain on standby until released by the court or the party that issued the subpoena.

348.6 COURTROOM PROTOCOL

When appearing in court, members shall:

  1. Be punctual and prepared to proceed immediately with the case for which they are scheduled to appear.
  2. Dress in the department uniform or business attire.
  3. Observe all rules of the court in which they are appearing and remain alert to changes in the assigned courtroom where their matter is to be heard.

348.6.1 TESTIMONY

Before the date of testifying, the subpoenaed member shall request a copy of relevant reports and become familiar with the content in order to be prepared for court.

348.7 OVERTIME APPEARANCES

When a member appears in court on his/her off-duty time, he/she will be compensated in accordance with any current collective bargaining agreement.

352 - Outside Agency Assistance

352.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance to members when requesting or responding to a request for mutual aid or when assisting another law enforcement agency.

352.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to promptly respond to requests for assistance by other law enforcement agencies, subject to available resources and consistent with the applicable laws and policies of this department.

352.3 ASSISTING OUTSIDE AGENCIES

Generally, requests for any type of assistance from another agency should be routed to the Shift Supervisor’s office for approval. Any such response to assist an outside agency may be considered for authorization regardless of whether an agreement for reciprocal aid under Minn. Stat. § 626.76, Subd. 1 exists. In some instances, a memorandum of understanding or other established protocol may exist that eliminates the need for approval of individual requests.

When another law enforcement agency requests assistance from this department, the Shift Supervisor may authorize, if available, an appropriate number of personnel to assist. Members are reminded that their actions when rendering assistance must conform with applicable laws and be consistent with the policies of this department.

Officers may respond to a request for emergency assistance; however, they shall notify a supervisor of their activity as soon as practicable.

Arrestees may be temporarily detained by this department until arrangements for transportation are made by the outside agency. Probation violators who are temporarily detained by this department will not ordinarily be booked by this department. Only in exceptional circumstances, and subject to supervisor approval, will this department provide transportation of arrestees to other facilities on behalf of another agency.

When transportation assistance is rendered, a report shall be prepared and submitted by the handling member unless otherwise directed by a supervisor.

352.3.1 AGREEMENTS

The Department may, at the discretion of the Chief of Police, establish an agreement with another law enforcement agency to (Minn. Stat. § 626.76, Subd.1):

  1. Assist other peace officers in the line of their duty and within the course of their employment.
  2. Exchange department peace officers with peace officers of another agency on a temporary basis.

352.3.2 INITIATED ACTIVITY

Any on-duty officer who engages in law enforcement activities of any type that are not part of a mutual aid request and take place outside the jurisdiction of the Metro Transit Police Department shall notify his/her supervisor or the Shift Supervisor and Transit Control Center as soon as practicable. This requirement does not apply to special enforcement details or multi-agency units that regularly work in multiple jurisdictions.

352.4 REQUESTING OUTSIDE ASSISTANCE

If assistance is needed from another agency, the member requesting assistance should, if practicable, first notify a supervisor. The handling member or supervisor should direct assisting personnel to where they are needed and to whom they should report when they arrive.

The requesting member should arrange for appropriate radio communication capabilities, if necessary and available, so that communication can be coordinated between assisting personnel.

352.5 REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

Incidents of outside assistance or law enforcement activities that are not documented in a crime report shall be documented in a general case report or as directed by the Shift Supervisor.

352.6 MANDATORY SHARING

Equipment and supplies purchased with federal funds or grants that require such equipment and supplies be shared with other agencies should be documented and updated as necessary by the Administration Supervisor or the authorized designee.

The documentation should include:

  1. The conditions relative to sharing.
  2. The training requirements for:
    1. The use of the supplies and equipment.
    2. The members trained in the use of the supplies and equipment.
  3. Any other requirements for use of the equipment and supplies.

Copies of the documentation should be provided to Transit Control Center and the Shift Supervisor to ensure use of the equipment and supplies is in compliance with the applicable sharing agreements.

The Training Supervisor should maintain documentation that the appropriate members have received the required training.

358 - Major Incident Notification

358.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance to members of this department in determining when, how and to whom notification of major incidents should be made.

358.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes that certain incidents should be brought to the attention of supervisors or other specified personnel of this department to facilitate the coordination of activities and ensure that inquiries from the media and the public may be properly addressed.

358.3 MINIMUM CRITERIA FOR NOTIFICATION

Most situations where the media show a strong interest are also of interest to the Chief of Police. The following list of incident types is provided as a guide for notification and is not intended to be all inclusive:

  • Homicides.
  • Traffic collisions with fatalities.
  • Officer-involved shooting, whether on or off-duty (See Officer-Involved Shooting Policy for special notifications).
  • Significant injury or death to an employee, whether on or off-duty.
  • Death of a prominent Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit official.
  • Arrest of Department employee or prominent Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit official.
  • In-custody deaths.
  • Any other incident, which has or is likely to attract significant media attention.

358.4 SHIFT SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

The Shift Supervisor is responsible for making the appropriate notifications. The Shift Supervisor shall make reasonable attempts to obtain as much information on the incident as possible before notification. The Shift Supervisor shall attempt to make the notifications as soon as practicable.

358.4.1 STAFF NOTIFICATION

In the event an incident occurs as identified in the Minimum Criteria for Notification, the Chief of Police shall be notified along with the affected Division supervisor and the Investigation Division supervisor if that division is providing assistance.

358.4.2 DETECTIVE NOTIFICATION

If the incident requires that an officer or investigator respond from home, the immediate supervisor of the appropriate detail shall be contacted. Detectives may be contacted directly in the event the Investigation Division supervisor in unable to be reached.

358.4.3 PATROL SUPERVISOR NOTIFICATION

In the event of a traffic fatality or major injury, the Traffic Reconstruction supervisor shall be notified, who will then contact the appropriate investigator.

358.4.4 PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER (PIO)

The Public Information Officer (PIO) shall be called after members of staff have been notified that it appears the media may have a significant interest in the incident. The PIO will typically be notified by the Chief of Police or designee.

360 - Death Investigation

360.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The investigation of cases involving death include those ranging from natural cause to homicide. Some causes of death may not be readily apparent and some cases differ substantially from what they appeared to be initially. The thoroughness of death investigations cannot be emphasized enough.

Death investigations shall be conducted pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 390.005 through 390.252 if the county has an elected or appointed Coroner (Minn. Stat. § 390.34).

360.2 INVESTIGATION CONSIDERATIONS

Death investigation cases require certain actions be taken. Emergency Medical Services shall be called in all suspected death cases unless the death is obvious (e.g., decapitated or decomposed). Peace officers are not authorized to pronounce death unless they are also Coroners or deputy coroners.

Metro Transit Police Department officers responding to or encountering a death scene shall promptly notify their Shift Supervisor. The Shift Supervisor shall ensure that a supervisor from the local agency with jurisdiction over the case is also notified.

360.2.1 MEDICAL EXAMINER REQUEST

The Medical Examiner shall be called in all sudden or unexpected deaths or deaths due to other than natural causes, including, but not limited to (Minn. Stat. § 390.11):

  1. Unnatural deaths, including violent deaths arising from homicide, suicide or accident.
  2. Deaths due to a fire or associated with burns or chemical, electrical or radiation injury.
  3. Unexplained or unexpected perinatal and postpartum maternal deaths.
  4. Deaths under suspicious, unusual or unexpected circumstances.
  5. Deaths of persons whose bodies are to be cremated or otherwise disposed of so that the bodies will later be unavailable for examination.
  6. Deaths of inmates of public institutions and persons in custody of law enforcement officers who have not been hospitalized primarily for organic disease.
  7. Deaths that occur during, in association with or as the result of diagnostic, therapeutic or anesthetic procedures.
  8. Deaths due to culpable neglect.
  9. Stillbirths of 20 weeks or longer gestation unattended by a physician.
  10. Sudden deaths of persons not affected by recognizable disease.
  11. Unexpected deaths of persons notwithstanding a history of underlying disease.
  12. Deaths in which a fracture of a major bone, such as a femur, humerus or tibia, has occurred within the past six months.
  13. Deaths unattended by a physician occurring outside of a licensed health care facility or licensed residential hospice program.
  14. Deaths of persons not seen by their physician within 120 days of demise.
  15. Deaths of persons occurring in an emergency department.
  16. Stillbirths or deaths of newborn infants in which there has been maternal use of or exposure to unprescribed controlled substances, including street drugs, or in which there is a history or evidence of maternal trauma.
  17. Unexpected deaths of children.
  18. Solid organ donors.
  19. Unidentified bodies.
  20. Skeletonized remains.
  21. Unexpected deaths occurring within 24 hours of arrival at a health care facility.
  22. Deaths associated with the decedent's employment.
  23. Deaths of non-registered hospice patients or patients in non-licensed hospice programs.
  24. Deaths attributable to acts of terrorism.

360.2.2 SEARCHING DEAD BODIES

The Medical Examiner or his/her assistants and authorized investigators are generally the only persons permitted to move, handle or search a dead body (Minn. Stat. § 390.221).

An officer shall make a reasonable search of an individual who it is reasonable to believe is dead, or near death, for information identifying the individual as an organ donor or as an individual who made a refusal. If a donor document is located, the Medical Examiner shall be promptly notified (Minn. Stat. § 525A.12).

Should exigent circumstances indicate to an officer that any other search of a known dead body is warranted prior to the arrival of the Medical Examiner, the investigating officer shall first obtain verbal consent from the Medical Examiner.

The Medical Examiner is required to release property or articles to law enforcement that are necessary for conducting an investigation unless reasonable basis exists pursuant to Minn. Stat.

§ 390.225 Subd. 2 to not release the property or articles (Minn. Stat. § 390.221).

Whenever reasonably possible, a witness, preferably a relative of the deceased or a member of the household, should be requested to remain nearby the scene and available to the officer, pending the arrival of the Medical Examiner.

The name and address of this person shall be included in the narrative of the death report. Whenever personal effects are removed from the body of the deceased by the Medical Examiner, a receipt shall be obtained. This receipt shall be attached to the death report.

360.2.3 DEATH NOTIFICATION

When practicable, and if not handled by the Medical Examiner, notification to the next-of-kin of the deceased person shall be made, in person, by the Chief of Police or designee. If the next-of-kin lives in another jurisdiction, a law enforcement official from that jurisdiction may be requested to make the personal notification. If the relatives live outside the Metro Transit Police Department's jurisdiction, the Medical Examiner may be requested to make the notification. The Medical Examiner needs to know if notification has been made. Assigned investigators may need to talk to the next-of-kin.

If a deceased person has been identified as a missing person, this department shall attempt to locate family members and inform them of the death and the location of the deceased missing person's remains. All efforts to locate and notify family members shall be recorded in appropriate reports and properly retained (Minn. Stat. § 390.25 Subd. 2 (b)).

This department shall immediately notify the state fire marshal when a human death results from a fire, (Minn. Stat. § 299F.04 Subd. 5 (b)).

360.2.4 UNIDENTIFIED DEAD BODIES

If the identity of a dead body cannot be established after the Medical Examiner arrives, the Medical Examiner will issue a "John Doe" or "Jane Doe" number for the report.

360.2.5 UNIDENTIFIED BODIES DATA ENTRY

As soon as reasonably possible, but no later than 30 working days after the date a death is reported to the Department, any information or items pertaining to identifying features of the unidentified body, dental records, fingerprints, any unusual physical characteristics, description of clothing or personal belongings found on or with the body, that are in the possession of MTPD shall be forwarded to the Medical Examiner for transmission to the BCA for eventual entry into systems designed to assist in the identification process, such as the Missing Children and Missing Persons Information Clearinghouse and the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) files (Minn. Stat. § 390.25 Subd. 2 (a)).

360.2.6 DEATH INVESTIGATION REPORTING

All incidents involving a death shall be documented on the appropriate form.

360.2.7 SUSPECTED HOMICIDE

If the initially assigned officer suspects that the death involves a homicide or other suspicious circumstances, the officer shall take steps to protect the scene and the Investigation Division shall be notified to determine the possible need for an investigator to respond to the scene for further immediate investigation.

If the on-scene supervisor, through consultation with the Shift Supervisor or Investigation Division supervisor, is unable to determine the manner of death, the investigation shall proceed as though it is a homicide.

The investigator of a homicide or suspicious-circumstances death may, with the approval of his/ her supervisor, request the Medical Examiner to conduct physical examinations and tests and provide a report with the costs borne by the Department (Minn. Stat. § 390.251).

360.2.8 EMPLOYMENT RELATED DEATHS OR INJURIES

Any member of this agency who responds to and determines that a death, serious illness or serious injury has occurred as a result of an accident at or in connection with the victim’s employment, should ensure that the nearest office of the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry is notified with all pertinent information.

362 - Identity Theft

362.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Identity theft is a growing trend that frequently involves related crimes in multiple jurisdictions. This policy is intended to provide guidelines for the reporting and investigation of such crimes.

362.2 REPORTING

  1. A report shall be taken any time a person living within the jurisdiction of the Metro Transit Police Department reports that he/she has been a victim of identity theft (Minn. Stat. § 609.527, Subd. 5). This includes:
    1. Taking a report even if the location of the crime is outside the jurisdiction of this department or has not been determined.
    2. Providing the victim with department information, as set forth in the Victim and Witness Assistance Policy. Officers should encourage the individual to review the material, and assist with any questions.
  2. Officers should include all known incidents of fraudulent activity (e.g., credit card number applied for in victim’s name when the victim has never made such an application).
  3. Officers should also cross-reference all known reports made by the victim (e.g., U.S. Secret Service, credit reporting bureaus, U.S. Postal Service and the Department of Public Safety's Driver and Vehicle Services Division) with all known report numbers.
  4. Following supervisory review and Department processing, the initial report should be forwarded to the appropriate investigator for follow-up investigation, coordination with other agencies and prosecution as circumstances dictate.

362.3 PREVENTATIVE MEASURES

The victim should be advised to place a security freeze on his/her consumer report as allowed by law (Minn. Stat. § 13C.016 Subd. 2). A victim may also access the Minnesota Attorney General's office for additional detailed information.

362.4 VICTIM DATA

The victim may be provided the Consent to Create an FBI Identity Theft File Form and a Notice About Providing Your Social Security Number. These completed forms should be submitted to the Records Section for appropriate filing and entry into the NCIC Identity Theft File. Forms and details are available on the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension identity theft website.

362.5 INFORMATION

The victim should also be encouraged to contact the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which is responsible for receiving and processing complaints under the Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act. The victim can contact the FTC online or by telephone. Additional information may be found at the U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ) website.

364 - Private Persons Arrests

364.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance for the handling of private person's arrests made pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 629.30 Subd. 2 (4).

364.2 ADVISING PRIVATE PERSONS OF THE ARREST PROCESS

All officers shall advise civilians of the right to make a private person's arrest, including advice on how to safely execute such an arrest. In all situations, officers should use sound discretion in determining whether to advise an individual of the arrest process.

  1. When advising any individual regarding the right to make a private person's arrest, officers should refrain from encouraging or dissuading any individual from making such an arrest and should instead limit advice to the legal requirements for such an arrest, as listed below.
  2. Private individuals should be discouraged from using force to effect a private person's arrest. Absent immediate threat to their own safety or the safety of others, private individuals should be encouraged to refer matters to law enforcement officials for further investigation or arrest.
  3. Private individuals shall be informed of the requirement to take the arrested person before a judge or to a peace officer without unnecessary delay (Minn. Stat. § 629.39).

364.3 ARRESTS BY PRIVATE PERSONS

A private person may arrest another under the following circumstances (Minn. Stat. § 629.37):

  1. For a public offense committed or attempted in his/her presence.
  2. When the person arrested has committed a felony, although not in his/her presence.
  3. When a felony has been committed and he/she has reasonable cause for believing the person to be arrested committed the felony.
  4. When directed by a judge or a peace officer to arrest another person (Minn. Stat. § 629.403).

364.4 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Any officer presented with a private person wishing to make an arrest must determine whether there is reasonable cause to believe that such an arrest would be lawful.

  1. Should any officer determine that there is no reasonable cause to believe that a private person's arrest is lawful, the officer should take no action to further detain or restrain the individual beyond that which reasonably appears necessary to investigate the matter, determine the lawfulness of the arrest and protect the public safety.
    1. Any officer who determines that a private person's arrest appears to be unlawful should promptly release the arrested individual. The officer must include the basis of such a determination in a related report.
    2. Absent reasonable cause to support a private person's arrest or other lawful grounds to support an independent arrest by the officer, the officer should advise the parties that no arrest will be made and that the circumstances will be documented in a related report.
  2. Whenever an officer determines that there is reasonable cause to believe that a private person's arrest is lawful, the officer may exercise any of the following options:
    1. Take the individual into physical custody for booking.
    2. Release the individual upon a misdemeanor citation or pending formal charges.

364.5 REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

In all circumstances in which a private person is claiming to have made an arrest, the individual must complete and sign a Department Citizen's Arrest Form. If the person fails or refuses to do so the arrest subject shall be released unless the officer has an independent reason to take the person into custody.

In addition to the Citizen's Arrest Form (and any other related documents, such as citations and booking forms), officers shall complete a narrative report regarding the circumstances and disposition of the incident.

368 - Limited English Preficiency Services

368.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance to members when communicating with individuals with limited English proficiency (LEP) (42 USC § 2000d).

368.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Authorized interpreter - A person who has been screened and authorized by the Department to act as an interpreter and/or translator for others.

Interpret or interpretation - The act of listening to a communication in one language (source language) and orally converting it to another language (target language), while retaining the same meaning.

Limited English proficient (LEP) - Any individual whose primary language is not English and who has a limited ability to read, write, speak or understand English. These individuals may be competent in certain types of communication (e.g., speaking or understanding) but still be LEP for other purposes (e.g., reading or writing). Similarly, LEP designations are context-specific; an individual may possess sufficient English language skills to function in one setting but these skills may be insufficient in other situations. This includes individuals who, because of difficulty in speaking or comprehending the English language, cannot fully understand any charges made against them, the seizure of their property, or they are incapable of presenting or assisting in the presentation of a defense (Minn. Stat. § 611.31).

Qualified bilingual member - A member of the Metro Transit Police Department, designated by the Department, who has the ability to communicate fluently, directly and accurately in both English and another language. Bilingual members may be fluent enough to communicate in a non-English language but may not be sufficiently fluent to interpret or translate from one language into another.

Translate or translation - The replacement of written text from one language (source language) into an equivalent written text (target language).

368.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to reasonably ensure that LEP individuals have meaningful access to law enforcement services, programs and activities, while not imposing undue burdens on its members.

The Department will not discriminate against or deny any individual access to services, rights or programs based upon national origin or any other protected interest or right.

368.3 LEP COORDINATOR

The Chief of Police shall delegate certain responsibilities to an LEP Coordinator. The LEP Coordinator shall be appointed by, and directly responsible to, the Patrol Captain or the authorized designee.

The responsibilities of the LEP Coordinator include, but are not limited to:

  1. Coordinating and implementing all aspects of the Metro Transit Police Department's LEP services to LEP individuals.
  2. Developing procedures that will enable members to access LEP services, including telephonic interpreters, and ensuring the procedures are available to all members.
  3. Ensuring that a list of all qualified bilingual members and authorized interpreters is maintained and available to each Shift Supervisor and Communications Supervisor. The list should include information regarding the following:
    1. Languages spoken
    2. Contact information
    3. Availability
  4. Ensuring signage stating that interpreters are available free of charge to LEP individuals is posted in appropriate areas and in the most commonly spoken languages.
  5. Reviewing existing and newly developed documents to determine which are vital documents and should be translated, and into which languages the documents should be translated.
  6. Annually assessing demographic data and other resources, including contracted language services utilization data and community-based organizations, to determine if there are additional documents or languages that are appropriate for translation.
  7. Identifying standards and assessments to be used by the Department to qualify individuals as qualified bilingual members or authorized interpreters.
  8. Periodically reviewing efforts of the Department in providing meaningful access to LEP individuals, and, as appropriate, developing reports, new procedures or recommending modifications to this policy.
  9. Receiving and responding to complaints regarding department LEP services.
  10. Ensuring appropriate processes are in place to provide for the prompt and equitable resolution of complaints and inquiries regarding discrimination in access to department services, programs and activities.

368.4 FOUR-FACTOR ANALYSIS

Since there are many different languages that members could encounter, the Department will utilize the four-factor analysis outlined in the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Guidance to Federal Financial Assistance Recipients, available at the DOJ website, to determine which measures will provide meaningful access to its services and programs. It is recognized that law enforcement contacts and circumstances will vary considerably. This analysis, therefore, must remain flexible and will require an ongoing balance of four factors, which are:

  1. The number or proportion of LEP individuals eligible to be served or likely to be encountered by department members, or who may benefit from programs or services within the jurisdiction of the Department or a particular geographic area.
  2. The frequency with which LEP individuals are likely to come in contact with department members, programs or services.
  3. The nature and importance of the contact, program, information or service provided.
  4. The cost of providing LEP assistance and the resources available.

368.5 TYPES OF LEP ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE

Metro Transit Police Department members should never refuse service to an LEP individual who is requesting assistance, nor should they require an LEP individual to furnish an interpreter as a condition for receiving assistance. The Department will make every reasonable effort to provide meaningful and timely assistance to LEP individuals through a variety of services.

The Department will utilize all reasonably available tools, such as language identification cards, when attempting to determine an LEP individual's primary language.

LEP individuals may choose to accept department-provided LEP services at no cost or they may choose to provide their own.

Department-provided LEP services may include, but are not limited to, the assistance methods described in this policy.

368.6 WRITTEN FORMS AND GUIDELINES

Vital documents or those that are frequently used should be translated into languages most likely to be encountered. The LEP Coordinator will arrange to make these translated documents available to members and other appropriate individuals, as necessary.

368.7 AUDIO RECORDINGS

The Department may develop audio recordings of important or frequently requested information in a language most likely to be understood by those LEP individuals who are representative of the community being served.

368.8 QUALIFIED BILINGUAL MEMBERS

Bilingual members may be qualified to provide LEP services when they have demonstrated through established department procedures a sufficient level of skill and competence to fluently communicate in both English and a non-English language. Members utilized for LEP services must demonstrate knowledge of the functions of an interpreter/translator and the ethical issues involved when acting as a language conduit. Additionally, bilingual members must be able to communicate technical and law enforcement terminology, and be sufficiently proficient in the non-English language to perform complicated tasks, such as conducting interrogations, taking statements, collecting evidence or conveying rights or responsibilities.

When a qualified bilingual member from this department is not available, personnel from other Metropolitan Area departments, who have been identified by the Department as having the requisite skills and competence, may be requested.

368.9 AUTHORIZED INTERPRETERS

Any person designated by the Department to act as an authorized interpreter and/or translator must have demonstrated competence in both English and the involved non-English language, must have an understanding of the functions of an interpreter that allows for correct and effective translation, and should not be a person with an interest in the department case or investigation involving the LEP individual. A person providing interpretation or translation services may be required to establish the accuracy and trustworthiness of the interpretation or translation in a court proceeding.

Authorized interpreters must pass a screening process established by the LEP Coordinator which demonstrates that their skills and abilities include:

  1. The competence and ability to communicate information accurately in both English and in the target language.
  2. Knowledge, in both languages, of any specialized terms or concepts peculiar to this department and of any particularized vocabulary or phraseology used by the LEP individual.
  3. The ability to understand and adhere to the interpreter role without deviating into other roles, such as counselor or legal adviser.
  4. Knowledge of the ethical issues involved when acting as a language conduit.

368.9.1 SOURCES OF AUTHORIZED INTERPRETERS

The Department may contract with authorized interpreters who are available over the telephone. Members may use these services with the approval of a supervisor and in compliance with established procedures.

The Metro Transit Police Department currently contracts with Betmar Languages for communicating with LEP individuals. Betmar Languages may be utilized with the permission of a supervisor and can be contacted at (763) 572-9711 or via their website at: www.betmar.com

Metro Transit Police supervisors also have access to RTT Mobile Interpretation which is capable of providing on-demand LEP services through a proprietary device called ELSA (Enabling Language Services Anywhere). Contact a supervisor for assistance with this technology. www.rttmobile.com

Other sources may include:

  • Qualified bilingual members of this department or personnel from other Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit departments.
  • Individuals employed exclusively to perform interpretation services.
  • Contracted in-person interpreters, such as state or federal court interpreters, among others.
  • Interpreters from other agencies who have been qualified as interpreters by this department, and with whom the Department has a resource-sharing or other arrangement that they will interpret according to department guidelines.

368.9.2 COMMUNITY VOLUNTEERS AND OTHER SOURCES OF LANGUAGE ASSISTANCE

Language assistance may be available from community volunteers who have demonstrated competence in either monolingual (direct) communication and/or in interpretation or translation (as noted in above), and have been approved by the Department to communicate with LEP individuals.

Where qualified bilingual members or other authorized interpreters are unavailable to assist, approved community volunteers who have demonstrated competence may be called upon when appropriate. However, department members must carefully consider the nature of the contact and the relationship between the LEP individual and the volunteer to ensure that the volunteer can provide neutral and unbiased assistance.

While family or friends of an LEP individual may offer to assist with communication or interpretation, members should carefully consider the circumstances before relying on such individuals. For example, children should not be relied upon except in exigent or very informal and non-confrontational situations.

368.10 CONTACT AND REPORTING

While all law enforcement contacts, services and individual rights are important, this department will utilize the four-factor analysis to prioritize service to LEP individuals so that such services may be targeted where they are most needed, according to the nature and importance of the particular law enforcement activity involved.

Whenever any member of this department is required to complete a report or other documentation, and interpretation services are provided to any involved LEP individual, such services should be noted in the related report. Members should document the type of interpretation services utilized and whether the individual elected to use services provided by the Department or some other identified source.

368.11 RECEIVING AND RESPONDING TO REQUESTS FOR ASSISTANCE

The Metro Transit Police Department will take reasonable steps and will work with the Department of Human Resources to develop in-house language capacity by hiring or appointing qualified members proficient in languages representative of the community being served.

368.11.1 EMERGENCY CALLS TO 9-1-1

Department members will make every reasonable effort to promptly accommodate LEP individuals utilizing 9-1-1 lines. When a 9-1-1 call-taker receives a call and determines that the caller is an LEP individual, the call-taker shall quickly determine whether sufficient information can be obtained to initiate an appropriate emergency response. If language assistance is still needed, the language is known and a qualified bilingual member is available in Transit Control Center, the call shall immediately be handled by the qualified bilingual member.

If a qualified bilingual member is not available or the call-taker is unable to identify the caller's language, the call-taker will contact the contracted telephone interpretation service and establish a three-way call between the call-taker, the LEP individual and the interpreter.

Dispatchers will make every reasonable effort to dispatch a qualified bilingual member to the assignment, if available and appropriate.

While 9-1-1 calls shall receive top priority, reasonable efforts should also be made to accommodate LEP individuals seeking routine access to services and information by utilizing the resources listed in this policy.

368.12 FIELD ENFORCEMENT

Field enforcement will generally include such contacts as traffic stops, pedestrian stops, serving warrants and restraining orders, crowd/traffic control and other routine field contacts that may involve LEP individuals. The scope and nature of these activities and contacts will inevitably vary. Members and/or supervisors must assess each situation to determine the need and availability of language assistance to all involved LEP individuals and utilize the methods outlined in this policy to provide such assistance.

Although not every situation can be addressed in this policy, it is important that members are able to effectively communicate the reason for a contact, the need for information and the meaning or consequences of any enforcement action. For example, it would be meaningless to request consent to search if the officer is unable to effectively communicate with an LEP individual.

If available, officers should obtain the assistance of a qualified bilingual member or an authorized interpreter before placing an LEP individual under arrest.

368.13 INVESTIGATIVE FIELD INTERVIEWS

In any situation where an interview may reveal information that could be used as the basis for arrest or prosecution of an LEP individual and a qualified bilingual member is unavailable or lacks the skills to directly communicate with the LEP individual, an authorized interpreter should be used. This includes interviews conducted during an investigation with victims, witnesses and suspects. In such situations, audio recordings of the interviews should be made when reasonably possible. Identification and contact information for the interpreter (e.g., name, address) should be documented so that the person can be subpoenaed for trial if necessary.

If an authorized interpreter is needed, officers should consider calling for an authorized interpreter in the following order:

  • An authorized department member or allied agency interpreter
  • An authorized telephone interpreter
  • Any other authorized interpreter

Any Miranda warnings shall be provided to suspects in their primary language by an authorized interpreter or, if the suspect is literate, by providing a translated Miranda warning card.

The use of an LEP individual's bilingual friends, family members, children, neighbors or bystanders may be used only when a qualified bilingual member or authorized interpreter is unavailable and there is an immediate need to interview an LEP individual.

368.14 CUSTODIAL INTERROGATIONS

Miscommunication during custodial interrogations may have a substantial impact on the evidence presented in a criminal prosecution. Only qualified bilingual members or, if none is available or appropriate, authorized interpreters shall be used during custodial interrogations. Miranda warnings shall be provided to suspects in their primary language by the qualified bilingual member or an authorized interpreter.

In order to ensure that translations during custodial interrogations are accurately documented and are admissible as evidence, interrogations should be recorded whenever reasonably possible. See guidance on recording custodial interrogations in the Investigation and Prosecution Policy.

368.14.1 OTHER TIMING AND NOTIFICATION MANDATES

The investigating or arresting officer shall immediately make necessary contacts to get an authorized interpreter for an in-custody LEP person at the earliest possible time in order to assist the person throughout the interrogation or taking of a statement. This applies even when the interrogation will be conducted by a bilingual member (Minn. Stat. § 611.32).

The following shall be explained to the LEP person with the assistance of the authorized interpreter (Minn. Stat. § 611.32):

  1. All charges filed against the person
  2. All procedures relating to the person's detainment and release
  3. In the case of any seizure under the provisions of the Asset Forfeiture Policy:
    1. The possible consequences of the seizure
    2. The person's right to judicial review

368.14.2 OATH

Every authorized interpreter shall be administered and take the following oath prior to assisting in taking a statement related to a criminal matter from an in-custody LEP person (Min. Stat. § 611.33):

"I will make, to the best of my skill and judgment, a true interpretation to the disabled person being examined of all the proceedings, in a language which said person understands, and to repeat the statements, in the English language, of said person to the officials before whom the proceeding is taking place."

368.5 BOOKINGS

When gathering information during the booking process, members should remain alert to the impediments that language barriers can create. In the interest of the arrestee's health and welfare, the safety and security of the facility, and to protect individual rights, it is important that accurate medical screening and booking information be obtained. Members should seek the assistance of a qualified bilingual member whenever there is concern that accurate information cannot be obtained or that booking instructions may not be properly understood by an LEP individual.

368.16 COMPLAINTS

The Department shall ensure that LEP individuals who wish to file a complaint regarding members of this department are able to do so. The Department may provide an authorized interpreter or translated forms, as appropriate. Complaints will be referred to the LEP Coordinator.

Investigations into such complaints shall be handled in accordance with the Personnel Complaints Policy. Authorized interpreters used for any interview with an LEP individual during an investigation should not be members of this department.

Any notice required to be sent to an LEP individual as a complaining party pursuant to the Personnel Complaints Policy should be translated or otherwise communicated in a language- accessible manner.

368.17 COMMUNITY OUTREACH

Community outreach programs and other such services offered by this department are important to the ultimate success of more traditional law enforcement duties. This department will continue to work with community groups, local businesses and neighborhoods to provide equal access to such programs and services.

368.18 TRAINING

To ensure that all members who may have contact with LEP individuals are properly trained, the Department will provide periodic training on this policy and related procedures, including how to access department-authorized telephonic and in-person interpreters and other available resources.

The Training Coordinator shall be responsible for ensuring new members receive LEP training. Those who may have contact with LEP individuals should receive refresher training at least once every two years thereafter. The Training Supervisor shall maintain records of all LEP training provided, and will retain a copy in each member's training file in accordance with established records retention schedules.

368.18.1 TRAINING FOR AUTHORIZED INTERPRETERS

All members on the authorized interpreter list must successfully complete prescribed interpreter training. To complete interpreter training successfully, an interpreter must demonstrate proficiency in and ability to communicate information accurately in both English and in the target language, demonstrate knowledge in both languages of any specialized terms or phraseology, and understand and adhere to the interpreter role without deviating into other roles, such as counselor or legal adviser.

Members on the authorized interpreter list must receive refresher training annually or they will be removed from the authorized interpreter list. This annual training should include language skills competency (including specialized terminology) and ethical considerations.

The Training Supervisor shall be responsible for coordinating the annual refresher training and will maintain a record of all training the interpreters have received.

370 - Communications with Persons with Disabilities

370.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance to members when communicating with individuals with disabilities, including those who are deaf or hard of hearing, have impaired speech or vision, or are blind.

370.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Auxiliary aids - Tools used to communicate with people who have a disability or impairment. They include, but are not limited to, the use of gestures or visual aids to supplement oral communication; a notepad and pen or pencil to exchange written notes; a computer or typewriter; an assistive listening system or device to amplify sound; a teletypewriter (TTY) or videophones (video relay service or VRS); taped text; qualified readers; or a qualified interpreter.

Disability or impairment - A physical or mental impairment that substantially limits a major life activity, including hearing or seeing, regardless of whether the disabled person uses assistive or adaptive devices or auxiliary aids. Individuals who wear ordinary eyeglasses or contact lenses are not considered to have a disability (42 USC § 12102). This includes those who, because of a hearing, speech or other communication disorder, cannot fully understand any charges made against them, the seizure of their property or they are incapable of presenting or assisting in the presentation of a defense (Minn. Stat. § 611.31).

Qualified Interpreter - A person who is able to interpret effectively, accurately and impartially, both receptively and expressively, using any necessary specialized vocabulary. Qualified interpreters include oral interpreters, transliterators, sign language interpreters and intermediary interpreters.

370.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to reasonably ensure that people with disabilities, including victims, witnesses, suspects and arrestees have equal access to law enforcement services, programs and activities. Members must make efforts to communicate effectively with individuals with disabilities.

The Department will not discriminate against or deny any individual access to services, rights or programs based upon disabilities.

370.3 AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES (ADA) COORDINATOR

The Chief of Police shall delegate certain responsibilities to an ADA Coordinator (28 CFR 35.107). The ADA Coordinator shall be appointed by and directly responsible to the Patrol Captain or the authorized designee.

The responsibilities of the ADA Coordinator shall include, but not be limited to:

  1. Working with the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit ADA coordinator regarding the Metro Transit Police Department's efforts to ensure equal access to services, programs and activities.
  2. Developing reports, new procedures, or recommending modifications to this policy.
  3. Acting as a liaison with local disability advocacy groups or other disability groups regarding access to department services, programs and activities.
  4. Ensuring that a list of qualified interpreter services is maintained and available to each Shift Supervisor and Communications Supervisor. The list should include information regarding the following:
    1. Contact information
    2. Availability
    3. Type of services provided
  5. Developing procedures that will enable members to access auxiliary aids or services, including qualified interpreters, and ensure the procedures are available to all members.
  6. Ensuring signage is posted in appropriate areas, indicating that auxiliary aids are available free of charge to people with disabilities.
  7. Ensuring appropriate processes are in place to provide for the prompt and equitable resolution of complaints and inquiries regarding discrimination in access to department services, programs and activities.

370.4 FACTORS TO CONSIDER

Because the nature of any law enforcement contact may vary substantially from one situation to the next, members of this department should consider all information reasonably available to them when determining how to communicate with an individual with a disability. Members should carefully balance all known factors in an effort to reasonably ensure people who are disabled have equal access to services, programs and activities. These factors may include, but are not limited to:

  1. Members should not always assume that effective communication is being achieved. The fact that an individual appears to be nodding in agreement does not always mean he/she completely understands the message. When there is any doubt, members should ask the individual to communicate back or otherwise demonstrate their understanding.
  2. The nature of the disability (e.g., deafness or blindness vs. hard of hearing or low vision).
  3. The nature of the law enforcement contact (e.g., emergency vs. non-emergency, custodial vs. consensual contact).
  4. The availability of auxiliary aids. The fact that a particular aid is not available does not eliminate the obligation to reasonably ensure access. However in an emergency availability may factor into the type of aid used.

370.5 INITIAL AND IMMEDIATE CONSIDERATIONS

Recognizing that various law enforcement encounters may be potentially volatile and/or emotionally charged, members should remain alert to the possibility of communication problems.

Members should exercise special care in the use of all gestures and verbal and written communication to minimize initial confusion and misunderstanding when dealing with any individual with known or suspected disabilities.

In a non-emergency situation when a member knows or suspects an individual requires assistance to effectively communicate the member shall identify the individual's choice of auxiliary aid or service.

The individual's preferred communication method must be honored unless another effective method of communication exists under the circumstances (28 CFR 35.160).

Factors to consider when determining whether an alternative method is effective include:

  1. The methods of communication usually used by the individual.
  2. The nature, length and complexity of the communication involved.
  3. The context of the communication.

In emergency situations involving an imminent threat to the safety or welfare of any person, members may use whatever auxiliary aids and services that reasonably appear effective under the circumstances. This may include for example exchanging written notes or using the services of a person who knows sign language but is not a qualified interpreter even if the person who is deaf or hard of hearing would prefer a qualified sign language interpreter or another appropriate auxiliary aid or service. Once the emergency has ended the continued method of communication should be reconsidered. The member should inquire as to the individual's preference and give primary consideration to that preference.

If an individual who is deaf, hard of hearing or has impaired speech must be handcuffed while in the custody of the Metro Transit Police Department, consideration should be given, safety permitting, to placing the handcuffs in the front of the body to facilitate communication using sign language or writing.

370.6 TYPES OF ASSISTANCE AVAILABLE

Metro Transit Police Department members shall never refuse to assist an individual with disabilities who is requesting assistance. The Department will not charge anyone to receive auxiliary aids, nor shall they require anyone to furnish their own auxiliary aid or service as a condition for receiving assistance. The Department will make every reasonable effort to provide equal access and timely assistance to individuals who are disabled through a variety of services.

A person who is disabled may choose to accept department-provided auxiliary aids or services or they may choose to provide their own.

Department-provided auxiliary aids or services may include, but are not limited to, the assistance methods described in this policy.

370.7 AUDIO RECORDINGS AND ENLARGED PRINT

The Department may develop audio recordings to assist people who are blind or have a visual impairment with accessing important information. If such a recording is not available, members may read aloud from the appropriate form, for example a personnel complaint form, or provide forms with enlarged print.

370.8 QUALIFIED INTERPRETERS

A qualified interpreter may be needed in lengthy or complex transactions (e.g., interviewing a victim, witness, suspect or arrestee), if the individual to be interviewed normally relies on sign language or speechreading (lip-reading) to understand what others are saying. The qualified interpreter should not be a person with an interest in the case or the investigation. A person providing interpretation services may be required to establish the accuracy and trustworthiness of the interpretation in a court proceeding.

Qualified interpreters should be:

  1. Available by some means, even remotely, within a reasonable amount of time but in no event longer than one hour if requested.
  2. Experienced in providing interpretation services related to law enforcement matters.
  3. Familiar with the use of VRS and/or video remote interpreting services.
  4. Certified in either American Sign Language (ASL) or Signed English (SE).
  5. Able to understand and adhere to the interpreter role without deviating into other roles, such as counselor or legal adviser.
  6. Knowledgeable of the ethical issues involved when providing interpreter services.

Members should use department-approved procedures to request a qualified interpreter at the earliest reasonable opportunity and generally not more than 15 minutes after a request for an interpreter has been made or it is reasonably apparent that an interpreter is needed. No individual who is disabled shall be required to provide his/her own interpreter (28 CFR 35.160).

370.9 TTY AND RELAY SERVICES

In situations where an individual without a disability would have access to a telephone (e.g., booking or attorney contacts), members must also provide those who are deaf, hard of hearing or have impaired speech the opportunity to place calls using an available TTY (also known as a telecommunications device for deaf people, or TDD). Members shall provide additional time as needed for effective communication due to the slower nature of TTY and TDD communications.

The Department will accept all TTY or TDD calls placed by those who are deaf or hard of hearing and received via a telecommunications relay service (28 CFR 35.162).

Note that relay services translate verbatim, so the conversation must be conducted as if speaking directly to the caller.

370.10 COMMUNITY VOLUNTEERS

Interpreter services may be available from community volunteers who have demonstrated competence in communication services such as ASL or SE, and have been approved by the Department to provide interpreter services.

Where qualified interpreters are unavailable to assist approved community volunteers who have demonstrated competence may be called upon when appropriate. However department members must carefully consider the nature of the contact and the relationship between the individual with the disability and the volunteer to ensure that the volunteer can provide neutral and unbiased assistance.

370.11 FAMILY AND FRIENDS

While family or friends may offer to assist with interpretation, members should carefully consider the circumstances before relying on such individuals. The nature of the contact and relationship between the individual with the disability and the person offering services must be carefully considered (e.g., victim/suspect).

Children shall not be relied upon except in emergency or critical situations when there is no qualified interpreter reasonably available.

Adults may be relied upon when (28 CFR 35.160):

  1. There is an emergency or critical situation and there is no qualified interpreter reasonably available.
  2. The person with the disability requests that the adult interpret or facilitate communication and the adult agrees to provide such assistance, and reliance on that adult for such assistance is reasonable under the circumstances.

370.12 REPORTING

Whenever any member of this department is required to complete a report or other documentation and communication assistance has been provided, such services should be noted in the related report. Members should document the type of communication services utilized and whether the individual elected to use services provided by the Department or some other identified source. If the individual's express preference is not honored, the member must document why another method of communication was used.

All written communications exchanged in a criminal case shall be attached to the report or placed into evidence.

370.13 FIELD ENFORCEMENT

Field enforcement will generally include such contacts as traffic stops, pedestrian stops, serving warrants and restraining orders, crowd/traffic control and other routine field contacts that may involve individuals with disabilities. The scope and nature of these activities and contacts will inevitably vary.

The Department recognizes it would be virtually impossible to provide immediate access to complete communication services to every member of this department. Members and/or supervisors must assess each situation and consider the length, complexity and importance of the communication, as well as the individual's preferred method of communication, when determining the type of resources to use and whether a qualified interpreter is needed.

Although not every situation can be addressed in this policy, it is important that members are able to effectively communicate the reason for a contact, the need for information and the meaning or consequences of any enforcement action. For example it would be meaningless to verbally request consent to search if the officer is unable to effectively communicate with an individual who is deaf or hard of hearing and requires communications assistance.

If available, officers should obtain the assistance of a qualified interpreter before placing an individual with a disability under arrest. Individuals who are arrested and are assisted by service animals should be permitted to make arrangements for the care of such animals prior to transport.

370.13.1 FIELD RESOURCES

Examples of methods that may be sufficient for transactions such as checking a license or giving directions to a location or for urgent situations such as responding to a violent crime in progress may, depending on the circumstances, include such simple things as:

  1. Hand gestures or visual aids with an individual who is deaf, hard of hearing or has impaired speech.
  2. Exchange of written notes or communications.
  3. Verbal communication with an individual who can speechread by facing the individual and speaking slowly and clearly.
  4. Use of computer, word processing, personal communication device or similar device to exchange texts or notes.
  5. Slowly and clearly speaking or reading simple terms to individuals who have a visual or mental impairment.

Members should be aware that these techniques may not provide effective communication as required by law and this policy depending on the circumstances.

370.14 CUSTODIAL INTERROGATIONS

In an effort to ensure the rights of individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech impairment are protected during a custodial interrogation, this department will provide interpreter services before beginning an interrogation, unless exigent circumstances exist. The use of a video remote interpreting service should be considered, where appropriate, if a live interpreter is not available. Miranda warnings shall be provided to suspects who are deaf or hard of hearing by a qualified interpreter or by providing a written Miranda warning card.

To ensure that communications during custodial investigations are accurately documented and are admissible as evidence, as with all custodial interviews, interrogations should be recorded whenever reasonably possible. See guidance on recording custodial interrogations in the Investigation and Prosecution Policy.

370.14.1 OTHER TIMING AND NOTIFICATION MANDATES

The investigating or arresting officer shall immediately make necessary contacts to get a qualified interpreter for a person in custody at the earliest possible time (Minn. Stat. § 611.32).

The following shall be explained with the assistance of the qualified interpreter (Minn. Stat. § 611.32):

  1. All charges filed against the person
  2. All procedures relating to the person's detainment and release
  3. In the case of any seizure under the Asset Forfeiture Policy:
    1. The possible consequences of the seizure
    2. The person's right to judicial review

370.14.2 OATH

Every qualified interpreter shall be administered and take the following oath prior to assisting in taking a statement related to a criminal matter from an in-custody deaf or hard of hearing person (Minn. Stat. § 611.33):

"I will make, to the best of my skill and judgment, a true interpretation to the disabled person being examined of all the proceedings, in a language which said person understands, and to repeat the statements, in the English language, of said person to the officials before whom the proceeding is taking place."

370.15 ARRESTS AND BOOKINGS

If an individual with speech or hearing disabilities is arrested, the arresting officer shall use department-approved procedures to provide a qualified interpreter at the place of arrest or booking as soon as reasonably practicable, unless the individual indicates that he/she prefers a different auxiliary aid or service or the officer reasonably determines another effective method of communication exists under the circumstances.

When gathering information during the booking process members should remain alert to the impediments that often exist when communicating with those who are deaf, hard of hearing, who have impaired speech or vision, are blind, or have other disabilities. In the interest of the arrestee's health and welfare, the safety and security of the facility and to protect individual rights, it is important that accurate medical screening and booking information be obtained. If necessary, members should seek the assistance of a qualified interpreter whenever there is concern that accurate information cannot be obtained or that booking instructions may not be properly understood by the individual.

Individuals who require and possess personally owned communication aids (e.g., hearing aids, cochlear processors) should be permitted to retain them while in custody.

370.16 COMPLAINTS

The Department shall ensure that individuals with disabilities who wish to file a complaint regarding members of this department are able to do so. The Department may provide a qualified interpreter or forms in enlarged print, as appropriate. Complaints will be referred to the department ADA Coordinator.

Investigations into such complaints shall be handled in accordance with the Personnel Complaints Policy. Qualified interpreters used during the investigation of a complaint should not be members of this Department.

370.17 COMMUNITY OUTREACH

Community outreach programs and other such services offered by this department are important to the ultimate success of more traditional law enforcement duties. This department will continue to work with community groups, local businesses and neighborhoods to provide equal access to such programs and services.

370.18 TRAINING

To ensure that all members who may have contact with individuals who are disabled are properly trained, the Department will provide periodic training that should include:

  1. Awareness and understanding of this policy and related procedures, related forms and available resources.
  2. Procedures for accessing qualified interpreters and other available resources.
  3. Working with in-person and telephone interpreters and related equipment.

The Training Coordinator shall be responsible for ensuring new members receive training related to interacting with individuals who have disabilities, including individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing, who have impaired speech or vision, or are blind. Those who may have contact with such individuals should receive refresher training at least once every two years thereafter. The Training Coordinator shall maintain records of all training provided, and will retain a copy in each member's training file in accordance with established records retention schedules.

370.18.1 CALL-TAKER TRAINING

Emergency call-takers shall be trained in the use of TTY equipment protocols for communicating with individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or who have speech impairments. Such training and information should include:

  1. The requirements of the ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act for telephone emergency service providers.
  2. ASL syntax and accepted abbreviations.
  3. Practical instruction on identifying and processing TTY or TDD calls, including the importance of recognizing silent TTY or TDD calls, using proper syntax, abbreviations and protocol when responding to TTY or TDD calls.
  4. Hands-on experience in TTY and TDD communications, including identification of TTY or TDD tones.

Training should be mandatory for all Transit Control Center members who may have contact with individuals from the public who are deaf, hard of hearing or have impaired speech. Refresher training should occur every six months.

373 - Pupil Arrest Reporting

373.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to describe the procedures to follow when a pupil is arrested on school grounds and during school hours.

373.2 PUPIL ARREST REPORTING

In the event a school pupil is arrested, the arresting officer shall include the necessary information in the report to ensure that the Records Division notifies the chief administrative officer of the school, or an appropriate designee, of the pupil's arrest.

If there is probable cause to believe an incident involved alcohol or a controlled substance, the arresting officer shall complete the appropriate form and submit the form with the report to the Records Division. The Records Division shall ensure the form is distributed to the chemical abuse pre-assessment team of the school within two weeks of the occurrence (Minn. Stat. § 121A.28).

Arrest reporting may involve the officer, Investigative Division and/or the local agency having jurisdiction over the case.

373.2.1 PUPIL ARREST AFTER NOTIFICATION

Based upon the circumstances of the investigation, it may be appropriate to notify the school prior to the arrest. Prior notification and assistance from the school, may reduce disruption to school operations and other students.

 

373.2.2 PUPIL ARREST BEFORE NOTIFICATION

Based upon the circumstances of the investigation, it may be appropriate to arrest the pupil before notifying the school. This may be appropriate if the pupil is a flight risk, if prior notification will impede the investigation or if notification creates additional risks to students, faculty, the officer or the public.

Proper notification to the school after the pupil's arrest should then be made when circumstances reasonably allow.

373.2.3 PARENTAL NOTIFICATION

Upon arrest, it is the arresting officer's responsibility to ensure the parents of the arrested pupil are properly notified. Notification shall be made by the officer, regardless of subsequent notifications by the juvenile detention facility. Notifications should be documented and include the charges against the pupil and where the pupil will be taken.

374 - Biological Samples

374.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for the collection of biological samples from those individuals required to provide samples upon conviction for certain offenses. This policy does not apply to biological samples collected at a crime scene or taken from a person in conjunction with a criminal investigation. Nor does it apply to biological samples collected from those required to register, for example, as sex offenders.

374.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will assist in the expeditious collection of required biological samples from offenders in accordance with the laws of this state and with as little reliance on force as practicable.

374.3 PERSONS SUBJECT TO BIOLOGICAL SAMPLE COLLECTION

The following persons must submit a biological sample:

  1. Adults who are subject to a court order requiring a biological sample after sentencing (Minn. Stat. § 609.117).
  2. Juveniles who are subject to a court order requiring a biological sample after being adjudicated delinquent (Minn. Stat. § 609.117).

374.4 PROCEDURE

When an individual is required to provide a biological sample, a qualified employee shall attempt to obtain the sample in accordance with this policy.

374.4.1 COLLECTION

The following steps should be taken to collect a sample:

  1. Verify that the individual is required to provide a sample pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 609.117.
  2. Verify that a biological sample has not been previously collected from the offender by querying the person’s criminal history. There is no need to obtain a biological sample if one has been previously obtained.
  3. Use the designated collection kit provided by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension to perform the collection and take steps to avoid cross contamination.

374.5 USE OF FORCE TO OBTAIN SAMPLES

If a person refuses to cooperate with the sample collection process, officers should attempt to identify the reason for refusal and seek voluntary compliance without resorting to using force. Force will not be used in the collection of samples except as authorized by court order or approval of legal counsel and only with the approval of a supervisor. Methods to consider when seeking voluntary compliance include contacting:

  1. The person’s parole or probation officer when applicable.
  2. The prosecuting attorney to seek additional charges against the person for failure to comply or to otherwise bring the refusal before a judge.
  3. The judge at the person’s next court appearance.
  4. The person’s attorney.
  5. A chaplain.
  6. Another custody facility with additional resources, where an arrestee can be transferred to better facilitate sample collection.
  7. A supervisor who may be able to authorize custodial disciplinary actions to compel compliance, if any are available.

The supervisor shall review and approve any plan to use force and be present to document the process.

374.5.1 VIDEO RECORDING

A video recording should be made any time force is used to obtain a biological sample. The recording should document all staff participating in the process, in addition to the methods and all force used during the collection. The recording should be part of the investigation file, if any, or otherwise retained in accordance with the department’s records retention schedule.

378 - Public Safety Video Surveillance System

378.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance for the placement and monitoring of department public safety video surveillance, as well as the storage and release of the captured images.

This policy only applies to overt, marked public safety video surveillance systems operated by the Department. It does not apply to mobile audio/video systems, covert audio/video systems or any other image capturing devices used by the Department.

378.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department operates a public safety video surveillance system to complement its anti-crime strategy, to effectively allocate and deploy personnel, and to enhance public safety and security in public areas. Cameras may be placed in strategic locations throughout the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit service area to detect and deter crime, to help safeguard against potential threats to the public, to help manage emergency response situations during natural and man-made disasters and to assist Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit officials in providing services to the community.

Video surveillance in public areas will be conducted in a legal and ethical manner while recognizing and protecting constitutional standards of privacy.

378.3 VIDEO SURVEILLANCE AUDIT

The Chief of Police or the authorized designee will conduct an annual review of the public safety video surveillance system. The review should include an analysis of the cost, benefit and effectiveness of the system, including any public safety issues that were effectively addressed or any significant prosecutions that resulted, and any systemic operational or administrative issues that were identified, including those related to training, discipline or policy.

The results of each review shall be appropriately documented and maintained by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee and other applicable advisory bodies. Any recommendations for training or policy should be promptly addressed.

378.4 TRAINING

All department members authorized to operate or access public video surveillance systems shall receive appropriate training. Training should include guidance on the use of cameras, interaction with dispatch and patrol operations and a review regarding relevant policies and procedures, including this policy. Training should also address state and federal law related to the use of video surveillance equipment and privacy.

378.5 OPERATIONAL GUIDELINES

Only department-approved video surveillance equipment shall be utilized. Members authorized to monitor video surveillance equipment should only monitor public areas and public activities where

no reasonable expectation of privacy exists. The Chief of Police or the authorized designee shall approve all proposed locations for the use of video surveillance technology and should consult with and be guided by legal counsel as necessary in making such determinations.

378.5.1 INTEGRATION WITH OTHER TECHNOLOGY

The Department may elect to integrate its public safety video surveillance system with other technology to enhance available information. Systems such as gunshot detection, incident mapping, crime analysis, license plate recognition, facial recognition and other video-based analytical systems may be considered based upon availability and the nature of department strategy.

The Department should evaluate the availability and propriety of networking or otherwise collaborating with appropriate private sector entities and should evaluate whether the use of certain camera systems, such as pan-tilt-zoom systems and video enhancement or other analytical technology, requires additional safeguards.

378.5.2 CAMERA MARKINGS

All public areas monitored by public safety surveillance equipment shall be marked in a conspicuous manner with appropriate signs to inform the public that the area is under police surveillance. Signs should be well lit, placed appropriately and without obstruction to ensure visibility.

378.5.3 PLACEMENT AND MONITORING

Camera placement will be guided by the underlying purpose or strategy associated with the overall video surveillance plan. As appropriate, the Chief of Police should confer with other affected Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit divisions and designated community groups when evaluating camera placement. Environmental factors, including lighting, location of buildings, presence of vegetation or other obstructions, should also be evaluated when determining placement.

Recorded images may be used for a variety of purposes, including criminal investigations and monitoring of activity around high-value or high-threat areas. The public safety video surveillance system may be useful for the following purposes:

  1. To prevent, deter and identify criminal activity.
  2. To target identified areas of gang and narcotics complaints or activity.
  3. To respond to critical incidents.
  4. To assist in identifying, apprehending and prosecuting offenders.
  5. To document officer and offender conduct during interactions to safeguard the rights of the public and officers.
  6. To augment resources in a cost-effective manner.
  7. To monitor pedestrian and vehicle traffic activity.

Images from each camera should be recorded in a manner consistent with the underlying purpose of the particular camera. Images may be transmitted to monitors installed in the Shift Supervisor’s office and Transit Control Center. When activity warranting further investigation is reported or detected at any camera location, the available information should be provided to responding officers in a timely manner. The Shift Supervisor or trained Transit Control Center personnel are authorized to adjust the cameras to more effectively view a particular area for any legitimate public safety purpose.

The Chief of Police may authorize video feeds from the public safety video surveillance system to be forwarded to a specified location for monitoring by other than police personnel, such as allied government agencies, road or traffic crews, or fire or emergency operations personnel.

Unauthorized recording, viewing, reproduction, dissemination or retention is prohibited.

378.6 STORAGE AND RETENTION OF MEDIA

All downloaded media shall be stored in a secure area with access restricted to authorized persons. A recording needed as evidence shall be copied to a suitable medium and booked into evidence in accordance with established evidence procedures. All actions taken with respect to retention of media shall be appropriately documented.

The type of video surveillance technology employed and the manner in which recordings are used and stored will affect retention periods. The recordings should be stored and retained in accordance with the established records retention schedule.

378.6.1 EVIDENTIARY INTEGRITY

All downloaded and retained media shall be treated in the same manner as other evidence. Media shall be accessed, maintained, stored and retrieved in a manner that ensures its integrity as evidence, including strict adherence to chain of custody requirements. Electronic trails, including encryption, digital masking of innocent or uninvolved individuals to preserve anonymity, authenticity certificates and date and time stamping shall be used as appropriate to preserve individual rights and to ensure the authenticity and maintenance of a secure evidentiary chain of custody.

378.7 VIDEO SUPERVISION

Supervisors should monitor video surveillance access and usage to ensure members are within department policy and applicable laws. Supervisors should ensure such use and access is appropriately documented.

378.7.1 PROHIBITED ACTIVITY

Public safety video surveillance systems will not intentionally be used to invade the privacy of individuals or observe areas where a reasonable expectation of privacy exists.

Public video surveillance equipment shall not be used in an unequal or discriminatory manner and shall not target protected individual characteristics including, but not limited to race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, disability, gender or sexual orientation.

Video surveillance equipment shall not be used to harass, intimidate or discriminate against any individual or group.

378.7.2 VIDEO LOG

A log should be maintained at all locations where video surveillance monitors are located. The log should be used to document all persons not assigned to the monitoring locations who have been given access to view or monitor images provided by the video surveillance cameras. The logs should, at a minimum, record the:

  1. Date and time access was given.
  2. Name and agency of the person being given access to the images.
  3. Name of person authorizing access.
  4. Identifiable portion of images viewed.

378.8 RELEASE OF VIDEO IMAGES

All recorded video images gathered by the public safety video surveillance equipment are for the official use of the Metro Transit Police Department and are classified as law enforcement data under Minn. Stat. § 13.82.

Requests for recorded video images from the public or the media shall be processed in the same manner as requests for department public records under the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act. Except as required by a statute, court order or other lawful process consistent with the provisions of Minn. Stat. § 13.82, video images requested under the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act will generally not be disclosed to the public when such video images are evidence in an ongoing criminal investigation in which a disposition has not been reached.

Requests for recorded images from other law enforcement agencies shall be referred to the Shift Supervisor for release in accordance with a specific and legitimate law enforcement purpose.

Recorded video images that are the subject of a court order or subpoena shall be processed in accordance with the established department subpoena process.

380 - Child and Dependent Adult Safety

380.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines to ensure that children and dependent adults are not left without appropriate care in the event their caregiver or guardian is arrested or otherwise prevented from providing care due to actions taken by members of this department.

This policy does not address the actions to be taken during the course of a child abuse or vulnerable adult investigation. These are covered in the Child Abuse and Adult Abuse.

380.2 POLICY

It is the policy of this department to mitigate, to the extent reasonably possible, the stressful experience individuals may have when a parent or caregiver is arrested. The Metro Transit Police Department will endeavor to create a strong cooperative relationship with local, state and community-based social services to ensure an effective, collaborative response that addresses the needs of those affected.

380.3 PROCEDURES DURING AN ARREST

When encountering an arrest or prolonged detention situation, officers should make reasonable attempts to determine if the arrestee is responsible for children or dependent adults. In some cases this may be obvious, such as when children or dependent adults are present. However, officers should inquire if the arrestee has caregiver responsibilities for any children or dependent adults who are without appropriate supervision. The following steps should be taken:

  1. Inquire about and confirm the location of any children or dependent adults.
  2. Look for evidence of children and dependent adults. Officers should be mindful that some arrestees may conceal the fact that they have a dependent for fear the individual may be taken from them.
  3. Consider inquiring of witnesses, neighbors, friends and relatives of the arrestee as to whether the person is responsible for a child or dependent adult.

Whenever reasonably possible, officers should take reasonable steps to accomplish the arrest of a parent, guardian or caregiver out of the presence of his/her child or dependent adult. Removing children or dependent adults from the scene in advance of the arrest will generally ensure the best outcome for the individual.

Whenever it is safe to do so, officers should allow the parent or caregiver to assure children or dependent adults that they will be provided care. If this is not safe or if the demeanor of the parent or caregiver suggests this conversation would be nonproductive, the officer at the scene should explain the reason for the arrest in age-appropriate language and offer reassurance to the child or dependent adult that he/she will receive appropriate care.

380.3.1 AFTER AN ARREST

Whenever an arrest is made, the officer should take all reasonable steps to ensure the safety of the arrestee’s disclosed or discovered children or dependent adults.

Officers should allow the arrestee reasonable time to arrange for care of children and dependent adults. Temporary placement with family or friends may be appropriate. However, any decision should give priority to a care solution that is in the best interest of the child or dependent adult. In such cases the following guidelines should be followed:

  1. Allow the person reasonable time to arrange for the care of children and dependent adults with a responsible party, as appropriate.
    1. Unless there is evidence to the contrary (e.g., signs of abuse, drug use, unsafe environment), officers should respect the parent or caregiver’s judgment regarding arrangements for care. It is generally best if the child or dependent adult remains with relatives or family friends that he/she knows and trusts because familiarity with surroundings and consideration for comfort, emotional state and safety are important.
    2. Except when a court order exists limiting contact, the officer should attempt to locate and place children or dependent adults with the non-arrested parent, guardian or caregiver.
  2. Provide for the immediate supervision of children or dependent adults until an appropriate caregiver arrives.
  3. Notify the county social services agency, if appropriate.
  4. Notify the field supervisor or Shift Supervisor of the disposition of children or dependent adults.

If children or dependent adults are at school or another known location outside the household at the time of arrest, the arresting officer should attempt to contact the school or other known location and inform the principal or appropriate responsible adult of the caregiver’s arrest and of the arrangements being made for the care of the arrestee’s dependent. The result of such actions should be documented in the associated report.

380.3.2 DURING THE BOOKING PROCESS

During the booking process, the arrestee shall be allowed to make additional telephone calls to relatives or other responsible individuals as is reasonably necessary to arrange for the care of any child or dependent adult. These telephone calls should be given as soon as practicable and are in addition to any other telephone calls allowed by law.

If an arrestee is unable to resolve the care of any child or dependent adult through this process, a supervisor should be contacted to determine the appropriate steps to arrange for care. These steps may include additional telephone calls or contacting a local, county or state services agency.

380.3.3 REPORTING

  1. For all arrests where children are present or living in the household, the reporting employee will document the following information:
    1. Name
    2. Sex
    3. Age
    4. How, where and with whom or which agency the child was placed
  2. For all arrests where dependent adults are present or living in the household, the reporting employee should document the following information about the dependent adult:
    1. Name
    2. Sex
    3. Age
    4. Whether he/she reasonably appears able to care for him/herself
    5. Disposition or placement information if he/she is unable to care for him/herself

380.3.4 SUPPORT AND COUNSELING REFERRAL

If, in the judgment of the handling officers, the child or dependent adult would benefit from additional assistance, such as counseling services, contact with a victim advocate or a crisis telephone number, the appropriate referral information may be provided.

380.4 DEPENDENT WELFARE SERVICES

Whenever an arrestee is unwilling or incapable of arranging for the appropriate care of any child or dependent adult, the handling officer should consider contacting the appropriate welfare service or other department-approved social service entity to determine whether protective custody is appropriate (Minn. Stat. § 260C.007; Minn. Stat. § 260C.175 ).

Only when other reasonable options are exhausted should a child or dependent adult be transported to the police facility, transported in a marked patrol car or taken into formal protective custody.

Under no circumstances should a child or dependent adult be left unattended or without appropriate care.

380.5 TRAINING

The Training Coordinator is responsible to ensure that all personnel of this department who may be involved in arrests affecting children or dependent adults receive approved training on effective safety measures when a parent, guardian or caregiver is arrested.

382 - Service Animals

382.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Service animals play an important role in helping to overcome the limitations often faced by people with disabilities. The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes this need and is committed to making reasonable modifications to its policies, practices and procedures in accordance with Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to permit the use of service animals that are individually trained to assist a person with a disability.

382.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Service animal - A dog that is trained to do work or perform tasks for the benefit of an individual with a disability, including a physical, sensory, psychiatric, intellectual or other mental disability. The work or tasks performed by a service animal must be directly related to the individual's disability (28 CFR 35.104).

Service animal also includes a miniature horse if the horse is trained to do work or perform tasks for people with disabilities, provided the horse is housebroken, is under the handler’s control, the facility can accommodate the horse’s type, size and weight, and the horse’s presence will not compromise legitimate safety requirements necessary for safe operation of the facility (28 CFR 35.136(i)).

382.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to provide services and access to persons with service animals in the same manner as those without service animals. Department members shall protect the rights of persons assisted by service animals in accordance with state and federal law.

382.3 IDENTIFICATION AND USE OF SERVICE ANIMALS

Some service animals may be readily identifiable. However, many do not have a distinctive symbol, harness or collar. Service animals are not pets and may be trained by an individual or organization to assist people with disabilities.

Examples of the ways service animals may be used to provide assistance include:

  • Guiding people who are blind or have low vision.
  • Alerting people who are deaf or hard of hearing.
  • Retrieving or picking up items, opening doors or flipping switches for people who have limited use of their hands, arms or legs.
  • Pulling wheelchairs.
  • Providing physical support and assisting with stability and balance.
  • Doing work or performing tasks for persons with traumatic brain injury, intellectual disabilities or psychiatric disabilities, such as reminding a person with depression to take medication.
  • Alerting a person with anxiety to the onset of panic attacks, providing tactile stimulation to calm a person with post-traumatic stress disorder, assisting people with schizophrenia to distinguish between hallucinations and reality, and helping people with traumatic brain injury to locate misplaced items or follow daily routines.

     

382.4 MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES

Service animals that are assisting individuals with disabilities are permitted in all public facilities and areas where the public is allowed. Department members are expected to treat individuals with service animals with the same courtesy and respect that the Metro Transit Police Department affords to all members of the public (see generally Minn. Stat. § 256C.02; Minn. Stat. § 363A.19).

382.4.1 REMOVAL

If an animal exhibits vicious behavior, poses a direct threat to the health of others or unreasonably disrupts or interferes with normal business operations, an officer may direct the owner to remove the animal from the premises. Barking alone is not a threat nor does a direct threat exist if the person takes prompt, effective action to control the animal. Each incident must be considered individually. Past incidents alone are not cause for excluding a service animal. Removal of a service animal may not be used as a reason to refuse service to an individual with disabilities. Members of this department are expected to provide all services as are reasonably available to an individual with the disability.

382.4.2 INQUIRY

If it is apparent or if an officer is aware the animal is a service animal, the owner should not be asked any questions as to the status of the animal. If it is unclear whether an animal meets the definition of a service animal, the officer should ask the individual only the following questions:

  • Is the animal required because of a disability?
  • What task or service has the animal been trained to perform?

If the individual explains that the animal is required because of a disability and has been trained to work or perform at least one task, the animal meets the definition of a service animal, and no further question as to the animal’s status should be asked. The person should not be questioned about his/her disabilities nor should the person be asked to provide any license, certification or identification card for the service animal.

382.4.3 CONTACT

Service animals are not pets. Department members should not interfere with the important work performed by a service animal by talking to, petting or otherwise initiating contact with a service animal.

382.4.4 COMPLAINTS

When handling calls of a complaint regarding a service animal, members of this department should remain neutral and should be prepared to explain the ADA requirements concerning service animals to the concerned parties. Businesses are required to allow service animals to accompany their owner into all areas that other customers or members of the public are allowed.

Absent a violation of law independent of the ADA, officers should take no enforcement action beyond keeping the peace. Individuals who believe they have been discriminated against as a result of a disability should be referred to the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice or the Minnesota Department of Human Rights.

386 - Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation

386.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy is intended ensure the protection and security of ancient or historic grave sites, including notification of personnel responsible for cultural items, in compliance with the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act (NAGPRA) (25 USC § 3001 et seq.).

386.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include (43 CFR 10.2):

Funerary objects and associated funerary objects - Objects that, as part of the death rite or ceremony of a culture, are reasonably believed to have been placed intentionally at the time of death or later with or near individual human remains, or that were made exclusively for burial purposes or to contain human remains.

Native American human remains - The physical remains of the body of a person of Native American ancestry.

Objects of cultural patrimony - Objects having ongoing historical, traditional or cultural importance that is central to the Native American group or culture itself and therefore cannot be appropriated or conveyed by any individual, including members of the Native American group or Native Hawaiian organization. Such objects must have been considered inalienable by the Native American group at the time the object was separated from the group.

Sacred objects - Specific ceremonial objects needed by traditional Native American religious leaders for the practice of traditional Native American religions.

386.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that the protection of Native American human remains, funerary objects, associated funerary objects, sacred objects or objects of cultural patrimony is the responsibility of all members. Such protection includes minimizing destruction, contamination, inadvertent disruption or complicated custody transfer processes.

386.3 COMPLIANCE WITH THE NATIVE AMERICAN GRAVES PROTECTION AND REPATRIATION ACT

Upon discovery or arrival upon a scene where it reasonably appears that a Native American grave, human remains, funerary objects, associated funerary objects, sacred objects or objects of cultural patrimony are exposed or otherwise unsecured, members shall secure the site in the same manner as a crime scene. All activity at the scene, other than scene preservation activity, must cease (43 CFR 10.4).

No photography or video recording may be permitted by the media or any group or individual who may wish to exhibit the remains.

Without delay, the appropriate agency or group shall be notified to respond and take control of the scene. These include the following (43 CFR 10.4):

  • Federal land - Appropriate agency at the U.S. Department of the Interior.
  • State land - State archaeologist (Minn. Stat. § 307.08, Subd. 7)
  • Tribal land - Responsible Indian tribal official.

386.4 EVIDENCE AND PROPERTY

If the location has been investigated as a possible homicide scene prior to identification as a NAGPRA site, investigators shall work with other appropriate agencies and individuals to ensure the proper transfer and repatriation of any material collected. Members shall ensure that any remains or artifacts located at the site are expediently processed (43 CFR 10.6).

386.5 BURIAL GROUNDS

All human burials, human remains and human burial grounds shall be afforded equal treatment and respect for human dignity, regardless of ethnic origins, cultural backgrounds or religious affiliations (Minn. Stat. § 307.08, Subd. 1).

This department shall cooperate with other government agencies, the Minnesota Office of the State Archaeologist and the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council to carry out any provisions of state law (Minn. Stat. § 307.08, Subd. 9).

388 - Off-Duty Law Enforcement Actions

388.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The decision to become involved in a law enforcement action when off-duty can place an officer as well as others at great risk and must be done with careful consideration. This policy is intended to provide guidelines for officers of the Metro Transit Police Department with respect to taking law enforcement action while off-duty.

388.2 POLICY

Officers generally should not initiate law enforcement action while off-duty. Officers should not attempt to initiate enforcement action when witnessing minor crimes, such as suspected intoxicated drivers, reckless driving or minor property crimes. Such incidents should be promptly reported to the appropriate law enforcement agency.

When the safety of the public or the prevention of major property damage requires immediate action, officers should first consider reporting and monitoring the activity and only take direct action as a last resort.

Officers are not expected to place themselves in unreasonable peril. However, any licensed member of this department who becomes aware of an incident or circumstance that he/she reasonably believes poses an imminent threat of serious bodily injury or death or significant property damage may take reasonable action to minimize the threat.

388.3 FIREARMS

Officers of this department may carry firearms while off-duty in accordance with federal regulations, state law and department policy. All firearms and ammunition must meet guidelines as described in the Firearms Policy. When carrying firearms while off-duty, officers shall also carry their department-issued badge and identification.

Officers should refrain from carrying firearms when the consumption of alcohol is likely or when the need to carry a firearm is outweighed by safety considerations. Firearms shall not be carried by any officer who has consumed an amount of an alcoholic beverage or taken any drugs that would tend to adversely affect the officer’s senses or judgment.

388.4 DECISION TO INTERVENE

There is no legal requirement for off-duty officers to take law enforcement action. However, should officers decide to intervene, they must evaluate whether the action is necessary or desirable and should take into consideration:

  1. The tactical disadvantage of being alone and the fact there may be multiple or hidden suspects.
  2. The inability to communicate with responding units.
  3. The lack of equipment, such as handcuffs, Oleoresin Capsicum (OC) spray or a baton.
  4. The lack of cover.
  5. The potential for increased risk to bystanders if the off-duty officer were to intervene.
  6. Unfamiliarity with the surroundings.
  7. The potential for the off-duty officer to be misidentified by other peace officers or members of the public.

Officers should consider waiting for on-duty uniformed officers to arrive and gather as much accurate intelligence as possible instead of immediately intervening.

388.4.1 INTERVENTION PROCEDURE

If involvement is reasonably necessary, the officer should attempt to call or have someone else call 9-1-1 to request immediate assistance. The operator should be informed that an off-duty officer is on-scene and should be provided a description of the officer if reasonably possible.

Whenever reasonably practicable, the officer should loudly and repeatedly identify him/herself as an Metro Transit Police Department officer until acknowledged. Official identification should also be displayed.

388.4.2 INCIDENTS OF PERSONAL INTEREST

Officers should refrain from handling incidents of personal interest (e.g., family or neighbor disputes) and should remain neutral. In such circumstances, officers should call the responsible agency to handle the matter.

388.4.3 NON-LICENSED RESPONSIBILITIES

Non-licensed personnel should not become involved in any law enforcement actions while off- duty except to notify the local law enforcement authority and remain at the scene, if safe and reasonably practicable.

388.4.4 OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

When encountering a non-uniformed officer in public, uniformed officers should wait for acknowledgement by the non-uniformed officer in case he/she needs to maintain an undercover capability.

388.5 REPORTING

Any officer, taking any off-duty law enforcement action, shall notify a Metro Transit Police Department supervisor (or other applicable enforcement authority if acting outside the jurisdiction of the Metro Transit Police Department). The Shift Supervisor shall determine whether a report should be filed by the employee.

Officers should cooperate fully with the agency having jurisdiction in providing statements or reports as requested or as appropriate.

389 - Department Use of Social Media

389.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines to ensure that any use of social media on behalf of the Department is consistent with the department mission.

This policy does not address all aspects of social media use. Specifically, it does not address:

  • Personal use of social media by department members (see the Employee Speech, Expression and Social Networking Policy).
  • Use of social media in personnel processes (see the Recruitment and Selection Policy).
  • Use of social media as part of a criminal investigation, other than disseminating information to the public on behalf of this department (see the Investigation and Prosecution Policy).

389.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Social media - Any of a wide array of Internet-based tools and platforms that allow for the sharing of information, such as the department website or social networking services.

389.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department may use social media as a method of effectively informing the public about department services, issues, investigations and other relevant events.

Department members shall ensure that the use or access of social media is done in a manner that protects the constitutional rights of all.

389.3 AUTHORIZED USERS

Only members authorized by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee may utilize social media on behalf of the Department. Authorized members shall use only department-approved equipment during the normal course of duties to post and monitor department-related social media, unless they are specifically authorized to do otherwise by their supervisors.

The Chief of Police may develop specific guidelines identifying the type of content that may be posted. Any content that does not strictly conform to the guidelines should be approved by a supervisor prior to posting.

Requests to post information over department social media by members who are not authorized to post should be made through the member’s chain of command.

389.4 AUTHORIZED CONTENT

Only content that is appropriate for public release, that supports the department mission and conforms to all department policies regarding the release of information may be posted.

Examples of appropriate content include:

  1. Announcements.
  2. Tips and information related to crime prevention.
  3. Investigative requests for information.
  4. Requests that ask the community to engage in projects that are relevant to the department mission.
  5. Real-time safety information that is related to in-progress crimes, geographical warnings or disaster information.
  6. Traffic information.
  7. Press releases.
  8. Recruitment of personnel.

389.4.1 INCIDENT-SPECIFIC USE

In instances of active incidents where speed, accuracy and frequent updates are paramount (e.g., crime alerts, public safety information, traffic issues), the Public Information Officer or the authorized designee will be responsible for the compilation of information to be released, subject to the approval of the Incident Commander.

389.5 PROHIBITED CONTENT

Content that is prohibited from posting includes, but is not limited to:

  1. Content that is abusive, discriminatory, inflammatory or sexually explicit.
  2. Any information that violates individual rights, including confidentiality and/or privacy rights and those provided under state, federal or local laws.
  3. Any information that could compromise an ongoing investigation.
  4. Any information that could tend to compromise or damage the mission, function, reputation or professionalism of the Metro Transit Police Department or its members.
  5. Any information that could compromise the safety and security of department operations, members of the Department, victims, suspects or the public.
  6. Any content posted for personal use.
  7. Any content that has not been properly authorized by this policy or a supervisor.

Any member who becomes aware of content on this Department’s social media site that he/she believes is unauthorized or inappropriate should promptly report such content to a supervisor. The supervisor will ensure its removal from public view and investigate the cause of the entry.

389.5.1 PUBLIC POSTING PROHIBITED

Department social media sites shall be designed and maintained to prevent posting of content by the public.

The Department may provide a method for members of the public to contact department members directly.

389.6 MONITORING CONTENT

The Chief of Police will appoint a supervisor to review, at least annually, the use of department social media and report back on, at a minimum, the resources being used, the effectiveness of the content, any unauthorized or inappropriate content and the resolution of any issues.

389.7 RETENTION OF RECORDS

The Administration Captain should work with the Custodian of Records to establish a method of ensuring that public records generated in the process of social media use are retained in accordance with established records retention schedules.

389.8 TRAINING

Authorized members should receive training that, at a minimum, addresses legal issues concerning the appropriate use of social media sites, as well as privacy, civil rights, dissemination and retention of information posted on department sites.

390 - Community Relations

390.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for community relationship-building.

Additional guidance on community relations and outreach is provided in other policies, including the:

  • Hate or Prejudice Crimes Policy.
  • Limited English Proficiency Services Policy.
  • Communications with Persons with Disabilities Policy.
  • Patrol Function Policy.
  • Suspicious Activity Reporting Policy.

390.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to promote positive relationships between department members and the community by treating community members with dignity and respect and engaging them in public safety strategy development and relationship-building activities, and by making relevant policy and operations information available to the community in a transparent manner.

390.3 MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES

Officers should, as time and circumstances reasonably permit:

  1. Make casual and consensual contacts with community members to promote positive community relationships (see the Detentions and Photographing Detainees Policy).
  2. Become reasonably familiar with the schools, businesses and community groups in their assigned jurisdictional areas.
  3. Work with community members and the department community relations coordinator to identify issues and solve problems related to community relations and public safety.
  4. Conduct periodic foot patrols of their assigned areas to facilitate interaction with community members. Officers carrying out foot patrols should notify an appropriate supervisor and Transit Control Center of their status (i.e., on foot patrol) and location before beginning and upon completion of the foot patrol. They should also periodically inform Transit Control Center of their location and status during the foot patrol.

390.4 COMMUNITY RELATIONS COORDINATOR

The Chief of Police or the authorized designee should designate a member of the Department to serve as the community relations coordinator. He/she should report directly to the Chief of Police or the authorized designee and is responsible for:

  1. Obtaining department-approved training related to his/her responsibilities.
  2. Responding to requests from department members and the community for assistance in identifying issues and solving problems related to community relations and public safety.
  3. Organizing surveys to measure the condition of the department’s relationship with the community.
  4. Working with community groups, department members and other community resources to:
    1. Identify and solve public safety problems within the community.
    2. Organize programs and activities that help build positive relationships between department members and the community and provide community members with an improved understanding of department operations.
  5. Working with the Patrol Captain to develop patrol deployment plans that allow officers the time to participate in community engagement and problem-solving activities.
  6. Recognizing department and community members for exceptional work or performance in community relations efforts.
  7. Attending Metropolitan Area council and other community meetings to obtain information on community relations needs.
  8. Assisting with the department’s response to events that may affect community relations, such as an incident where the conduct of a department member is called into public question.
  9. Informing the Chief of Police and others of developments and needs related to the furtherance of the department’s community relations goals, as appropriate.

390.5 SURVEYS

The community relations coordinator should arrange for a survey of community members and department members to be conducted at least annually to assess the condition of the relationship between the Department and the community. Survey questions should be designed to evaluate perceptions of the following:

  1. Overall performance of the Department
  2. Overall competence of department members
  3. Attitude and behavior of department members
  4. Level of community trust in the Department
  5. Safety, security or other concerns

A written summary of the compiled results of the survey should be provided to the Chief of Police.

390.6 COMMUNITY AND YOUTH ACTIVITIES AND PROGRAMS

The community relations coordinator should organize or assist with programs and activities that create opportunities for department members and community members, especially youth, to interact in a positive setting. Examples of such programs and events include:

  1. Department-sponsored athletic programs (e.g., baseball, basketball, soccer, bowling).
  2. Police-community get-togethers (e.g., cookouts, meals, charity events).
  3. Youth leadership and life skills mentoring.
  4. School resource officer/Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.®) programs.
  5. Neighborhood Watch and crime prevention programs.

390.7 INFORMATION SHARING

The community relations coordinator should work with the Public Information Officer to develop methods and procedures for the convenient sharing of information (e.g., major incident notifications, significant changes in department operations, comments, feedback, positive events) between the Department and community members. Examples of information-sharing methods include:

  1. Community meetings.
  2. Social media (see the Department Use of Social Media Policy).
  3. Department website postings.

Information should be regularly refreshed, to inform and engage community members continuously.

390.8 LAW ENFORCEMENT OPERATIONS EDUCATION

The community relations coordinator should develop methods to educate community members on general law enforcement operations so they may understand the work that officers do to keep the community safe. Examples of educational methods include:

  1. Development and distribution of informational cards/flyers.
  2. Department website postings.
  3. Presentations to driver education classes.
  4. Instruction in schools.
  5. Department ride-alongs (see the Ride-Along Policy).
  6. Scenario/Simulation exercises with community member participation.
  7. Youth internships at the Department.
  8. Citizen academies.

Instructional information should include direction on how community members should interact with the police during enforcement or investigative contacts and how community members can make a complaint to the Department regarding alleged misconduct or inappropriate job performance by department members.

390.9 SAFETY AND OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

Department members responsible for community relations activities should consider the safety of the community participants and, as much as reasonably practicable, not allow them to be present in any location or situation that would jeopardize their safety.

Department members in charge of community relations events should ensure that participating community members have completed waiver forms before participation, if appropriate. A parent or guardian must complete the waiver form if the participating community member has not reached 18 years of age.

Community members are subject to a criminal history check before approval for participation in certain activities, such as citizen academies.

390.10 COMMUNITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE

The Chief of Police should establish a committee of volunteers consisting of community members, community leaders and other community stakeholders (e.g., representatives from schools, churches, businesses, social service organizations). The makeup of the committee should reflect the demographics of the community as much as practicable.

The committee should convene regularly to:

  1. Provide a public forum for gathering information about public safety concerns in the community.
  2. Work with the Department to develop strategies to solve public safety problems.
  3. Generate plans for improving the relationship between the Department and the community.
  4. Participate in community outreach to solicit input from community members, including youth from the community.

The Training Supervisor should arrange for initial and ongoing training for committee members on topics relevant to their responsibilities.

The Chief of Police may include the committee in the evaluation and development of department policies and procedures and may ask them to review certain personnel complaints for the purpose of providing recommendations regarding supervisory, training or other issues as appropriate.

390.10.1 LEGAL CONSIDERATIONS

The Chief of Police and the community relations coordinator should work with the Prosecuting Attorney as appropriate to ensure the committee complies with any legal requirements such as public notices, records maintenance and any other associated obligations or procedures.

390.11 TRANSPARENCY

The Department should periodically publish statistical data and analysis regarding the department’s operations. The reports should not contain the names of officers, suspects or case numbers. The community relations coordinator should work with the community advisory committee to identify information that may increase transparency regarding department operations.

390.12 TRAINING

Subject to available resources, members should receive training related to this policy, including training on topics such as:

  1. Effective social interaction and communication skills.
  2. Cultural, racial and ethnic diversity and relations.
  3. Building community partnerships.
  4. Community policing and problem-solving principles.
  5. Enforcement actions and their effects on community relations.

Where practicable and appropriate, community members, especially those with relevant expertise, should be involved in the training to provide input from a community perspective.

390.12.1 STATE-MANDATED TRAINING

The Training Supervisor is responsible for ensuring that members receive community policing as required by Minn. Stat. § 626.8455.

400 - Patrol Function

400.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to define the functions of the patrol unit of the Department to ensure intra-organization cooperation and information sharing.

400.1.1 FUNCTION

Officers will generally patrol in clearly marked vehicles, patrol assigned jurisdictional areas of Metro Transit, respond to calls for assistance, act as a deterrent to crime, enforce state, local and, when authorized or empowered by agreement or statute, federal laws and respond to emergencies 24 hours per day, seven days per week.

Patrol will generally provide the following services within the limits of available resources:

  1. Patrol that is directed at the prevention of criminal acts, traffic violations and collisions, the maintenance of public order and the discovery of hazardous situations or conditions.
  2. Crime prevention activities, such as inspecting Metropolitan Council and Metro Transit property as well as community presentations.
  3. Calls for service, both routine and emergency.
  4. Investigation of both criminal and non-criminal acts.
  5. The apprehension of criminal offenders.
  6. Community Oriented Policing and problem-solving activities, such as citizen assists and individual citizen contacts of a positive nature.
  7. The sharing of information between the Patrol Division and other divisions within the Department, as well as other government agencies.
  8. The application of resources to specific problems or situations within the community that may be improved or resolved by Community Oriented Policing and problem-solving strategies.
  9. Traffic direction and control.

TERRORISM

It is the goal of the Metro Transit Police Department to make every reasonable effort to accurately and appropriately gather and report any information that may relate to either foreign or domestic terrorism. Officers should advise a supervisor as soon as practicable of any activity believed to be terrorism related and should document such incidents with a written report. The supervisor should ensure that all terrorism-related reports are forwarded to the Investigation Division Supervisor in a timely fashion.

400.2 PATROL INFORMATION SHARING PROCEDURES

The following guidelines are intended to develop and maintain intra-organization cooperation and information flow between the various divisions of the Metro Transit Police Department.

400.2.1 CRIME REPORTS

A crime report may be completed by any patrol officer who receives criminal information. The report will be processed and forwarded to the appropriate unit for retention or follow-up investigation.

400.2.2 PATROL BRIEFINGS

Patrol supervisors, investigative supervisors/officers and special unit supervisors/officers are encouraged to share information as much as reasonably possible. All supervisors and/or officers will be provided an opportunity to share information through daily patrol briefings or via electronic mail.

400.2.3 INFORMATION CLIPBOARDS / BOOKS

Several information clipboards and/or books will be maintained in the roll call room and will be available for review by officers from all divisions within the Department. These will include, but not be limited to, the patrol briefing clipboard, the roll call sheet book and the written directive/ administrative announcement clipboard.

400.2.4 BULLETIN BOARDS / INTERNAL WEBSITE

A bulletin board may be kept in the roll call room for display of suspect information, investigative reports and photographs. Roll Call Sheets and other information can also be found on the Department's internal website. Members of the Department can go to: www.mtpd.us to be re- directed to the internal website. New Interim Directives will be made available for patrol supervisors and will be discussed at briefings and shift meetings. A copy of the Interim Directive will be placed on the briefing room clipboard.

400.3 CROWDS, EVENTS AND GATHERINGS

Officers may encounter gatherings of people, including but not limited to, civil demonstrations, civic, social and business events, public displays, parades and sporting events. Officers should monitor such events as time permits in an effort to keep the peace and protect the safety and rights of those present. A patrol supervisor should be notified when it becomes reasonably foreseeable that such an event may require increased monitoring, contact or intervention.

Officers responding to an event or gathering that warrants law enforcement involvement should carefully balance the speech and association rights of those present with applicable public safety concerns before taking enforcement action. Officers are encouraged to contact organizers or responsible persons to seek voluntary compliance that may address relevant public safety/order concerns.

Officers should consider enforcement of applicable state and local laws, when the activity blocks the entrance or egress of a facility or location and when voluntary compliance with the law is not achieved.

402 - Bias-Based Policing

402.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance to department members that affirms the Metro Transit Police Department 's commitment to policing that is fair and objective.

Nothing in this policy prohibits the use of specified characteristics in law enforcement activities designed to strengthen the department’s relationship with its diverse communities (e.g., cultural and ethnicity awareness training, youth programs, community group outreach, partnerships).

402.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Bias-based policing - An inappropriate reliance on characteristics such as race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, economic status, age, cultural group, disability or affiliation with any non-criminal group (protected characteristics) as the basis for providing differing law enforcement service or enforcement.

This includes use of racial or ethnic stereotypes as factors in selecting whom to stop and search. It does not include law enforcement’s use of race or ethnicity to determine whether a person matches a specific description of a particular subject (Minn. Stat. § 626.8471).

402.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department is committed to providing law enforcement services to the community with due regard for the racial, cultural or other differences of those served. It is the policy of this department to provide law enforcement services and to enforce the law equally, fairly, objectively and without discrimination toward any individual or group (Minn. Stat. § 626.8471, Subd. 3).

402.3 BIAS-BASED POLICING PROHIBITED

Bias-based policing is strictly prohibited.

However, nothing in this policy is intended to prohibit an officer from considering protected characteristics in combination with credible, timely and distinct information connecting a person or people of a specific characteristic to a specific unlawful incident, or to specific unlawful incidents, specific criminal patterns or specific schemes.

402.4 MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES

Every member of this department shall perform his/her duties in a fair and objective manner and is responsible for promptly reporting any suspected or known instances of bias-based policing to a supervisor. Members should, when reasonable to do so, intervene to prevent any biased-based actions by another member.

402.4.1 REASON FOR CONTACT

Officers contacting a person shall be prepared to articulate sufficient reason for the contact, independent of the protected characteristics of the individual.

To the extent that written documentation would otherwise be completed (e.g., arrest report, Field Interview (FI) card), the involved officer should include those facts giving rise to the contact, as applicable.

Except for required data-collection forms or methods, nothing in this policy shall require any officer to document a contact that would not otherwise require reporting.

402.4.2 INFORMATION TO BE PROVIDED

Officers shall (Minn. Stat. § 626.8471, Subd. 3):

  1. Introduce or identify themselves and state the reason for a contact as soon as practicable unless providing the information could compromise officer or public safety.
  2. Attempt to answer questions the person may have regarding the contact, including relevant referrals to other agencies when appropriate.
  3. Explain the reason for the contact if it is determined the reasonable suspicion was unfounded.
  4. When requested, provide their name and badge number and identify this department during routine stops.
  5. When requested, officers should inform a member of the public of the process to file a misconduct complaint for bias-based policing against a member of the Department, and that bias-based policing complaints may be made by calling the Attorney General’s office (Minn. Stat. § 626.9514).

402.5 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Supervisors should monitor those individuals under their command for compliance with this policy and shall handle any alleged or observed violations in accordance with the Personnel Complaints Policy.

  1. Supervisors should discuss any issues with the involved officer and his/her supervisor in a timely manner.
    1. Supervisors should document these discussions, in the prescribed manner.
  2. Supervisors should periodically review MAV recordings, portable audio/video recordings, Mobile Digital Computer (MDC) data and any other available resource used to document contact between officers and the public to ensure compliance with this policy.
    1. Supervisors should document these periodic reviews.
    2. Recordings that capture a potential instance of bias-based policing should be appropriately retained for administrative investigation purposes.
  3. Supervisors shall initiate investigations of any actual or alleged violations of this policy.
  4. Supervisors should take prompt and reasonable steps to address any retaliatory action taken against any member of this department who discloses information concerning bias-based policing.

402.6 ADMINISTRATION

Each year, the Patrol Captain should review the efforts of the Department to provide fair and objective policing and submit an annual report, including public concerns and complaints, to the Chief of Police. The annual report should not contain any identifying information about any specific complaint, citizen or officers. It should be reviewed by the Chief of Police to identify any changes in training or operations that should be made to improve service.

Supervisors should review the annual report and discuss the results with those they are assigned to supervise.

402.7 TRAINING

Training on fair and objective policing and review of this policy should be conducted as directed by the Professional Standards Unit.

The Chief of Police and supervisors should receive and review training materials prepared by the Board of Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) (Minn. Stat. § 626.8471, Subd. 7).

404 - Roll Call Training

404.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Roll Call training is generally conducted at the beginning of the officer's assigned shift. Roll Call provides an opportunity for important exchange between employees and supervisors. A supervisor generally will conduct Roll Call. However, officers may conduct Roll Call for training purposes with supervisor approval.

Roll Call should accomplish, at a minimum, the following basic tasks:

  1. Briefing officers with information regarding daily patrol activity, with particular attention given to unusual situations and changes in the status of wanted persons, stolen vehicles and major investigations.
  2. Notifying officers of changes in schedules and assignments.
  3. Notifying officers of new Interim Directives or changes in Interim Directives.
  4. Reviewing recent incidents for training purposes.
  5. Providing training on a variety of subjects.

404.2 PREPARATION OF MATERIALS

The supervisor conducting Roll Call, or the officer if the supervisor is unable to participate in a group briefing session, is responsible for collection and preparation of the materials necessary for a constructive briefing. Supervisors may delegate this responsibility to a subordinate officer in his/ her absence or for training purposes.

404.3 RETENTION OF BRIEFING TRAINING RECORDS

Roll Call training materials and a curriculum or summary shall be forwarded to the Training Coordinator for inclusion in training records as appropriate.

406 - Crime and Disaster Scene Integrity

406.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance in handling a major crime or disaster.

406.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to secure crime or disaster scenes so that evidence is preserved, and to identify and mitigate the dangers associated with a major crime or disaster scene for the safety of the community and those required to enter or work near the scene.

406.3 SCENE RESPONSIBILITY

The first officer at the scene of a crime or major incident is generally responsible for the immediate safety of the public and preservation of the scene. Officers shall also consider officer safety and the safety of those persons entering or exiting the area, including those rendering medical aid to any injured parties. Once an officer has assumed or been assigned to maintain the integrity and security of the crime or disaster scene, the officer shall maintain the crime or disaster scene until he/she is properly relieved by a supervisor or other designated person.

406.4 FIRST RESPONDER CONSIDERATIONS

The following list generally describes the first responder’s function at a crime or disaster scene. This list is not intended to be all-inclusive, is not necessarily in order and may be altered according to the demands of each situation:

  1. Broadcast emergency information, including requests for additional assistance and resources.
  2. Provide for the general safety of those within the immediate area by mitigating, reducing or eliminating threats or dangers.
  3. Locate or identify suspects and determine whether dangerous suspects are still within the area.
  4. Provide first aid to injured parties if it can be done safely.
  5. Evacuate the location safely as required or appropriate.
  6. Secure the inner perimeter.
  7. Protect items of apparent evidentiary value.
  8. Secure an outer perimeter.
  9. Identify potential witnesses.
  10. Start a chronological log noting critical times and personnel allowed access.

406.5 SEARCHES

Officers arriving at crime or disaster scenes are often faced with the immediate need to search for and render aid to victims, and to determine if suspects are present and continue to pose a threat. Once officers are satisfied that no additional suspects are present and/or there are no injured persons to be treated, those exigent circumstances will likely no longer exist. Officers should thereafter secure the scene and conduct no further search until additional or alternate authority for the search is obtained, such as consent or a search warrant.

406.5.1 CONSENT

When possible, officers should seek written consent to search from authorized individuals. However, in the case of serious crimes or major investigations, it may be prudent to also obtain a search warrant. Consent as an additional authorization may be sought, even in cases where a search warrant has been granted.

406.6 EXECUTION OF HEALTH ORDERS

Any licensed member of this department may assist in the enforcement of all directives of the local health officer issued for the purpose of preventing the spread of any contagious, infectious or communicable disease (Minn. Stat. § 144.4195, Subd. 2).

410 - Ride-Along Policy

410.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Ride-Along Program provides an opportunity for persons to experience the law enforcement function first hand. This policy provides the requirements, approval process and hours of operation for the Ride-Along Program.

410.1.1 ELIGIBILITY

The Metro Transit Police Department Ride-Along Program is offered to residents, students and those employed within the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit. Every reasonable attempt will be made to accommodate interested persons. Any applicant may be disqualified with or without cause from participating in the program.

The following factors may be considered in disqualifying an applicant and are not limited to:

  • Being under 18 years of age.
  • Prior criminal history.
  • Pending criminal action.
  • Pending lawsuit against the Department.
  • Denial by any supervisor.

410.1.2 AVAILABILITY

The Ride-Along Program is available on most days of the week. The ride-along times are from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Exceptions to this schedule may be made as approved by the Chief of Police, Deputy Chief of Police, Patrol Captain or Shift Supervisor.

410.2 PROCEDURE TO REQUEST A RIDE-ALONG

Generally, ride-along requests will be scheduled by the Shift Supervisor. The participant will complete and sign a ride-along waiver form. Information requested will include a valid driver's license, address and telephone number.

The Shift Supervisor will schedule a date, based on availability, sometime after the date of application. If approved, a copy of the ride-along waiver form will be forwarded to the respective Shift Supervisor as soon as possible for his/her scheduling considerations.

If the ride-along is denied after the request has been made, a representative of the Department will contact the applicant and advise him/her of the denial.

410.2.1 PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

Once approved, civilian ride-alongs will be allowed to ride no more than once every six months. An exception would apply to the following: chaplains, police applicants and all others with approval of the Shift Supervisor.

An effort will be made to ensure that no more than one citizen will participate in a ride-along during any given time period. Normally, no more than one ride-along will be allowed in the officer's vehicle at a given time.

Ride-along requirements for CSO's are covered in Policy Manual § 1048, "Community Service Officers."

410.2.2 SUITABLE ATTIRE

Any person approved to ride-along is required to be suitably dressed. Sandals, tank tops, shorts and ripped or torn blue jeans are not permitted. Hats and ball caps will not be worn in the police vehicle. The Shift Supervisor or field supervisor may refuse a ride-along to anyone not properly dressed.

410.2.3 PEACE OFFICER RIDE-ALONGS

Off-duty members of this department or any other law enforcement agency will not be permitted to ride-along with on-duty officers without the express consent of the Shift Supervisor. In the event that such a ride-along is permitted, the off-duty employee shall not be considered on-duty and shall not represent him/herself as a peace officer or participate in any law enforcement activity except as emergency circumstances may require or as directed by an on-duty member.

410.2.4 RIDE-ALONG CRIMINAL HISTORY CHECK

All ride-along applicants are subject to a criminal history check. The criminal history check may include a local records check and a Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Criminal History System check prior to approval (provided that the ride-along is not an employee of the ).

410.3 OFFICER'S RESPONSIBILITIES

The officer shall advise the dispatcher that a ride-along is present in the vehicle before going into service. Officers shall consider the safety of the ride-along at all times.

Officers should use sound discretion when encountering a potentially dangerous situation, and if feasible, let the participant out of the vehicle in a well-lighted place of safety. The dispatcher will be advised of the situation and as soon as practicable have another police unit respond to pick up the participant at that location. The ride-along may be continued or terminated at this time.

Conduct by a person participating in a ride-along that results in termination of the ride or is otherwise inappropriate should be immediately reported to the Shift Supervisor.

The Shift Supervisor is responsible for maintaining and scheduling ride-alongs. Upon completion of the ride-along, a copy of the ride-along waiver form shall be returned to the Shift Supervisor with any comments that may be offered by the officer.

CONTROL OF RIDE-ALONG

The assigned employee shall maintain control over the ride-along at all times and instruct him/her in the conditions that necessarily limit participation. These instructions should include:

  1. The ride-along will follow the directions of the officer.
  2. The ride-along will not become involved in any investigation, handling of evidence, discussions with victims or suspects or handling any police equipment.
  3. The ride-along may terminate the ride at any time and the officer may return the observer to his/her home or to the station if the ride-along interferes with the performance of the officer's duties.
  4. The officer may terminate the ride-along and return the observer to their home or to the station if the ride-along interferes with the performance of any officer's duties.
  5. Ride-alongs may be allowed to continue riding during the transportation and booking process provided this does not jeopardize their safety.
  6. Officers will not allow any ride-alongs to be present in any residence or situation that would jeopardize their safety or cause undue stress or embarrassment to a victim or any other person.
  7. Under no circumstance shall a civilian ride-along be permitted to enter a private residence with an officer without the expressed consent of the resident or other authorized person.

412 - Hazadous Material Response

412.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Hazardous materials present a potential harm to employees as a result of their exposure. To comply with Minnesota law, the following represents the policy of this department.

412.1.1 HAZARDOUS MATERIAL DEFINED

Hazardous material - Any refuse, sludge or other waste material or combinations of refuse, sludge or other waste materials in solid, semisolid, liquid or contained gaseous form, which, because of its quantity, concentration, or chemical, physical or infectious characteristics may (Minn. Stat. § 116.06 Subd. 11):

  1. Cause or significantly contribute to an increase in mortality or an increase in serious irreversible or incapacitating reversible illness.
  2. Pose a substantial present or potential hazard to human health or the environment when improperly treated, stored, transported, disposed of or otherwise managed.

412.2 HAZARDOUS MATERIAL RESPONSE

Employees may encounter situations involving suspected hazardous materials, such as at the scene of a traffic collision, chemical spill or fire. When employees come into contact with a suspected hazardous material, certain steps should be taken to protect themselves and other persons.

The fire department is the agency trained and equipped to properly respond and mitigate most hazardous materials and biohazards.

Responders should not perform tasks or use equipment absent proper training. A responder entering the area may require decontamination before he/she is allowed to depart the scene and should be evaluated by appropriate technicians and medical professionals for signs of exposure.

The following steps should be considered at any scene involving suspected hazardous materials:

  1. Attempt to identify the type of hazardous material. Identification can be determined by placard, driver's manifest or statements from the person transporting the material
  2. Notify the appropriate fire department.
  3. Provide first aid to injured parties if it can be done safely and without contamination.
  4. Begin evacuation of the immediate and surrounding areas dependent on the material. Voluntary evacuation should be considered. Depending on the material, mandatory evacuation may be necessary.
  5. Contact the Minnesota Duty Officer (800-422-0798).
  6. Responders should remain uphill and upwind of the hazard until a zone of entry and a decontamination area are established.

412.3 REPORTING EXPOSURE(S)

Department personnel who believe that they have been exposed to a hazardous material shall immediately report the exposure to a supervisor. Each exposure shall be documented by the employee in an employee memorandum that shall be forwarded via chain of command to their supervisor. Should the affected employee be unable to document the exposure for any reason, it shall be the responsibility of the notified supervisor to complete the memorandum.

Injury or illness caused or believed to be caused from exposure to hazardous materials shall be reported the same as any other on-duty injury or illness, in addition to a crime report or incident report.

412.3.1 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

When a supervisor has been informed that an employee has been exposed to a hazardous material, he/she shall ensure that immediate medical treatment is obtained and appropriate action is taken to lessen the exposure.

To ensure the safety of employees, safety equipment is available through supervisory personnel. Safety items not maintained by the Department will be obtained through the appropriate fire department.

414 - Hostage and Barricade Incidents

414.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for situations where officers have legal cause to contact, detain or arrest a person, and the person refuses to submit to the lawful requests of the officers by remaining in a structure or vehicle and/or by taking a hostage.

The scope of this policy is not intended to address all variables that officers encounter during their initial response or when a hostage or barricade situation has developed. This policy does not require or purport to recommend specific strategies or tactics for resolution as each incident is a dynamic and rapidly evolving event.

414.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Barricade situation - An incident where a person maintains a position of cover or concealment and ignores or resists law enforcement personnel, and it is reasonable to believe the subject is armed with a dangerous or deadly weapon.

Hostage situation - An incident where it is reasonable to believe a person is unlawfully held by a hostage-taker as security so that specified terms or conditions will be met.

414.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to address hostage and barricade situations with due regard for the preservation of life and balancing the risk of injury, while obtaining the safe release of hostages, apprehending offenders and securing available evidence.

414.3 COMMUNICATION

When circumstances permit, initial responding officers should try to establish and maintain lines of communication with a barricaded person or hostage-taker. Officers should attempt to identify any additional subjects, inquire about victims and injuries, seek the release of hostages, gather intelligence information, identify time-sensitive demands or conditions and obtain the suspect’s surrender.

When available, department-authorized negotiators should respond to the scene as soon as practicable and assume communication responsibilities. Negotiators are permitted to exercise flexibility in each situation based upon their training, the circumstances presented, suspect actions or demands and the available resources.

414.3.1 EMERGENCY COMMUNICATION

A supervisor with probable cause to believe that a person is being unlawfully confined may order a telephone company to cut, reroute, or divert telephone lines for the purpose of establishing and controlling communications with a suspect (Minn. Stat. § 609.774).

414.4 FIRST RESPONDER CONSIDERATION

First responding officers should promptly and carefully evaluate all available information to determine whether an incident involves, or may later develop into, a hostage or barricade situation.

The first responding officer should immediately request a supervisor’s response as soon as it is determined that a hostage or barricade situation exists. The first responding officer shall assume the duties of the supervisor until relieved by a supervisor or a more qualified responder. The officer shall continually evaluate the situation, including the level of risk to officers, to the persons involved and to bystanders, and the resources currently available.

The handling officer should brief the arriving supervisor of the incident, including information about suspects and victims, the extent of any injuries, additional resources or equipment that may be needed, and current perimeters and evacuation areas.

414.4.1 BARRICADE SITUATION

Unless circumstances require otherwise, officers handling a barricade situation should attempt to avoid a forceful confrontation in favor of stabilizing the incident by establishing and maintaining lines of communication while awaiting the arrival of specialized personnel and trained negotiators. During the interim the following options, while not all-inclusive or in any particular order, should be considered:

  • Ensure injured persons are evacuated from the immediate threat area if it is reasonably safe to do so. Request medical assistance.
  • Assign personnel to a contact team to control the subject should he/she attempt to exit the building, structure or vehicle, and attack, use deadly force, attempt to escape or surrender prior to additional resources arriving.
  • Request additional personnel, resources and equipment as needed (e.g., canine team, air support).
  • Provide responding emergency personnel with a safe arrival route to the location.
  • Evacuate non-injured persons in the immediate threat area if it is reasonably safe to do so.
  • Attempt or obtain a line of communication and gather as much information on the subject as possible, including weapons, other involved parties, additional hazards or injuries.
  • Establish an inner and outer perimeter as circumstances require and resources permit to prevent unauthorized access.
  • Evacuate bystanders, residents and businesses within the inner and then outer perimeter as appropriate. Check for injuries, the presence of other involved subjects, witnesses, evidence or additional information.
  • Determine the need for and notify the appropriate persons within and outside the Department (e.g., command staff and the Public Information Officer etc).
  • If necessary and available, establish a tactical or exclusive radio frequency for the incident.
  • Establish a command post.

414.4.2 HOSTAGE SITUATION

Officers presented with a hostage situation should attempt to avoid a forceful confrontation in favor of controlling the incident in anticipation of the arrival of specialized personnel and trained hostage negotiators. However, it is understood that hostage situations are dynamic and can require that officers react quickly to developing or changing threats. The following options while not all-inclusive or in any particular order, should be considered:

  • Ensure injured persons are evacuated from the immediate threat area if it is reasonably safe to do so. Request medical assistance.
  • Assign personnel to a contact team to control the subject should he/she attempt to exit the building, structure or vehicle, and attack, use deadly force, attempt to escape or surrender prior to additional resources arriving.
  • Establish a rapid response team in the event it becomes necessary to rapidly enter a building, structure or vehicle, such as when the suspect is using deadly force against any hostages (see the Rapid Response and Deployment Policy).
  • Assist hostages or potential hostages to escape if it is reasonably safe to do so. Hostages should be kept separated if practicable pending further interview.
  • Request additional personnel, resources and equipment as needed (e.g., canine team, air support).
  • Provide responding emergency personnel with a safe arrival route to the location.
  • Evacuate non-injured persons in the immediate threat area if it is reasonably safe to do so.
  • Coordinate pursuit or surveillance vehicles and control of travel routes.
  • Attempt or obtain a line of communication and gather as much information about the suspect as possible, including any weapons, victims and their injuries, additional hazards, other involved parties and any other relevant intelligence information.
  • Establish an inner and outer perimeter as resources and circumstances permit to prevent unauthorized access.
  • Evacuate bystanders, residents and businesses within the inner and then outer perimeter as appropriate. Check for injuries, the presence of other involved subjects, witnesses, evidence or additional information.
  • Determine the need for and notify the appropriate persons within and outside the Department, such as command staff and the Public Information Officer.
  • If necessary and available, establish a tactical or exclusive radio frequency for the incident.

414.5 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITY

Upon being notified that a hostage or barricade situation exists, the supervisor should immediately respond to the scene, assess the risk level of the situation, establish a proper chain of command and assume the role of Incident Commander until properly relieved. This includes requesting a tactical response if appropriate and apprising the Tactical Team Commander of the circumstances. In addition, the following options, listed here in no particular order, should be considered:

  1. Ensure injured persons are evacuated and treated by medical personnel.
  2. Ensure the completion of necessary first responder responsibilities or assignments.
  3. Request crisis negotiators, specialized units, additional personnel, resources or equipment as appropriate.
  4. Establish a command post location as resources and circumstances permit.
  5. Designate assistants who can help with intelligence information and documentation of the incident.
  6. If it is practicable to do so, arrange for video documentation of the operation.
  7. Consider contacting utility and communication providers when restricting such services (e.g., restricting electric power, gas, telephone service).
  8. Ensure adequate law enforcement coverage for the remainder of the Metropolitan Area during the incident. The supervisor should direct non-essential personnel away from the scene unless they have been summoned by the supervisor or Transit Control Center.
  9. Identify a media staging area outside the outer perimeter and have the department Public Information Officer or a designated temporary media representative provide media access in accordance with the Media Relations Policy
  10. Identify the need for mutual aid and the transition or relief of personnel for incidents of extended duration.
  11. Debrief personnel and review documentation as appropriate.

414.6 CRISIS RESPONSE UNIT

It will be the Incident Commander's decision, with input from the Emergency Response Unit / Tactical Team Commander, whether to deploy the Unit / Team during a hostage or barricade situation. Once the Incident Commander authorizes deployment, the Unit / Team Commander or the authorized designee will be responsible for the tactical portion of the operation. The Incident Commander shall continue supervision of the command post operation, outer perimeter security and evacuation, media access and support for the Unit / Team. The Incident Commander and the Unit / Team Commander or the authorized designee shall maintain communications at all times.

414.7 REPORTING

Unless otherwise relieved by a supervisor or Incident Commander, the handling officer at the scene is responsible for completion and/or coordination of incident reports.

416 - Response to Bomb Calls

416.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines to assist members of the Metro Transit Police Department in their initial response to incidents involving explosives, explosive devices, explosion/ bombing incidents or threats of such incidents. Under no circumstances should these guidelines be interpreted as compromising the safety of first responders or the public. When confronted with an incident involving explosives, safety should always be the primary consideration.

416.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to place a higher priority on the safety of persons and the public over damage or destruction to public or private property.

416.3 RECEIPT OF BOMB THREAT

Department members receiving a bomb threat should obtain as much information from the individual as reasonably possible, including the type, placement and alleged detonation time of the device.

If the bomb threat is received on a recorded line, reasonable steps should be taken to ensure that the recording is preserved in accordance with established department evidence procedures.

The member receiving the bomb threat should ensure that the Shift Supervisor is immediately advised and informed of the details. This will enable the Shift Supervisor to ensure that the appropriate personnel are dispatched and, as appropriate, the threatened location is given an advance warning.

416.4 GOVERNMENT FACILITY OR PROPERTY

A bomb threat targeting a government facility may require a different response based on the government agency.

416.4.1 METRO TRANSIT POLICE DEPARTMENT FACILITY

If the bomb threat is against the Metro Transit Police Department facility, the Shift Supervisor will direct and assign officers as required for coordinating a general building search or evacuation of the police department, as he/she deems appropriate.

416.4.2 OTHER COUNTY OR MUNICIPAL FACILITY OR PROPERTY

If the bomb threat is against a county or municipal facility within the jurisdiction of the Metro Transit Police Department that is not the property of this department, the appropriate agency will be promptly informed of the threat. Assistance to the other entity may be provided as the Shift Supervisor deems appropriate.

416.4.3 FEDERAL BUILDING OR PROPERTY

If the bomb threat is against a federal building or property, the Federal Protective Service should be immediately notified. The Federal Protective Service provides a uniformed law enforcement response for most facilities, which may include use of its Explosive Detector Dog teams.

If the bomb threat is against a federal government property where the Federal Protective Service is unable to provide a timely response, the appropriate facility’s security or command staff should be notified.

Bomb threats against a military installation should be reported to the military police or other military security responsible for the installation.

416.5 PRIVATE FACILITY OR PROPERTY

When a member of this department receives notification of a bomb threat at a Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit location, the member receiving the notification should obtain as much information as reasonably possible from the notifying individual, including:

  1. The location of the facility.
  2. The nature of the threat.
  3. Whether the type and detonation time of the device is known.
  4. Whether the facility is occupied, and if so, the number of occupants currently on-scene.
  5. Whether the individual is requesting police assistance at the facility.
  6. Whether there are any internal facility procedures regarding bomb threats in place, such as:
    1. No evacuation of personnel and no search for a device.
    2. Search for a device without evacuation of personnel.
    3. Evacuation of personnel without a search for a device.
    4. Evacuation of personnel and a search for a device.

The member receiving the bomb threat information should ensure that the Shift Supervisor is immediately notified so that he/she can communicate with the person in charge of the threatened facility.

416.5.1 ASSISTANCE

The Shift Supervisor should be notified when police assistance is requested. The Shift Supervisor will make the decision whether the Department will render assistance and at what level. Information and circumstances that indicate a reasonably apparent, imminent threat to the safety of either the facility or the public may require a more active approach, including police control over the facility.

Should the Shift Supervisor determine that the Department will assist or control such an incident, he/she will determine:

  1. The appropriate level of assistance.
  2. The plan for assistance.
  3. Whether to evacuate and/or search the facility.
  4. Whether to involve facility staff in the search or evacuation of the building.

     

    1. The person in charge of the facility should be made aware of the possibility of damage to the facility as a result of a search.
    2. The safety of all participants is the paramount concern.
  5. The need for additional resources, including:

     

    1. Notification and response, or standby notice, for fire and emergency medical services.

Even though a facility does not request police assistance to clear the interior of a building, based upon the circumstances and known threat, officers may be sent to the scene to evacuate other areas that could be affected by the type of threat, or for traffic and pedestrian control.

416.6 FOUND DEVICE

When handling an incident involving a suspected explosive device, the following guidelines, while not all inclusive, should be followed:

  1. No known or suspected explosive item should be considered safe regardless of its size or apparent packaging.
  2. The device should not be touched or moved except by the bomb squad or military explosive ordnance disposal team.
  3. Personnel should not transmit on any equipment that is capable of producing radio frequency energy within the evacuation area around the suspected device. This includes the following:
    1. Two-way radios
    2. Cell phones
    3. Other personal communication devices
  4. The appropriate bomb squad or military explosive ordnance disposal team should be summoned for assistance.
  5. The largest perimeter reasonably possible should initially be established around the device based upon available personnel and the anticipated danger zone.
  6. A safe access route should be provided for support personnel and equipment.
  7. Search the area for secondary devices as appropriate and based upon available resources.
  8. Consider evacuation of buildings and personnel near the device or inside the danger zone and the safest exit route.
  9. Promptly relay available information to the Shift Supervisor including:

     

    1. The time of discovery.
    2. The exact location of the device.
    3. A full description of the device (e.g., size, shape, markings, construction).
    4. The anticipated danger zone and perimeter.
    5. The areas to be evacuated or cleared.

416.7 EXPLOSION/BOMBING INCIDENTS

When an explosion has occurred, there are multitudes of considerations which may confront the responding officers. As in other catastrophic events, a rapid response may help to minimize injury to victims, minimize contamination of the scene by gathering crowds, or minimize any additional damage from fires or unstable structures.

416.7.1 CONSIDERATIONS

Officers responding to explosions, whether accidental or a criminal act, should consider the following actions:

  1. Assess the scope of the incident, including the number of victims and extent of injuries.
  2. Request additional personnel and resources, as appropriate.
  3. Assist with first aid.
  4. Identify and take appropriate precautions to mitigate scene hazards, such as collapsed structures, bloodborne pathogens and hazardous materials.
  5. Assist with the safe evacuation of victims, if possible.
  6. Establish an inner perimeter to include entry points and evacuation routes. Search for additional or secondary devices.
  7. Preserve evidence.
  8. Establish an outer perimeter and evacuate if necessary.
  9. Identify witnesses.

416.7.2 NOTIFICATIONS

When an explosion has occurred, the following people should be notified as appropriate:

  • Fire department
  • Bomb squad
  • Additional department personnel, such as investigators and forensic services
  • Field supervisor
  • Shift Supervisor
  • Other law enforcement agencies, including local, state or federal agencies, such as the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF)
  • Other government agencies, as appropriate

416.7.3 CROWD CONTROL

Only authorized members with a legitimate need should be permitted access to the scene. Spectators and other unauthorized individuals should be restricted to a safe distance as is reasonably practicable given the available resources and personnel.

416.7.4 PRESERVATION OF EVIDENCE

As in any other crime scene, steps should immediately be taken to preserve the scene. The Shift Supervisor should assign officers to protect the crime scene area, which could extend over a long distance. Consideration should be given to the fact that evidence may be imbedded in nearby structures or hanging in trees and bushes.

418 - Civil Commitments

418.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for when officers may place an individual in protective custody and request a 72-hour hold under the Minnesota Commitment and Treatment Act (Minn. Stat. § 253B.05).

418.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to protect the public and individuals through legal and appropriate use of the 72-hour hold process.

418.3 AUTHORITY

An officer, having reason to believe that any individual because of mental illness, chemical dependency or public intoxication is in danger of injuring him/herself or others if not immediately detained, may take, or cause to be taken, the individual to a treatment facility for a 72-hour evaluation (Minn. Stat. § 253B.05, Subd. 2).

The officer shall make written application for admission of the individual to a treatment facility. The application shall contain the officer’s reasons for and circumstances under which the individual was taken into custody. If danger to specific individuals is a basis for the requested emergency hold, the statement must include identifying information for those individuals to the extent reasonably practicable. The facility shall make a copy of the statement available to the individual taken into custody (Minn. Stat. § 253B.05, Subd. 2).

418.3.1 VOLUNTARY EVALUATION

If officers encounter an individual who may qualify for a 72-hour hold, they may inquire as to whether the person desires to voluntarily be evaluated at an appropriate facility. If the individual so desires, the officers should:

  1. Transport the individual to an appropriate facility that is able to conduct the evaluation and admit the person pursuant to the Minnesota Commitment and Treatment Act.
  2. If at any point the individual changes his/her mind regarding voluntary evaluation, officers should proceed with the application for a 72-hour hold, if appropriate.
  3. Document the circumstances surrounding the individual’s desire to pursue voluntary evaluation and/or admission.

418.4 CONSIDERATIONS AND RESPONSIBILITIES

Any officer handling a call involving an individual who may qualify for a 72-hour hold should consider, as time and circumstances reasonably permit:

  1. Available information that might assist in determining the cause and nature of the individual’s action or stated intentions.
  2. Community or neighborhood mediation services.
  3. Conflict resolution and de-escalation techniques.
  4. Community or other resources available to assist in dealing with mental health issues.

While these steps are encouraged, nothing in this section is intended to dissuade officers from taking reasonable action to ensure the safety of the officers and others.

418.5 TRANSPORTATION

When transporting any individual for a 72-hour hold, the transporting officer should have Transit Control Center notify the receiving facility of the estimated time of arrival, the level of cooperation of the individual and whether any special medical care is needed.

Officers may transport individuals in a patrol unit and shall secure them in accordance with the Handcuffing and Restraints Policy. Should the detainee require transport in a medical transport vehicle and the safety of any person, including the detainee, requires the presence of an officer during the transport, Shift Supervisor approval is required before transport commences.

418.5.1 TYPE OF TRANSPORTATION

When transporting any individual on a Minn. Stat. § 253B.05 admission, and if reasonably practicable, officers should not be in uniform and should not use a vehicle visibly marked as a law enforcement vehicle (Minn. Stat. § 253B.05, Subd. 2(b)).

418.6 TRANSFER TO APPROPRIATE FACILITY

Upon arrival at the facility, the officer will escort the individual into a treatment area designated by a facility staff member. If the individual is not seeking treatment voluntarily, the officer should provide the staff member with the written application for a 72-hour hold and remain present to provide clarification of the grounds for detention, upon request.

Absent exigent circumstances, the transporting officer should not assist facility staff with the admission process, including restraint of the individual. However, if the individual is transported and delivered while restrained, the officer may assist with transferring the individual to facility restraints and will be available to assist during the admission process, if requested. Under normal circumstances, officers will not apply facility-ordered restraints.

418.7 DOCUMENTATION

The officer should complete an application for emergency admission, provide it to the facility staff member assigned to that patient and retain a copy of the application for inclusion in the case report.

The officer should also provide a verbal summary to any evaluating staff member regarding the circumstances leading to the involuntary detention.

418.8 CRIMINAL OFFENSES

Officers investigating an individual who is suspected of committing a minor criminal offense and who is being taken into custody for purposes of a 72-hour hold should resolve the criminal matter by issuing a warning or a citation, as appropriate.

When an individual who may qualify for a 72-hour hold has committed a serious criminal offense that would normally result in an arrest and transfer to a jail facility, the officer should:

  1. Arrest the individual when there is probable cause to do so.
  2. Notify the appropriate supervisor of the facts supporting the arrest and the facts that would support the 72-hour hold.
  3. Facilitate the individual’s transfer to jail.
  4. Thoroughly document in the related reports the circumstances that indicate the individual may qualify for a 72-hour hold.

In the supervisor’s judgment, the individual may be arrested or booked and transported to the appropriate mental health facility. The supervisor should consider the seriousness of the offense, the treatment options available, the ability of this department to regain custody of the individual, department resources (e.g., posting a guard) and other relevant factors in making this decision.

418.9 FIREARMS AND OTHER WEAPONS

Whenever an individual is taken into custody for a 72-hour hold, the handling officers should seek to determine if the individual owns or has access to any firearm or other deadly weapon. Officers should consider whether it is appropriate and consistent with current search and seizure law under the circumstances to seize any such firearms or other dangerous weapons (e.g., safekeeping, evidence, consent).

Officers are cautioned that a search warrant may be needed before entering a residence or other place to search unless lawful warrantless entry has already been made (e.g., exigent circumstances, consent). A warrant may also be needed before searching for or seizing weapons.

The handling officers should further advise the individual of the procedure for the return of any firearm or other weapon that has been taken into custody.

418.10 TRAINING

This department will endeavor to provide department-approved training on interaction with mentally disabled persons, 72-hour holds and crisis intervention.

420 - Cite and Release Policy

420.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide members of the Metro Transit Police Department with guidance on when to release adults who are suspected offenders on a citation for a criminal offense, rather than having the person held in custody for a court appearance or released on bail.

This policy also provides guidance on when a court orders that a person be released.

Additional release restrictions may apply to those detained for domestic violence, as outlined in the Domestic Abuse Policy.

420.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will consider its resources and its mission of protecting the community when exercising any discretion to release suspected offenders on a citation, when authorized to do so.

420.3 RELEASE

A suspected offender shall be released on issuance of a citation:

  1. When the offender has been arrested without a warrant and either a prosecutor or district court judge orders that the offender should be released (Minn. R. Crim. P. 4.02; Minn. R. Crim. P. 6.01).
    1. Release is not required if a reviewing supervisor determines that the offender should be held pursuant to Minn. R. Crim. P. 6.01 Subd. 1.
  2. When the offender is charged with a petty or fine-only misdemeanor (Minn. R. Crim. P. 6.01).
  3. In misdemeanor cases unless it reasonably appears to the arresting officer that the offender will (Minn. R. Crim. P. 6.01):
    1. Cause bodily injury to him/herself or another if he/she is not detained.
    2. Continue engaging in criminal conduct.
    3. Not respond to a citation.
  4. When the offender is from another state which has a reciprocal agreement with Minnesota unless the offense is (Minn. Stat. § 169.91):

     

    1. One which would result in the revocation of the offender’s driver’s license under Minnesota law upon conviction.
    2. A violation of a highway weight limitation.
    3. A violation of a law governing the transportation of hazardous materials.
    4. That the offender was driving without a valid driver’s license.

420.4 PROHIBITIONS

The release of a suspected offender on a citation is not permitted when:

  1. The offender has committed a driving while impaired (DWI) offense (Minn. Stat. § 169A.40; Minn. Stat. § 169.91).
  2. The offender is arrested for a violation of state law or an ordinance related to the operation or registration of a vehicle punishable as a misdemeanor or felony and (Minn. Stat. § 169.91):

     

    1. The offender demands an immediate appearance before a judge.
    2. The offender is charged with:
      1. An offense involving an accident that resulted in injury or death.
      2. Criminal vehicular homicide.
      3. Failure to stop after being involved in an accident that resulted in death, personal injuries or damage to property.
    3. There is reasonable cause to believe that the offender may leave the state. See the Domestic Abuse Policy for release restrictions related to those investigations.

420.5 CONSIDERATIONS

In determining whether to cite and release a person when discretion is permitted, officers should consider:

  1. The type of offense committed.
  2. The known criminal history of the suspected offender.
  3. The ability to identify the suspected offender with reasonable certainty.
  4. Whether there is any record of the individual failing to appear in previous cases or other articulable indications that the individual may not appear in court for this offense.
  5. The individual’s ties to the area, such as residence, employment or family.
  6. Whether there is reasonable likelihood that criminal conduct by the individual will continue.

420.6 FISH AND GAME AND ENVIRONMENT-RELATED OFFENSES

In the case of game and fish laws or other environment-related offenses, as specified in Minn. Stat. § 97A.211, officers should release the offender unless there is reason to believe that criminal conduct will continue or that the offender will not respond as required by the citation (Minn. Stat. § 97A.211).

422 - Foreign Diplomatic and Consular Representatives

422.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines to ensure that members of the Metro Transit Police Department extend appropriate privileges and immunities to foreign diplomatic and consular representatives in accordance with international law.

422.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department respects international laws related to the special privileges and immunities afforded foreign diplomatic and consular representatives assigned to the United States.

All foreign diplomatic and consular representatives shall be treated with respect and courtesy, regardless of any privileges or immunities afforded them.

422.3 CLAIMS OF IMMUNITY

If a member comes into contact with a person where law enforcement action may be warranted and the person claims diplomatic or consular privileges and immunities, the member should, without delay:

  1. Notify a supervisor.
  2. Advise the person that his/her claim will be investigated and he/she may be released in accordance with the law upon confirmation of the person’s status.
  3. Request the person’s identification card, either issued by the U.S. Department of State (DOS), Office of the Chief of Protocol, or in the case of persons accredited to the United Nations, by the U.S. Mission to the United Nations. These are the only reliable documents for purposes of determining privileges and immunities.
  4. Contact the DOS Diplomatic Security Command Center at 571-345-3146 or toll free at 866-217-2089, or at another current telephone number and inform the center of the circumstances.
  5. Verify the immunity status with DOS and follow any instructions regarding further detention, arrest, prosecution and/or release, as indicated by the DOS representative. This may require immediate release, even if a crime has been committed.

Identity or immunity status should not be presumed from the type of license plates displayed on a vehicle. If there is a question as to the status or the legitimate possession of a Diplomat or Consul license plate, a query should be run via the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (NLETS), designating “US” as the state.

422.4 ENFORCEMENT ACTION

If the DOS is not immediately available for consultation regarding law enforcement action, members shall be aware of the following:

  1. Generally, all persons with diplomatic and consular privileges and immunities may be issued a citation or notice to appear. However, the person may not be compelled to sign the citation.
  2. All persons, even those with a valid privilege or immunity, may be reasonably restrained in exigent circumstances for purposes of self-defense, public safety or the prevention of serious criminal acts.
  3. An impaired foreign diplomatic or consular representative may be prevented from driving a vehicle, even if the person may not be arrested due to privileges and immunities.

     

    1. Investigations, including the request for field sobriety tests, chemical tests and any other tests regarding impaired driving may proceed but they shall not be compelled.
  4. The following persons may not be detained or arrested, and any property or vehicle owned by these persons may not be searched or seized:
    1. Diplomatic-level staff of missions to international organizations and recognized family members
    2. Diplomatic agents and recognized family members
    3. Members of administrative and technical staff of a diplomatic mission and recognized family members
    4. Career consular officers, unless the person is the subject of a felony warrant
  5. The following persons may generally be detained and arrested:

     

    1. International organization staff; however, some senior officers are entitled to the same treatment as diplomatic agents.
    2. Support staff of missions to international organizations.
    3. Diplomatic service staff and consular employees; however, special bilateral agreements may exclude employees of certain foreign countries.
    4. Honorary consular officers.

422.5 DOCUMENTATION

All contacts with persons who have claimed privileges and immunities afforded foreign diplomatic and consular representatives should be thoroughly documented and the related reports forwarded to DOS.

422.6 DIPLOMATIC IMMUNITY TABLE

Reference table on diplomatic immunity:

Category Arrested or Detained Enter Residence Subject to Ordinary Procedures Issued Traffic Citation Subpoenaed as Witness Prosecuted Recognized Family Members
Diplomatic Agent No (note b) No Yes No No Same as sponsor (full immunity & inviolability)
Member of Admin and Tech Staff No (note b) No Yes No No Same as sponsor (full immunity & inviolability)
Service Staff Yes (note a) Yes Yes Yes No for official acts Yes otherwise (note a) No immunity or inviolability (note a)
Career Consul Officer Yes if for a felony and pursuant to a warrant(note a) Yes (note d) Yes Yes No for official acts Yes otherwise (note a) No immunity or inviolability
Honorable Consul Officer Yes Yes Yes No for official acts Yes otherwise No for official acts Yes otherwise No immunity or inviolability
Consulate Employees Yes (note a) Yes Yes No for official acts Yes otherwise No for official Yes otherwise (note a) No immunity or inviolability (note a)
Int'l Org Staff (note b) Yes (note c) Yes (note c) Yes Yes (note c) No for official acts Yes otherwise (note c) No immunity or inviolability
Diplomatic- Level Staff of Missions to Int’l Org No (note b) No Yes No No Same as sponsor (full immunity & inviolability)
Support Staff of Missions to Int’l Orgs Yes Yes Yes Yes No for official acts Yes otherwise No immunity or inviolability

Notes for diplomatic immunity table:

  1. This table presents general rules. The employees of certain foreign countries may enjoy higher levels of privileges and immunities on the basis of special bilateral agreements.
  2. Reasonable constraints, however, may be applied in emergency circumstances involving self-defense, public safety, or in the prevention of serious criminal acts.
  3. A small number of senior officers are entitled to be treated identically to diplomatic agents.
  4. Note that consul residences are sometimes located within the official consular premises. In such cases, only the official office space is protected from police entry.

424 - Rapid Response and Deployment Policy

424.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Violence in schools, workplaces and other locations by any individual or group of individuals presents a difficult situation for law enforcement. The purpose of this policy is to identify guidelines and factors that will assist officers implement rapid response and deployment to such situations.

424.2 POLICY

The policy of this department in dealing with a crisis situation shall be:

  1. To obtain and maintain complete operative control of the incident.
  2. To explore every reasonably available source of intelligence regarding the circumstances, location and suspect(s) in the incident.
  3. To attempt, by every means available, to attain any tactical advantage over the responsible individual(s).
  4. To attempt, whenever feasible, a negotiated surrender of the suspect(s) and release of the hostages through the expertise of the members of this department and others.

Nothing in this policy shall preclude the use of necessary force, deadly or otherwise, by members of this department in protecting themselves or others from death or injury.

424.3 PROCEDURE

If there is a reasonable belief that acts or threats by a suspect are placing lives in imminent danger, first responding officers should consider reasonable options to immediately eliminate the threat. Officers must decide, often under a multitude of difficult and rapidly evolving circumstances, whether to advance on the suspect, take other actions to deal with the threat or wait for additional resources.

When deciding on a course of action officers should consider the following:

  1. Whether sufficient personnel are available on-scene to advance on the suspect. Any advance on a suspect should be made using teams of two or more officers whenever reasonably possible.
  2. Whether individuals who are under imminent threat can be moved out of danger with reasonable safety.
  3. Whether the officers have the ability to effectively communicate with others in the field.
  4. Whether planned tactics can be effectively deployed.
  5. The availability of rifles, shotguns, shields, control devices and any other appropriate tools, and whether the deployment of these tools will provide a tactical advantage.
  6. In a case of a barricaded suspect with no hostages and no immediate threat to others, officers should consider summoning and waiting for additional assistance (special tactics and/or hostage negotiation team response).
  7. If a suspect is actively engaged in the infliction of serious bodily harm or other life-threatening activity toward others, the officer should take immediate action, if reasonably possible, to stop the threat presented by the suspect while calling for additional assistance.

428 - Immigration Enforcement

428.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance to members of the Metro Transit Police Department to ensure equal enforcement of the law and equal service to all persons regardless of their immigration status. The immigration status of an individual alone is generally not a matter for transit police action.

428.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that all members make personal and professional commitments to equal enforcement of the law and equal service to the public. Confidence in this commitment will increase the effectiveness of this department in protecting and serving the entire community and recognizing the dignity of all persons, regardless of their immigration status.

The Metro Transit Police Department is concerned for the safety of the public and thus detection of criminal activity is of primary interest in dealing with any person. The decision to arrest shall be based upon those factors which establish probable cause and not on arbitrary aspects. Race, ethnicity or nationality, religion, sex, sexual orientation, economic status, age, culture, group, disability or affiliation with any other similar identifiable group shall not be used as the basis for providing differing levels of law enforcement service or the enforcement of the law (Minn. Stat. §626.8471, Subd.3).

Metro Transit police officers and staff shall not undertake any law enforcement action for the sole purpose of detecting the presence of an undocumented person or persons or to verify immigration status, including but not limited to questioning any person or persons about their immigration status. Metro Transit police officers and staff shall not question or detain any person for violations of federal civil immigration laws except when immigration status is an element of the crime or when enforcing 8 USC § 1324c.

428.3 VICTIMS AND WITNESSES

To encourage crime reporting and cooperation in the investigation of criminal activity, all individuals, regardless of their immigration status, must feel secure that contacting or being addressed by members of law enforcement will not lead to immigration inquiry. While it may be necessary to determine the identity of a victim or witness, Department members shall treat all individuals equally and without regard to race, color or national origin in any way that would violate the United States or Minnesota Constitutions.

428.4 ENFORCEMENT

The Metro Transit Police Department does not independently conduct sweeps or other concentrated efforts to detain suspected undocumented persons. The Metro Transit Police Department does not participate in ICE or other immigration related sweeps or concentrated efforts to detain suspected undocumented persons.

Unless immigration status is relevant to another criminal offense or investigation (e.g., human trafficking, smuggling, terrorism), the fact that an individual is suspected of being an undocumented person shall not be the sole basis for contact, detention or arrest.

428.4.1 IMMIGRATION CHECKS

Immigration status may be determined through any of the following sources:

  1. A law enforcement officer who is authorized by the federal government under 8 USC § 1357 to verify or ascertain an alien's immigration status (sometimes referred to as a 287(g) certified officer)
  2. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)
  3. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP)

428.5 ARREST NOTIFICATION TO IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT

An officer will not notify ICE when booking arrestees at the county jail.

428.6 ICE REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE

Requests by ICE, or any other federal agency, for assistance from this department should be directed to the Chief of Police. The Department may provide available support services, such as traffic control or peacekeeping efforts, to ICE or other federal agencies if approved by the Chief of Police. The Chief of Police need not be consulted in the event of exigent circumstances such as an imminent loss of life and/or officer safety concerns.

428.7 INFORMATION SHARING

Nothing in this policy is intended to restrict officers from exchanging legitimate law enforcement information with any other federal, state or local government entity (8 USC § 1373).

428.8 U VISA AND T VISA NON-IMMIGRANT STATUS

Under certain circumstances, federal law allows temporary immigration benefits, known as a U visa, to victims and witnesses of certain qualifying crimes (8 USC § 1101(a)(15)(U)). A law enforcement certification for a U visa may be completed by an officer in order for a U visa to be issued.

Similar immigration protection, known as a T visa, is available for certain qualifying victims of human trafficking (8 USC § 1101(a)(15)(T)). A law enforcement declaration for a T visa may be completed by an officer in order for a T visa to be issued.

Any request for assistance in applying for U visa or T visa status should be forwarded in a timely manner to the Investigation Division supervisor assigned to oversee the handling of any related case. The Investigation Division supervisor should:

  1. Consult with the assigned investigator to determine the current status of any related case and whether further documentation is warranted.
  2. Contact the appropriate prosecutor assigned to the case, if applicable, to ensure the certification or declaration has not already been completed and whether a certification or declaration is warranted.
  3. Address the request and complete the certification or declaration, if appropriate, in a timely manner.
    1. The instructions for completing certification and declaration forms can be found on the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) website.
  4. Ensure that any decision to complete, or not complete, a certification or declaration form is documented in the case file and forwarded to the appropriate prosecutor. Include a copy of any completed form in the case file.

428.9 TRAINING

The Training Supervisor shall ensure that all appropriate members receive immigration training.

430 - Emergency Utility Service

430.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The local jurisdiction's Public Works Department and Metro Transit have personnel available to handle emergency calls 24 hours per day. Calls for service during non-business hours are frequently directed to the Police Department. Requests for such service received by this department should be handled in the following manner.

Regardless of what the break or malfunction is (e.g. water line, electrical line, traffic signal etc), if it belongs to a local jurisdiction, that jurisdiction shall be notified. If the break or malfunction belongs to the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit, the proper owner shall be notified. Upon the officer notifying the TCC of the break and/or malfunction, TCC will make the necessary notifications on behalf of the officer.

430.1.1 EMERGENCY NUMBERS

A current list of emergency personnel who are to be called for Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit emergencies will be maintained by the Transit Control Center.

432 - Patrol Rifles

432.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

To more effectively and accurately address the increasing level of firepower and body armor utilized by criminal suspects, the Metro Transit Police Department will make patrol rifles available to qualified officers as an additional and more immediate tactical resource.

432.2 PATROL RIFLE

432.2.1 DEFINITION

Patrol Rifle - An authorized weapon which is owned by the Department and which is made available to properly trained and qualified officers as a supplemental resource to their duty handgun. No personally owned rifles may be carried for patrol duty unless pre-approved in writing by the Chief of Police and the Department armorer.

432.3 SPECIFICATIONS

Only weapons and ammunition that meet agency authorized specifications, approved by the Chief of Police and issued by the Department, may be used by officers in their law enforcement responsibilities. The authorized patrol rifle issued by the Department is the Smith and Wesson M&P 15 and/or Bushmaster M4.

432.4 RIFLE MAINTENANCE

  1. Primary responsibility for maintenance of patrol rifles shall fall on the Armorer or armorer, who shall inspect and service each patrol rifle on an annual basis.
  2. Each patrol officer carrying a patrol rifle may be required to field strip and clean an assigned patrol rifle as needed.
  3. Each patrol officer shall be responsible for promptly reporting any damage or malfunction of an assigned patrol rifle to a supervisor, the Armorer or armorer.
  4. Any patrol rifle found to be unserviceable shall also be clearly identified as non-serviceable, including details regarding the unserviceable condition.
  5. Each patrol rifle shall be subject to inspection by a supervisor, the Armorer or armorer at any time.
  6. No modification shall be made to any patrol rifle without prior written authorization from the Armorer or armorer.

432.5 TRAINING

Officers shall not carry or utilize the patrol rifle unless they have successfully completed Department training. This training shall consist of a patrol rifle user's course and qualification score with a certified patrol rifle instructor. Officers shall thereafter be required to successfully complete a yearly firearms proficiency qualification conducted by a certified patrol rifle instructor.

Any officer who fails to qualify or who fails to successfully complete a Department-sanctioned training/qualification session within a calendar year will no longer be authorized to carry the patrol rifle without successfully passing remedial training and qualification.

432.6 DEPLOYMENT OF THE PATROL RIFLE

Officers may deploy the patrol rifle in any circumstance where the officer can articulate a reasonable expectation that the rifle may be needed. Examples of some general guidelines for deploying the patrol rifle may include, but are not limited to:

  1. Situations where the officer reasonably anticipates an armed encounter.
  2. When an officer is faced with a situation that may require the delivery of accurate and effective fire at long range.
  3. Situations where an officer reasonably expects the need to meet or exceed a suspect's firepower.
  4. When an officer reasonably believes that there may be a need to deliver fire on a barricaded suspect or a suspect with a hostage.
  5. When an officer reasonably believes that a suspect may be wearing body armor.
  6. When authorized or requested by a supervisor.
  7. When appropriate to aid in the dispatch of an animal.

432.7 DISCHARGE OF THE PATROL RIFLE

The discharge of the patrol rifle shall be governed by the Use of Force Policy and the Shooting Policy.

432.8 PATROL READY

Any qualified officer carrying a patrol rifle in the field shall maintain the weapon in a patrol ready condition until deployed. A rifle is considered in a patrol ready condition when it has been inspected by the assigned officer at the start of their shift and the following conditions are met:

  1. The fire selector switch is in the safe position.
  2. The chamber is empty.
  3. The bolt is forward.
  4. A 20 or 30 round magazine (loaded with 18 or 28 rounds) is inserted into the magazine well.
  5. The dust cover is closed.

432.9 RIFLE STORAGE

When not in use or assigned to a squad, patrol rifles will be stored in the Department armory.

The last three digits of the assigned patrol rifle serial number will be recorded on the Daliy Activity Log.

In-service patrol rifles should be secured in the vehicle gun lock or cased in the trunk if a gun lock is not available.

435 - Field Training Officer Program

435.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Field Training Officer Program is intended to provide a standardized program to facilitate the officer's transition from the academic setting to the actual performance of general law enforcement duties of the Metro Transit Police Department.

It is the policy of this department to assign all new police officers to a structured Field Training Officer Program that is designed to prepare the new officer to perform in a patrol assignment and to acquire all of the skills needed to operate in a safe, productive and professional manner.

435.2 FIELD TRAINING OFFICER - SELECTION AND TRAINING

The Field Training Officer (FTO) is an experienced officer trained in the art of supervising, training and evaluating entry-level and lateral police officers in the application of their previously acquired knowledge and skills.

435.2.1 SELECTION PROCESS

FTOs will be selected based on the following requirements:

  1. Desire to be an FTO (e.g. submitting a letter of interest).
  2. Minimum of two years of patrol experience with this department.
  3. Demonstrated ability as a positive role model.
  4. Evaluation by supervisors and current FTO's.
  5. Other criteria may be established at the time of the FTO posting.

435.2.2 CONTINUED TRAINING

All FTOs must complete a POST-approved FTO course every five years while assigned to the position of FTO.

435.3 FIELD TRAINING OFFICER PROGRAM SUPERVISOR

The Field Training Officer Program Supervisor will be selected by the Chief of Police or designee. The responsibilities of the FTO Program Supervisor include the following:

  1. Assignment of trainees to FTO's.
  2. Conduct FTO meetings to ensure understanding and compliance with the Field Training Program requirements.
  3. Maintain and ensure FTO/trainee performance evaluations are completed through the established review and approval process.
  4. Maintain, update and issue the Field Training Manual to each trainee.
  5. Monitor individual FTO performance.
  6. Monitor overall FTO Program.
  7. Maintain liaison with FTO coordinators of other agencies.
  8. Develop ongoing training for FTO's.
  9. Conduct an annual program review with the FTO's and provide recommendations for change, if any, to the Chief of Police or designee.

435.4 TRAINEE DEFINED

Trainee - Any entry level or lateral police officer newly appointed to the Metro Transit Police Department who possesses a Minnesota POST license or is eligible to be licensed.

435.5REQUIRED TRAINING

Entry level officers shall be required to successfully complete the Field Training Program (typically 16 weeks in duration).

The training period for lateral officers may be modified depending on the trainee's demonstrated performance and level of experience.

The required training will take place on at least two different shifts and with at least two different FTO's if reasonably possible.

435.5.1 FIELD TRAINING MANUAL

Each new officer will be issued a Field Training Manual at the beginning of his/her Primary Training Phase. This manual is an outline of the subject matter and skills necessary to properly function as an officer with the Metro Transit Police Department. The officer shall become knowledgeable of the subject matter as outlined. He/she shall also become proficient with those skills as set forth in the manual.

The Field Training Manual will specifically cover those policies, procedures, rules and regulations enacted by the Metro Transit Police Department.

435.6 EVALUATIONS

Evaluations are an important component of the training process and shall be completed as outlined below.

435.6.1 FIELD TRAINING OFFICER

The FTO will be responsible for the following:

  1. Completing and submitting a written evaluation on the performance of the assigned trainee to the FTO Program Supervisor on a daily basis.
  2. Reviewing the Daily Observation Report (DOR) with the trainee each day.
  3. Completing a detailed end-of-phase performance evaluation on the assigned trainee at the end of each phase of training.
  4. Signing off all completed topics contained in the Field Training Manual, noting the method of learning and evaluating the performance of the assigned trainee.

435.6.2 IMMEDIATE SUPERVISOR

The immediate shift supervisor shall be kept apprised on the progress/status of the trainee assigned to their shift and shall forward any concerns to the FTO Program Supervisor.

435.6.3 TRAINEE

At the completion of the Field Training Program, the trainee shall submit a performance evaluation of each of his/her FTOs and of the Field Training Program.

435.7 DOCUMENTATION

All documentation of the Field Training Program will be retained in the officer's training files and will consist of the following:

  1. Daily Observation Reports (DOR's).
  2. End of phase / bi-weekly evaluations.
  3. Performance Improvement Plans (PIP's).
  4. A Certificate of Completion, certifying that the trainee has successfully completed the required number of hours of field training.

437 - Obtaining Air Support

437.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The use of air support can be invaluable in certain situations. This policy specifies potential situations where the use of air support may be requested and the responsibilities for making a request.

437.2 REQUEST FOR AIR SUPPORT ASSISTANCE

If a supervisor or officer in charge of an incident determines that the use of air support would be beneficial, a request to obtain air support assistance may be made.

437.2.1 REQUEST FOR ASSISTANCE FROM ANOTHER AGENCY

After consideration and approval of the request for air support, the Shift Supervisor or designee will call the closest agency having air support available. The Shift Supervisor will apprise that agency of the specific details of the incident prompting the request.

437.2.2 CIRCUMSTANCES UNDER WHICH AID MAY BE REQUESTED

Law enforcement air support may be requested under any of the following conditions:

  1. When the aircraft is activated under existing mutual aid agreements.
  2. Whenever the safety of law enforcement personnel is in jeopardy and the presence of the aircraft may reduce such hazard.
  3. When the use of aircraft will aid in the capture of a suspected fleeing felon whose continued freedom represents an ongoing threat to the community.
  4. When an aircraft is needed to locate a person who has strayed or is lost and whose continued absence constitutes a serious health or safety hazard.
  5. Vehicle pursuits (Minn. Stat. § 626.8458).
  6. When the Shift Supervisor or equivalent authority determines a reasonable need exists.

While it is recognized that the availability of air support will generally provide valuable assistance to ground personnel, the presence of air support will rarely replace the need for officers on the ground.

439 - Detentions and Photographing Detainees

439.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for conducting field interviews (FI) and pat- down searches, and the taking and retention of photographs of persons detained in the field but not arrested. Due to a variety of situations confronting the officer, the decision to FI or photograph a field detainee shall be left to the discretion of the involved officer based on the totality of the circumstances available to him/her at the time of the detention.

439.2 DEFINITIONS

Detention - Occurs when an officer intentionally, through words, actions or physical force causes an individual to reasonably believe he/she is being required to restrict his/her movement. Detentions also occur when an officer actually restrains a person’s freedom of movement.

Consensual Encounter - Occurs when an officer contacts an individual but does not create a detention through words, actions or other means. In other words, a reasonable individual would believe that his/her contact with the officer is voluntary.

Field Interview (FI) - The brief detainment of an individual, whether on foot or in a vehicle, based on reasonable suspicion for the purpose of determining the individual's identity and resolving the officer's suspicions.>

Field Photographs - Posed photographs taken of a person during a contact, detention or arrest in the field. Undercover surveillance photographs of an individual and recordings captured by the normal operation of a Mobile Video Recorder (MVR) system when persons are not posed for the purpose of photographing are not considered field photographs.

Pat-Down Search - This type of search is used by officers in the field to check an individual for weapons. It involves a thorough patting down of clothing to locate any weapons or dangerous items that could pose a danger to the officer, the detainee or others.

Reasonable Suspicion - Occurs when, under the totality of the circumstances, an officer has articulable facts that criminal activity may be afoot and a particular person is connected with that possible criminal activity.

439.3 FIELD INTERVIEWS

Officers may stop individuals for the purpose of conducting an FI where reasonable suspicion is present. In justifying the stop, the officer should be able to point to specific facts which, when taken together with rational inferences, reasonably warrant the stop. Such facts include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. The appearance or demeanor of an individual suggests that he/she is part of a criminal enterprise or is engaged in a criminal act.
  2. The actions of the suspect suggest that he/she is engaged in a criminal activity.
  3. The hour of day or night is inappropriate for the suspect's presence in the area.
  4. The suspect's presence in the particular area is suspicious.
  5. The suspect is carrying a suspicious object.
  6. The suspect's clothing bulges in a manner that suggests he/she is carrying a weapon.
  7. The suspect is located in proximate time and place to an alleged crime.
  8. The officer has knowledge of the suspect's prior criminal record or involvement in criminal activity.

439.3.1 INITIATING A FIELD INTERVIEW

Based on observance of suspicious circumstances or upon information from investigation, an officer may initiate the stop of a person when there is articulable, reasonable suspicion to do so. A person, however, should not be detained longer than is reasonably necessary to resolve the officer’s suspicions.

Nothing in this policy is intended to discourage consensual contacts. Frequent and random casual contacts with consenting individuals is encouraged by the Metro Transit Police Department to strengthen our community involvement, community awareness and problem identification.

439.3.2 DURATION OF DETENTION

A subject may be detained to conduct an FI only for the period reasonably necessary to determine the individual’s identity and resolve the officer’s suspicions. The interview should not extend beyond the immediate vicinity of the place where the detention was first effected unless the detainee is arrested.

439.3.3 WITNESS IDENTIFICATION AND INTERVIEWS

Because potential witnesses to an incident may be lost or the integrity of their statements compromised with the passage of time, officers should, when warranted by the seriousness of the case, take reasonable steps to promptly coordinate with an on-scene supervisor and/or criminal investigator to utilize available personnel for the following:

  1. Identifying all persons present at the scene and in the immediate area.
    1. When reasonably feasible, a recorded statement should be obtained from those persons who claim not to have witnessed the incident but who were present at the time it occurred.
    2. Any potential witness who is unwilling or unable to remain available for a formal interview should not be detained absent reasonable suspicion to detain or probable cause to arrest. Without detaining the individual for the sole purpose of identification, officers should attempt to identify the witness prior to his/her departure.
  2. Witnesses who are willing to provide a formal interview should be asked to meet at a suitable location where criminal investigators may obtain a recorded statement. Such witnesses, if willing, may be transported by department personnel.
    1. A written, verbal or recorded statement of consent should be obtained prior to transporting a witness in a department vehicle. When the witness is a minor, consent should be obtained from the parent or guardian, if reasonably available, prior to transport.

439.4 PAT-DOWN SEARCHES

A pat-down search of a detained subject may be conducted whenever an officer reasonably believes that the person may possess an object that can be utilized as an offensive weapon or whenever the officer has a reasonable fear for his/her own safety or the safety of others. Circumstances that may establish justification for performing a pat-down search include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. The type of crime suspected, particularly in crimes of violence where the use or threat of weapons is involved.
  2. Where more than one suspect must be handled by a single officer.
  3. The hour of the day and the location or area where the stop takes place.
  4. Prior knowledge of the suspect's use of force and/or propensity to carry weapons.
  5. The appearance and demeanor of the suspect.
  6. Visual indications that suggest the suspect is carrying a firearm or other weapon.
  7. The age and gender of the suspect.

When reasonably possible, pat-down searches should be performed by officers of the same gender as the suspect.

439.5 FIELD PHOTOGRAPHS

Before photographing any field detainee, the officer shall carefully consider, among other things, the factors listed below.

439.5.1 FIELD PHOTOGRAPHS TAKEN WITH CONSENT

Field photographs may be taken when the subject of the photograph knowingly and voluntarily gives consent. When taking a consensual photograph, the officer should note in a report that the subject consented to the photograph being taken.

439.5.2 FIELD PHOTOGRAPHS TAKEN WITHOUT CONSENT

Field photographs may be taken without consent only if they are taken during a detention that is based upon reasonable suspicion of criminal activity, and the photograph serves a legitimate law enforcement purpose related to the detention. The officer must be able to articulate facts that reasonably indicate that the subject was involved in or was about to become involved in criminal conduct.

If, prior to taking a photograph, the officer’s reasonable suspicion of criminal activity has been dispelled, the detention must cease and the photograph should not be taken.

All field photographs and related reports shall be submitted to a supervisor and retained in compliance with this policy.

439.6 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

While it is recognized that field photographs often become valuable investigative tools, supervisors should monitor such practices in view of the above listed considerations. This is not to imply that supervisor approval is required before taking each photograph. Field photographs shall be classified as law enforcement data under Minn. Stat. § 13.82, and shall be collected, maintained and disseminated consistent with the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act.

439.7 DISPOSITION OF PHOTOGRAPHS

All detainee photographs must be adequately labeled and submitted to the Shift Supervisor with either an associated FI card or other memorandum explaining the nature of the contact. If an individual is photographed as a suspect in a particular crime, the photograph should be submitted as an evidence item in the related case, following standard evidence procedures.

If a photograph is not associated with an investigation where a case number has been issued, the Shift Supervisor should review and forward the photograph to one of the following locations:

  1. If the photo and associated FI or memorandum is relevant to criminal gang enforcement, the Shift Supervisor will forward the photo and documents to the Investigations Supervisor. The Investigations Supervisor will ensure the photograph and supporting documents are retained as prescribed in the Criminal Organizations Policy.
  2. Photographs that do not qualify for retention in the criminal gang file or that are not evidence in an investigation with an assigned case number should be forwarded to the Records Section. These photographs will be purged as described in this policy.

When a photograph is taken in association with a particular case, the investigator may use such photograph in a photo lineup. Thereafter, the individual photograph should be retained as a part of the case file. All other photographs will be kept in the Records Section in a separate non-booking photograph file in alphabetical order.

439.7.1 PURGING THE FIELD PHOTO FILE

Photographs that are more than one year old and no longer serve a law enforcement purpose are periodically purged and destroyed unless a longer period of retention is required by the Department records retention schedule. No record may be destroyed unless done in compliance with such a schedule unless ordered by a court or pursuant to other applicable statute. Photographs that continue to serve a law enforcement purpose may be retained longer than one year provided that a notation of that fact is added to the file for each additional year that they are retained. Access to FI photos shall be governed by the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act.

439.8 PHOTO REVIEW POLICY

Any person who has been the subject of a field photograph or an FI by this department during any contact other than an arrest and requests to view non-confidential data shall be shown the data immediately if possible, or within 10 days of the date of the oral or written request, excluding Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays. No charge may be assessed for display of the data, and if desired the person shall be informed of the content and meaning of that data (Minn. Stat. § 13.04 Subd. 3). The request to view the photograph/FI data shall be directed to the office of the Chief of Police, who will ensure that the status of the photograph or FI is properly reviewed according to this policy as described below.

439.8.1 REVIEW PROCESS

Upon receipt of such a written request, the Chief of Police or designee will permit the individual to appear in person. Any minor should be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian for a review of the status of the photograph/Fl unless the minor has made a request that the photograph/FI not be reviewed by the parent or guardian pursuant to Minn. R. 1205.0500.

Such a meeting will be scheduled during regular business hours no longer than 10 days of the receipt of the request.

A meeting for the review of the status of any non-arrest photograph/FI is simply an informal opportunity for the individual to meet to review the data.

440 - Photography of Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit Property

440.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit (herein referred to as "Council") has security and public relations interests in persons wishing to take photographic or video images on, in or of Council property, vehicles and/or employees. Although in most cases there is no particular harm involved in taking photographic or video images on, in or of Council property, vehicles or employees, intelligence indicates that persons who wish to target particular locations for terrorist purposes are likely to use photography as part of their pre-attack surveillance and planning. As such, the Council has not only an obligation to protect its customers, employees, property and to deter and prevent terrorism, but also an inherent responsibility to regulate photography on, in or of Council property, vehicles and employees.

440.2 POLICY

In order to provide the highest level of security to its customers and employees, the Council requires that any person on or in Council property or vehicles taking non-commercial/personal use photographic or video images, including but not limited to, film, digital or video recording (hereinafter referred to as "pictures") of Council property, vehicles and/or employees, must provide proper identification upon request of a Metro Transit Police officer.

Any person observed taking pictures on, in or of Council property, vehicles and/or employees who refuses to provide proper identification to a Metro Transit Police officer or other Council official upon request; or any person observed taking pictures on, in or of a restricted area (i.e. an area not open to the public) will be directed to stop taking pictures and will be subject to additional law enforcement action as appropriate.

Any person wishing to take pictures for any type of commercial purpose or use (e.g. movies, commercials, trade publications etc.) must first obtain permission from the Council Marketing Department.

440.3 TYPES OF PHOTOGRAPHY

Photography of Council property will typically fall into one of the following three categories:

  1. Non-Commercial / Personal Use Photography
    1. No permission is required for non-commercial / personal use pictures taken in public areas. However, any person taking pictures on, in or of Council property, vehicles and/or employees must provide proper identification (preferably in the form of state issued identification) upon request of a Metro Transit Police officer or other Council official. The Metro Transit Police officer or Council official may allow the person to take pictures at the specific location under the following conditions:
      1. The person provides proper identification.
      2. The circumstances indicate that the subject(s) of the picture(s) does/do not pose a security or safety threat or in any way cause disruption of service or operations of the Council; and
      3. The picture(s) is/are for personal or educational use only (e.g. tourist, railroad buff, student, artist etc).
    2. Non-commercial / personal use photographers are prohibited from using tripods, monopods, wiring or any like equipment that may have an impact on the safety of customers and/or employees and are prohibited from interfering with the free flow of passengers or disrupting service in any manner.
  2. Commercial Photography
    1. Any person wishing to take pictures for any type of commercial purpose or use must first obtain permission from the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit Marketing Department located at: 560 6th Ave N in the City of Minneapolis, Minnesota 55411 or by calling (612) 349-7525. If permission is granted, it will be valid for a specific location, date and time.
  3. News Media Photography
    1. News media photographers shall display their Press credentials and will be allowed to take pictures in the public areas on, in or of Council property, vehicles and/or employees so long as they do not interfere with the free flow of passengers or disrupt service in any manner.
    2. News media photographers are requested to make prior notification to the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit - Public Information Officer at (612) 373-3333 and to the Metro Transit Police Department at (612) 349-7200.
    3. News media photographers are not allowed inside any crime or incident scene without the permission of, and an escort provided by, the on-scene Metro Transit Police Incident Commander or their designee.

440.4 DOCUMENTING PHOTOGRAPHY INCIDENTS

All Metro Transit Police officers operating within the scope of this policy will document all incidents on the appropriate Metro Transit Police report form(s) and/or records management system. Officers may refer to the Report Preparation Policy if further information is needed.

441 - Criminal Gangs

441.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that the Metro Transit Police Department appropriately utilizes criminal intelligence systems and temporary information files to support investigations of criminal organizations and enterprises.

441.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Criminal intelligence system - Any record system that receives, stores, exchanges or disseminates information that has been evaluated and determined to be relevant to the identification of a criminal organization or enterprise, its members or affiliates. This does not include temporary information files.

441.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes that certain criminal activities, including but not limited to gang crimes and drug trafficking, often involve some degree of regular coordination and may involve a large number of participants over a broad geographical area.

It is the policy of this department to collect and share relevant information while respecting the privacy and legal rights of the public.

441.3 CRIMINAL INTELLIGENCE SYSTEMS

No department member may create, submit to or obtain information from a criminal intelligence system unless the Chief of Police has approved the system for department use.

Any criminal intelligence system approved for department use should meet or exceed the standards of 28 CFR 23.20.

A designated supervisor will be responsible for maintaining each criminal intelligence system that has been approved for department use. The supervisor or the authorized designee should ensure the following:

  1. Members using any such system are appropriately selected and trained.
  2. Use of every criminal intelligence system is appropriately reviewed and audited.
  3. Any system security issues are reasonably addressed.

441.3.1 SYSTEM ENTRIES

It is the designated supervisor’s responsibility to approve the entry of any information from a report, FI, photo or other relevant document into an authorized criminal intelligence system. If entries are made based upon information that is not on file with this department, such as open or public source documents or documents that are on file at another agency, the designated supervisor should ensure copies of those documents are retained by the Records Section. Any supporting documentation for an entry shall be retained by the Records Section in accordance with the established records retention schedule and for at least as long as the entry is maintained in the system.

The designated supervisor should ensure that any documents retained by the Records Section are appropriately marked as intelligence information. The Records Supervisor may not purge such documents without the approval of the designated supervisor.

441.3.2 ENTRIES INTO CRIMINAL GANG INVESTIGATIVE DATA SYSTEM

It is the designated supervisor’s responsibility to approve the entry of any information into the criminal gang investigative data system maintained by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and authorized by Minn. Stat. § 299C.091. Entries may be made if the individual is 14 years of age or older and the Department documents the following:

  1. The Department has reasonable suspicion to believe that the individual has met at least three of the criteria or identifying characteristics of gang membership, developed by the Violent Crime Coordinating Council.
  2. The individual has been convicted of a gross misdemeanor or felony, or has been adjudicated or has a stayed adjudication as a juvenile for an offense that would be a gross misdemeanor or felony if committed by an adult.

441.4 TEMPORARY INFORMATION FILE

No member may create or keep files on individuals that are separate from the approved criminal intelligence system. However, members may maintain temporary information that is necessary to actively investigate whether a person or group qualifies for entry into the department-approved CIS only as provided in this section. Once information qualifies for inclusion, it should be submitted to the supervisor responsible for consideration of CIS entries.

441.4.1 FILE CONTENTS

A temporary information file may only contain information and documents that, within one year, will have a reasonable likelihood to meet the criteria for entry into an authorized criminal intelligence system.

Information and documents contained in a temporary information file:

  1. Must only be included upon documented authorization of the responsible department supervisor.
  2. Should not be originals that would ordinarily be retained by the Records Section or Property and Evidence, but should be copies of, or references to, retained documents such as copies of reports, field interview (FI) forms, Transit Control Center records or booking forms.
  3. Shall not include opinions. No person, organization or enterprise shall be labeled as being involved in crime beyond what is already in the document or information.
  4. May include information collected from publicly available sources or references to documents on file with another government agency. Attribution identifying the source should be retained with the information.

441.4.2 FILE REVIEW AND PURGING

The contents of a temporary information file shall not be retained longer than one year. At the end of one year, the contents must be purged or entered in an authorized criminal intelligence system, as applicable.

The designated supervisor shall periodically review the temporary information files to verify that the contents meet the criteria for retention. Validation and purging of files is the responsibility of the supervisor.

441.5 INFORMATION RECOGNITION

Department members should document facts that suggest an individual, organization or enterprise is involved in criminal activity and should forward that information appropriately. Examples include, but are not limited to:

  1. Gang indicia associated with a person or residence.
  2. Information related to a drug-trafficking operation.
  3. Vandalism indicating an animus for a particular group.
  4. Information related to an illegal gambling operation.

Department supervisors who utilize an authorized criminal intelligence system should work with the Training Supervisor to train members to identify information that may be particularly relevant for inclusion.

441.6 RELEASE OF INFORMATION

Department members shall comply with the rules of an authorized criminal intelligence system regarding inquiries and release of information.

Information from a temporary information file may only be furnished to department members and other law enforcement agencies on a need-to-know basis and consistent with the Records Maintenance and Release Policy.

When an inquiry is made by the parent or guardian of a juvenile as to whether that juvenile’s name is in a temporary information file, such information should be provided by the supervisor responsible for the temporary information file, unless there is good cause to believe that the release of such information might jeopardize an ongoing criminal investigation.

441.7 CRIMINAL STREET GANGS

The Investigation Division supervisor should ensure that there are an appropriate number of department members who can:

  1. Testify as experts on matters related to criminal street gangs, and maintain an above average familiarity with identification of criminal street gangs, criminal street gang members and patterns of criminal gang activity.
  2. Coordinate with other agencies in the region regarding criminal street gang crimes and information.
  3. Train other members to identify gang indicia and investigate criminal street gang-related crimes.

441.8 TRAINING

The Training Supervisor should provide training on best practices in the use of each authorized criminal intelligence system to those tasked with investigating criminal organizations and enterprises. Training should include:

  1. The protection of civil liberties.
  2. Participation in a multi-agency criminal intelligence system.
  3. Submission of information into a multi-agency criminal intelligence system or the receipt of information from such a system, including any governing federal and state rules and statutes.
  4. The type of information appropriate for entry into a criminal intelligence system or temporary information file.
  5. The review and purging of temporary information files.

444 - Shift Supervisors

444.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Each patrol shift must be directed by supervisors who are capable of making decisions and communicating in a manner consistent with Department policies, procedures, practices, functions and objectives. To accomplish this goal, a Lieutenant heads each watch.

444.2 DESIGNATION AS ACTING SHIFT SUPERVISOR

When a Lieutenant is unavailable for duty as Shift Supervisor, in most instances the senior qualified sergeant shall be designated as acting Shift Supervisor. This policy does not preclude designating a less senior sergeant as an acting Shift Supervisor when operational needs require or training permits.

446 - Mobile Video Recorders

446.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Metro Transit Police Department has equipped most marked patrol cars with Mobile Video Recording (MVR) systems to provide records of events and assist officers in the performance of their duties. This policy provides guidance on the use of these systems.

446.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Activate - Any process that causes the MVR system to transmit or store video or audio data in an active mode.

In-car camera system and Mobile Video Recorder (MVR) - Synonymous terms - that refer to any system that captures audio and video signals that is capable of installation in a vehicle and that includes at minimum, a camera, microphone, recorder and monitor.

Law Enforcement Operator (LEO) - Primarily a licensed peace officer but on occasion may be a non-licensed representative of the Department who is authorized and assigned to operate MVR- equipped vehicles to the extent consistent with Minn. Stat. § 169.98.

MGDPA - The Minnesota Government Data Practices Act, Minnesota Statutes Chapter 13.

MVR technician - Personnel certified or trained in the operational use and repair of MVRs, duplicating methods, storage and retrieval methods and procedures, and who possess a working knowledge of video forensics and evidentiary procedures.

Recorded media - Audio-video signals recorded or digitally stored on a storage device or portable media.

446.2 POLICY

It is the goal of the Metro Transit Police Department to use mobile video recorder (MVR) technology to more effectively fulfill the department's mission and to ensure these systems are used securely and efficiently.

446.3 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Prior to going into service, each officer working patrol will properly equip him/herself to record audio and video in the field. It may be impractical for some officers to utilize audio/video in the field depending on their assignment (e.g. light rail, beat officers, special details/assignments etc). At the end of the shift, each officer will follow the established procedures for providing to the Department any recordings or used media and any other related equipment. Each officer should have adequate recording media for the entire duty assignment. Only Metro Transit Police Department identified and labeled media with tracking numbers is to be used.

At the start of each shift, officers should test the MVR system operation in accordance with manufacturer specifications and department operating procedures and training.

System documentation is accomplished by the officer recording his/her name, vehicle ID, area, shift etc. at the start and again at the end of each shift. If the system is malfunctioning, the officer shall take the vehicle out of service unless a supervisor requests the vehicle remain in service.

446.4 ACTIVATION OF THE MVR

The MVR system is designed to turn on in the following circumstances:

  1. The vehicles emergency lights are activated
  2. The vehicles brakes are locked up
  3. The vehicle reaches speeds of 80 mph
  4. The vehicle is involved in a collision
  5. Manually activated from the control panel or remotely from the officer's wireless transmitter

The system remains on until it is turned off manually. The audio portion is independently controlled and should be activated manually by the officer whenever appropriate. When audio is being recorded, the video will also record.

Operators are encouraged to narrate events using the audio recording so as to provide the best documentation for pretrial and courtroom presentation.

446.4.1 REQUIRED ACTIVATION OF THE MVR

This policy is not intended to describe every possible situation in which the MVR system may be used, although there are many situations where its use is appropriate. An officer may activate the system any time the officer believes its use would be appropriate and/or valuable to document an incident.

In some circumstances it is not possible to capture images of the incident due to conditions or the location of the camera. However, the audio portion can be valuable evidence and is subject to the same activation requirements as the MVR. The MVR system should be activated in any of the following situations:

  1. All field contacts involving actual or potential criminal conduct within video or audio range:
    1. Traffic stops (to include, but not limited to, traffic violations, stranded motorist assistance and all crime interdiction stops)
    2. Priority responses
    3. Vehicle pursuits
    4. Suspicious vehicles
    5. Arrests
    6. Field Identification / Field Elimination Show-Up
    7. Physical or verbal confrontations or use of force
    8. Prisoner transports
    9. Non-custody transports
    10. Pedestrian checks
    11. DWI investigations including field sobriety tests
    12. Consensual encounters
    13. Crimes in progress
    14. Responding to an in-progress call
    15. Medical incidents attended to by members of the Department
  2. All self-initiated activity in which an officer would normally notify Transit Control Center
  3. Any call for service involving a crime where the recorder may aid in the apprehension and/ or prosecution of a suspect:
    1. Family violence calls
    2. Disturbance of peace calls
    3. Offenses involving violence or weapons
  4. Any other contact that becomes adversarial after the initial contact, in a situation that would not otherwise require recording
  5. Any other circumstance where the officer believes that a recording of an incident would be appropriate

446.4.2 CESSATION OF RECORDING

Once activated, the MVR system should remain on until the incident has concluded. For purposes of this section, conclusion of an incident has occurred when all arrests have been made, arrestees have been transported and all witnesses and victims have been interviewed. Recording may cease if an officer is simply waiting for a tow truck or a family member to arrive, or in other similar situations.

446.4.3 WHEN ACTIVATION IS NOT REQUIRED

Activation of the MVR system is not required when exchanging information with other officers or during breaks, lunch periods, when not in service or actively on patrol.

No member of this department may surreptitiously use Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit equipment to record a conversation of any other member of this department except with a court order or when lawfully authorized by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee for the purpose of conducting a criminal or administrative investigation.

446.4.4 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Supervisors should determine if vehicles with non-functioning MVR systems should be placed into service. If these vehicles are placed into service, the appropriate documentation should be made, including notification of the Transit Control Center.

At reasonable intervals, supervisors should validate that:

  1. Beginning and end-of-shift recording procedures are followed (log-in and log-out).
  2. Logs reflect the proper chain of custody, including (if applicable):
    1. The tracking number of the MVR system media.
    2. The date it was issued.
    3. The law enforcement operator or the vehicle to which it was issued.
    4. The date it was submitted.
    5. Law enforcement operators submitting the media.
    6. Holds for evidence indication and tagging as required.
  3. The operation of MVR systems by new employees is assessed and reviewed no less than biweekly.

When an incident arises that requires the immediate retrieval of the recorded media (e.g., serious crime scenes, peace officer-involved shootings, department-involved collisions), a supervisor shall respond to the scene and ensure that the appropriate supervisor, MVR technician or crime scene investigator properly retrieves the recorded media. The media may need to be treated as evidence and should be handled in accordance with current evidence procedures for recorded media. Copies may be distributed to investigators as appropriate to the investigation.

Supervisors may activate the MVR system remotely to monitor a developing situation such as a chase, riot or an event that may threaten public safety, officer safety or both, when the purpose is to obtain tactical information to assist in managing the event.

446.5 REVIEW OF MVR RECORDINGS

All recording media, recorded images and audio recordings are the property of the agency and subject to the provisions of the MGDPA. Dissemination outside of the agency is strictly prohibited except to the extent permitted or required under the MGDPA, Peace Officer Disciplinary Procedures Act or other applicable law.

To prevent damage to, or alteration of, the original recorded media, it shall not be copied, viewed or otherwise inserted into any device not approved by the department MVR technician, forensic media staff or other authorized personnel. When reasonably possible, a copy of the original media shall be used for viewing (unless otherwise directed by the courts) to preserve the original media.

Recordings may be reviewed in any of the following situations.

  1. For use when preparing reports or statements
  2. By a supervisor investigating a specific act of officer conduct
  3. By a supervisor to assess officer performance
  4. To assess proper functioning of MVR systems
  5. By department investigators, after approval of a supervisor, who are participating in an official investigation such as a personnel complaint, administrative inquiry or a criminal investigation
  6. By department personnel who request to review recordings
  7. By an officer who is captured on or referenced in the video or audio data and reviews and uses the data for any purpose relating to his/her employment
  8. By court personnel through proper process or with permission of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee
  9. By the media through proper process or with an MGDPA request (Minn. Stat. § 13.01 et seq.)
  10. To assess possible training value
  11. Recordings may be shown for staff or public safety training purposes. If an involved officer objects to showing a recording, his/her objection will be submitted to the staff to determine if the training value outweighs the officer's objection

Employees desiring to view any previously uploaded or archived MVR recording should submit a request in writing to the Shift Supervisor. Approved requests should be forwarded to the MVR technician for processing.

In no event shall any recording be used or shown for the purpose of ridiculing or embarrassing any employee.

446.6 DOCUMENTING MVR USE

If any incident is recorded with either the video or audio system, the existence of that recording shall be documented in the officer's report. If a citation is issued, the officer shall make a notation on the records copy of the citation indicating that the incident was recorded.

446.7 RECORDING MEDIA STORAGE AND INTEGRITY

Once submitted for storage, all recording media will be labeled and stored in a designated secure area. All recording media that is not booked in as evidence will be retained for a minimum of 30 days and disposed of in compliance with the established records retention schedule.

446.7.1 COPIES OF ORIGINAL RECORDING MEDIA

Original recording media shall not be used for any purpose other than for initial review by a supervisor. Upon proper request, a copy of the original recording media will be made for use as authorized in this policy.

Original recording media may only be released in response to a court order or upon approval by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee. In the event an original recording is released to a court, a copy shall be made and placed in storage until the original is returned.

446.7.2 MVR RECORDINGS AS EVIDENCE

Officers who reasonably believe that an MVR recording is likely to contain evidence relevant to a criminal offense, potential claim against the officer or against the Metro Transit Police Department, should indicate this in an appropriate report. Officers should ensure relevant recordings are preserved by saving and tagging the incident appropriately.

446.7.3 CLASSIFICATIONS AND RETENTION SCHEDULE

Classification Definition Retention
AOA Footage captured while assisting other agencies that may contain evidence 90 days
Arrest Custodial Arrest 2 years
Crash Investigation Footage related to any crash related investigation 2 years
DWI Arrest for DWI related offenses 2 years
Emergency Vehicle Response Response to CFS that does not result in any other classification 60 days
Flee Footage of vehicle refusing to stop 2 years
Information Community contact of interest 90 days
Investigative Community contact of interest ID possible suspects, witnesses 90 days
Interview Interview captured on DVR that does not result in any classification 90 days
No event Accidental activation, system check at beginning of shift 30 days
Officer Assault Footage or audio of documented Use-of-Force against a police officer 6 years
Prisoner/ Person Transport Footage documenting the transportation of people from one place to another 90 days
Traffic - Citation Traffic stop resulting in a citation issued 2 years
Traffic - No Citation Traffic stop resulting in no citation issued 60 days
Training Event that could assist in department training viewable to all personnel 90 days
Use-of-force Footage or audio of documented Use-of-Force 6 years

446.8 SYSTEM OPERATIONAL STANDARDS

  1. MVR system vehicle installations should be based on officer safety requirements and vehicle and device manufacturer recommendations.
  2. The MVR system should be configured to minimally record for 30 seconds prior to an event.
  3. The MVR system may not be configured to record audio data occurring prior to activation.
  4. To prevent bleed-over and/or noise from other MVRs in systems using low band transmitters (analog), only the primary LEO initiating the contact shall activate his/her audio recorder.
  5. LEOs using digital transmitters that are individually synchronized to their individual MVR shall activate both audio and video recordings when responding in a support capacity in order to obtain additional perspectives of the incident scene.
  6. With the exception of law enforcement radios or other emergency equipment, other electronic devices should not be used within the law enforcement vehicle in order to intentionally interfere with the capability of the MVR system to record audio data.
  7. LEOs shall not erase, alter, reuse, modify or tamper with MVR recordings. Only a supervisor, MVR technician or other approved designee may erase and reissue previously recorded recordings and may only do so pursuant to the provisions of this policy.
  8. To prevent damage, original recordings shall not be viewed on any equipment other than the equipment issued or authorized by the MVR technician.

446.9 MVR TECHNICIAN RESPONSIBILITIES

The MVR technician is responsible for:

  1. Ordering, issuing, retrieving, storing, erasing and duplicating of all recorded media.
  2. Collecting all completed media for oversight and verification of wireless downloaded media. Once collected the MVR technician:
    1. Ensures it is stored in a secured location with authorized controlled access.
    2. Makes appropriate entries in the chain of custody log.
  3. Erasing of media:

     

    1. Pursuant to a court order.
    2. In accordance with established records retention policies, including reissuing all other media deemed to be of no evidentiary value.
  4. Assigning all media an identification number prior to issuance to the field.

     

    1. Maintaining a record of issued media.
  5. Ensuring that an adequate supply of recording media is available.
  6. Managing the long-term storage of media that has been deemed to be of evidentiary value in accordance with the department evidence storage protocols and the records retention schedule.

446.10 TRAINING

Users of the MVR systems and supervisors shall successfully complete an approved course of instruction prior to being deployed with MVR systems in operational settings.

448 - Mobile Digital Computer Use

448.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the proper access, use and application of the Mobile Digital Computer (MDC) system in order to ensure appropriate access to confidential records from local, state and national law enforcement databases, and to ensure effective electronic communications between department members and Transit Control Center.

448.2 POLICY

Metro Transit Police Department members using the MDC shall comply with all appropriate federal and state rules and regulations and shall use the MDC in a professional manner, in accordance with this policy.

448.3 PRIVACY EXPECTATION

Members forfeit any expectation of privacy with regard to messages accessed, transmitted, received or reviewed on any department technology system (see the Information Technology Use Policy for additional guidance).

448.4 RESTRICTED ACCESS AND USE

MDC use is subject to the Information Technology Use and Protected Information policies.

Members shall not access the MDC system if they have not received prior authorization and the required training. Members shall immediately report unauthorized access or use of the MDC by another member to their supervisors or Shift Supervisors.

Use of the MDC system to access law enforcement databases or transmit messages is restricted to official activities, business-related tasks and communications that are directly related to the business, administration or practices of the Department. In the event that a member has questions about sending a particular message or accessing a particular database, the member should seek prior approval from his/her supervisor.

Sending derogatory, defamatory, obscene, disrespectful, sexually suggestive, harassing or any other inappropriate messages on the MDC system is prohibited and may result in discipline.

It is a violation of this policy to transmit a message or access a law enforcement database under another member’s name or to use the password of another member to log in to the MDC system unless directed to do so by a supervisor. Members are required to log off the MDC or secure the MDC when it is unattended. This added security measure will minimize the potential for unauthorized access or misuse.

448.4.1 USE WHILE DRIVING

Use of the MDC by the vehicle operator should generally be limited to times when the vehicle is stopped. When the vehicle is in motion, the operator should only attempt to read messages that are likely to contain information that is required for immediate enforcement, investigative or safety needs.

Short transmissions, such as a license plate check, are permitted if it reasonably appears that it can be done safely. In no case shall an operator attempt to send or review lengthy messages while the vehicle is in motion.

448.5 EQUIPMENT CONSIDERATIONS

448.5.1 BOMB CALLS

When investigating reports of possible bombs, members should not communicate on their MDCs when in the evacuation area of a suspected explosive device. Radio frequency emitted by the MDC could cause some devices to detonate.

448.5.2 MALFUNCTIONING MDC

Whenever possible, members will not use vehicles with malfunctioning MDCs. Whenever members must drive a vehicle in which the MDC is not working, they shall notify Transit Control Center. It shall be the responsibility of the dispatcher to document all information that will then be transmitted verbally over the police radio.

448.6 DOCUMENTATION OF ACTIVITY

Except as otherwise directed by the Shift Supervisor or other department-established protocol, all calls for service assigned by a dispatcher should be communicated by voice over the police radio and electronically via the MDC unless security or confidentiality prevents such broadcasting.

MDC and voice transmissions are used to document the member's daily activity. To ensure accuracy:

  1. All contacts or activity shall be documented at the time of the contact.
  2. Whenever the activity or contact is initiated by voice, it should be documented by a dispatcher.
  3. Whenever the activity or contact is not initiated by voice, the member shall document it via the MDC.

448.6.1 STATUS CHANGES

All changes in status (e.g., arrival at scene, meal periods, in service) will be transmitted over the police radio or through the MDC system.

Members responding to in-progress calls should advise changes in status over the radio to assist other members responding to the same incident. Other changes in status can be made on the MDC.

448.6.2 EMERGENCY ACTIVATION

If there is an emergency activation and the member does not respond to a request for confirmation of the need for emergency assistance or confirms the need, available resources will be sent to assist in locating the member. If the location is known, the nearest available officer should respond in accordance with the Officer Response to Calls Policy.

Members should ensure a field supervisor and the Shift Supervisor is notified of the incident without delay.

Officers not responding to the emergency shall refrain from transmitting on the police radio until a no-further-assistance broadcast is made or if they are also handling an emergency.

450 - Portable Audio/Video Recorders

450.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for the use of portable audio/video recording devices by members of this department while in the performance of their duties. Portable audio/video recording devices include all recording systems whether body-worn, hand held or integrated into portable equipment.

This policy does not apply to lawful surreptitious audio/video recording, interception of communications for authorized investigative purposes or to mobile audio/video recordings (see the Investigation and Prosecution and Mobile Video Recorders policies).

450.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department may provide members with access to portable recorders, either audio or video or both, for use during the performance of their duties. The use of recorders is intended to enhance the mission of the Department by accurately capturing contacts between members of the Department and the public.

450.3 MEMBER PRIVACY EXPECTATION

All recordings made by members acting in an official capacity shall remain the property of the Department regardless of whether those recordings were made with department-issued or personally owned recorders. Members shall have no expectation of privacy or ownership interest in the content of these recordings.

450.4 MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES

If/when portable audio/video recording devices are implemented, prior to going into service, each uniformed member will be responsible for making sure that he/she is equipped with a portable recorder issued by the Department, and that the recorder is in good working order. If the recorder is not in working order or malfunctions at any time, the member shall promptly report the failure to his/her supervisor and obtain a functioning device as soon as practicable. Uniformed members should wear the recorder in a conspicuous manner or otherwise notify persons that they are being recorded, whenever possible.

Any member assigned to a non-uniformed position may carry an approved portable recorder at any time the member believes that such a device may be useful. Unless conducting a lawful recording in an authorized undercover capacity, non-uniformed members should wear the recorder in a conspicuous manner when in use or otherwise notify persons that they are being recorded, whenever possible.

When using a portable recorder, the assigned member shall record his/her name, employee number and the current date and time at the beginning and the end of the shift or other period of use, regardless of whether any activity was recorded. This procedure is not required when the recording device and related software captures the user’s unique identification and the date and time of each recording.

Members should document the existence of a recording in any report or other official record of the contact, including any instance where the recorder malfunctioned or the member deactivated the recording. Members should include the reason for deactivation.

450.5 ACTIVATION OF THE PORTABLE RECORDER

This policy is not intended to describe every possible situation in which the portable recorder should be used, although there are many situations where its use is appropriate. Members should activate the recorder any time the member believes it would be appropriate or valuable to record an incident.

The portable recorder should be activated in any of the following situations:

  1. All enforcement and investigative contacts including stops and field interview (FI) situations
  2. Traffic stops including, but not limited to, traffic violations, stranded motorist assistance and all crime interdiction stops
  3. Self-initiated activity in which a member would normally notify Transit Control Center
  4. Any other contact that becomes adversarial after the initial contact in a situation that would not otherwise require recording

Members should remain sensitive to the dignity of all individuals being recorded and exercise sound discretion to respect privacy by discontinuing recording whenever it reasonably appears to the member that such privacy may outweigh any legitimate law enforcement interest in recording. Requests by members of the public to stop recording should be considered using this same criterion. Recording should resume when privacy is no longer at issue unless the circumstances no longer fit the criteria for recording.

At no time is a member expected to jeopardize his/her safety in order to activate a portable recorder or change the recording media. However, the recorder should be activated in situations described above as soon as practicable.

450.5.1 CESSATION OF RECORDING

Once activated, the portable recorder should remain on continuously until the member’s direct participation in the incident is complete or the situation no longer fits the criteria for activation. Recording may be stopped during significant periods of inactivity such as report writing or other breaks from direct participation in the incident.

450.5.2 SURREPTITIOUS USE OF THE PORTABLE RECORDER

Minnesota law permits an individual to surreptitiously record any conversation in which one party to the conversation has given his/her permission (Minn. Stat. § 626A.02).

Members of the Department may surreptitiously record any conversation during the course of a criminal investigation in which the member reasonably believes that such a recording will be lawful and beneficial to the investigation.

Members shall not surreptitiously record another department member without a court order unless lawfully authorized by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.

450.5.3 EXPLOSIVE DEVICE

Many portable recorders, including body-worn cameras and audio/video transmitters, emit radio waves that could trigger an explosive device. Therefore, these devices should not be used where an explosive device may be present.

450.6 PROHIBITED USE OF PORTABLE RECORDERS

Members are prohibited from using department-issued portable recorders and recording media for personal use and are prohibited from making personal copies of recordings created while on- duty or while acting in their official capacity.

Members are also prohibited from retaining recordings of activities or information obtained while on-duty, whether the recording was created with department-issued or personally owned recorders. Members shall not duplicate or distribute such recordings, except for authorized legitimate department business purposes. All such recordings shall be retained at the Department.

Members are prohibited from using personally owned recording devices while on-duty without the express consent of the Shift Supervisor. Any member who uses a personally owned recorder for department-related activities shall comply with the provisions of this policy, including retention and release requirements.

Recordings shall not be used by any member for the purpose of embarrassment, intimidation or ridicule.

450.7 RETENTION OF RECORDINGS

Any time a member records any portion of a contact that the member reasonably believes constitutes evidence in a criminal case, the member shall record the related case number and transfer the file in accordance with current procedure for storing digital files and document the existence of the recording in the related case report. Transfers should occur at the end of the member’s shift, or any time the storage capacity is nearing its limit.

Any time a member reasonably believes a recorded contact may be beneficial in a non-criminal matter (e.g., a hostile contact), the member should promptly notify a supervisor of the existence of the recording.

450.7.1 RETENTION REQUIREMENTS

Portable recordings may be considered criminal investigative data subject to public disclosure (Minn. Stat. § 13.82, Subd. 7). All recordings shall be retained for a period consistent with the requirements of the organization’s records retention schedule but in no event for a period less than 30 days.

450.8 REVIEW OF RECORDINGS

When preparing written reports, members should review their recordings as a resource. However, members shall not retain personal copies of recordings. Members should not use the fact that a recording was made as a reason to write a less detailed report.

Supervisors are authorized to review relevant recordings any time they are investigating alleged misconduct or reports of meritorious conduct or whenever such recordings would be beneficial in reviewing the member’s performance.

Recorded files may also be reviewed:

  1. Upon approval by a supervisor, by any member of the Department who is participating in an official investigation, such as a personnel complaint, administrative investigation or criminal investigation.
  2. Pursuant to lawful process or by court personnel who are otherwise authorized to review evidence in a related case.
  3. By media personnel with permission of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.
  4. In compliance with the Minnesota Data Practices Act request, if permitted or required by the Act, and in accordance with the Records Maintenance and Release Policy.

All recordings should be reviewed by the Custodian of Records prior to public release (see the Records Maintenance and Release Policy). Recordings that unreasonably violate a person’s privacy or sense of dignity should not be publicly released unless disclosure is required by law or order of the court.

454 - Bicycle Patrol Unit

454.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Metro Transit Police Department has established an auxiliary Bicycle Patrol Unit (BPU) for the purpose of enhancing patrol efforts in the community. Bicycle patrol has been shown to be an effective way to increase officer visibility in congested areas. A bicycle's quiet operation can provide a tactical approach to crimes in progress. The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for the safe and effective operation of the patrol bicycle.

454.2 POLICY

Patrol bicycles may be used for regular patrol duty, traffic enforcement, parking control or special events. The use of the patrol bicycle will emphasize its mobility and visibility to the community.

Bicycles may be deployed to any area at all hours of the day or night, according to Department needs and as staffing levels allow.

Requests for specific deployment of bicycle patrol officers shall be coordinated through the BPU supervisor or the Shift Supervisor.

454.3 SELECTION OF PERSONNEL

Licensed personnel, who are off probation, may submit a letter of interest upon a vacancy being posted. Although typically reserved for officers assigned to either the Minneapolis or St. Paul Beats, interested officers are encouraged to apply. Interested personnel shall be evaluated by the following criteria:

  1. Desire to be a member of the Bicycle Patrol Unit (e.g. submitting a letter of interest).
  2. Recognized competence and ability as evidenced by performance.
  3. Special skills or training as it pertains to the assignment.
  4. Good physical condition.
  5. Willingness to perform duties using the bicycle as a mode of transportation.
  6. Other criteria may be established at the time of the Bicycle Patrol Unit posting.

454.3.1 BICYCLE PATROL UNIT SUPERVISOR

The BPU supervisor will be selected by the Patrol Captain or designee. The BPU supervisor shall have responsibility for the following:

  1. Organizing bicycle patrol training.
  2. Inspecting and maintaining inventory of patrol bicycles and program equipment.
  3. Scheduling maintenance and repairs.
  4. Coordinating activities with the Patrol Division.
  5. Inspection and documentation that bicycles not in active service are in a serviceable condition.
  6. Other activities as required to maintain the efficient operation of the unit.

454.4 TRAINING

Participants in the program must complete a Department-approved bicycle-training course after acceptance into the program. Thereafter, bicycle patrol officers should receive yearly in-service training to improve skills and refresh safety, health and operational procedures. The initial training shall minimally include the following:

  • Bicycle patrol strategies
  • Bicycle safety and accident prevention
  • Operational tactics using bicycles

Bicycle patrol officers may be required to qualify with their duty firearm while wearing bicycle safety equipment, including the helmet and riding gloves.

454.5 UNIFORMS AND EQUIPMENT

Officers shall wear the department-approved uniform and safety equipment while operating the department bicycle. Safety equipment includes department-approved helmet, riding gloves, protective eye wear and approved footwear.

The bicycle patrol uniform consists of the standard short-sleeve uniform shirt or other department- approved shirt with department badge and patches, and department-approved bicycle patrol pants or shorts. The Uniform and Equipment Specifications Manual shall be consulted for specific uniform requirements.

Bicycle patrol officers shall carry the same equipment on the bicycle patrol duty belt as they would on a regular patrol assignment.

Officers will be responsible for obtaining the necessary forms, citation books and other department equipment needed while on bicycle patrol.

454.6 CARE AND USE OF PATROL BICYCLES

Officers will be assigned a specially marked and equipped patrol bicycle, attached gear bag and accessories.

Bicycles utilized for uniformed bicycle patrol shall be primarily black or white with a "Police" decal affixed to each side of the crossbar or the bike's saddlebag. Every such bicycle shall be equipped with either lamps and/or reflectors and must meet legal requirements.

Bicycles utilized for uniformed bicycle patrol shall be equipped with a rear rack and/or saddle bag(s) sufficient to carry the necessary equipment for handling routine patrol calls, including report writing and citations.

Each bicycle gear bag shall include a repair tool and tire tube. Recommended, but optional equipment, include security locks, tire pump and a first aid kit. These items shall remain with/on the bicycle at all times.

Bicycle officers shall conduct an inspection of the bicycle and equipment prior to use to ensure proper working order of the equipment. Officers are responsible for the routine care and maintenance of their assigned equipment (e.g., tire pressure, chain lubrication and overall cleaning).

If a needed repair is beyond the ability of the bicycle officer, the program supervisor shall be notified and they shall arrange for repair by an approved technician.

Each bicycle will have scheduled maintenance performed annually by a Department-approved repair shop/technician.

At the end of a bicycle assignment, the bicycle shall be returned clean and ready for the next tour of duty.

Officers shall not modify the patrol bicycle, remove, modify or add components except with the express approval of the bicycle supervisor or in the event of an emergency.

Vehicle bicycle racks are available should the officer need to transport the patrol bicycle. Due to possible component damage, transportation of the patrol bicycle in a trunk or on a patrol car push- bumper is discouraged.

Bicycles shall be properly secured when not in the officer's immediate presence.

454.7 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Officers are exempt from operating the bicycle in compliance with Minnesota law while performing their duties (Minn. Stat. § 169.222 Subd. 11). Officers may operate the bicycle without lighting equipment during hours of darkness, when such operation reasonably appears necessary for officer safety and tactical considerations. Officers must use caution and care when operating the bicycle without lighting equipment.

458 - Foot Pursuits

458.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines to assist officers in making the decision to initiate or continue the pursuit of suspects on foot.

458.2 POLICY

It is the policy of this department that officers, when deciding to initiate or continue a foot pursuit, must continuously balance the objective of apprehending the suspect with the risk and potential for injury to department members, the public or the suspect.

Officers are expected to act reasonably based on the totality of the circumstances.

458.3 DECISION TO PURSUE

The safety of department members and the public should be the primary consideration when determining whether a foot pursuit should be initiated or continued. Officers must be mindful that immediate apprehension of a suspect is rarely more important than the safety of the public and department members.

Officers may be justified in initiating a foot pursuit of any individual the officer reasonably believes is about to engage in, is engaging in or has engaged in criminal activity. The decision to initiate or continue such a foot pursuit, however, must be continuously re-evaluated in light of the circumstances presented at the time.

Mere flight by a person who is not suspected of criminal activity shall not serve as the sole justification for engaging in an extended foot pursuit without the development of reasonable suspicion regarding the individual’s involvement in criminal activity or being wanted by law enforcement.

Deciding to initiate or continue a foot pursuit is a decision that an officer must make quickly and under unpredictable and dynamic circumstances. It is recognized that foot pursuits potentially place department members and the public at significant risk. Therefore, no officer or supervisor shall be criticized or disciplined for deciding not to engage in a foot pursuit because of the perceived risk involved.

If circumstances permit, surveillance and containment are generally the safest tactics for apprehending fleeing persons. In deciding whether to initiate or continue a foot pursuit, an officer should continuously consider reasonable alternatives to a foot pursuit based upon the circumstances and resources available, such as the following:

  1. Containment of the area.
  2. Saturation of the area with law enforcement personnel, including assistance from other agencies.
  3. A canine search.
  4. Thermal imaging or other sensing technology.
  5. Air support.
  6. Apprehension at another time, when the identity of the suspect is known or there is information available that would likely allow for later apprehension, and the need to immediately apprehend the suspect does not reasonably appear to outweigh the risk of continuing the foot pursuit.

458.4 GENERAL GUIDELINES

When reasonably practicable, officers should consider alternatives to engaging in or continuing a foot pursuit when:

  1. Directed by a supervisor to terminate the foot pursuit; such an order shall be considered mandatory.
  2. The officer is acting alone.
  3. Two or more officers become separated, lose visual contact with one another or obstacles separate them to the degree that they cannot immediately assist each other should a confrontation take place. In such circumstances, it is generally recommended that a single officer keep the suspect in sight from a safe distance and coordinate the containment effort.
  4. The officer is unsure of his/her location and direction of travel.
  5. The officeris pursuing multiple suspects and it is not reasonable to believe that the officer would be able to control the suspect should a confrontation occur.
  6. The physical condition of the officers renders him/her incapable of controlling the suspect if apprehended.
  7. The officer loses radio contact with Transit Control Center or with assisting or backup officers.
  8. The suspect enters a building, structure, confined space, isolated area or dense or difficult terrain, and there are insufficient officers to provide backup and containment. The primary officer should consider discontinuing the foot pursuit and coordinating containment pending the arrival of sufficient resources.
  9. The officer becomes aware of unanticipated or unforeseen circumstances that unreasonably increase the risk to officers or the public.
  10. The officer reasonably believes that the danger to the pursuing officers or public outweighs the objective of immediate apprehension.
  11. The officer loses possession of his/her firearm or other essential equipment.
  12. The officer or a third party is injured during the foot pursuit, requiring immediate assistance, and there are no other emergency personnel available to render assistance.
  13. The suspect’s location is no longer known.
  14. The identity of the suspect is established or other information exists that will allow for the suspect’s apprehension at a later time, and it reasonably appears that there is no immediate threat to Department personnel or the public if the suspect is not immediately apprehended.
  15. The officer’s ability to safely continue the pursuit is impaired by inclement weather, darkness or other environmental conditions.

458.5 RESPONSIBILITIES IN FOOT PURSUITS

458.5.1 INITIATING OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Unless relieved by another officer or a supervisor, the initiating officer shall be responsible for coordinating the progress of the pursuit. When acting alone and when practicable, the initiating officer should not attempt to overtake and confront the suspect but should attempt to keep the suspect in sight until sufficient officers are present to safely apprehend the suspect.

Early communication of available information from the involved officers is essential so that adequate resources can be coordinated and deployed to bring a foot pursuit to a safe conclusion. Officers initiating a foot pursuit should broadcast the following information as soon as it becomes practicable and available:

  1. Location and direction of travel
  2. Call sign identifier
  3. Reason for the foot pursuit, such as the crime classification
  4. Number of suspects and description, to include name if known
  5. Whether the suspect is known or believed to be armed with a dangerous weapon

Officers should be mindful that radio transmissions made while running may be difficult to understand and may need to be repeated.

Absent extenuating circumstances, any officer unable to promptly and effectively broadcast this information should terminate the foot pursuit. If the foot pursuit is discontinued for any reason, immediate efforts for containment should be established and alternatives considered based upon the circumstances and available resources.

When a foot pursuit terminates, the officer will notify Transit Control Center of his/her location and the status of the foot pursuit termination (e.g., suspect in custody, lost sight of suspect), and will direct further actions as reasonably appear necessary, to include requesting medical aid as needed for officers, suspects or members of the public.

458.5.2 ASSISTING OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

Whenever any officer announces that he/she is engaged in a foot pursuit, all other officers should minimize nonessential radio traffic to permit the involved officers maximum access to the radio frequency.

458.5.3 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon becoming aware of a foot pursuit, the supervisor shall make every reasonable effort to ascertain sufficient information to direct responding resources and to take command, control and coordination of the foot pursuit. The supervisor should respond to the area whenever reasonably possible. The supervisor does not, however, need to be physically present to exercise control over the foot pursuit. The supervisor should continuously assess the situation in order to ensure the foot pursuit is conducted within established department guidelines.

The supervisor shall terminate the foot pursuit when the danger to pursuing officers or the public appears to unreasonably outweigh the objective of immediate apprehension of the suspect.

Upon apprehension of the suspect, the supervisor should promptly proceed to the termination point to direct the post-pursuit activity.

458.5.4 TRANSIT CONTROL CENTER RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon notification or becoming aware that a foot pursuit is in progress, the dispatcher is responsible for:

  1. Clearing the radio channel of non-emergency traffic.
  2. Coordinating pursuit communications of the involved officers.
  3. Broadcasting pursuit updates as well as other pertinent information as necessary.
  4. Ensuring that a field supervisor is notified of the foot pursuit.
  5. Notifying and coordinating with other involved or affected agencies as practicable.
  6. Notifying the Shift Supervisor as soon as practicable.
  7. Assigning an incident number and logging all pursuit activities.

458.6 REPORTING

The initiating officer shall complete the appropriate crime/arrest reports documenting, at minimum:

  1. Date and time of the foot pursuit.
  2. Initial reason and circumstances surrounding the foot pursuit.
  3. Course and approximate distance of the foot pursuit.
  4. Alleged offenses.
  5. Involved vehicles and officers.
  6. Whether a suspect was apprehended as well as the means and methods used.

     

    1. Any use of force shall be reported and documented in compliance with the Use of Force Policy.
  7. Arrestee information, if applicable.
  8. Any injuries and/or medical treatment.
  9. Any property or equipment damage.
  10. Name of the supervisor at the scene or who handled the incident.

Assisting officers taking an active role in the apprehension of the suspect shall complete supplemental reports as necessary or as directed.

The supervisor reviewing the report will make a preliminary determination that the pursuit appears to be in compliance with this policy or that additional review and/or follow-up is warranted.

In any case in which a suspect is not apprehended and there is insufficient information to warrant further investigation, a supervisor may authorize that the initiating officer need not complete a formal report.

460 - Automated License Plate Readers (ALPR)

460.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidance for the capture, storage and use of digital data obtained through the use of Automated License Plate Reader (ALPR) technology (Minn. Stat. § 626.8472).

460.2 ADMINISTRATION

The ALPR technology, also known as License Plate Recognition (LPR), allows for the automated detection of license plates. It may be used by the Metro Transit Police Department to convert data associated with vehicle license plates for official law enforcement purposes, including identifying stolen or wanted vehicles, stolen license plates and missing persons. It may also be used to gather information related to active warrants, homeland security, electronic surveillance, suspect interdiction and stolen property recovery.

All installation and maintenance of ALPR equipment, as well as ALPR data retention and access, shall be managed by the Administrative Division Supervisor. The Administrative Division Supervisor will assign members under his/her command to administer the day-to-day operation of the ALPR equipment and data.

460.3 OPERATIONS

Use of an ALPR is restricted to the purposes outlined below. Department members shall not use, or allow others to use, the equipment or database records for any unauthorized purpose.

  1. An ALPR shall only be used for official law enforcement business.
  2. An ALPR may be used in conjunction with any routine patrol operation or criminal investigation. Reasonable suspicion or probable cause is not necessary before using an ALPR.
  3. While an ALPR may be used to canvass license plates around any crime scene, particular consideration should be given to using ALPR-equipped cars to canvass areas around homicides, shootings and other major incidents.
  4. No member of this department shall operate ALPR equipment or access ALPR data without first completing department-approved training.
  5. No ALPR operator may access confidential department, state or federal data unless authorized to do so.
  6. If practicable, the officer should verify an ALPR response through the Minnesota Justice Information Services (MNJIS) and National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (NLETS) databases before taking enforcement action that is based solely upon an ALPR alert.

460.3.1 RESTRICTIONS, NOTIFICATIONS AND AUDITS

The Metro Transit Police Department will observe the following guidelines regarding ALPR use (Minn. Stat. § 13.824):

  1. Data collected by an ALPR will be limited to:
    1. License plate numbers.
    2. Date, time and location of data captured.
    3. Pictures of license plates, vehicles and areas surrounding the vehicle captured.
  2. ALPR data may only be matched with the Minnesota license plate data file, unless additional sources are needed for an active criminal investigation.
  3. ALPRs shall not be used to monitor or track an individual unless done so under a search warrant or because of exigent circumstances.
  4. The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension shall be notified within 10 days of any installation or use and of any fixed location of an ALPR.

460.4 DATA COLLECTION AND RETENTION

The Administrative Division Supervisor is responsible for ensuring systems and processes are in place for the proper collection and retention of ALPR data. Data will be transferred from vehicles to the designated storage in accordance with department procedures.

ALPR data received from another agency shall be maintained securely and released in the same manner as ALPR data collected by this department (Minn. Stat. § 13.824).

ALPR data not related to an active criminal investigation must be destroyed no later than 60 days from the date of collection with the following exceptions (Minn. Stat. § 13.824):

  1. Exculpatory evidence - Data must be retained until a criminal matter is resolved if a written request is made from a person who is the subject of a criminal investigation asserting that ALPR data may be used as exculpatory evidence.
  2. Address Confidentiality Program - Data related to a participant of the Address Confidentiality Program must be destroyed upon the written request of the participant. ALPR data already collected at the time of the request shall be destroyed and future related ALPR data must be destroyed at the time of collection. Destruction can be deferred if it relates to an active criminal investigation.

All other ALPR data should be retained in accordance with the established records retention schedule.

460.4.1 LOG OF USE

A public log of ALPR use will be maintained that includes (Minn. Stat. § 13.824):

  1. Specific times of day that the ALPR collected data.
  2. The aggregate number of vehicles or license plates on which data are collected for each period of active use and a list of all state and federal public databases with which the data were compared.
  3. For each period of active use, the number of vehicles or license plates related to:
    1. A vehicle or license plate that has been stolen.
    2. A warrant for the arrest of the owner of the vehicle.
    3. An owner with a suspended or revoked driver’s license or similar category.
    4. Active investigative data.
  4. For an ALPR at a stationary or fixed location, the location at which the ALPR actively collected data and is installed and used.

A publicly accessible list of the current and previous locations, including dates at those locations, of any fixed ALPR or other surveillance devices with ALPR capability shall be maintained. The list may be kept from the public if the data is security information as provided in Minn. Stat. § 13.37, Subd. 2.

460.5 ACCOUNTABILITY

All saved data will be closely safeguarded and protected by both procedural and technological means. The Metro Transit Police Department will observe the following safeguards regarding access to and use of stored data (Minn. Stat. § 13.824; Minn. Stat. § 13.05):

  1. All ALPR data downloaded to the mobile workstation and in storage shall be accessible only through a login/password-protected system capable of documenting all access of information by name, date and time.
  2. Members approved to access ALPR data under these guidelines are permitted to access the data for legitimate law enforcement purposes only, such as when the data relate to a specific criminal investigation or department-related civil or administrative action.
  3. Biennial audits and reports shall be completed pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 13.824, Subd. 6.
  4. Breaches of personal data are addressed as set forth in the Protected Information Policy (Minn. Stat. § 13.055).
  5. All queries and responses, and all actions, in which data are entered, updated, accessed, shared or disseminated, must be recorded in a data audit trail.
  6. Any member who violates Minn. Stat. § 13.09 through the unauthorized acquisition or use of ALPR data will face discipline and possible criminal prosecution (Minn. Stat. § 626.8472).

460.6 POLICY

The policy of the Metro Transit Police Department is to utilize ALPR technology to capture and store digital license plate data and images while recognizing the established privacy rights of the public.

All data and images gathered by the ALPR are for the official use of this department. Because such data may contain confidential information, it is not open to public review.

460.7 RELEASING ALPR DATA

The ALPR data may be shared only with other law enforcement or prosecutorial agencies for official law enforcement purposes or as otherwise permitted by law, using the following procedures (Minn. Stat. § 13.824):

  1. The agency makes a written request for the ALPR data that includes:
    1. The name of the agency.
    2. The name of the person requesting.
    3. The intended purpose of obtaining the information.
    4. A record of the factual basis for the access and any associated case number, complaint or incident that is the basis for the access.
    5. A statement that the request is authorized by the head of the requesting law enforcement agency or his/her designee.
  2. The request is reviewed by the Administrative Division Supervisor or the authorized designee and approved before the request is fulfilled.
    1. A release must be based on a reasonable suspicion that the data is pertinent to an active criminal investigation.
  3. The approved request is retained on file.

Requests for ALPR data by non-law enforcement or non-prosecutorial agencies will be processed as provided in the Records Maintenance and Release Policy.

464 - Homeless Persons

464.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to ensure that personnel understand the needs and rights of the homeless and to establish procedures to guide officers during all contacts with the homeless, whether consensual or for enforcement purposes. The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes that members of the homeless community are often in need of special protection and services. The Metro Transit Police Department will address these needs in balance with the overall missions of this department. Therefore, officers will consider the following policy when serving the homeless community.

464.2 HOMELESS COMMUNITY LIAISON

The Chief of Police will designate a member of this department to act as the Homeless Liaison Officer. The responsibilities of the Homeless Liaison Officer include the following:

  1. Maintain and make available to all Department employees a list of assistance programs and other resources that are available to the homeless.
  2. Meet with social services and representatives of other organizations that render assistance to the homeless.
  3. Maintain a list of those areas within and near this jurisdiction that are used as frequent homeless encampments.
  4. Remain abreast of laws dealing with the removal and/or destruction of the personal property of the homeless. This will include the following:
    1. Proper posting of notices of trespass and clean-up operations.
    2. Proper retention of property after clean up, to include procedures for owners to reclaim their property in accordance with the Property Procedures Policy and other established procedures.
  5. Be present during any clean-up operation conducted by this department involving the removal of personal property of the homeless to ensure the rights of the homeless are not violated.
  6. Develop training to assist officers in understanding current legal and social issues relating to the homeless.

464.3 FIELD CONTACTS

Officers are encouraged to contact the homeless for purposes of rendering aid, support and for community-oriented policing purposes. Nothing in this policy is meant to dissuade an officer from taking reasonable enforcement action when facts support a reasonable suspicion of criminal activity. However, when encountering a homeless person who has committed a non-violent misdemeanor and continued freedom is not likely to result in a continuation of the offense or a

breach of the peace, officers are encouraged to consider long-term solutions to problems that may relate to the homeless, such as shelter referrals and counseling in lieu of physical arrest. Officers should provide homeless persons with resource and assistance information whenever it is reasonably apparent such services may be appropriate.

464.3.1 OTHER CONSIDERATIONS

Homeless members of the community will receive the same level and quality of service provided to other members of our community. The fact that a victim or witness is homeless can, however, require special considerations for a successful investigation and prosecution. Officers should consider the following when handling investigations involving homeless victims, witnesses or suspects:

  1. Documenting alternate contact information. This may include obtaining addresses and telephone numbers of relatives and friends.
  2. Document places the homeless person may frequent.
  3. Provide homeless victims with victim/witness resources when appropriate.
  4. Obtain statements from all available witnesses in the event a homeless victim is unavailable for a court appearance.
  5. Consider whether the person may be a dependent adult or elder and if so proceed in accordance with the Adult Abuse Policy.
  6. Arrange for transportation for investigation-related matters, such as medical exams and court appearances.
  7. Consider whether a crime should be reported and submitted for prosecution even when a homeless victim indicates he/she does not desire prosecution.

464.4 PERSONAL PROPERTY

The personal property of homeless persons must not be treated differently than the property of other members of the public. Officers should use reasonable care when handling, collecting and retaining the personal property of homeless persons and should not destroy or discard the personal property of a homeless person.

When a homeless person is arrested or otherwise removed from a public place, officers should make reasonable accommodations to permit the person to lawfully secure his/her personal property. Otherwise, the arrestee’s personal property should be collected for safekeeping. If the arrestee has more personal property than can reasonably be collected and transported by the officer, a supervisor should be consulted. The property should be photographed and measures should be taken to remove or secure the property. It will be the supervisor’s responsibility to coordinate the removal and safekeeping of the property.

Officers should not conduct or assist in clean-up operations of belongings that reasonably appear to be the property of homeless persons without the prior authorization of a supervisor or the Department Homeless Liaison Officer. When practicable, requests by the public for clean-up operations of a homeless encampment should be referred to the Homeless Liaison Officer.

Officers who encounter unattended encampments, bedding or other personal property in public areas that reasonably appears to belong to a homeless person should not remove or destroy such property and should inform the Department Homeless Liaison Officer if such property appears to involve a trespass, blight to the community or is the subject of a complaint. It will be the responsibility of the Homeless Liaison Officer to address the matter in a timely fashion.

464.5 MENTAL ILLNESSES AND MENTAL IMPAIRMENTS

Some homeless persons may suffer from a mental illness or a mental impairment. Officers shall not detain a homeless person under a 72-hour emergency medical hold unless facts and circumstances warrant such a detention.

464.6 ECOLOGICAL ISSUES

Sometimes homeless encampments can affect the ecology and natural resources of the community and may involve criminal offenses beyond mere littering. Officers are encouraged to notify other appropriate agencies or departments when a significant impact to the environment has or is likely to occur. Significant impacts to the environment may warrant a crime report, investigation, supporting photographs and supervisor notification.

464.7 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to provide law enforcement services to all members of the community while protecting the rights, dignity and private property of the homeless. Homelessness is not a crime and members of this department will not use homelessness solely as a basis for detention or law enforcement action.

465 - Passenger / Customer Eviction

465.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

It is the goal of the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit to provide the Metro Transit passenger a conveyance which is safe, clean and responsive to the passengers riding experience. It is the policy of the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit to evict passengers from a conveyance when a Metro Transit Police officer or Metro Transit operator has reason to believe that the passenger presents an immediate threat to the peace and/or safety of other passengers and/or the operator.

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for evicting passengers/customers from Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit conveyances/property and to establish reporting requirements for such actions.

465.2 CONSIDERATIONS WHEN EVICTING OR REMOVING PASSENGERS/CUSTOMERS

When considering whether or not to evict/remove a passenger(s) or customer(s), Metro Transit Police officers shall consider the totality of the circumstances presented at the time. These circumstances may include one or more of the following:

  1. The safety of other passengers, the operator, the responding officer, other Metro Transit and/or Metro Transit Police personnel.
  2. The safety of other motorists and/or public.
  3. The preservation of Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit property.
  4. Whether reasonable belief exists that the passenger/customer violated any Minnesota State Statute, law, ordinance, Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit policy or rule.
    1. The above includes but is not limited to the interference, interruption, disruption or obstruction by the passenger/customer.
  5. The time of day, location, weather conditions, age of passenger(s), number of passengers and the condition of the passenger(s) at the time of eviction/removal.
  6. Any other factor(s) which reasonably assist Metro Transit Police officers in concluding that the removal or eviction of the passenger(s) is warranted.

465.3 DOCUMENTING AN EVICTION OR REMOVAL

All Metro Transit Police officers operating within the scope of this policy will document all incidents on the appropriate Metro Transit Police report form(s) and/or records management system. Officers may refer to the Report Preparation Policy if further information is needed.

467 - Fare Enforcement

467.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

It is the policy of Metro Transit that reasonable, non-discriminatory fares shall be charged for all public transportation services operated by the agency. The fare structure will be a "Service Based Structure" with fare levels determined by the type of service provided. Passengers will pay specified rates accordingly, unless they qualify for a reduced fare.

The purpose of this policy is to define the role of Metro Transit Police officers as it relates to fare inspection.

467.2 ENFORCEMENT

Enforcement of the "Proof of Payment" fare collection process will be accomplished by Metro Transit Police officers. The role of Metro Transit Police officers, conducting fare inspection duty, is to educate customers on the proof-of-payment system and to take enforcement action against fare violators. These steps are implemented in an attempt to gain compliance within the established system.

Metro Transit Police officers will be the primary point of contact with passengers. As such, the highest standards of integrity, fairness, impartiality and professionalism are expected of them. In terms of public acceptance and enforcement of the proof-of-payment system, the fare inspections are essential to the success of the system. The philosophy for fare inspection will be high visibility, with pleasant, yet firm enforcement. This philosophy dictates that Metro Transit Police officers apply interpersonal relationship skills and law enforcement authority to gain acceptance of and compliance with the proof-of-payment system.

467.2.1 INSPECTIONS

Metro Transit Police officers will randomly inspect passengers both onboard the conveyance and off while located in a "Paid Fare Zone." Officers shall announce their intent to inspect fares by stating something similar to, "Fare inspection" or "Please display your ticket for fare inspection." Passengers without proof of payment will be asked if they understand the fare system or have some other reason for not having a valid proof of payment (e.g. a malfunction with the ticket vending machine (TVM)). Officers will request appropriate documentation from passengers using disability cards, reduced fare cards and/or stored value cards.

  1. If the officer is satisfied that the passenger did not intentionally evade payment of fare, the officer will explain the fare system to the passenger, issue a verbal warning and may ask the passenger to exit the conveyance to pay the proper fare. The officer may also allow the passenger to ride to their destination and ensure that the fare is paid at that time.
  2. If the officer decides that fare payment was intentionally avoided, a citation should be issued to the passenger. The officer may ask that the passenger exit the conveyance or may allow the passenger to ride to their destination and ensure that the fare is paid at that time.
    1. If the passenger is found to be in violation for a second time, in addition to issuing a citation, the passenger may be trespassed for 30 days.
    2. If the passenger is found to be in violation for a third time (or more), he/she may be booked for the continued offense and if applicable, a trespass violation.

467.3 DOCUMENTING FARE ENFORCEMENT

All Metro Transit Police officers operating within the scope of this policy will document all incidents on the appropriate Metro Transit Police report form(s) and/or records management system (including patrol logs). Officers may refer to the Report Preparation Policy if further information is needed.

467.4 POLICE PRESENCE

The presence of Metro Transit Police officers while conducting fare inspections will provide security to passengers and Metro Transit personnel. Officers may also be asked to support revenue collection personnel while they, or a vendor, service the TVM's.

468 - Public Recording of Law Enforcement Activity

468.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for handling situations in which members of the public photograph or audio/video record law enforcement actions and other public activities that involve members of this department. In addition, this policy provides guidelines for situations where the recordings may be evidence.

468.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes the right of persons to lawfully record members of this department who are performing their official duties. Members of this department will not prohibit or intentionally interfere with such lawful recordings. Any recordings that are deemed to be evidence of a crime or relevant to an investigation will only be collected or seized lawfully.

Officers should exercise restraint and should not resort to highly discretionary arrests for offenses such as interference, failure to comply or disorderly conduct as a means of preventing someone from exercising the right to record members performing their official duties.

468.3 RECORDING LAW ENFORCEMENT ACTIVITY

Members of the public who wish to record law enforcement activities are limited only in certain aspects.

  1. Recordings may be made from any public place or any private property where the individual has the legal right to be present.
  2. Beyond the act of photographing or recording, individuals may not interfere with the law enforcement activity. Examples of interference include, but are not limited to:
    1. Tampering with a witness or suspect.
    2. Inciting others to violate the law.
    3. Being so close to the activity as to present a clear safety hazard to the officers.
    4. Being so close to the activity as to interfere with an officer’s effective communication with a suspect or witness.
  3. The individual may not present an undue safety risk to the officers, him/herself or others.

468.4 OFFICER RESPONSE

Officers should promptly request a supervisor respond to the scene whenever it appears that anyone recording activities may be interfering with an investigation or it is believed that the recording may be evidence. If practicable, officers should wait for the supervisor to arrive before taking enforcement action or seizing any cameras or recording media.

Whenever practicable, officers or supervisors should give clear and concise warnings to individuals who are conducting themselves in a manner that would cause their recording or behavior to be unlawful. Accompanying the warnings should be clear directions on what an individual can do to be compliant; directions should be specific enough to allow compliance. For example, rather than directing an individual to clear the area, an officer could advise the person that he/she may continue observing and recording from the sidewalk across the street.

If an arrest or other significant enforcement activity is taken as the result of a recording that interferes with law enforcement activity, officers shall document in a report the nature and extent of the interference or other unlawful behavior and the warnings that were issued.

468.5 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

A supervisor should respond to the scene when requested or any time the circumstances indicate a likelihood of interference or other unlawful behavior.

The supervisor should review the situation with the officer and:

  1. Request any additional assistance as needed to ensure a safe environment.
  2. Take a lead role in communicating with individuals who are observing or recording regarding any appropriate limitations on their location or behavior. When practical, the encounter should be recorded.
  3. When practicable, allow adequate time for individuals to respond to requests for a change of location or behavior.
  4. Ensure that any enforcement, seizure or other actions are consistent with this policy and constitutional and state law.
  5. Explain alternatives for individuals who wish to express concern about the conduct of department members, such as how and where to file a complaint.

468.6 SEIZING RECORDINGS AS EVIDENCE

Officers should not seize recording devices or media unless (42 USC § 2000aa):

  1. There is probable cause to believe the person recording has committed or is committing a crime to which the recording relates, and the recording is reasonably necessary for prosecution of the person.
    1. Absent exigency or consent, a warrant should be sought before seizing or viewing such recordings. Reasonable steps may be taken to prevent erasure of the recording.
  2. There is reason to believe that the immediate seizure of such recordings is necessary to prevent serious bodily injury or death of any person.
  3. The person consents.

     

    1. To ensure that the consent is voluntary, the request should not be made in a threatening or coercive manner.
    2. If the original recording is provided, a copy of the recording should be provided to the recording party, if practicable. The recording party should be permitted to be present while the copy is being made, if feasible.

Recording devices and media that are seized will be submitted within the guidelines of the Property and Evidence Policy.

469 - Medical Aid and Response

469.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy recognizes that members often encounter persons who appear to be in need of medical aid and establishes a law enforcement response to such situations.

469.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that all officers and other designated members be trained to provide emergency medical aid and to facilitate an emergency medical response.

469.3 FIRST RESPONDING MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES

Whenever practicable, members should take appropriate steps to provide initial medical aid (e.g., first aid, CPR and use of an automated external defibrillator (AED)) in accordance with their training and current certification levels. This should be done for those in need of immediate care and only when the member can safely do so.

Prior to initiating medical aid, the member should contact Transit Control Center and request response by emergency medical services (EMS) as the member deems appropriate.

Members should follow universal precautions when providing medical aid, such as wearing gloves and avoiding contact with bodily fluids, consistent with the Communicable Diseases Policy. Members should use a barrier or bag device to perform rescue breathing.

When requesting EMS, the member should provide Transit Control Center with information for relay to EMS personnel in order to enable an appropriate response, including:

  1. The location where EMS is needed.
  2. The nature of the incident.
  3. Any known scene hazards.
  4. Information on the person in need of EMS, such as:
    1. Signs and symptoms as observed by the member.
    2. Changes in apparent condition.
    3. Number of patients, sex and age, if known.
    4. Whether the person is conscious, breathing and alert, or is believed to have consumed drugs or alcohol.
    5. Whether the person is showing signs or symptoms of excited delirium or other agitated chaotic behavior.

Members should stabilize the scene whenever practicable while awaiting the arrival of EMS. Members should not direct EMS personnel whether to transport the person for treatment.

469.4 TRANSPORTING ILL AND INJURED PERSONS

Except in extraordinary cases where alternatives are not reasonably available, members should not transport persons who are unconscious, who have serious injuries or who may be seriously ill. EMS personnel should be called to handle patient transportation.

Officers should search any person who is in custody before releasing that person to EMS for transport.

An officer should accompany any person in custody during transport in an ambulance when requested by EMS personnel, when it reasonably appears necessary to provide security, when it is necessary for investigative purposes or when so directed by a supervisor.

Members should not provide emergency escort for medical transport or civilian vehicles.

469.5 PERSONS REFUSING EMS CARE

If a person who is not in custody refuses EMS care or refuses to be transported to a medical facility, an officer shall not force that person to receive care or be transported. However, members may assist EMS personnel when EMS personnel determine the person lacks mental capacity to understand the consequences of refusing medical care or to make an informed decision and the lack of immediate medical attention may result in serious bodily injury or the death of the person.

In cases where mental illness may be a factor, the officer should consider proceeding with a 72- hour hold in accordance with the Civil Commitments Policy.

If an officer believes that a person who is in custody requires EMS care and the person refuses, he/she should encourage the person to receive medical treatment. The officer may also consider contacting a family member to help persuade the person to agree to treatment or who may be able to authorize treatment for the person.

If the person still refuses, the officer will require the person to be transported to the nearest medical facility. In such cases, the officer should consult with a supervisor prior to the transport.

Members shall not sign refusal-for-treatment forms or forms accepting financial responsibility for treatment.

469.5.1 SICK OR INJURED ARRESTEE

If an arrestee appears ill or injured, or claims illness or injury, he/she should be medically cleared prior to booking. If the officer has reason to believe the arrestee is feigning injury or illness, the officer should contact a supervisor, who will determine whether medical clearance will be obtained prior to booking.

If the jail or detention facility refuses to accept custody of an arrestee based on medical screening, the officer should note the name of the facility person refusing to accept custody and the reason for refusal, and should notify a supervisor to determine the appropriate action.

Arrestees who appear to have a serious medical issue should be transported by ambulance. Officers shall not transport an arrestee to a hospital without a supervisor’s approval.

469.6 MEDICAL ATTENTION RELATED TO USE OF FORCE

Specific guidelines for medical attention for injuries sustained from a use of force may be found in the Use of Force, Handcuffing and Restraints, Control Devices and Conducted Energy Device policies.

469.7 AIR AMBULANCE

Generally, when on-scene, EMS personnel will be responsible for determining whether an air ambulance response should be requested. An air ambulance may be appropriate when there are victims with life-threatening injuries or who require specialized treatment (e.g., gunshot wounds, burns, obstetrical cases), and distance or other known delays will affect the EMS response.

The local agency should develop guidelines for air ambulance landings or enter into local operating agreements for the use of air ambulances, as applicable. In creating those guidelines, theDepartment should identify:

  • Responsibility and authority for designating a landing zone and determining the size of the landing zone.
  • Responsibility for securing the area and maintaining that security once the landing zone is identified.
  • Consideration of the air ambulance provider’s minimum standards for proximity to vertical obstructions and surface composition (e.g., dirt, gravel, pavement, concrete, grass).
  • Consideration of the air ambulance provider’s minimum standards for horizontal clearance from structures, fences, power poles, antennas or roadways.
  • Responsibility for notifying the appropriate highway or transportation agencies if a roadway is selected as a landing zone.
  • Procedures for ground personnel to communicate with flight personnel during the operation.

One department member at the scene should be designated as the air ambulance communications contact. Headlights, spotlights and flashlights should not be aimed upward at the air ambulance. Members should direct vehicle and pedestrian traffic away from the landing zone.

Members should follow these cautions when near an air ambulance:

  • Never approach the aircraft until signaled by the flight crew.
  • Always approach the aircraft from the front.
  • Avoid the aircraft’s tail rotor area.
  • Wear eye protection during landing and take-off.
  • Do not carry or hold items, such as IV bags, above the head.
  • Ensure that no one smokes near the aircraft.

469.8 AUTOMATED EXTERNAL DEFIBRILLATOR (AED) USE

469.8.1 AED USER RESPONSIBILITY

Members who are issued AEDs for use in department vehicles should check the AED at the beginning of the shift to ensure it is properly charged and functioning. Any AED that is not functioning properly will be taken out of service and given to the Inspections Unit who is responsible for ensuring appropriate maintenance.

Following use of an AED, the device shall be cleaned and/or decontaminated as required. The electrodes and/or pads will be replaced as recommended by the AED manufacturer.

Any member who uses an AED should contact Transit Control Center as soon as possible and request response by EMS.

469.8.2 AED REPORTING

Any member using an AED will complete an incident report detailing its use.

469.8.3 AED TRAINING AND MAINTENANCE

The Training Supervisor should ensure appropriate training is provided to members authorized to use an AED.

The Inspections Unit is responsible for ensuring AED devices are appropriately maintained and will retain records of all maintenance in accordance with the established records retention schedule.

470 - Crisis Intervention Incidents

470.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for interacting with those who may be experiencing a mental health or emotional crisis. Interaction with such individuals has the potential for miscommunication and violence. It often requires an officer to make difficult judgments about a person’s mental state and intent in order to effectively and legally interact with the individual.

470.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Person in crisis - A person whose level of distress or mental health symptoms have exceeded the person’s internal ability to manage his/her behavior or emotions. A crisis can be precipitated by any number of things, including an increase in the symptoms of mental illness despite treatment compliance; non-compliance with treatment, including a failure to take prescribed medications appropriately; or any other circumstance or event that causes the person to engage in erratic, disruptive or dangerous behavior that may be accompanied by impaired judgment.

470.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department is committed to providing a consistently high level of service to all members of the community and recognizes that persons in crisis may benefit from intervention. The Department will collaborate, where feasible, with mental health professionals to develop an overall intervention strategy to guide its members’ interactions with those experiencing a mental health crisis. This is to ensure equitable and safe treatment of all involved.

470.3 SIGNS

Members should be alert to any of the following possible signs of mental health issues or crises:

  1. A known history of mental illness
  2. Threats of or attempted suicide
  3. Loss of memory
  4. Incoherence, disorientation or slow response
  5. Delusions, hallucinations, perceptions unrelated to reality or grandiose ideas
  6. Depression, pronounced feelings of hopelessness or uselessness, extreme sadness or guilt
  7. Social withdrawal
  8. Manic or impulsive behavior, extreme agitation, lack of control
  9. Lack of fear
  10. Anxiety, aggression, rigidity, inflexibility or paranoia

Members should be aware that this list is not exhaustive. The presence or absence of any of these should not be treated as proof of the presence or absence of a mental health issue or crisis.

470.4 COORDINATION WITH MENTAL HEALTH PROFESSIONALS

The Chief of Police should designate an appropriate Captain to collaborate with mental health professionals to develop an education and response protocol. It should include a list of community resources to guide department interaction with those who may be suffering from mental illness or who appear to be in a mental health crisis.

470.5 FIRST RESPONDERS

Safety is a priority for first responders. It is important to recognize that individuals under the influence of alcohol, drugs or both may exhibit symptoms that are similar to those of a person in a mental health crisis. These individuals may still present a serious threat to officers; such a threat should be addressed with reasonable tactics. Nothing in this policy shall be construed to limit an officer’s authority to use reasonable force when interacting with a person in crisis.

Officers are reminded that mental health issues, mental health crises and unusual behavior alone are not criminal offenses. Individuals may benefit from treatment as opposed to incarceration.

An officer responding to a call involving a person in crisis should:

  1. Promptly assess the situation independent of reported information and make a preliminary determination regarding whether a mental health crisis may be a factor.
  2. Request available backup officers and specialized resources as deemed necessary and, if it is reasonably believed that the person is in a crisis situation use conflict resolution and de- escalation techniques to stabilize the incident as appropriate.
  3. If feasible, and without compromising safety, turn off flashing lights, bright lights or sirens.
  4. Attempt to determine if weapons are present or available.
  5. Take into account the person’s mental and emotional state and potential inability to understand commands or to appreciate the consequences of his/her action or inaction, as perceived by the officer.
  6. Secure the scene and clear the immediate area as necessary.
  7. Employ tactics to preserve the safety of all participants.
  8. Determine the nature of any crime.
  9. Request a supervisor, as warranted.
  10. Evaluate any available information that might assist in determining cause or motivation for the person’s actions or stated intentions.
  11. If circumstances reasonably permit, consider and employ alternatives to force.

470.6 DE-ESCALATION

Officers should consider that taking no action or passively monitoring the situation may be the most reasonable response to a mental health crisis.

Once it is determined that a situation is a mental health crisis and immediate safety concerns have been addressed responding members should be aware of the following considerations and should generally:

  • Evaluate safety conditions.
  • Introduce themselves and attempt to obtain the person’s name.
  • Be patient, polite, calm, courteous and avoid overreacting.
  • Speak and move slowly and in a non-threatening manner.
  • Moderate the level of direct eye contact.
  • Remove distractions or disruptive people from the area.
  • Demonstrate active listening skills (e.g., summarize the person’s verbal communication).
  • Provide for sufficient avenues of retreat or escape should the situation become volatile.

Responding officers generally should not:

  • Use stances or tactics that can be interpreted as aggressive.
  • Allow others to interrupt or engage the person.
  • Corner a person who is not believed to be armed, violent or suicidal.
  • Argue, speak with a raised voice or use threats to obtain compliance.

470.7 INCIDENT ORIENTATION

When responding to an incident that may involve mental illness or a mental health crisis, the officer should request that the dispatcher provide critical information as it becomes available. This includes:

  1. Whether the person relies on drugs or medication, or may have failed to take his/her medication.
  2. Whether there have been prior incidents, suicide threats/attempts, and whether there has been previous police response.
  3. Contact information for a treating physician or mental health professional.

Additional resources (e.g. personnel with additional/advanced crisis intervention training) and a supervisor should be requested as warranted.

470.8 SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

A supervisor should respond to the scene of any interaction with a person in crisis. Responding supervisors should:

  1. Attempt to secure appropriate and sufficient resources (e.g. personnel with additional/ advanced crisis intervention training and/or medical personnel).
  2. Closely monitor any use of force, including the use of restraints, and ensure that those subjected to the use of force are provided with timely access to medical care (see the Handcuffing and Restraints Policy).
  3. Consider strategic disengagement. Absent an imminent threat to the public and, as circumstances dictate, this may include removing or reducing law enforcement resources or engaging in passive monitoring.
  4. Ensure that all reports are completed and that incident documentation uses appropriate terminology and language.
  5. Conduct an after-action tactical and operational debriefing, and prepare an after-action evaluation of the incident to be forwarded to the Captain.
  6. Evaluate whether a critical incident stress management debriefing for involved members is warranted.

470.7 INCIDENT REPORTING

Members engaging in any oral or written communication associated with a mental health crisis should be mindful of the sensitive nature of such communications and should exercise appropriate discretion when referring to or describing persons and circumstances.

Members having contact with a person in crisis should keep related information confidential, except to the extent that revealing information is necessary to conform to department reporting procedures or other official mental health or medical proceedings.

470.7.1 DIVERSION

Individuals who are not being arrested should be processed in accordance with the Civil Commitments Policy.

470.10 NON-LICENSED INTERACTION WITH PEOPLE IN CRISIS

Non-licensed members may be required to interact with persons in crisis in an administrative capacity, such as dispatching, records request, and animal control issues.

  1. Members should treat all individuals equally and with dignity and respect.
  2. If a member believes that he/she is interacting with a person in crisis, he/she should proceed patiently and in a calm manner.
  3. Members should be aware and understand that the person may make unusual or bizarre claims or requests.

If a person’s behavior makes the member feel unsafe, if the person is or becomes disruptive or violent, or if the person acts in such a manner as to cause the member to believe that the person may be harmful to him/herself or others, an officer should be promptly summoned to provide assistance.

470.11 EVALUATION

The Captain designated to coordinate the crisis intervention strategy for this department should ensure that a thorough review and analysis of the department response to these incidents is conducted annually. The report will not include identifying information pertaining to any involved individuals, officers or incidents and will be submitted to the Chief of Police through the chain of command.

470.12 TRAINING

In coordination with the mental health community and appropriate stakeholders, the Department will develop and provide education and training to all department members to enable them to effectively interact with persons in crisis.

Additionally, the Training Supervisor will provide officers with in-service training in crisis intervention and mental illness crises as required by Minn. Stat. § 626.8469.

471 - Civil Disputes

471.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides members of the Metro Transit Police Department with guidance for addressing conflicts between persons when no criminal investigation or enforcement action is warranted (e.g., civil matters), with the goal of minimizing any potential for violence or criminal acts.

The Domestic Abuse Policy will address specific legal mandates related to domestic violence court orders. References in this policy to “court orders” apply to any order of a court that does not require arrest or enforcement by the terms of the order or by Minnesota law.

471.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes that a law enforcement presence at a civil dispute can play an important role in the peace and safety of the community. Subject to available resources, members of this department will assist at the scene of civil disputes with the primary goal of safeguarding persons and property, preventing criminal activity and maintaining the peace. When handling civil disputes, members will remain impartial, maintain a calm presence, give consideration to all sides and refrain from giving legal or inappropriate advice.

471.3 GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS

When appropriate, members handling a civil dispute should encourage the involved parties to seek the assistance of resolution services or take the matter to the civil courts. Members must not become personally involved in disputes and shall at all times remain impartial.

While not intended to be an exhaustive list, members should give considerations to the following when handling civil disputes:

  1. Civil disputes tend to be confrontational and members should be alert that they can escalate to violence very quickly. De-escalation techniques should be used when appropriate.
  2. Members should not dismiss alleged or observed criminal violations as a civil matter and should initiate the appropriate investigation and report when criminal activity is apparent.
  3. Members shall not provide legal advice, however, when appropriate, members should inform the parties when they are at risk of violating criminal laws.
  4. Members are reminded that they shall not enter a residence or other non-public location without legal authority including valid consent.
  5. Members should not take an unreasonable amount of time assisting in these matters and generally should contact a supervisor if it appears that peacekeeping efforts longer than 30 minutes are warranted.

471.4 COURT ORDERS

Disputes involving court orders can be complex. Where no mandate exists for an officer to make an arrest for a violation of a court order, the matter should be addressed by documenting any apparent

court order violation in a report. If there appears to be a more immediate need for enforcement action, the investigating officer should consult a supervisor prior to making any arrest.

If a person appears to be violating the terms of a court order but is disputing the validity of the order or its applicability, the investigating officer should document the following:

  1. The person’s knowledge of the court order or whether proof of service exists.
  2. Any specific reason or rationale the involved person offers for not complying with the terms of the order.

A copy of the court order should be attached to the report when available. The report should be forwarded to the appropriate prosecutor. The report should also be forwarded to the court issuing the order with a notice that the report was also forwarded to the prosecutor for review.

471.4.1 STANDBY REQUESTS

Officers responding to a call for standby assistance to retrieve property should meet the person requesting assistance at a neutral location to discuss the process. The person should be advised that items that are disputed will not be allowed to be removed. The member may advise the person to seek private legal advice as to the distribution of disputed property.

Members should accompany the person to the location of the property. Members should ask if the other party will allow removal of the property or whether the other party would remove the property.

If the other party is uncooperative, the person requesting standby assistance should be instructed to seek private legal advice and obtain a court order to obtain the items. Officers should not order the other party to allow entry or the removal of any items. If there is a restraining or similar order against the person requesting standby assistance, that person should be asked to leave the scene or they may be subject to arrest for violation of the order.

If the other party is not present at the location, the member will not allow entry into the location or the removal of property from the location.

471.5 VEHICLES AND PERSONAL PROPERTY

Officers may be faced with disputes regarding possession or ownership of vehicles or other personal property. Officers may review documents provided by parties or available databases (e.g., vehicle registration), but should be aware that legal possession of vehicles or personal property can be complex. Generally, officers should not take any enforcement action unless a crime is apparent. The people and the vehicle or personal property involved should be identified and the incident documented.

471.6 REAL PROPERTY

Disputes over possession or occupancy of real property (e.g., land, homes, apartments) should generally be handled through a person seeking a court order.

472 - Suspicious Activity Reporting

472.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for reporting and investigating suspicious and criminal activity.

472.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Involved party - An individual who has been observed engaging in suspicious activity, as defined in this policy, when no definitive criminal activity can be identified, thus precluding the person’s identification as a suspect.

Suspicious activity - Any reported or observed activity that a member reasonably believes may have a nexus to any criminal act or attempted criminal act, or to foreign or domestic terrorism. Race, ethnicity, national origin or religious affiliation should not be considered as factors that create suspicion (although these factors may be used as specific suspect descriptions). Examples of suspicious activity may include, but are not limited to:

  • Suspected pre-operational surveillance or intelligence gathering (e.g., photographing security features, asking questions about sensitive security-related subjects).
  • Tests of security measures and response to incidents (e.g., “dry run,” creating false alarms, attempts to enter secure areas without authorization).
  • Suspicious purchases (e.g., purchasing large quantities of otherwise legal items, such as fertilizer, that could be used to create an explosive or other dangerous device).
  • An individual in possession of such things as a hoax explosive or dispersal device, sensitive materials (e.g., passwords, access codes, classified government information), or coded or ciphered literature or correspondence.

Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) - An incident report used to document suspicious activity.

472.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes the need to protect the public from criminal conduct and acts of terrorism and shall lawfully collect, maintain and disseminate information regarding suspicious activities, while safeguarding civil liberties and privacy protections.

472.3 RESPONSIBILITIES

The Criminal Investigations supervisor and authorized designees will manage SAR activities. Authorized designees should include supervisors who are responsible for department participation in criminal intelligence systems as outlined in the Criminal Organizations Policy.

The responsibilities of the Criminal Investigations supervisor include, but are not limited to:

  1. Remaining familiar with those databases available to the Department that would facilitate the purpose of this policy.
  2. Maintaining adequate training in the area of intelligence gathering to ensure no information is being maintained that would violate the law or civil rights of any individual.
  3. Ensuring a process is available that would allow members to report relevant information. The process should be designed to promote efficient and quick reporting, and should not be cumbersome, duplicative or complicated.
  4. Ensuring that members are made aware of the purpose and value of documenting information regarding suspicious activity, as well as the databases and other information resources that are available to the Department.
  5. Ensuring that SAR information is appropriately disseminated to members in accordance with their job responsibilities.
  6. Coordinating investigative follow-up, if appropriate.
  7. Coordinating with any appropriate agency or fusion center.
  8. Ensuring that, as resources are available, the Department conducts outreach that is designed to encourage members of the community to report suspicious activity and that outlines what they should look for and how they should report it (e.g., website, public service announcements).

472.4 REPORTING AND INVESTIGATION

Any department member receiving information regarding suspicious activity should take any necessary immediate and appropriate action, including a request for tactical response or immediate notification of specialized entities, when applicable. Any non-licensed member who receives such information should ensure that it is passed on to an officer in a timely manner.

If the suspicious activity is not directly related to a reportable crime, the member should prepare a SAR and include information about involved parties and the circumstances of the incident. If, during any investigation, an officer becomes aware of suspicious activity that is unrelated to the current investigation, the information should be documented separately in a SAR and not included in the original incident report. The report number of the original incident should be included in the SAR as a cross reference. A SAR should be processed as any other incident report.

472.5 HANDLING INFORMATION

The Records Section will forward copies of SARs, in a timely manner, to the following:

  • Investigation Division supervisor
  • Crime Analysis Unit
  • Other authorized designees

473 - First Amendment Assemblies

473.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance for responding to public assemblies or demonstrations.

473.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department respects the rights of people to peaceably assemble. It is the policy of this department not to unreasonably interfere with, harass, intimidate or discriminate against persons engaged in the lawful exercise of their rights, while also preserving the peace, protecting life and preventing the destruction of property.

473.3 GENERAL CONSIDERATIONS

Individuals or groups present on the public way, such as public facilities, streets or walkways, generally have the right to assemble, rally, demonstrate, protest or otherwise express their views and opinions through varying forms of communication, including the distribution of printed matter. These rights may be limited by laws or ordinances regulating such matters as the obstruction of individual or vehicle access or egress, trespass, noise, picketing, distribution of handbills, leafleting and loitering. However, officers shall not take action or fail to take action based on the opinions being expressed.

Participant behavior during a demonstration or other public assembly can vary. This may include, but is not limited to:

  • Lawful, constitutionally protected actions and speech.
  • Civil disobedience (typically involving minor criminal acts).
  • Rioting.

All of these behaviors may be present during the same event. Therefore, it is imperative that law enforcement actions are measured and appropriate for the behaviors officers may encounter. This is particularly critical if force is being used. Adaptable strategies and tactics are essential. The purpose of a law enforcement presence at the scene of public assemblies and demonstrations should be to preserve the peace, to protect life and prevent the destruction of property.

Officers should not:

  1. Engage in assembly or demonstration-related discussion with participants.
  2. Harass, confront or intimidate participants.
  3. Seize the cameras, cell phones or materials of participants or observers unless an officer is placing a person under lawful arrest.

Supervisors should continually observe department members under their commands to ensure that members’ interaction with participants and their response to crowd dynamics is appropriate.

473.3.1 PHOTOGRAPHS AND VIDEO RECORDINGS

Photographs and video recording, when appropriate, can serve a number of purposes, including support of criminal prosecutions by documenting criminal acts; assistance in evaluating department performance; serving as training material; recording the use of dispersal orders; and facilitating a response to allegations of improper law enforcement conduct.

Photographs and videos will not be used or retained for the sole purpose of collecting or maintaining information about the political, religious or social views of associations, or the activities of any individual, group, association, organization, corporation, business or partnership, unless such information directly relates to an investigation of criminal activities and there is reasonable suspicion that the subject of the information is involved in criminal conduct.

473.4 UNPLANNED EVENTS

When responding to an unplanned or spontaneous public gathering, the first responding officer should conduct an assessment of conditions, including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Location
  • Number of participants
  • Apparent purpose of the event
  • Leadership (whether it is apparent and/or whether it is effective)
  • Any initial indicators of unlawful or disruptive activity
  • Indicators that lawful use of public facilities, streets or walkways will be impacted
  • Ability and/or need to continue monitoring the incident

Initial assessment information should be promptly communicated to Transit Control Center, and the assignment of a supervisor should be requested. Additional resources should be requested as appropriate. The responding supervisor shall assume command of the incident until command is expressly assumed by another, and the assumption of command is communicated to the involved members. A clearly defined command structure that is consistent with the Incident Command System (ICS) should be established as resources are deployed.

473.5 PLANNED EVENT PREPARATION

For planned events, comprehensive, incident-specific operational plans should be developed. The ICS should be considered for such events.

473.5.1 INFORMATION GATHERING AND ASSESSMENT

In order to properly assess the potential impact of a public assembly or demonstration on public safety and order, relevant information should be collected and vetted. This may include:

  • Information obtained from outreach to group organizers or leaders.
  • Information about past and potential unlawful conduct associated with the event or similar events.
  • The potential time, duration, scope and type of planned activities.
  • Any other information related to the goal of providing a balanced response to criminal activity and the protection of public safety interests.

Information should be obtained in a transparent manner, and the sources documented. Relevant information should be communicated to the appropriate parties in a timely manner.

Information will be obtained in a lawful manner and will not be based solely on the purpose or content of the assembly or demonstration, or the race, ethnicity, national origin or religion of the participants (or any other characteristic that is unrelated to criminal conduct or the identification of a criminal subject).

473.5.2 OPERATIONAL PLANS

An operational planning team with responsibility for event planning and management should be established. The planning team should develop an operational plan for the event.

The operational plan will minimally provide for the following:

  1. Command assignments, chain of command structure, roles and responsibilities
  2. Staffing and resource allocation
  3. Management of criminal investigations
  4. Designation of uniform of the day and related safety equipment (e.g., helmets, shields)
  5. Deployment of specialized resources
  6. Event communications and interoperability in a multijurisdictional event
  7. Liaison with demonstration leaders and external agencies
  8. Liaison with Metropolitan Area government and legal staff
  9. Media relations
  10. Logistics: food, fuel, replacement equipment, duty hours, relief and transportation
  11. Traffic management plans
  12. First aid and emergency medical service provider availability
  13. Prisoner transport and detention
  14. Review of policies regarding public assemblies and use of force in crowd control
  15. Parameters for declaring an unlawful assembly
  16. Arrest protocol, including management of mass arrests
  17. Protocol for recording information flow and decisions
  18. Rules of engagement, including rules of conduct, protocols for field force extraction and arrests, and any authorization required for the use of force
  19. Protocol for handling complaints during the event

473.5.3 MUTUAL AID AND EXTERNAL RESOURCES

The magnitude and anticipated duration of an event may necessitate interagency cooperation and coordination. The assigned Incident Commander should ensure that any required memorandums of understanding or other agreements are properly executed, and that any anticipated mutual aid is requested and facilitated (see the Outside Agency Assistance Policy).

473.6 UNLAWFUL ASSEMBLY DISPERSAL ORDERS

If a public gathering or demonstration remains peaceful and nonviolent, and there is no reasonably imminent threat to persons or property, the Incident Commander should generally authorize continued monitoring of the event.

Should the Incident Commander make a determination that public safety is presently or is about to be jeopardized, he/she or the authorized designee should attempt to verbally persuade event organizers or participants to disperse of their own accord. Warnings and advisements may be communicated through established communications links with leaders and/or participants or to the group.

When initial attempts at verbal persuasion are unsuccessful, the Incident Commander or the authorized designee should make a clear standardized announcement to the gathering that the event is an unlawful assembly, and should order the dispersal of the participants. The announcement should be communicated by whatever methods are reasonably available to ensure that the content of the message is clear and that it has been heard by the participants. The announcement should be amplified, made in different languages as appropriate, made from multiple locations in the affected area and documented by audio and video. The announcement should provide information about what law enforcement actions will take place if illegal behavior continues and should identify routes for egress. A reasonable time to disperse should be allowed following a dispersal order.

473.7 USE OF FORCE

Use of force is governed by current department policy and applicable law (see the Use of Force, Handcuffing and Restraints, Control Devices and Techniques, and Conducted Energy Device policies).

Individuals refusing to comply with lawful orders (e.g., nonviolent refusal to disperse) should be given a clear verbal warning and a reasonable opportunity to comply. If an individual refuses to comply with lawful orders, the Incident Commander shall evaluate the type of resistance and adopt a reasonable response in order to accomplish the law enforcement mission (such as dispersal or arrest of those acting in violation of the law). Control devices and Conducted Energy Device (CED)s should be considered only when the participants’ conduct reasonably appears to present the potential to harm officers, themselves or others, or will result in substantial property loss or damage (see the Control Devices and Techniques and the Conducted Energy Device policies).

Force or control devices, including oleoresin capsaicin (OC), should be directed toward individuals and not toward groups or crowds, unless specific individuals cannot reasonably be targeted due to extreme circumstances, such as a riotous crowd.

Any use of force by a member of this department shall be documented promptly, completely and accurately in an appropriate report. The type of report required may depend on the nature of the incident.

473.8 ARRESTS

The Metro Transit Police Department should respond to unlawful behavior in a manner that is consistent with the operational plan. If practicable, warnings or advisements should be communicated prior to arrest.

Mass arrests should be employed only when alternate tactics and strategies have been, or reasonably appear likely to be, unsuccessful. Mass arrests shall only be undertaken upon the order of the Incident Commander or the authorized designee. There must be probable cause for each arrest.

If employed, mass arrest protocols should fully integrate:

  1. Reasonable measures to address the safety of officers and arrestees.
  2. Dedicated arrest, booking and report writing teams.
  3. Timely access to medical care.
  4. Timely access to legal resources.
  5. Timely processing of arrestees.
  6. Full accountability for arrestees and evidence.
  7. Coordination and cooperation with the prosecuting authority, jail and courts (see the Citation Releases Policy).

473.9 MEDIA RELATIONS

The Public Information Officer should use all available avenues of communication, including press releases, briefings, press conferences and social media to maintain open channels of communication with media representatives and the public about the status and progress of the event, taking all opportunities to reassure the public about the professional management of the event (see the Media Relations Policy).

473.10 DEMOBILIZATION

When appropriate, the Incident Commander or the authorized designee should implement a phased and orderly withdrawal of law enforcement resources. All relieved personnel should promptly complete any required reports, including use of force reports, and account for all issued equipment and vehicles to their supervisors prior to returning to normal operational duties.

473.11 POST EVENT

The Incident Commander should designate a member to assemble full documentation of the event, to include the following:

  1. Operational plan
  2. Any incident logs
  3. Any assignment logs
  4. Vehicle, fuel, equipment and supply records
  5. Incident, arrest, use of force, injury and property damage reports
  6. Photographs, audio/video recordings, Transit Control Center records/tapes
  7. Media accounts (print and broadcast media)

473.11.1 AFTER-ACTION REPORTING

The Incident Commander should work with Metropolitan Council legal counsel, if needed and as appropriate, to prepare a comprehensive after-action report of the event, explaining all incidents where force was used including the following:

  1. Date, time and description of the event
  2. Actions taken and outcomes (e.g., injuries, property damage, arrests)
  3. Problems identified
  4. Significant events
  5. Recommendations for improvement; opportunities for training should be documented in a generic manner, without identifying individuals or specific incidents, facts or circumstances.

473.12 TRAINING

Department members should receive periodic training regarding this policy, as well as the dynamics of crowd control and incident management. The Department should, when practicable, train with its external and mutual aid partners.

474 - Medical Cannabis

474.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide members of this department with guidelines for investigating the possession or use of medical cannabis under Minnesota’s medical cannabis laws.

474.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include (Minn. Stat. § 152.22):

Medical cannabis - Any species of the genus cannabis plant, or any mixture or preparation of them, including whole plant extracts and resins in the form of a liquid, oil or pill, that is properly packaged and labeled with:

  1. The name and address of the authorized manufacturer.
  2. The patient’s registry identification number, name, date of birth and address.
  3. The chemical composition of medical cannabis.
  4. Recommended dosage.
  5. Directions for use.
  6. Batch number.
  7. Date of manufacture.

Raw leaves, flowers and edibles are not included.

Patient - A Minnesota resident who has been diagnosed with a qualifying medical condition by a health care practitioner and who has met any other requirements for patients under Minn. Stat. § 152.22 et seq.

Caregiver - A person who has been approved by the Minnesota Commissioner of Health to assist a patient who is unable to self-administer medication or acquire medical cannabis from a distribution facility due to a disability, and who is authorized to assist the patient with the use of medical cannabis.

474.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to prioritize resources to avoid making arrests related to medical cannabis that the arresting officer reasonably believes would not be prosecuted by state or federal authorities.

Minnesota medical cannabis laws are intended to provide protection from prosecution to those who use or possess medical cannabis for medical purposes. The Metro Transit Police Department will exercise discretion to ensure laws are appropriately enforced without unreasonably burdening both those individuals protected under Minnesota law and the resources of the Department.

474.3 INVESTIGATION

Investigations involving the possession or use of cannabis generally fall into one of two categories:

  1. Investigations when no person makes a medicinal claim.
  2. Investigations when a person claims to be a patient or caregiver.

474.3.1 INVESTIGATIONS WITH NO MEDICAL CLAIM

In any investigation involving the possession, delivery, production or use of a cannabis product or drug paraphernalia where no person claims that the cannabis is used for medicinal purposes, the officer should proceed with a criminal investigation. A medicinal claim may be raised at any time, so officers should document any statements and observations that may be relevant to whether the cannabis was possessed or produced for medicinal purposes.

474.3.2 INVESTIGATIONS INVOLVING A PATIENT OR CAREGIVER

Arrest shall not be made for the possession of medical cannabis by a patient, a caregiver or the parent or legal guardian of a patient (Minn. Stat. § 152.32).

Possession of medical cannabis properly packaged and labeled by an authorized manufacturer should suffice for verification of a person’s status as a patient. The possession of medical cannabis registry verification from the Minnesota Department of Health should also suffice for verification a person’s status as a patient or caregiver (Minn. Stat. § 152.22; Minn. Stat. § 152.27).

474.3.3 EXCEPTIONS

This policy does not apply to the following offenses. Officers may take enforcement action if the person (Minn. Stat. § 152.23):

  1. Possesses or engages in the use of medical cannabis on a school bus or van, on the grounds of any preschool or primary or secondary school, in any correctional facility, or on the grounds of any child care facility or home daycare.
  2. Vaporizes medical cannabis on any form of public transportation, where the vapor would be inhaled by a non-patient minor child, or in any public place or a place of employment.
  3. Operates any motor vehicle, aircraft, train or motorboat, or works on transportation property, equipment or facilities while under the influence of medical cannabis.

474.4 FEDERAL LAW ENFORCEMENT

Officers should provide information regarding a medical cannabis investigation to federal law enforcement authorities when it is requested by federal law enforcement authorities or whenever the officer believes those authorities would have a particular interest in the information.

474.5 PROPERTY AND EVIDENCE SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

The Property and Evidence supervisor shall ensure that medical cannabis, drug paraphernalia or other related property seized from a person engaged or assisting in the use of medical cannabis is not destroyed. Upon the prosecutor’s decision to forgo prosecution, or the dismissal of charges or an acquittal, the Property and Evidence supervisor shall as soon as practicable return to the person from whom it was seized any medical cannabis, drug paraphernalia or other related property.

The Property and Evidence supervisor may not destroy medical cannabis except upon receipt of a court order.

The Property and Evidence supervisor may release medical cannabis to federal law enforcement authorities upon presentation of a valid court order or by a written order of the Investigation Division supervisor.

500 - Traffic Function and Responsibility

500.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The ultimate goal of traffic law enforcement is to reduce traffic collisions. This may be achieved through the application of such techniques as geographic/temporal assignment of personnel and equipment and the establishment of preventative patrols to deal with specific categories of unlawful driving behavior. Traffic enforcement techniques are based on collision data, enforcement activity records, traffic volume and traffic conditions. This department provides enforcement efforts toward violations, not only in proportion to the frequency of their occurrence in collision situations but also in terms of traffic-related needs.

500.2 TRAFFIC OFFICER DEPLOYMENT

Several factors are considered in the development of deployment schedules for officers of the Metro Transit Police Department. Information provided by the Minnesota Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) is a valuable resource for traffic collision occurrences and therefore officer deployment. Some of the factors for analysis include:

  • Location
  • Time
  • Day
  • Violation factors

All officers assigned to patrol or traffic enforcement functions will emphasize enforcement of collision-causing violations during periods of high-collision incidence and at locations of occurrence. All officers will take directed enforcement action on request, and random enforcement action when appropriate, against violators as a matter of routine. All officers shall maintain high visibility while working general enforcement, especially at high-collision incidence locations.

Other factors to be considered for deployment are citizen requests, construction zones or special events.

500.3 ENFORCEMENT

Enforcement actions are commensurate with applicable laws and take into account the degree and severity of the violation committed. This department does not establish ticket quotas and the number of citations issued by any officer shall not be used when evaluating officer performance (Minn. Stat. § 169.985; Minn. Stat. § 299D.08). The visibility and quality of an officer’s work effort will be commensurate with the philosophy of this policy. Several methods are effective in the reduction of collisions:

500.3.1 WARNINGS

Warnings or other non-punitive enforcement actions should be considered in each situation and substituted for arrests or citations when circumstances warrant.

500.3.2 TRAFFIC CITATIONS

Traffic citations may be issued when an officer believes it is appropriate. It is essential that officers fully explain the rights and requirements imposed on motorists upon issuance of a citation for a traffic violation. Officers should provide the following information at a minimum:

  1. Explanation of the violation or charge.
  2. Court appearance procedure, including the optional or mandatory appearance by the motorist.
  3. Notice of whether the motorist can enter a plea and pay the fine by mail or at the court.
  4. The court contact information.

500.3.3 TRAFFIC CITATION COURT JURISDICTION

An officer who issues a traffic citation shall ensure that the citation is properly directed to the court having jurisdiction (Minn. Stat. § 169.91 Subd. 3).

500.3.4 PHYSICAL ARREST

Physical arrest can be made on a number of criminal traffic offenses. These physical arrest cases usually deal with, but are not limited to (Minn. Stat. § 169.91):

  1. Negligent homicide.
  2. Driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs.
  3. Hit-and-run resulting in serious injury or death.
  4. Hit-and-run resulting in damage to any vehicle or property.

500.4 HIGH-VISIBILITY VESTS

The Department has provided American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Class II high-visibility vests to increase the visibility of department members who may be exposed to hazards presented by passing traffic, maneuvering or operating vehicles, machinery and equipment (23 CFR 655.601; Minn. R. 5205.0030).

Although intended primarily for use while performing traffic-related assignments, high-visibility vests should be worn at any time increased visibility would improve the safety or efficiency of the member.

500.4.1 REQUIRED USE

Except when working in a potentially adversarial or confrontational role, such as during vehicle stops, high-visibility vests should be worn at any time it is anticipated that an employee will be exposed to the hazards of approaching traffic or construction and recovery equipment. Examples of when high-visibility vests should be worn include traffic control duties, collision investigations, lane closures and while at disaster scenes, or any time high visibility is desirable. When emergency conditions preclude the immediate donning of the vest, officers should retrieve and wear the vest as soon as conditions reasonably permit. Use of the vests shall also be mandatory when directed by a supervisor.

Vests maintained in the investigation units may be used any time a plain clothes officer might benefit from being readily identified as an officer.

500.4.2 CARE AND STORAGE OF HIGH-VISIBILITY VESTS

High-visibility vests shall be maintained in the trunk of each patrol and investigation unit, in the side box of each police motorcycle and in the saddlebag or gear bag of each police bicycle. Each vest should be stored inside the resealable plastic bag provided to protect and maintain the vest in a serviceable condition. Before going into service each employee shall ensure a serviceable high-visibility vest is properly stored.

A supply of high-visibility vests will be maintained in the equipment room for replacement of damaged or unserviceable vests. The Training Supervisor should be promptly notified whenever the supply of vests in the equipment room needs replenishing.

502 - Traffic Collisions

502.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for responding to and investigating traffic collisions.

502.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to respond to traffic collisions and render or summon aid to injured victims as needed. The Department will investigate and prepare reports according to the established minimum reporting requirements with the goal of reducing the occurrence of collisions by attempting to identify the cause of the collision and through enforcing applicable laws. Unless restricted by law, traffic collision reports will be made available to the public upon request.

502.3 RESPONSE

Upon arriving at the scene, the responding member should assess the need for additional resources and summon assistance as appropriate. Generally, the member initially dispatched to the scene will be responsible for the investigation and report, if required, unless responsibility is reassigned by a supervisor.

A supervisor should notified when the incident:

  1. Is within the jurisdiction of this department and there is:
    1. A life-threatening injury.
    2. A fatality.
    3. A Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit vehicle involved.
    4. A Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit official or employee involved.
    5. Involvement of an on- or off-duty member of this department.
  2. Is within another jurisdiction and there is:

     

    1. A Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit of vehicle involved.
    2. A Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit official involved.
    3. Involvement of an on-duty member of this department.

502.3.1 MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon arriving at the scene, the responding member should consider and appropriately address:

  1. Traffic direction and control
  2. Proper placement of emergency vehicles, cones, roadway flares or other devices if available to provide protection for members, the public and the scene.
  3. First aid for any injured parties if it can be done safely.
  4. The potential for involvement of hazardous materials.
  5. The need for additional support as necessary (e.g., traffic control, emergency medical services, fire department, HAZMAT, tow vehicles).
  6. Clearance and cleanup of the roadway.

502.4 NOTIFICATION

If a traffic collision involves a life-threatening injury or fatality, the responding officer shall notify the Shift Supervisor. The Shift Supervisor or any supervisor may assign a traffic investigator or other appropriate personnel to investigate the incident. The Shift Supervisor will ensure notification is made to the Patrol Supervisor and department command staff in accordance with the Major Incident Notification Policy.

502.4.1 NOTIFICATION OF FAMILY

In the event of a life-threatening injury or fatality, the supervisor responsible for the incident should ensure notification of the victim’s immediate family or coordinate such notification with the Medical Examiner, department chaplain or another suitable person. Notification should be made as soon as practicable following positive identification of the victim.

The identity of any person seriously injured or deceased in a traffic collision should not be released until notification is made to the victim’s immediate family.

502.5 MINIMUM REPORTING REQUIREMENTS

A State crash report shall be taken when:

  1. A fatality, any injury (including complaint of pain), impaired driving or hit and run is involved.
  2. An on-duty member of the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit is involved.
  3. The collision results in any damage to any Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit-owned or leased vehicle.
  4. The collision involves any other public agency driver or vehicle.
  5. There is damage to public property.
  6. There is damage to any vehicle to the extent that towing is required.
  7. Prosecution or follow-up investigation is contemplated.
  8. Directed by a supervisor.

502.5.1 PRIVATE PROPERTY

Generally, reports should not be taken when a traffic collision occurs on private property unless there is an injury or fatality, a hit-and-run violation or other traffic law violation involved. Members may provide assistance to motorists as a public service, such as exchanging information and arranging for the removal of the vehicles.

502.5.2 METROPOLITAN COUNCIL / METRO TRANSIT VEHICLE INVOLVED

A State crash report shall be taken when a Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit vehicle is involved in a traffic collision that results in property damage or injury. In cases where minor damage has occurred to Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit property only, a Supervisor may complete the State crash report in lieu of an outside agency completing the report.

Whenever there is damage to a Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit vehicle, a police report shall be completed and forwarded to the appropriate Captain. The traffic investigator or supervisor at the scene should determine what photographs should be taken of the scene and the vehicle damage.

502.5.3 INJURED ANIMALS

Department members should refer to the Firearms Policy (312.7.2 Injured Animals) when a traffic collision involves the disposition of an injured animal.

502.6 INVESTIGATION

When a traffic collision meets minimum reporting requirements the investigation should include, at a minimum:

  1. Identification and interview of all involved parties.
  2. Identification and interview of any witnesses.
  3. A determination of whether a violation of law has occurred and the appropriate enforcement action.
  4. Identification and protection of items of apparent evidentiary value.
  5. Documentation of the incident as necessary (e.g., statements, measurements, photographs, collection of evidence and reporting) on the appropriate forms.

502.6.1 INVESTIGATION BY OUTSIDE LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY

The Patrol Supervisor or on-duty Shift Supervisor should request that the Minnesota Department of Public Safety (State Patrol) or other outside law enforcement agency investigate and complete a traffic collision investigation when a personal injury or fatal traffic collision occurs within the jurisdiction of the Metro Transit Police Department and involves:

  1. An on- or off-duty member of the Department.
    1. The involved member shall complete the department traffic collision form. If the member is unable to complete the form, the supervisor shall complete it.
  2. An on-or off-duty official or employee of the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit.

Department members shall promptly notify a supervisor when any department vehicle is involved in a traffic collision. The collision investigation and report shall be completed by the agency having jurisdiction.

502.6.2 COMMERCIAL VEHICLE COLLISIONS

Commercial vehicle collisions additionally require notification to the Minnesota State Patrol if the collision results in (Minn. Stat. § 169.783):

  1. A fatality.
  2. Bodily injury to a person who, as a result of the injury, immediately receives medical treatment away from the scene of the collision.
  3. One or more vehicles incurring disabling damage as a result of the collision, requiring the vehicle to be transported away from the scene by tow truck or other motor vehicle.

A waiver or inspection by a state trooper or other authorized person is required before a person may drive a commercial motor vehicle that was involved in such a collision (Minn. Stat. § 169.783).

502.7 ENFORCEMENT ACTION

After a thorough investigation in which physical evidence or independent witness statements indicate that a violation of a traffic law contributed to the collision, authorized members should issue a citation or arrest the offending driver, as appropriate.

More serious violations, such as driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, vehicular manslaughter or other felonies, shall be enforced. If a driver who is subject to enforcement action is admitted to a hospital, a supervisor shall be contacted to determine the best enforcement option.

502.8 REPORTS

Department members shall utilize forms approved by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety as required for the reporting of traffic collisions (Minn. Stat. § 169.09, Subd. 9). All such reports shall be forwarded to the Patrol Supervisor for approval and filing.

502.8.1 REPORT MODIFICATON

A change or modification of a written report that alters a material fact in the report may be made only by the member who prepared the report, and only prior to its approval and distribution. Once a report has been approved and distributed, corrections shall only be made by way of a written supplemental report. A written supplemental report may be made by any authorized member.

502.8.2 PATROL SUPERVISOR RESPONSIBILITIES

The responsibilities of the Patrol Supervisor include, but are not limited to:

  1. Ensuring the monthly and quarterly reports on traffic collision information and statistics are forwarded to the Patrol Captain or other persons as required.
  2. Forwarding the traffic collision report to the Department of Public Safety within 10 days of the collision investigation (Minn. Stat. § 169.09, Subd. 8).
  3. Ensuring completion and submission of a Department of Public Safety Fatality Report when a collision results in a fatality.

503 - Crash Review Boards

503.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes a process for the Metro Transit Police Department to review vehicle crashes by its employees.

The review process shall be in addition to any other review or investigation that may be conducted by any outside or multi-agency entity having jurisdiction over the investigation or evaluation of the vehicle crash.

503.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will objectively evaluate vehicle crashes by its members to ensure that their vehicle use/operation is lawful, appropriate and consistent with training and policy.

503.3 REMOVAL FROM LINE DUTY ASSIGNMENTS

Generally, whenever an employee's actions while using department equipment, results in death or very serious injury to another, that employee will be placed in a temporary administrative assignment pending an administrative review. The Chief of Police may exercise discretion and choose not to place an employee in an administrative assignment in any case.

503.4 REVIEW BOARD

The Crash Review Board will be convened anytime a Metro Transit Police Department vehicle (owned, rented, leased etc) is involved in a crash. This includes vehicles that were being operated or parked when the crash occurred.

The Chief of Police may request the Crash Review Board to investigate the circumstances surrounding any vehicle crash.

The supervisor of the Crash Reconstruction Unit will convene the Crash Review Board as necessary. The involved employee's supervisor will ensure that all relevant reports, documents and materials are available for consideration and review by the board (e.g. Metro Transit Police report, DPS Motor Vehicle Crash report, crash insurance information etc).

503.4.1 COMPOSITION OF THE BOARD

The Crash Reconstruction Unit supervisor should select two Crash Review Board members from the following, as appropriate:

  • Metro Transit Police Department supervisor (Sergeant or Lieutenant).
  • One full-time officer assigned to the Crash Reconstruction Unit.

The Crash Reconstruction Unit supervisor will serve as chairperson on the three (3) person board.

503.4.2 RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE BOARD

The Crash Review Board is empowered to conduct an administrative review and inquiry into the circumstances of a vehicle crash.

The Board members may request further investigation, request reports be submitted for the Board's review and call persons to present information. The Board will not request the involved employee to appear.

The Board does not have the authority to recommend discipline.

The Chief of Police will determine whether the Board should delay its review until after completion of any criminal investigation, review by any prosecutorial body, filing of criminal charges, the decision not to file criminal charges or any other action. The Board should be provided all relevant material from these proceedings for its consideration.

The review shall be based upon those facts which were reasonably believed, known or should have been known by the officer at the time of the incident, applying any legal requirements, department policies, procedures and approved training to those facts. Facts later discovered but unknown to the officer at the time shall neither justify nor call into question an officer's decision.

The Board shall make one of the following recommended findings:

  • The vehicle crash was preventable
  • The vehicle crash was non-preventable

A recommended finding requires a majority vote of the Board. The Board may also recommend additional investigations or reviews, such as training reviews to consider whether training should be developed or revised and policy reviews, as may be appropriate. The Board chairperson shall forward the necessary paperwork to the Internal Affairs Unit for processing. If the crash was determined to be preventable, the Internal Affairs Unit will then consult with the Chief of Police to determine if discipline should be considered and if so, the disciplinary process will be initiated.

510 - Vehicle Towing

510.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides the procedures for towing a vehicle by or at the direction of the Metro Transit Police Department and under the authority of Minn. Stat. § 168B.035.

510.2 STORAGE AND IMPOUNDS

Vehicles may be towed for violations of Minn. Stat. § 168B.035, including parking, registration and snow emergency violations.

Vehicles may be moved or removed from a highway when in violation of Minn. Stat. § 169.32(a) or when left unattended upon any street or highway or upon any bridge or causeway or in any tunnel where such vehicle constitutes an obstruction to traffic (Minn. Stat. § 169.33).

The responsibilities of those employees storing or impounding a vehicle are as follows:

510.2.1 COMPLETION OF VEHICLE IMPOUND AND INVENTORY REPORT

Department members requesting towing of a vehicle shall complete a Vehicle Impound and Inventory Report, including a description of property within the vehicle. A copy is to be given to the tow truck operator and the original is to be submitted to the Records Section as soon as practicable after the vehicle is stored.

The Records Section shall promptly enter pertinent data from the completed Vehicle Impound and Inventory Report into the Minnesota Justice Information Services (MNJIS). In most, if not all cases, the local agency will enter the data into MNJIS.

Approved Vehicle Impound and Inventory Report forms shall be promptly placed into the Records Section so that they are immediately available for release or for information, should inquiries be made.

Within 48 hours, excluding weekends and holidays, of the towing of any such vehicle, it shall be the responsibility of the Records Section to determine through MNJIS the names and addresses of any individuals having an interest in the vehicle. Notice to all such individuals shall be sent by certified mail within five business days of impound (Minn. Stat. § 168B.06 Subd. 1). In most, if not all cases, the local agency should handle this step.

510.2.2 REMOVAL OF VEHICLE DISABLED IN A TRAFFIC COLLISION

When a vehicle has been involved in a traffic collision and must be removed from the scene, the officer shall have the driver select a towing company, if reasonably possible, and shall relay the request for the specified towing company to the dispatcher. When there is no preferred company requested, a company will be selected from the rotational list of towing companies maintained by the local agency.

If the owner is incapacitated or for any reason it is necessary for the Department to assume responsibility for a vehicle involved in a collision, the officer shall request the dispatcher to call a company selected from the rotational list of towing companies. The officer will then conduct an inventory and store the vehicle using a Vehicle Impound and Inventory Report.

510.2.3 DRIVING A NON-CITY VEHICLE

Vehicles that have been towed by or at the direction of the Department should not be driven by police personnel unless it is necessary to move a vehicle a short distance to eliminate a hazard, prevent the obstruction of a fire hydrant or to comply with posted signs.

510.2.4 DISPATCHER'S RESPONSIBILITIES

Upon receiving a request for towing, the dispatcher shall promptly telephone the specified authorized towing service. The officer shall be advised when the request has been made and the towing service has been dispatched.

When there is no preferred company requested, the dispatcher shall call the next firm in rotation from the list of approved towing companies and shall make appropriate entries on that form to ensure the next firm is called.

510.2.5 RECORDS SECTION RESPONSIBILITIES

Records Section personnel shall promptly enter pertinent data from the completed Vehicle Impound and Inventory Report form into the stolen vehicle system. Approved forms shall be promptly filed so that they are immediately available for release or review should inquiries be made.

Within 48 hours of recovering a stolen vehicle or receiving notification that a vehicle reported stolen through this department has been recovered, the Records Section shall make a reasonable and good faith effort to notify the victim of the recovery. The notice must specify when the recovering law enforcement agency expects to release the vehicle to the owner and where the owner may pick up the vehicle. Upon recovery of a vehicle reported stolen to another agency, the Records Section is to promptly inform the agency that the vehicle is recovered, where it is located and when it can be released to the owner (Minn. Stat. § 169.042 Subd. 1).

In most, if not all cases, the local agency shall make the necessary notifications.

510.3 TOWING SERVICES

Local law enforcement agencies periodically select one or more firms to act as official tow services and awards contracts to those firms. Those firms will be used in the following situations:

  1. When it is necessary to safeguard a vehicle due to the inability of the owner or operator to take the required action.
  2. When a vehicle is being held as evidence in connection with an investigation.
  3. When it is otherwise necessary to store a motor vehicle. This would include situations involving the recovery of stolen or abandoned vehicles and the removal of vehicles obstructing traffic in violation of state or local regulations.

If more than one firm has been awarded contracts, they shall be placed on a rotation list. Nothing in this policy shall require the Department to tow a vehicle.

510.4 TOWING AT ARREST SCENES

Whenever a person in charge or in control of a vehicle is arrested, it is the policy of this department to provide reasonable safekeeping by towing the arrestee’s vehicle subject to the exceptions described below. However, a vehicle shall be towed whenever it is needed for the furtherance of an investigation or prosecution of the case, or when the community caretaker doctrine would reasonably suggest that the vehicle should be towed. For example, the vehicle would present a traffic hazard if it were not removed, or the vehicle is located in a high-crime area and is susceptible to theft or damage if left at the scene.

The following are examples of situations where consideration should be given to leaving a vehicle at the scene in lieu of towing, provided the vehicle can be lawfully parked and left in a reasonably secured and safe condition:

  • Traffic-related warrant arrest.
  • Situations where the vehicle was not used to further the offense for which the occupant was arrested nor may be subject to forfeiture proceedings.
  • Whenever the vehicle otherwise does not need to be stored and the owner requests that it be left at the scene.

In such cases, the handling employee shall note in the report that the owner was informed that the Department will not be responsible for theft or damages.

510.5 VEHICLE INVENTORY

All property in a stored or impounded vehicle shall be inventoried and listed on the vehicle storage form. This includes the trunk and any compartments or containers, even if they are closed and/or locked. Members conducting inventory searches should be as thorough and accurate as practicable in preparing an itemized inventory. These inventory procedures are for the purpose of protecting an owner's property while the owner is in police custody, to provide for the safety of officers and the public, and to protect the Department against fraudulent claims of lost, stolen or damaged property.

510.6 PRESERVATION OF EVIDENCE

An officer who removes a vehicle pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 168B.035 is required to take reasonable and necessary steps to preserve evidence. If there is probable cause to believe that a vehicle or its contents constitute any evidence which tends to show that a criminal offense has been committed, or that a particular person has committed a criminal offense, officers shall ensure that all legally required and reasonably necessary efforts are taken to preserve the evidence. Such evidence is to be provided safe storage and preserved until released to the owner or otherwise disposed of according to law.

510.7 SECURITY OF VEHICLES AND PROPERTY

Unless it would cause an unreasonable delay in the completion of a vehicle impound/storage or create an issue of officer safety, officer should make reasonable accommodations to permit a driver/owner to retrieve small items of value or personal need (e.g., cash, jewelry, cellular telephone, prescriptions) that are not considered evidence or contraband.

If a search of a vehicle leaves the vehicle or any property contained therein vulnerable to unauthorized entry, theft or damage, personnel conducting the search shall take such steps as are reasonably necessary to secure and/or preserve the vehicle or property from such hazards.

512 - Vehicle Impound Hearings

512.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes a procedure for the requirement to provide vehicle storage or impound hearings.

512.2 STORED OR IMPOUND HEARING

When a vehicle is stored or impounded by any member of the Metro Transit Police Department, a hearing will be conducted upon the request of the owner or operator of the vehicle to determine if probable cause existed for the removal and placement of the vehicle.

The hearing shall be conducted within 48 hours of the request, excluding weekends and holidays. The hearing officer must be a person other than the person who directed the storage or impound of the vehicle.

512.2.1 HEARING PROCEDURES

The vehicle storage hearing is an informal process to evaluate the validity of an order to store or impound a vehicle. The employee who caused the storage or removal of the vehicle does not need to be present for this hearing.

All requests for a hearing on a stored or impounded vehicle shall be submitted in person, in writing or by telephone, within 10 days of the date appearing on the notice. The Patrol Captain will generally serve as the hearing officer. The person requesting the hearing may record the hearing at his/her own expense.

The failure of either the registered or legal owner or interested person or his/her agent to request a hearing in a timely manner or to attend a scheduled hearing shall be considered a waiver of and satisfaction of the post-storage hearing.

Any relevant evidence may be submitted and reviewed by the hearing officer to determine if reasonable grounds have been established for the storage or impound of the vehicle. The initial burden of proof established by a preponderance of the evidence that the storage/impound was based on probable cause rests with the Department.

After consideration of all information, the hearing officer shall determine the validity of the storage or impound of the vehicle in question and then render a decision. The hearing officer shall also consider any mitigating circumstances attendant to the storage that reasonably would warrant the release of the vehicle or a mediation or reduction of the period the vehicle is impounded.

  1. If a decision is made that reasonable grounds for storage or impound have been established, the hearing officer shall advise the inquiring party of the decision that the inquiring party may pursue further civil remedies if desired.
    1. If mitigating circumstances are found to be relevant, the hearing officer may make reasonable adjustments to the impound period, storage or assessment fees as warranted.
  2. If a decision is made that reasonable grounds for storage or impound have not been established or sufficient mitigating circumstances exist, the vehicle in storage shall be released immediately. Towing and storage fees will be at the Department's expense.
  3. If a decision is made that reasonable grounds for storage have not been established or sufficient mitigating circumstances exist, and the vehicle has been released with fees having been paid, the receipt for such fees will be forwarded to the appropriate Captain. The hearing officer will recommend to the Captain that the fees paid by the registered or legal owner of the vehicle in question or the owner's agent be reimbursed by the Department.

514 - Impaired Driving

514.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance to those department members who play a role in the detection and investigation of driving while impaired (DWI).

514.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department is committed to the safety of the roadways and the community and will pursue fair but aggressive enforcement of Minnesota’s impaired driving laws.

514.3 INVESTIGATIONS

Officers should not enforce DWI laws to the exclusion of their other duties unless specifically assigned to DWI enforcement. All officers are expected to enforce these laws with due diligence.

The Patrol Supervisor will develop and maintain, in consultation with the prosecuting attorney, report forms with appropriate checklists to assist investigating officers in documenting relevant information and maximizing efficiency. Any DWI investigation will be documented using these forms. Information documented elsewhere on the form does not need to be duplicated in the report narrative. Information that should be documented includes, at a minimum:

  1. The field sobriety tests (FSTs) administered and the results.
  2. The officer’s observations that indicate impairment on the part of the individual, and the officer’s health-related inquiries that may help to identify any serious health concerns (e.g., diabetic shock).
  3. Sources of additional information (e.g., reporting party, witnesses) and their observations.
  4. Information about any audio and/or video recording of the individual’s driving or subsequent actions.
  5. The location and time frame of the individual’s vehicle operation and how this was determined.
  6. Any prior related convictions in Minnesota or another jurisdiction.

514.4 FIELD TESTS

The Training Coordinator should identify the primary field sobriety tests (FSTs) and any approved alternate tests for officers to use when investigating violations of DWI laws.

514.5 CHEMICAL TESTS

A person implies consent under Minnesota law to a chemical test or tests, and to providing the associated chemical sample, under any of the following (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 1):

  1. The arresting officer has probable cause to believe the person was driving, operating or in physical control of a vehicle while impaired as defined by Minn. Stat. § 169A.20.
  2. The officer has probable cause to believe that the person is DWI and has been involved in a vehicle accident resulting in property damage, personal injury or death.
  3. The officer has probable cause to believe that the person is DWI and the person has refused to take the preliminary screening test provided for by Minn. Stat. § 169A.41.
  4. The person was administered a preliminary screening test and the results indicated an alcohol concentration of 0.08 or more.
  5. The officer has probable cause to believe the person was driving, operating or in physical control of a commercial motor vehicle with the presence of any alcohol in the person’s body.

If a person withdraws this implied consent, or is unable to withdraw consent (e.g., the person is unconscious), the officer should consider implied consent revoked and proceed as though the person has refused to provide a chemical sample.

514.5.1 BREATH SAMPLES

The Patrol Supervisor should ensure that all devices used for the collection and analysis of breath samples are properly serviced and tested, and that a record of such service and testing is properly maintained.

Officers obtaining a breath sample should monitor the device for any sign of malfunction. Any anomalies or equipment failures should be noted in the appropriate report and promptly reported to the Patrol Supervisor.

514.5.2 BLOOD SAMPLES

Only persons authorized by law to draw blood shall collect blood samples (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 7). The blood draw should be witnessed by the assigned officer. No officer, even if properly certified, should perform this task.

Officers should inform an arrestee that if he/she chooses to provide a blood sample, a separate sample can be collected for alternate testing. Unless medical personnel object, two samples should be collected and retained as evidence, so long as only one puncture is required.

The blood sample shall be packaged, marked, handled, stored and transported as required by the testing facility.

If an arrestee cannot submit to a blood test because he/she has a bleeding disorder or has taken medication that inhibits coagulation, he/she shall not be required to take a blood test. Such inability to take a blood test should not be considered a refusal. However, that arrestee may be required to complete another available and viable test.

514.5.3 URINE SAMPLES

If a urine test will be performed, the arrestee should be promptly transported to the appropriate testing site. The officer shall follow any directions accompanying the urine evidence collection kit.

Urine samples shall be collected and witnessed by an officer or jail staff member of the same sex as the person giving the sample. The arrestee tested should be allowed sufficient privacy to maintain his/her dignity, to the extent possible, while still ensuring the accuracy of the sample.

The sample shall be packaged, marked, handled, stored and transported as required by the testing facility.

514.5.4 STATUTORY NOTIFICATIONS

At the time that the officer requests the person to submit to a breath test the officer must inform the person that (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 2):

  1. Minnesota law requires that he/she take the test.
  2. Refusal to take the test is a crime.
  3. He/she has the right to consult with an attorney unless it would unreasonably delay administration of the test.

At the time that the officer directs a person to submit to a blood or urine test pursuant to a warrant, the person must be informed that a refusal to submit to a blood or urine test is a crime (Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 1 and Subd. 2).

514.6 REFUSALS

When an arrestee refuses to provide a chemical sample officers should:

  1. Advise the arrestee of the requirement to provide a sample (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51; Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 1).
  2. Audio- and/or video-record the admonishment and the response when it is legal and practicable.
  3. Document the refusal in the appropriate report.

514.6.1 STATUTORY NOTIFICATIONS UPON REFUSAL

Upon refusal to submit to a chemical test as required by law, officers shall personally serve the notice of intention to revoke upon the person and invalidate the person’s license in such a way that no identifying information is destroyed and immediately return the license to the person (Minn. Stat. § 169A.52, Subd. 7; Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 8).

514.6.2 BLOOD SAMPLE WITHOUT CONSENT

A blood sample may be obtained from a person who does not consent to a chemical test when any of the following conditions exist (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 3):

  1. A search warrant has been obtained.
  2. The officer can articulate that exigent circumstances exist and the officer has probable cause to believe that the person has committed DWI, including vehicular homicide or injury (Minn. Stat. § 169A.52, Subd. 1; Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 13). Exigency does not exist solely because of the short time period associated with the natural dissipation of alcohol or controlled or prohibited substances in the person’s bloodstream. Exigency can be established by the existence of special facts, such as a lengthy delay in obtaining a blood sample due to a collision investigation or medical treatment of the person.

bloodstream. Exigency can be established by the existence of special facts such as a lengthy delay in obtaining a blood sample due to a collision investigation or medical treatment of the person.

514.6.3 FORCED BLOOD SAMPLE

A forced sample may not be taken except in DWI cases involving vehicular homicide or injury (Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 13). In those cases, if a person indicates by word or action that he/she will physically resist a blood draw, the officer should request a supervisor to respond.

The responding supervisor should:

  1. Evaluate whether using force to obtain a blood sample is appropriate under the circumstances.
  2. Ensure that all attempts to obtain a blood sample through force cease if the person agrees to, and completes, a viable form of testing in a timely manner.
  3. Advise the person of his/her duty to provide a sample (even if this advisement was previously done by another officer), and attempt to persuade the person to submit to such a sample without physical resistance.
    1. This dialogue should be recorded on audio and/or video when reasonably practicable.
  4. Ensure that the blood sample is taken in a medically approved manner.
  5. Ensure that the forced blood draw is recorded on audio and/or video when reasonably practicable.
  6. Monitor and ensure that the type and level of force applied appears reasonable under the circumstances:
    1. Unless otherwise provided in a warrant, force should generally be limited to handcuffing or similar restraint methods.
    2. In misdemeanor cases, if the arrestee becomes violent or more resistant, no additional force will be used and a refusal should be noted in the report.
    3. In felony cases, force which reasonably appears necessary to overcome the resistance to the blood draw may be permitted.
  7. Ensure the use of force and methods used to accomplish the collection of the blood sample are documented in the related report.

If a supervisor is unavailable, officers are expected to use sound judgment and perform the duties of a supervisor, as set forth above.

514.6.4 WARRANTS FOR CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES OR INCAPACITATION

A blood or urine test may be required pursuant to a warrant if the officer has probable cause to believe that (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 4):

  1. The person’s impairment is due to a controlled substance or a hazardous substance that is not subject to testing by a breath test.
  2. A controlled substance listed in Schedule I or II or its metabolite (other than marijuana or tetrahydrocannabinols), is present in the person’s body.
  3. The person is unconscious or incapacitated to the point that the officer providing the breath test advisory, administering the breath test or serving the search warrant has a good faith belief that the person is mentally or physically unable to comprehend the advisory or otherwise voluntarily submit to the chemical tests.

If a person objects to the blood or urine test as directed by the warrant or officer, the officer should offer the other type of test if the person is conscious. Action may be taken against a person refusing to submit to a blood or urine test only if an alternate test of blood or urine, as applicable, was offered (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 4; Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 2).

514.7 ARREST AND INVESTIGATION

514.7.1 RIGHT TO ATTORNEY CONTACTS

A person has a limited right to consult with an attorney prior to submitting to a chemical test. This right is limited to the extent that it cannot unreasonably delay administration of the test (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 2).

514.7.2 ARREST AUTHORITY

An officer may arrest a person without a warrant and without regard to whether the offense was committed in the officer’s presence if there is probable cause to believe the person committed (Minn. Stat. § 169A.40):

  1. A DWI offense (Minn. Stat. § 169A.20).
  2. An alcohol-related driving offense involving a school bus or a Head Start bus (Minn. Stat. § 169A.31).
  3. An underage drinking and driving offense (Minn. Stat. § 169A.33).

514.7.3 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

If an officer requests that a person submit to a chemical test and the person refuses such request, the officer shall report such refusal to the Commissioner of the Department of Public Safety (DPS) and the appropriate prosecuting attorney (Minn. Stat. § 169A.52, Subd. 1; Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 3).

If a person refuses to submit to a test or in the alternative submits to a test and the results indicate a prohibited alcohol concentration, the officer shall immediately give notice to the person that his/her driving privilege will be revoked and shall (Minn. Stat. § 169A.52, Subd. 7; Minn. Stat. § 171.177, Subd. 8):

  1. Issue the person a temporary license effective for only seven days.
    1. Officers are not required to issue a person a temporary license if the person’s driving privilege is under withdrawal by DPS or if the person is unlicensed.
  2. Send the notification of this action to the Commissioner of the DPS along with the certification that there was probable cause to believe the person had been driving, operating or in physical control of a motor vehicle while impaired, and that the person either refused to submit to a test or submitted to a test and the results indicated a prohibited alcohol concentration or drug presence.

Test results of a person that indicate a prohibited alcohol concentration or drug presence shall be forwarded to the Commissioner of the DPS and the appropriate prosecuting attorney (Minn. Stat. § 169A.52, Subd. 2).

514.7.4 PRELIMINARY SCREENING TEST

An officer who has reason to believe the person was driving, operating or in physical control of a motor vehicle while impaired, may require the person to provide a sample of the person’s breath for a preliminary screening test using a device approved by the DPS Commissioner (Minn. Stat. § 169A.41, Subd. 1).

The officer must use the results of the preliminary screening test for the purpose of deciding whether to arrest the person and require further chemical testing pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 169A.51 (Minn. Stat. § 169A.41, Subd. 2).

514.7.5 ADDITIONAL TESTING

An officer shall permit a person required to submit to a chemical test to have a qualified person of his/her own choosing administer a separate chemical test (Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 7(b)). The separate chemical test shall:

  1. Be conducted at the place where the person is in custody.
  2. Be conducted after the officer has administered the statutorily mandated test.
  3. Impose no expense to the state.

514.7.6 ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR BREATH SAMPLES

All breath samples requested in accordance with this policy shall be obtained in accordance with Minn. Stat. § 169A.51, Subd. 5.

514.8 RECORDS SECTION RESPONSIBILITIES

The Records Supervisor will ensure that all case-related records are transmitted according to current records procedures and as required by the prosecuting attorney’s office.

514.9 ADMINISTRATIVE HEARINGS

The Records Supervisor will ensure that all appropriate reports and documents related to administrative license suspensions are reviewed and forwarded to the Driver and Vehicle Services Division (DVS) of the DPS.

Any officer who receives notice of required attendance to an administrative license suspension hearing should promptly notify the prosecuting attorney.

An officer called to testify at an administrative hearing should document the hearing date and the DVS file number in a supplemental report. Specific details of the hearing generally should not be included in the report unless errors, additional evidence or witnesses are identified.

514.10 TRAINING

The Training Supervisor should ensure that officers participating in the enforcement of DWI laws receive regular training. Training should include at minimum current laws on impaired driving, investigative techniques and rules of evidence pertaining to DWI investigations. The Training Supervisor should confer with the prosecuting attorney’s office and update training topics as needed.

516 - Traffic Citations

516.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy outlines the responsibility for traffic citations, the collection of data, the procedure for dismissal, correction and voiding of traffic citations.

516.2 RESPONSIBILITIES

The Patrol Supervisor shall be responsible for the development and design of all Interim Directive traffic citations in compliance with state law (Minn. Stat. § 169.99 and Minn. Stat. § 169.999 Subd. 3).

The Records Section shall be responsible for the supply and accounting of all traffic citations issued to employees of this department. Citations will be kept in a secure location and issued to officers by Records Section staff. Officers will sign for the citation books when issued.

516.2.1 DATA COLLECTION

The Records Section should maintain information relating to traffic stops in which a citation is issued and to arrests resulting from those traffic stops, including information relating to:

  1. The race or ethnicity of the individual detained.
  2. Whether a search was conducted and, if so, whether the person detained consented to the search.

The Records Section should submit an annual report to the Chief of Police of the information collected to assist in the implementation and administration of the Department’s Bias-Based Policing Policy required by state law (Minn. Stat. § 626.8471 Subd. 4).

516.3 DISMISSAL OF TRAFFIC CITATIONS

Employees of this department do not have the authority to dismiss a citation once it has been issued. Only the court has the authority to dismiss a citation that has been issued. Any request from a recipient to dismiss a citation shall be referred to the Patrol Supervisor. Upon a review of the circumstances involving the issuance of the traffic citation, the Patrol Supervisor may request the Patrol Captain to recommend dismissal of the traffic citation. If approved, the citation will be forwarded to the appropriate prosecutor with a request for dismissal. All recipients of traffic citations whose request for dismissal of a traffic citation has been denied shall be referred to the appropriate court.

Should an officer determine during a court proceeding that a traffic citation should be dismissed in the interest of justice or where prosecution is deemed inappropriate, the officer may request the prosecutor to dismiss the citation. Upon dismissal of the traffic citation by the court, the officer shall notify his/her immediate supervisor of the circumstances surrounding the dismissal and shall complete any paperwork as directed or required. The citation dismissal shall then be forwarded to the Patrol Captain for review.

Members of the Department should provide a report or other verification to the owner of a stolen vehicle that may have received a citation during the time of the theft for the purpose of dismissing the citation (Minn. Stat. § 169.042 Subd. 2).

516.4 VOIDING TRAFFIC CITATIONS

Voiding a traffic citation may occur when a traffic citation has not been completed or where it is completed but not issued. All copies of the citation shall be presented to a supervisor to approve the voiding of the citation. The citation and copies shall then be forwarded to the Patrol Captain.

516.5 CORRECTION OF TRAFFIC CITATIONS

When a traffic citation is issued and in need of correction, the officer issuing the citation shall submit the citation and a letter requesting a specific correction to his/her immediate supervisor. The citation and letter shall then be forwarded to the Patrol Captain. The Patrol Captain shall prepare a letter of correction to the court having jurisdiction and to the recipient of the citation.

516.6 DISPOSITION OF TRAFFIC CITATIONS

The court and file copies of all traffic citations issued by members of this department shall be forwarded to the employee’s immediate supervisor for review. The citation copies shall then be filed with the Records Section.

Upon separation from employment with this department, all employees issued traffic citation books shall return any unused citations to the Records Section.

516.7 NOTICE OF PARKING VIOLATION APPEAL PROCEDURE

Disposition of notice of parking violation appeals is conducted pursuant to Minnesota state law and local regulations (Minn. Stat. § 169.04 (a) (1)).

516.7.1 APPEAL STAGES

Appeals may be pursued sequentially at three different levels:

  1. Administrative reviews are conducted by the Patrol Captain, which will review written/ documentary data. Requests for administrative reviews may be made at the Metro Transit Police Department. These requests are informal written statements outlining why the notice of parking violation should be dismissed. Copies of documentation relating to the notice of parking violation and the request for dismissal must be mailed to the current mailing address of the processing agency.
  2. If the appellant wishes to pursue the matter beyond administrative review, an administrative hearing may be conducted in person or by written application, at the election of the appellant. Independent referees review the existent administrative file, amendments and/or testimonial material provided by the appellant and may conduct further investigation or follow-up on their own.

     

  3. If the appellant wishes to pursue the matter beyond an administrative hearing, an appellant may petition a municipal court for a hearing by filing with the clerk of the municipal court and posting fees as required.

516.7.2 TIME REQUIREMENTS

Administrative review or appearance before a hearing examiner will not be provided if the mandated time limits are not adhered to by the violator.

  1. Requests for an administrative review must be postmarked within 21 days of issuance of the notice of parking violation, or within 10 days of mailing the Notice of Delinquent Parking Violation.
  2. Requests for administrative hearings must be postmarked within 15 days of the notification mailing of the results of the administrative review.
  3. Requests for appeal to the District Court must be made within 20 days of the mailing of the administrative hearing results.
  4. Registered owners of leased or rented vehicles may transfer responsibility for the violation to the lessee or renter of the vehicle at the time of the violation if the name, address and driver's license number of the lessee/renter is provided to the processing agency within 30 days of the mail date of the delinquent notice.

516.7.3 COSTS

  1. There is no cost for an administrative review.
  2. Appellants must pay the full amount due for the citation or provide satisfactory proof of their inability to pay, before receiving an administrative hearing.
  3. An appeal through District Court requires prior payment of filing costs including applicable court charges and fees. These costs will be reimbursed to the appellant in addition to any previously paid fines if appellant's liability is overruled by the District Court.

516.8 JUVENILE CITATIONS

Completion of traffic citation forms for juveniles may vary slightly from the procedure for adults. The juvenile’s age, place of residency and the type of offense should be considered before issuing the juvenile a citation.

  1. When any juvenile is issued a citation for a drug or alcohol violation, or a juvenile 16 years of age or older is issued a citation for an adult court traffic offense, the officer shall follow the arrest procedures prescribed in Minn. Stat. § 169.91 and shall make reasonable effort to notify the child's parent or guardian of the violation and the nature of the charge. Notifications should be documented (Minn. Stat. § 260B.225 Subd. 3).
  2. When any juvenile is issued a citation for a major traffic offense, the officer is required to file a signed copy of the citation, as provided in Minn. Stat. § 169.91, with the juvenile court of the county in which the violation occurred. The citation serves as a petition providing the juvenile court jurisdiction (Minn. Stat. § 260B.225 Subd. 5).

520 - Disabled Vehicles

520.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Law enforcement and other public agencies may develop and adopt a written policy to provide assistance to motorists in disabled vehicles within their primary jurisdiction.

520.2 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

When an on-duty officer observes a disabled vehicle on the roadway, the officer should make a reasonable effort to provide assistance. If that officer is assigned to a call of higher priority, the dispatcher should be advised of the location of the disabled vehicle and the need for assistance. The dispatcher should then assign another available officer to respond for assistance as soon as practicable.

520.3 EXTENT OF ASSISTANCE

In most cases, a disabled motorist will require assistance. After arrangements for assistance are made, continued involvement by Department personnel will be contingent on the time of day, the location, the availability of Department resources and the vulnerability of the disabled motorist.

520.3.1 MECHANICAL REPAIRS

Department personnel shall not make mechanical repairs to a disabled vehicle. The use of push bumpers to relocate vehicles to a position of safety is not considered a mechanical repair.

520.3.2 RELOCATION OF DISABLED VEHICLES

The relocation of disabled vehicles by members of this department by pushing or pulling a vehicle should only occur when the conditions reasonably indicate that immediate movement is necessary to reduce a hazard presented by the disabled vehicle.

524 - Abandoned Vehicle Violations

524.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides procedures for the removal, recording and storage of vehicles abandoned in violation of abandoned vehicle laws, under the authority of Minn. Stat. § 168B.04.

524.1.1 DEFINITION

Pursuant to Minnesota statutes, a vehicle is abandoned if:

  1. The motor vehicle has remained illegally for more than 48 hours on any government-owned or controlled property, or for more than four hours on that property when properly posted (Minn. Stat. § 168B.011 Subd. 2 (1)).
  2. The motor vehicle has been properly tagged by an officer and abandoned for four hours on any highway (Minn. Stat. § 168B.04, Subd. 2 (b) (1)).
  3. The motor vehicle has been abandoned and located so as to constitute a collision or traffic hazard (Minn. Stat. § 168B.04 Subd. 2 (b) (1)).
  4. The motor vehicle is unattended on private residential property, that is a single-family or duplex, without permission of the property caretaker (Minn. Stat. § 168B.04 Subd. 2 (b) (2)).
  5. The motor vehicle can be immediately removed if on private non-residential property if properly posted or after 24 hours if not posted (Minn. Stat. § 168B 04 Subd. 2 (b) (2)).
  6. The motor vehicle remains at a service, repair or maintenance establishment of motor vehicles five days after notifying the vehicle owner by certified mail, return receipt requested, of the property owner's intention to have the vehicle removed from the property (Minn. Stat. § 168B.04 Subd. 2 (b) (2)).

524.2 MARKING VEHICLES

Vehicles on public roadways suspected of being abandoned in violation of Minnesota abandoned vehicle laws shall be marked and noted on the officers log. Officers shall also make notification to TCC. No case number is required at this time.

A visible chalk, crayon or paint mark should be placed on the rear window or left rear tire tread at the fender level unless the vehicle is missing tires or other vehicle conditions or weather prevent marking.

If a marked vehicle has been moved or the markings have been removed during a four or 24-hour investigation period, the vehicle shall be marked again for either the four or 24-hour abandonment violation and the above process repeated.

524.2.1 MARKED VEHICLE FILE

TCC shall be responsible for maintaining a file for or notifying the local jurisdiction on all marked vehicles.

524.2.2 VEHICLE STORAGE

Any vehicle in violation shall be stored by the authorized towing service and a vehicle storage report shall be completed by the officer authorizing the storage of the vehicle.

The storage report form shall be submitted to the Records Section immediately following the storage of the vehicle. It shall be the responsibility of the Records Section to immediately notify the Minnesota Criminal Justice Information Services (MNJIS). Notification may also be made to the National Law Enforcement Telecommunications System (NLETS).

Within 48 hours of the storage of any such vehicle, excluding weekends and holidays, it shall be the responsibility of the Records Section to immediately notify MNJIS. Notification may also be made to the NLETS. In most, if not all cases, the local agency shall make the notification.

600 - Investigation and Prosecution

600.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to set guidelines and requirements pertaining to the handling and disposition of criminal investigations.

600.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to investigate crimes thoroughly and with due diligence, and to evaluate and prepare criminal cases for appropriate clearance or submission to a prosecutor.

600.3 INITIAL INVESTIGATION

600.3.1 OFFICER RESPONSIBILITIES

An officer responsible for an initial investigation shall complete no less than the following:

  1. Make a preliminary determination of whether a crime has been committed by completing, at a minimum:
    1. An initial statement from any witnesses or complainants.
    2. A cursory examination for evidence.
  2. If information indicates a crime has occurred, the officer shall:
    1. Preserve the scene and any evidence as required to complete the initial and follow- up investigation.
    2. Determine if additional investigative resources (e.g., investigators or scene processing) are necessary and request assistance as required.
    3. If assistance is warranted, or if the incident is not routine, notify a supervisor or the Shift Supervisor.
    4. Make reasonable attempts to locate, identify and interview all available victims, complainants, witnesses and suspects.
    5. Collect any evidence.
    6. Take any appropriate law enforcement action.
    7. Complete and submit the appropriate reports and documentation.
  3. If the preliminary determination is that no crime occurred, determine what other action may be necessary, what other resources may be available, and advise the informant or complainant of this information.

600.3.2 NON-LICENSED MEMBER RESPONSIBILITIES

A non-licensed member assigned to any preliminary investigation is responsible for all investigative steps, except making any attempt to locate, contact or interview a suspect face-to-face or take any enforcement action. Should an initial investigation indicate that those steps are required, the assistance of an officer shall be requested.

600.4 CUSTODIAL INTERROGATION REQUIREMENTS

Suspects who are in custody and subjected to an interrogation shall be given the Miranda warning, unless an exception applies. Interview or interrogation of a juvenile shall be in accordance with the Temporary Custody of Juveniles Policy.

600.4.1 AUDIO/VIDEO RECORDINGS

Any custodial interrogation of a person who is suspected of having committed a criminal offense should be electronically recorded (audio/video or both as available) in its entirety, including any information or discussion about the person’s rights and any waiver of those rights. Regardless of where the interrogation occurs, every reasonable effort should be made to secure functional recording equipment to accomplish such recordings.

Consideration should also be given to recording a non-custodial interrogation, or any investigative interview, for any other offense when it is reasonable to believe it would be appropriate and beneficial to the investigation and is otherwise allowed by law.

No recording of a custodial interrogation should be destroyed or altered without written authorization from the prosecuting attorney and the Investigation Division supervisor. Copies of recorded interrogations or interviews may be made in the same or a different format as the original recording, provided the copies are true, accurate and complete and are made only for authorized and legitimate law enforcement purposes.

Recordings should not take the place of a thorough report and investigative interviews. Written statements from suspects should continue to be obtained when applicable.

600.5 DISCONTINUATION OF INVESTIGATIONS

The investigation of a criminal case or efforts to seek prosecution should only be discontinued if one of the following applies:

  1. All reasonable investigative efforts have been exhausted, no reasonable belief that the person who committed the crime can be identified, and the incident has been documented appropriately.
  2. The perpetrator of a misdemeanor has been identified and a warning is the most appropriate disposition.
    1. In these cases, the investigator shall document that the person was warned and why prosecution was not sought.
    2. Warnings shall not be given for felony offenses or other offenses identified in this policy or by law that require an arrest or submission of a case to a prosecutor.
  3. The case has been submitted to the appropriate prosecutor but no charges have been filed. Further investigation is not reasonable nor has the prosecutor requested further investigation.
  4. The case has been submitted to the appropriate prosecutor, charges have been filed, and further investigation is not reasonable, warranted or requested, and there is no need to take the suspect into custody.
  5. Suspects have been arrested, there are no other suspects, and further investigation is either not warranted or requested.
  6. Investigation has proven that a crime was not committed (see the Sexual Assault Investigations Policy for special considerations in these cases).

The Domestic Abuse, Child Abuse, Sexual Assault Investigations and Adult Abuse policies may also require an arrest or submittal of a case to a prosecutor.

600.6 COMPUTERS AND DIGITAL EVIDENCE

The collection, preservation, transportation and storage of computers, cell phones and other digital devices may require specialized handling to preserve the value of the related evidence. If it is anticipated that computers or similar equipment will be seized, officers should request that computer forensic examiners assist with seizing computers and related evidence. If a forensic examiner is unavailable, officers should take reasonable steps to prepare for such seizure and use the resources that are available.

600.7 INVESTIGATIVE USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA AND INTERNET SOURCES

Use of social media and any other Internet source to access information for the purpose of criminal investigation shall comply with applicable laws and policies regarding privacy, civil rights and civil liberties. Information gathered via the Internet should only be accessed by members while on-duty and for purposes related to the mission of this department. If a member encounters information relevant to a criminal investigation while off-duty or while using his/her own equipment, the member should note the dates, times and locations of the information and report the discovery to his/her supervisor as soon as practicable. The member, or others who have been assigned to do so, should attempt to replicate the finding when on-duty and using department equipment.

Information obtained via the Internet should not be archived or stored in any manner other than department-established record keeping systems (see the Records Maintenance and Release and Criminal Organizations policies).

600.7.1 ACCESS RESTRICTIONS

Information that can be accessed from any department computer, without the need of an account, password, email address, alias or other identifier (unrestricted websites), may be accessed and used for legitimate investigative purposes without supervisory approval.

Accessing information from any Internet source that requires the use or creation of an account, password, email address, alias or other identifier, or the use of nongovernment IP addresses, requires supervisor approval prior to access. The supervisor will review the justification for accessing the information and consult with legal counsel as necessary to identify any policy or legal restrictions. Any such access and the supervisor approval shall be documented in the related investigative report.

Accessing information that requires the use of a third party’s account or online identifier requires supervisor approval and the consent of the third party. The consent must be voluntary and shall be documented in the related investigative report.

Information gathered from any Internet source should be evaluated for its validity, authenticity, accuracy and reliability. Corroborative evidence should be sought and documented in the related investigative report.

Any information collected in furtherance of an investigation through an Internet source should be documented in the related report. Documentation should include the source of information and the dates and times that the information was gathered.

600.7.2 INTERCEPTING ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION

Intercepting social media communications in real time may be subject to federal and state wiretap laws. Officers should seek legal counsel before any such interception.

600.8 ELECTRONIC BENEFIT TRANSFER (EBT) CARDS

Officers shall make a report any time they arrest a person who possesses more than one welfare Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card. The investigating officers shall forward this report to the Minnesota Department of Human Services within 30 days of the arrest. The report shall include all of the following (Minn. Stat. § 626.5533):

  1. The name, address and driver’s license or state identification card number of the suspect
  2. The number on each EBT card and name, if any
  3. The date and location of any alleged offense
  4. Any other information the Minnesota Department of Human Services may require on related state forms

600.9 LOCAL AGENCY NOTIFICATION

It is the responsibility of this Department to notify the law enforcement agency with primary jurisdiction when surveillance or an investigation has been initiated on any person within the jurisdiction of that agency (Minn. Stat. § 473.407 Subd. 3). Notification to the law enforcement agency should be accomplished in one of the following manners:

  1. Manual completion of the local agency police report.
  2. Automatic or automated population of the local agency police report (data transfer).
  3. Providing a copy of the Metro Transit Police report to the local agency.

600.10 MODIFICATION OF CHARGES FILED

Members are not authorized to recommend to the prosecutor or to any other official of the court that charges on a pending case be amended or dismissed without the authorization of a Captain, Deputy Chief or the Chief of Police. Any authorized request to modify the charges or to recommend dismissal of charges shall be made to the prosecutor.

602 - Sexual Assault Investigations

602.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the investigation of sexual assaults. These guidelines will address some of the unique aspects of such cases and the effects that these crimes have on the victims.

Mandatory notifications requirements are addressed in the Child Abuse and Adult Abuse policies.

602.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Sexual assault - Any crime or attempted crime of a sexual nature, to include, but not limited to, offenses defined in Minn. Stat § 609.293 and Minn. Stat. § 609.342 through Minn. Stat. § 609. 3453.

Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) - A multidisciplinary team generally comprised of advocates, law enforcement officers, forensic medical examiners, including sexual assault nurse examiners (SANEs) if possible, forensic laboratory personnel and prosecutors. The team is designed to coordinate a broad response to sexual assault victims.

602.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that its members, when responding to reports of sexual assaults, will strive to minimize the trauma experienced by the victims, and will aggressively investigate sexual assaults, pursue expeditious apprehension and conviction of perpetrators, and protect the safety of the victims and the community.

602.3 QUALIFIED INVESTIGATORS

Qualified investigators should be available for assignment of sexual assault investigations. These investigators should:

  1. Have specialized training in, and be familiar with, interview techniques and the medical and legal issues that are specific to sexual assault investigations.
  2. Conduct follow-up interviews and investigation.
  3. Present appropriate cases of alleged sexual assault to the prosecutor for review.
  4. Coordinate with other enforcement agencies, social service agencies and medical personnel as needed.
  5. Provide referrals to therapy services, victim advocates and support for the victim.
  6. Participate in or coordinate with SART or other multidisciplinary investigative teams as applicable.

602.4 INVESTIGATION AND REPORTING

In all reported or suspected cases of sexual assault, a report should be written and assigned for follow-up investigation. This includes incidents in which the allegations appear unfounded or unsubstantiated.

602.4.1 VICTIM INTERVIEWS

The primary considerations in sexual assault investigations, which begin with the initial call to Transit Control Center, should be the health and safety of the victim, the preservation of evidence, and preliminary interviews to determine if a crime has been committed and to attempt to identify the suspect.

Whenever possible, a member of SART should be included in the initial victim interviews.

An in-depth follow-up interview should not be conducted until after the medical and forensic examinations are completed and the personal needs of the victim have been met (e.g., change of clothes, bathing). The follow-up interview may be delayed to the following day based upon the circumstances. Whenever practicable, the follow-up interview should be conducted by a qualified investigator.

Victims are often reluctant or embarrassed to discuss details. Recanting or changing one or more aspects of a prior statement is not necessarily an indication of false reporting or that the case is unfounded. If the responding officer has reason to believe the incident may be without merit, he/ she should document the evidence and inconsistencies. Due to physical and emotional trauma, and the myths and stereotypes associated with sexual assault, inconsistencies in the victim's report are not uncommon. No opinions of whether the case is unfounded shall be included in the report.

602.4.2 VICTIM CONFIDENTIALITY

Officers investigating or receiving a report of an alleged sex offense shall assist in keeping the identity of the victim private by providing the victim with Safe at Home Program information. A notation should be made within the incident report that the Safe at Home Program information was provided to the victim.

The Department shall withhold public access to information that would reveal the identity of a victim or alleged victim of criminal sexual conduct or sex trafficking (Minn. Stat. § 13.82, Subd. 17(b); Minn. Stat. § 611A.021).

602.4.3 POLYGRAPH EXAMINATION

An officer shall not require a sexual assault victim to submit to a polygraph examination as a condition to investigating, charging or prosecuting the offense (Minn. Stat. § 611A.26, Subd. 1; Minn. Stat. § 611A.26, Subd. 5).

Officers may conduct a polygraph examination of a sexual assault victim only at the victim's request and with written, informed consent after the victim has been referred to and had the opportunity to exercise the option of consulting with a sexual assault counselor (Minn. Stat. § 611A.26, Subd. 2 and Minn. Stat. § 611A.26, Subd. 3).

To consent to a polygraph, the officer must inform the victim in writing that (Minn. Stat. § 611A.26, Subd. 4):

  1. The taking of a polygraph is voluntary and solely at the victim’s request.
  2. The victim may not be asked or required to submit to a polygraph examination.
  3. The results of the examination are not admissible in court.
  4. The victim’s refusal to submit to a polygraph examination may not be used as a basis not to investigate, charge or prosecute the offender.

602.4.4 COLLECTION AND TESTING OF BIOLOGICAL EVIDENCE

Whenever possible, a SART member should be involved in the collection of forensic evidence from the victim.

When the facts of the case indicate that collection of biological evidence is warranted, it should be collected regardless of how much time has elapsed since the reported assault.

If a drug-facilitated sexual assault is suspected, it is critical to the investigation that a urine sample from the victim be collected by a medical professional.

If resources allow, kits or biological evidence from all rape cases, including cases where the suspect is known by the victim, should be submitted for biological testing. The result and the case information should be entered into state and national registries in a timely manner.

All evidence from cases where the suspect is a stranger to the victim shall be transmitted in a timely manner to the proper forensics lab for processing all relevant biological evidence.

602.4.5 DISPOSITION OF CASES

If the assigned investigator has reason to believe the case is without merit, the case may be classified as unfounded only upon review and approval of the Investigation Division supervisor.

Classification of a rape case as unfounded requires the Investigation Division supervisor to determine that the facts have significant irregularities with reported information and that the incident could not have happened as it was reported. When a victim has recanted his/her original statement, there must be corroborating evidence to support the recanted information before the case should be determined as unfounded.

602.4.6 AUDITING CASE DISPOSITIONS

The Investigation Division supervisor will ensure case dispositions are reviewed on a periodic basis using an identified group that is independent of the investigation process. The SART and/ or victim advocates should be considered for involvement in this audit.

602.5 RELEASING INFORMATION TO THE PUBLIC

In cases where the perpetrator is not known to the victim, and especially if there are multiple crimes where more than one appear to be related, consideration should be given to releasing information to the public whenever there is a reasonable likelihood that doing so may result in developing helpful investigative leads. The Investigation Division supervisor should weigh the risk of alerting the suspect to the investigation with the need to protect the victim and the public, and to prevent more crimes.

602.6 TRAINING

Subject to available resources, periodic training will be provided to:

  1. Members who are first responders. This includes, but is not limited to, the following topics:
    1. Initial response to sexual assaults
    2. Legal issues
    3. Victim advocacy
    4. Victim’s response to trauma
  2. Qualified investigators who should receive advanced training on additional topics. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:
    1. Interviewing sexual assault victims
    2. SART
    3. Medical and legal aspects of sexual assault investigations
    4. Serial crimes investigations
    5. Use of community and other federal and state investigative resources, such as the Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (ViCAP)

606 - Asset Forgeiture

606.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy describes the authority and procedure for the seizure, forfeiture and liquidation of property associated with specified designated offenses and controlled substance offenses (Minn. Stat. § 609.531 to Minn. Stat. § 609.5318).

606.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes that appropriately applied forfeiture laws are helpful to enforce the law, deter crime and reduce the economic incentive of crime. However, the potential of revenue shall not be allowed to jeopardize the effective investigation and prosecution of criminal offenses, officer safety, the integrity of ongoing investigations or the due process rights of citizens.

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department that all employees of the agency, all employees assigned to another law enforcement agency’s task force and all employees assigned to a task force from an outside law enforcement agency, in which this agency serves as the Fiscal Agent, follow all state and federal laws pertaining to forfeiture.

606.3 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Cash - Money in the form of bills or coins, traveler’s checks, money orders, checks or other forms of electronic money or stored value cards, including, but not limited to, gift cards, debit cards, gift cards/certificates or other negotiable financial instruments.

Conveyance device - A device used for transportation. It includes, but is not limited to, a motor vehicle, trailer, snowmobile, airplane and vessel, and any equipment attached to it. The term "conveyance device" does not include property, which has been stolen or taken in violation of the law.

Firearms/ammunition/firearm accessories - A device that projects either single or multiple projectiles at high velocity. Ammunition is a term meaning the assembly of a projectile and its propellant. Accessories include, but are not limited to, holsters, gun cases, firearm optics, suppression devices, cleaning supplies.

Fiscal Agent - The person designated by the Metro Transit Police Department to be responsible for securing and maintaining seized assets and distributing any proceeds as a result of any forfeiture proceedings. This includes anytime the Metro Transit Police Department seizes property for forfeiture or when the Metro Transit Police Department is acting as the fiscal agent pursuant to a multi-agency agreement.

Forfeiture - The process by which legal ownership of an asset is transferred to a government or other authority.

Forfeiture Reviewer - The Metro Transit Police Department employee assigned by the Metro Transit Police Department responsible for reviewing all forfeiture cases and for acting as the liaison between the Department and the prosecutor’s office.

Jewelry/precious metals/precious stones - The term includes items of jewelry, such as rings, necklaces and watches that reasonably appear to be made of precious metals or precious stones. Precious metals include, but are not limited to, gold, silver, platinum, iridium and palladium. Precious stones, often referred to as gemstones, include, but are not limited to, diamonds, emeralds and rubies.

Property subject to administrative forfeiture - The following property is presumed to be subject to administrative forfeiture under Minnesota Law (Minn. Stat. § 609.5314):

  1. All cash, precious metals and precious stones found in proximity to controlled substances, forfeitable drug manufacturing or distributing equipment or devices, or forfeitable records of manufacture or the distribution of controlled substances.
  2. All conveyance devices containing controlled substances with a retail value of $100 or more if possession or sale of the controlled substance would be a felony under Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 152.
  3. All firearms, ammunition and firearm accessories found:

     

    1. In a conveyance device used or intended for use to commit or facilitate the commission of a felony offense involving a controlled substance.
    2. On or in proximity to a person from whom a felony amount of controlled substance is seized.
    3. On the premises where a controlled substance is seized and in proximity to the controlled substance, if possession or sale of the controlled substance would be a felony under Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 152.

Seizure - The act of law enforcement officials taking property, including cash and conveyance devices that have been used in connection with or acquired by illegal activities.

606.4 ASSET SEIZURE

Property may be seized for forfeiture as provided in this policy.

606.4.1 PROPERTY SUBJECT TO SEIZURE The following property is subject to seizure.

  1. The following property may be seized upon review and approval of a supervisor and in coordination with the Forfeiture Reviewer:
    1. Controlled substances and associated property as described in Minn. Stat. § 609.5311.
    2. Property intended for use to commit or facilitate the commission of a designated offense, as listed in Minn. Stat. § 169A.63, Subd. 6 and limited by Minn. Stat. § 169A.63, Subd. 7, and as listed in Minn. Stat. § 609.531, Subd. 1(f) and limited by Minn. Stat. § 609.5312.
  2. Property subject to administrative forfeiture may be seized without prior supervisor approval if the item has a retail value of $50,000 or less (Minn. Stat. § 609.5314).

606.4.2 PROPERTY NOT SUBJECT TO SEIZURE

The following property should not be seized for forfeiture:

  1. Cash and property that does not meet the prosecuting agency's current minimum forfeiture thresholds should not be seized.
  2. Cash totaling less than $300, unless prerecorded buy funds are included in the cash seized.
  3. Conveyance devices valued at less than $3,000 (on drug and fleeing arrests).

606.4.3 SEIZURE OF PROPERTY TO BE FORFEITED

An officer may seize property subject to forfeiture based on a court order. An officer may also seize property without a court order under any of the following conditions (Minn. Stat. § 609.531, Subd. 4; Minn. Stat. § 169A.63, Subd. 2):

  1. The seizure is incident to a lawful arrest or a lawful search.
  2. The property subject to seizure has been the subject of a prior judgment in favor of the state in a criminal injunction or forfeiture proceeding.
  3. The officer has probable cause to believe that a delay to obtain a warrant or other process would result in the removal or destruction of the property and that either of the following apply:

     

    1. The property was used or is intended to be used in commission of a felony.
    2. The property is dangerous to health or safety.

606.5 PROCESSING SEIZED PROPERTY FOR FORFEITURE PROCEEDINGS

When property or cash subject to this policy is seized, the officer making the seizure should ensure compliance with the following:

  1. If the retail value of the asset to be seized is $50,000 or less, completely and accurately prepare the Notice of Seizure and Intent to Forfeit Property Form (seizure form) and present it to the person from whom the property is to be seized for that person’s signature. If the person refuses to sign, the officer shall indicate on the seizure form that the person refused. The seizure form is not used when the value of the seized property exceeds $50,000.
  2. Prepare and provide a receipt for the items seized to the person from whom the property is being seized.
    1. If cash or property is seized from more than one person, a separate property inventory receipt must be completed for each person specifying the amount of cash seized. The receipt shall include a detailed description of all property, checks, money orders, traveler’s checks or other financial instruments.
  3. Complete and submit a report within 24 hours of the seizure if practicable. The report must include, at minimum, the following:

     

    1. A description of the items seized
    2. The location where the property was turned in or stored
    3. The name of the individual who was served with the seizure form
    4. The date that the seizure form was served
    5. The name of the officer making the seizure
    6. Whether the individual signed the seizure form
  4. If property is seized from multiple individuals, a separate seizure form will be completed for each individual. A copy of the receipt and seizure form must be given to the individual from whom the property was seized.
  5. When property is seized and no one claims possession of the property, the officer must leave a receipt in the place where the property was found if it is reasonably possible to do so.
  6. The officer will book seized property into the Property and Evidence as evidence, with the notation in the comment section of the property form, "Seized Subject to Forfeiture." Property seized subject to forfeiture should be booked on a separate property form. No other evidence from the case should be booked on this form.
  7. Forward the original and the pink copy of the seizure form, and any seized property processing worksheets, property receipts and reports to the Forfeiture Reviewer within 10 days of seizure.
  8. Inform the Forfeiture Reviewer of the estimated retail value of drugs found in proximity to the asset seized.

606.5.1 CASH HANDLING

It is the responsibility of the seizing officer to secure and count cash consistent with this policy and the Cash Handling, Security and Management Policy. All cash shall be counted in the presence of another officer and the envelope initialed by both officers. A supervisor shall be contacted for cash in excess of $500. The supervisor shall also witness the count, and will initial and date the property documentation and specify any additional security procedures to be used.

All forfeitable cash seized will be turned over to the Forfeiture Reviewer or property/evidence room as soon as practicable.

Prior to deposit with the Forfeiture Reviewer, officers shall examine all cash seized to determine whether it contains any prerecorded buy funds. Officers shall document the recovery of all buy funds and deposit those funds with the Forfeiture Reviewer to be returned to the appropriate buy fund account.

606.5.2 JEWELRY/PRECIOUS METALS/PRECIOUS STONES

Officers seizing jewelry, precious metals and/or precious stones will write a detailed description of each item on the property inventory receipt. A copy of the property inventory receipt and any photographs of the jewelry, precious metals and/or precious stones shall be delivered to the Forfeiture Reviewer.

Officers seizing jewelry, precious metals and/or precious stones shall book those items according to current property and evidence procedures as soon as practicable.

606.5.3 VEHICLES

Any conveyance device seized for forfeiture shall be taken to a secure designated area or to a department-approved impound facility as soon as practicable.

Officers shall inventory the conveyance device and its contents in accordance with the Vehicle Towing and Release Policy. Officers shall also complete applicable report forms and distribute them appropriately. A copy of the vehicle storage report shall be included with the seizure documentation that is submitted to the Forfeiture Reviewer.

606.5.4 FIREARMS/AMMUNITION/FIREARM ACCESSORIES

When firearms, ammunition or firearms accessories are seized, they shall be inventoried and delivered to the Property and Evidence in accordance with the current booking procedures and the Property and Evidence Policy.

606.6 MAINTAINING SEIZED PROPERTY

The Property and Evidence supervisor is responsible for ensuring compliance with the following:

  1. All property received for forfeiture is reasonably secured and properly stored to prevent waste and preserve its condition (Minn. Stat. § 609.531 Subd. 5).
  2. All property received for forfeiture is checked to determine if the property has been stolen.
  3. All property received for forfeiture is retained in the same manner as evidence until forfeiture is finalized or returned to the claimant or person with an ownership interest.
  4. Property received for forfeiture is not used unless the forfeiture action has been completed.

606.7 FORFEITURE REVIEWER

The Chief of Police will appoint an officer as the Forfeiture Reviewer. Prior to assuming duties, or as soon as practicable thereafter, the Forfeiture Reviewer should attend a department-approved course on asset forfeiture.

The responsibilities of Forfeiture Reviewer include the following:

  1. Confer regularly with the prosecuting attorney's office to remain familiar with forfeiture laws, particularly Minn. Stat. § 609.531 to Minn. Stat. § 609.5318, Minn. Stat. § 169A.63, and the forfeiture policies of the prosecuting agency.
  2. Make reasonable efforts to obtain annual training that includes best practices in pursuing, seizing and tracking forfeitures.
  3. Ensure responsibilities, including designation of a Fiscal Agent, are clearly established whenever multiple agencies are cooperating in a forfeiture case.
  4. Ensure that a seizure form, property inventory receipt and a forfeited property processing worksheet is available and appropriate for department use. The seizure form will minimally include the following (Minn. Stat. § 609.5314):
    1. Space for an itemized list of items seized
    2. The location and date of the seizure
    3. A place for the name of the individual served with the seizure form
    4. The date and signature of the officer conducting the seizure
    5. The agency case number
    6. A space for the signature of the person from whom property is seized or an appropriate space or check box for the officer to indicate that the person refused to sign
    7. At least an original and the pink copy
    8. Information in English, Hmong, Somali and Spanish explaining the right to obtain judicial review and the procedure provided by Minn. Stat. § 609.5314.
  5. Ensure that officers who may be involved in asset forfeiture receive training in the proper use of the seizure form and the forfeiture process. The training should be developed in consultation with the prosecuting attorney and may be accomplished through traditional classroom education, electronic media, Daily Training Bulletins or department directives. The training should be based on this policy and address any relevant statutory changes and court decisions.
  6. Review each asset forfeiture case to ensure the following:

     

    1. Written documentation of the seizure and items seized is present in the case file.
    2. Independent prosecutorial review of the circumstances and propriety of the seizure is made in a timely manner.
    3. A timely notice of seizure has been given to interest holders of seized property.
    4. Property is promptly released to those entitled to its return.
  7. Forward all changes to forfeiture status to any supervisor who initiates a forfeiture case.
  8. Deposit any cash received with the Fiscal Agent.
  9. Ensure the current minimum forfeiture thresholds are communicated appropriately to officers.
  10. Annually review and update this policy and any related policies to reflect current federal and state statutes and case law.
  11. Prepare a written plan for the Chief of Police to address any extended absence of the Forfeiture Reviewer to ensure that contact information for other law enforcement officers and attorneys who may assist in these matters is available.
  12. Ensure the Department disposes of property as provided by law following any forfeiture (Minn. Stat. § 609.5315).
  13. Ensure that any forfeited property used in an undercover capacity, or that is sold or added to the department inventory is done so according to Minnesota law.
  14. Ensure that all forfeited property is used or disposed of in a manner consistent with the use and disposition of similar property by this department.
  15. Upon completion of any forfeiture process, ensure that no property is retained by the Metro Transit Police Department unless the Metro Transit Police Department authorizes in writing the retention of the property for official use.
  16. Ensure that forfeiture proceeds are maintained in a separate fund or account subject to appropriate accounting control with regular reviews or audits of all deposits and expenditures (Minn. Stat. § 609.5315).
  17. Ensure that records of forfeiture are retained for a minimum of six years.
  18. Ensure monthly forfeiture reporting is made to the state auditor in the manner prescribed by the auditor (Minn. Stat. § 609.5315 Subd. 6).

606.8 DISPOSITION OF FORFEITED PROPERTY

Legal disposition may include (Minn. Stat. § 609.5315; Minn. Stat. § 169A.63, Subd. 10):

  1. Retention by the Department and/or prosecuting agency.
    1. If a forfeited motor vehicle is kept for Department use, the Department will make a reasonable effort to ensure the vehicle is available for use and adaptation by officers who participate in the Department's Drug Abuse Resistance Education program (Minn. Stat. §609.5315).
  2. Destruction.
  3. Sale performed in a commercially reasonable manner.
  4. Other disposition pursuant to applicable provisions of Minnesota Statutes.

No member of this department may use property that has been seized for forfeiture until the forfeiture action has been completed and the Metro Transit Police Department has given written authorization to retain the property for official use.

Members of this department or persons related to members of this department by blood or marriage are prohibited from purchasing forfeited items sold by this department (Minn. Stat. § 609.5315, Subd. 1(c)).

608 - Informants

608.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to provide guidelines for the use of informants.

608.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Informant - A person who covertly interacts with other individuals or suspects at the direction of, request of, or by agreement with the Metro Transit Police Department for law enforcement purposes. This also includes a person agreeing to supply information to the Metro Transit Police Department for a benefit (e.g., a quid pro quo in the form of a reduced criminal penalty, money).

608.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes the value of informants to law enforcement efforts and will strive to protect the integrity of the informant process. It is the policy of this department that all funds related to informant payments will be routinely audited and that payments to informants will be made according to the criteria outlined in this policy.

608.3 USE OF INFORMANTS

608.3.1 INITIAL APPROVAL

Before using an individual as an informant, an officer must receive approval from his/her supervisor and the Investigation Division supervisor. The officer shall compile sufficient information through a background investigation and experience with the informant in order to determine the suitability of the individual, including age, maturity and risk of physical harm, as well as any indicators of his/her reliability and credibility.

Members of this department should not guarantee absolute safety or confidentiality to an informant.

608.3.2 JUVENILE INFORMANTS

The use of informants under the age of 13 is prohibited.

In all cases, a juvenile 13 years of age or older may only be used as an informant with the written consent of each of the following:

  1. The juvenile’s parents or legal guardians
  2. The juvenile’s attorney, if any
  3. The court in which the juvenile’s case is being handled, if applicable
  4. The Chief of Police or the authorized designee

608.3.3 INFORMANT AGREEMENTS

All informants are required to sign and abide by the provisions of the designated department informant agreement. The officer using the informant shall discuss each of the provisions of the agreement with the informant.

Details of the agreement are to be approved in writing by the Investigation Division supervisor before being finalized with the informant.

608.4 INFORMANT INTEGRITY

To maintain the integrity of the informant process, the following must be adhered to:

  1. The identity of an informant acting in a confidential capacity shall not be withheld from the Chief of Police, Captain, Investigation Division supervisor or their authorized designees.
    1. Identities of informants acting in a confidential capacity shall otherwise be kept confidential.
  2. Criminal activity by informants shall not be condoned.
  3. Informants shall be told they are not acting as police officers, employees or agents of the Metro Transit Police Department, and that they shall not represent themselves as such.
  4. The relationship between department members and informants shall always be ethical and professional.
    1. Members shall not become intimately involved with an informant.
    2. Social contact shall be avoided unless it is necessary to conduct an official investigation, and only with prior approval of the Investigation Division supervisor.
    3. Members shall neither solicit nor accept gratuities or engage in any private business transaction with an informant.
  5. Officers shall not meet with informants in a private place unless accompanied by at least one additional officer or with prior approval of the Investigation Division supervisor.
    1. Officers may meet informants alone in an occupied public place, such as a restaurant.
  6. When contacting informants for the purpose of making payments, officers shall arrange for the presence of another officer.
  7. In all instances when department funds are paid to informants, a voucher shall be completed in advance, itemizing the expenses.
  8. Since the decision rests with the appropriate prosecutor, officers shall not promise that the informant will receive any form of leniency or immunity from criminal prosecution.

608.4.1 UNSUITABLE INFORMANTS

The suitability of any informant should be considered before engaging him/her in any way in a covert or other investigative process. Members who become aware that an informant may be unsuitable will notify the supervisor, who will initiate a review to determine suitability. Until a determination has been made by a supervisor, the informant should not be used by any member. The supervisor shall determine whether the informant should be used by the Department and,

if so, what conditions will be placed on his/her participation or any information the informant provides. The supervisor shall document the decision and conditions in file notes and mark the file “unsuitable” when appropriate.

Considerations for determining whether an informant is unsuitable include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. The informant has provided untruthful or unreliable information in the past.
  2. The informant behaves in a way that may endanger the safety of an officer.
  3. The informant reveals to suspects the identity of an officer or the existence of an investigation.
  4. The informant appears to be using his/her affiliation with this department to further criminal objectives.
  5. The informant creates officer-safety issues by providing information to multiple law enforcement agencies simultaneously, without prior notification and approval of each agency.
  6. The informant engages in any other behavior that could jeopardize the safety of officers or the integrity of a criminal investigation.
  7. The informant commits criminal acts subsequent to entering into an informant agreement.

608.5 INFORMANT FILES

Informant files shall be utilized as a source of background information about the informant, to enable review and evaluation of information provided by the informant, and to minimize incidents that could be used to question the integrity of department members or the reliability of the informant.

Informant files shall be maintained in a secure area within the Investigation Division. The Investigation Division supervisor or the authorized designee shall be responsible for maintaining informant files. Access to the informant files shall be restricted to the Chief of Police, Captain, Investigation Division supervisor or their authorized designees.

The Criminal Investigations Supervisor should arrange for an audit using a representative sample of randomly selected informant files on a periodic basis, but no less than one time per year. If the Investigation Division supervisor is replaced, the files will be audited before the new supervisor takes over management of the files. The purpose of the audit is to ensure compliance with file content and updating provisions of this policy. The audit should be conducted by a supervisor who does not have normal access to the informant files.

608.5.1 FILE SYSTEM PROCEDURE

A separate file shall be maintained on each informant and shall be coded with an assigned informant control number. An informant history that includes the following information shall be prepared for each file:

  1. Name and aliases
  2. Date of birth
  3. Physical description: sex, race, height, weight, hair color, eye color, scars, tattoos or other distinguishing features
  4. Photograph
  5. Current home address and telephone numbers
  6. Current employers, positions, addresses and telephone numbers
  7. Vehicles owned and registration information
  8. Places frequented
  9. Briefs of information provided by the informant and his/her subsequent reliability

     

    1. If an informant is determined to be unsuitable, the informant's file is to be marked "unsuitable" and notations included detailing the issues that caused this classification.
  10. Name of the officer initiating use of the informant
  11. Signed informant agreement
  12. Update on active or inactive status of informant

608.6 INFORMANT PAYMENTS

No informant will be told in advance or given an exact amount or percentage for his/her service. The amount of funds to be paid to any informant will be evaluated against the following criteria:

  • The extent of the informant's personal involvement in the case
  • The significance, value or effect on crime
  • The value of assets seized
  • The quantity of the drugs or other contraband seized
  • The informant’s previous criminal activity
  • The level of risk taken by the informant

The Investigation Division supervisor will discuss the above factors with the Patrol Captain and recommend the type and level of payment subject to approval by the Chief of Police.

608.6.1 PAYMENT PROCESS

Approved payments to an informant should be in cash using the following process:

  1. Payments of $500 and under may be paid in cash from a Investigation Division buy/expense fund.
    1. The Investigation Division supervisor shall sign the voucher for cash payouts from the buy/expense fund.
  2. Payments exceeding $500 shall be made by issuance of a check, payable to the officer who will be delivering the payment.

     

    1. The check shall list the case numbers related to and supporting the payment.
    2. A written statement of the informant's involvement in the case shall be placed in the informant's file.
    3. The statement shall be signed by the informant verifying the statement as a true summary of his/her actions in the case.
    4. Authorization signatures from the Chief of Police and the General Manager are required for disbursement of the funds.
  3. To complete the payment process for any amount, the officer delivering the payment shall complete a cash transfer form.

     

    1. The cash transfer form shall include the following:
      1. Date
      2. Payment amount
      3. Metro Transit Police Department case number
      4. A statement that the informant is receiving funds in payment for information voluntarily rendered.
    2. The cash transfer form shall be signed by the informant.
    3. The cash transfer form will be kept in the informant's file.

608.6.2 REPORTING OF PAYMENTS

Each informant receiving a cash payment shall be advised of his/her responsibility to report the cash to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as income. If funds distributed exceed $600 in any reporting year, the informant should be provided IRS Form 1099 (26 CFR 1.6041-1). If such documentation or reporting may reveal the identity of the informant and by doing so jeopardize any investigation, the safety of officers or the safety of the informant (26 CFR 1.6041-3), then IRS Form 1099 should not be issued.

In such cases, the informant shall be provided a letter identifying the amount he/she must report on a tax return as “other income” and shall be required to provide a signed acknowledgement of receipt of the letter. The completed acknowledgement form and a copy of the letter shall be retained in the informant’s file.

608.6.3 AUDIT OF PAYMENTS

The Investigation Division supervisor or the authorized designee shall be responsible for compliance with any audit requirements associated with grant provisions and applicable state and federal law.

At least once every six months, the Chief of Police or the authorized designee should conduct an audit of all informant funds for the purpose of accountability and security of the funds. The funds and related documents (e.g., buy/expense fund records, cash transfer forms, invoices, receipts and logs) will assist with the audit process.

610 - Eyewitness Identification

610.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy sets forth guidelines to be used when members of this department employ eyewitness identification techniques.

610.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to the policy include:

Eyewitness identification process - Any field identification, live lineup or photographic identification.

Field identification - A live presentation of a single individual to a witness following the commission of a criminal offense for the purpose of identifying or eliminating the person as the suspect.

Live lineup - A live presentation of individuals to a witness for the purpose of identifying or eliminating an individual as the suspect.

Photographic lineup - Presentation of photographs to a witness for the purpose of identifying or eliminating an individual as the suspect.

610.2 POLICY

This department will strive to use eyewitness identification techniques, when appropriate, to enhance the investigative process and will emphasize identifying persons responsible for crime and exonerating the innocent.

610.3 INTERPRETIVE SERVICES

Officers should make a reasonable effort to arrange for an interpreter before proceeding with eyewitness identification if communication with a witness is impeded due to language or hearing barriers.

Before the interpreter is permitted to discuss any matter with the witness, the investigating officer should explain the identification process to the interpreter. Once it is determined that the interpreter comprehends the process and can explain it to the witness, the eyewitness identification may proceed as provided for within this policy.

610.4 EYEWITNESS IDENTIFICATION FORM

The Investigation Division supervisor shall be responsible for the development and maintenance of an eyewitness identification process for use by members when they are conducting eyewitness identifications.

The process and any related forms or reports should provide:

  1. The date, time and location of the eyewitness identification procedure.
  2. The name and identifying information of the witness.
  3. The name of the person administering the identification procedure.
  4. If applicable, the names of all of the individuals present during the identification procedure.
  5. An admonishment that the suspect’s photograph may or may not be among those presented and that the witness is not obligated to make an identification.
  6. An admonishment to the witness that the investigation will continue regardless of whether an identification is made by the witness.
  7. A signature line where the witness acknowledges that he/she understands the identification procedures and instructions.

The process and related forms should be reviewed at least annually and modified when necessary.

610.5 EYEWITNESS IDENTIFICATION

Officers are cautioned not to, in any way, influence a witness as to whether any subject or photo presented in a lineup is in any way connected to the case. Officers should avoid mentioning that:

  • The individual was apprehended near the crime scene.
  • The evidence points to the individual as the suspect.
  • Other witnesses have identified, or failed to identify, the individual as the suspect.

In order to avoid undue influence, witnesses should view suspects or a lineup individually and outside the presence of other witnesses. Witnesses should be instructed to avoid discussing details of the incident or of the identification process with other witnesses.

Whenever feasible, the eyewitness identification procedure should be audio and/or video recorded and the recording should be retained according to current evidence procedures.

610.5.1 PHOTOGRAPHIC AND LIVE LINEUP CONSIDERATIONS

When practicable, the person composing the lineup and the person presenting the lineup should not be directly involved in the investigation of the case. When this is not possible, the member presenting the lineup must take the utmost care not to communicate the identity of the suspect in any way.

When practicable, the employee presenting a lineup to a witness should not know which photograph or person is the suspect.

Other persons or photos used in any lineup should bear similar characteristics to the suspect to avoid causing him/her to unreasonably stand out. In cases involving multiple suspects, a separate lineup should be conducted for each suspect. The suspects should be placed in a different order within each lineup.

The employee presenting the lineup to a witness should do so sequentially and not simultaneously (i.e., show the witness one person at a time). The witness should view all persons in the lineup.

The order of the suspect or the photos and the fillers should be randomized before being presented to each witness.

A live lineup should only be used before criminal proceedings have been initiated against the suspect. If there is any question as to whether any criminal proceedings have begun, the investigating officer should contact the appropriate prosecuting attorney before proceeding.

610.5.2 FIELD IDENTIFICATION CONSIDERATIONS

Field identifications, also known as field elimination show-ups or one-on-one identifications, may be helpful in certain cases, where exigent circumstances make it impracticable to conduct a photo or live lineup identifications. A field elimination or show-up identification should not be used when independent probable cause exists to arrest a suspect. In such cases a live or photo lineup is the preferred course of action if eyewitness identification is contemplated.

When initiating a field identification, the officer should observe the following guidelines:

  1. Obtain a complete description of the suspect from the witness.
  2. Assess whether a witness should be included in a field identification process by considering:
    1. The length of time the witness observed the suspect.
    2. The distance between the witness and the suspect.
    3. Whether the witness could view the suspect's face.
    4. The quality of the lighting when the suspect was observed by the witness.
    5. Whether there were distracting noises or activity during the observation.
    6. Any other circumstances affecting the witness's opportunity to observe the suspect.
    7. The length of time that has elapsed since the witness observed the suspect.
  3. If safe and practicable, the person who is the subject of the show-up should not be handcuffed or in a patrol vehicle.
  4. When feasible, officers should bring the witness to the location of the suspect, rather than bring the suspect to the witness.
  5. A person should not be shown to the same witness more than once.
  6. In cases involving multiple suspects, witnesses should only be permitted to view the suspects one at a time.
  7. A person in a field identification should not be required to put on clothing worn by the suspect, to speak words uttered by the suspect or to perform other actions mimicking those of the suspect.
  8. If a witness positively identifies an individual as the perpetrator, officers should not conduct any further field identifications with other witnesses for that suspect. In such instances

officers should document the contact information for any additional witnesses for follow up, if necessary.

610.6 DOCUMENTATION

A thorough description of the eyewitness process and the results of any eyewitness identification should be documented in the case report. Witness comments of how certain he/she is of the identification or non-identification should be quoted in the report. Officers shall also record the eye witness identification process with their squad MVR whenever it is available to them.

If a photographic lineup is utilized, a copy of the photographic lineup presented to the witness should be included in the case report. In addition, the order in which the photographs were presented to the witness should be documented in the case report.

612 - Brady Material Disclosure

612.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes guidelines for identifying and releasing potentially exculpatory or impeachment information (so-called "Brady information") to a prosecuting attorney.

612.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Brady information - Information known or possessed by the Metro Transit Police Department that is both favorable and material to the current prosecution or defense of a criminal defendant.

612.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department will conduct fair and impartial criminal investigations and will provide the prosecution with both incriminating and exculpatory evidence as well as information that may adversely affect the credibility of a witness. In addition to reporting all evidence of guilt, the Metro Transit Police Department will assist the prosecution by complying with its obligation to disclose information that is both favorable and material to the defense. The Department will identify and disclose to the prosecution potentially exculpatory information as provided in this policy.

612.3 DISCLOSURE OF INVESTIGATIVE INFORMATION

Officers must include in their investigative reports adequate investigative information and reference to all material evidence and facts that are reasonably believed to be either incriminating or exculpatory to any individual in the case. If an officer learns of potentially incriminating or exculpatory information any time after submission of a case, the officer or the handling investigator must prepare and submit a supplemental report documenting such information as soon as practicable. Supplemental reports shall be promptly processed and transmitted to the prosecutor's office.

If information is believed to be privileged or confidential (e.g., confidential informant or protected personnel files), the officer should discuss the matter with a supervisor and/or prosecutor to determine the appropriate manner in which to proceed.

Evidence or facts are considered material if there is a reasonable probability that they would affect the outcome of a criminal proceeding or trial. Determining whether evidence or facts are material often requires legal or even judicial review. If an officer is unsure whether evidence or facts are material, the officer should address the issue with a supervisor.

Supervisors who are uncertain about whether evidence or facts are material should address the issue in a written memo to an appropriate prosecutor. A copy of the memo should be retained in the Department case file.

612.4 DISCLOSURE OF PERSONNEL INFORMATION

If a member of this department is a material witness in a criminal case, a person or persons designated by the Chief of Police shall examine the personnel file and/or internal affairs file of the officer to determine whether they contain Brady information. If Brady information is located, the following procedure shall apply:

  1. In the event that a motion has not already been filed by the criminal defendant or other party, the prosecuting attorney and department member shall be notified of the potential presence of Brady material in the member's personnel file.
  2. If the data is classified as public data, a copy of it shall be provided to the prosecuting attorney. In the case of non-public data, the prosecuting attorney should then be requested to file a motion in order to initiate an in camera review by the court.
    1. If no motion is filed, the supervisor should work with counsel to determine whether the records should be disclosed to the prosecutor.
  3. The Custodian of Records shall accompany all relevant personnel files during any in camera inspection to address any issues or questions raised by the court.
  4. If the court determines that there is relevant Brady material contained in the files, only that data ordered released will be copied and released to the parties filing the motion.

     

    1. Prior to the release of any materials pursuant to this process, the Custodian of Records should request a protective order from the court limiting the use and further dissemination of such materials to the involved case and requiring the return of all copies upon completion of the case.
  5. If a court has determined that relevant Brady information is contained in the member's file in any case, the prosecutor should be notified of that fact in all future cases involving that member.

The person or persons designated by the Chief of Police should periodically examine the personnel files and/or internal affairs files of all officers who may be material witnesses in criminal cases to determine whether they contain Brady information. The obligation to provide Brady information is ongoing. If any new Brady information is identified, the prosecuting attorney should be notified.

612.5 INVESTIGATING BRADY ISSUES

If the Department receives information from any source that a member may have issues of credibility, dishonesty or has been engaged in an act of moral turpitude or criminal conduct, the information shall be investigated and processed in accordance with the Personnel Complaints Policy.

612.6 TRAINING

Department personnel should receive periodic training on the requirements of this policy.

613 - Warrant Service

613.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy establishes guidelines for the planning and serving of arrest and search warrants by members of this department. It is understood that this policy cannot address every variable or circumstance that can arise in the service of a search or arrest warrant, as these tasks can involve rapidly evolving and unique circumstances.

This policy is intended to be used in conjunction with the Operations Planning and Deconfliction Policy, which has additional guidance on planning and serving high-risk warrants.

This policy is not intended to address the service of search warrants on locations or property already secured or routine field warrant arrests by patrol officers.

613.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to balance the safety needs of the public, the safety of department members, privacy interests and other relevant factors when making decisions related to the service of search and arrest warrants.

613.3 OPERATIONS DIRECTOR / INVESTIGATIVE SUPERVISOR

The operations director / investigative supervisor (see the Operations Planning and Deconfliction Policy) shall review all risk assessment forms with the involved supervisor to determine the risk level of the warrant service.

The operations director will also have the responsibility to coordinate service of those warrants that are categorized as high risk. Deconfliction, risk assessment, operational planning, briefing and debriefing should follow guidelines in the Operations Planning and Deconfliction Policy.

613.4 SEARCH WARRANTS

Officers should receive authorization from a supervisor before preparing a search warrant application. Once authorization is received, the officer will prepare the affidavit and search warrant, consulting with the applicable prosecuting attorney as needed. He/she will also complete the risk assessment form and submit it, along with the warrant affidavit, to the appropriate supervisor and the operations director / investigative supervisor for review and classification of risk (see the Operations Planning and Deconfliction Policy).

613.5 ARREST WARRANTS

If an officer reasonably believes that serving an arrest warrant may pose a higher risk than commonly faced on a daily basis, the officer should complete the risk assessment form and submit it to the appropriate supervisor and the operations director / investigative supervisor for review and classification of risk (see the Operations Planning and Deconfliction Policy).

If the warrant is classified as high risk, service will be coordinated by the operations director / investigative supervisor. If the warrant is not classified as high risk, the supervisor should weigh the risk of entry into a residence to make an arrest against other alternatives, such as arresting the person outside the residence where circumstances may pose a lower risk.

613.6 WARRANT PREPARATION

An officer who prepares a warrant should ensure the documentation in support of the warrant contains as applicable:

  1. Probable cause to support the search or arrest, including relevant dates and times to demonstrate timeliness and facts to support any request for nighttime or no-knock warrant execution.
  2. A clear explanation of the affiant’s training, experience and relevant education.
  3. Adequately supported opinions, when relevant, that are not left to unsubstantiated conclusions.
  4. A nexus between the place to be searched and the persons or items central to the investigation. The facts supporting this nexus should be clear and current. For example, the affidavit shall explain why there is probable cause to believe that a particular person is currently residing at a particular location or that the items sought are present at a particular location.
  5. Full disclosure of known or suspected residents at the involved location and any indication of separate living spaces at the involved location. For example, it should be disclosed that several people may be renting bedrooms at a single location, even if the exact location of the rooms is not known.
  6. A specific description of the location to be searched, including photographs of the location, if reasonably available.
  7. A sufficient description of the items to be seized.
  8. Full disclosure of any known exculpatory information relevant to the warrant application (refer to the Brady Material Disclosure Policy).

613.7 HIGH-RISK WARRANT SERVICE

The operations director / investigative supervisor or the authorized designee shall coordinate the service of warrants that are categorized as high risk and shall have sole authority in determining the manner in which the warrant will be served, including the number of officers deployed.

The member responsible for directing the service should ensure the following as applicable:

  1. When practicable and when doing so does not cause unreasonable risk, video or photographic documentation is made of the condition of the location prior to execution of a search warrant. The images should include the surrounding area and persons present.
  2. The warrant service is audio- and video-recorded when practicable and reasonable to do so.
  3. Evidence is handled and collected only by those members who are designated to do so. All other members involved in the service of the warrant should alert one of the designated members to the presence of potential evidence and not touch or disturb the items.
  4. Reasonable efforts are made during the search to maintain or restore the condition of the location.
  5. Persons who are detained as part of the warrant service are handled appropriately under the circumstances.
  6. Reasonable care provisions are made for children and dependent adults (see the Child and Dependent Adult Safety Policy).
  7. A list is made of all items seized and a copy provided to the person in charge of the premises if present or otherwise left in a conspicuous place.
  8. A copy of the search warrant is left at the location.
  9. The condition of the property is documented with video recording or photographs after the search.

613.8 DETENTIONS DURING WARRANT SERVICE

Officers must be sensitive to the safety risks of all persons involved with the service of a warrant. Depending on circumstances and facts present, it may be appropriate to control movements of any or all persons present at a warrant service, including those who may not be the subject of a warrant or suspected in the case. However, officers must be mindful that only reasonable force may be used and weapons should be displayed no longer than the officer reasonably believes is necessary (see the Use of Force Policy).

As soon as it can be determined that an individual is not subject to the scope of a warrant and that no further reasonable suspicion or safety concerns exist to justify further detention, the person should be promptly released.

Officers should, when and to the extent reasonable, accommodate the privacy and personal needs of people who have been detained.

613.9 ACTIONS AFTER WARRANT SERVICE

The supervisor shall ensure that all affidavits, warrants, receipts and returns, regardless of any associated cases, are filed with the issuing court as soon as reasonably possible, but in any event no later than any date specified on the warrant or by rules established by the court.

613.10 OUTSIDE AGENCIES AND CROSS-JURISDICTIONAL WARRANTS

The operations director / investigative supervisor will ensure that cooperative efforts with other agencies in the service of warrants conform to existing mutual aid agreements or other memorandums of understanding and will work cooperatively to mitigate risks including, but not limited to, the following:

  • Identity of team members
  • Roles and responsibilities
  • Familiarity with equipment
  • Rules of engagement
  • Asset forfeiture procedures

Any outside agency requesting assistance in the service of a warrant within this jurisdiction should be referred to the operations director / investigative supervisor. The director should review and confirm the warrant, including the warrant location, and should discuss the service with the appropriate supervisor from the other agency. The director should ensure that members of the Metro Transit Police Department are utilized appropriately. Any concerns regarding the requested use of Metro Transit Police Department members should be brought to the attention of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee. The actual service of the warrant will remain the responsibility of the agency requesting assistance.

If the operations director / investigative supervisor is unavailable, the Shift Supervisor (Lieutenant) should assume this role.

If officers intend to serve a warrant outside Metro Transit Police Department jurisdiction, the operations director / investigative supervisor should provide reasonable advance notice to the applicable agency, request assistance as needed and work cooperatively on operational planning and the mitigation of risks detailed in this policy.

Officers will remain subject to the policies of the Metro Transit Police Department when assisting outside agencies or serving a warrant outside Metro Transit Police Department jurisdiction.

613.11 MEDIA ACCESS

No advance information regarding warrant service operations shall be released without the approval of the Chief of Police. Any media inquiries or press release after the fact shall be handled in accordance with the Media Relations Policy.

613.12 TRAINING

The Training Supervisor should ensure officers whose job duties require it, receive periodic training on this policy and associated topics, such as legal issues, warrant preparation, warrant service and reporting requirements.

614 - Operations Planning and Deconfliction

614.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidelines for planning, deconfliction and execution of high-risk operations.

Additional guidance on planning and serving high-risk warrants is provided in the Warrant Service Policy.

614.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

High-risk operations - Operations, including service of search and arrest warrants and sting operations, that are likely to present higher risks than are commonly faced by officers on a daily basis, including suspected fortified locations, reasonable risk of violence or confrontation with multiple persons, or reason to suspect that persons anticipate the operation.

614.2 POLICY

It is the policy of the Metro Transit Police Department to properly plan and carry out high- risk operations, including participation in a regional deconfliction system, in order to provide coordination, enhance the safety of members and the public, decrease the risk of compromising investigations and prevent duplicating efforts.

614.3 OPERATIONS DIRECTOR / INVESTIGATIVE SUPERVISOR

The Chief of Police will designate a member of this department to be the operations director (typically the Investigative Supervisor).

The operations director / investigative supervisor will develop and maintain a risk assessment form to assess, plan and coordinate operations. This form should provide a process to identify high-risk operations.

The operations director / investigative supervisor will review risk assessment forms with involved supervisors to determine whether a particular incident qualifies as a high-risk operation. The director will also have the responsibility for coordinating operations that are categorized as high risk.

614.4 RISK ASSESSMENT

614.4.1 RISK ASSESSMENT FORM PREPARATION

Officers assigned as operational leads for any operation that may qualify as a high-risk operation shall complete a risk assessment form.

When preparing the form, the officer should query all relevant and reasonably available intelligence resources for information about the subject of investigation, others who may be present and the involved location. These sources may include regional intelligence and criminal justice databases,

target deconfliction systems, firearm records, commercial databases and property records. Where appropriate, the officer should also submit information to these resources.

The officer should gather available information that includes, but is not limited to:

  1. Photographs, including aerial photographs, if available, of the involved location, neighboring yards and obstacles.
  2. Maps of the location.
  3. Diagrams of any property and the interior of any buildings that are involved.
  4. Historical information about the subject of investigation (e.g., history of weapon possession or use, known mental illness, known drug use, threats against police, gang affiliation, criminal history).
  5. Historical information about others who may be present at the location (e.g., other criminals, innocent third parties, dependent adults, children, animals).
  6. Obstacles associated with the location (e.g., fortification, booby traps, reinforced doors/ windows, surveillance measures, number and type of buildings, geographic and perimeter barriers, the number and types of weapons likely to be present, information that suggests the presence of explosives, chemicals or other hazardous materials, the potential for multiple dwellings or living spaces, availability of keys/door combinations).
  7. Other environmental factors (e.g., nearby venues such as schools and day care centers, proximity of adjacent homes or other occupied buildings, anticipated pedestrian and vehicle traffic at the time of service).
  8. Other available options that may minimize the risk to officers and others (e.g., making an off-site arrest or detention of the subject of investigation).

614.4.2 RISK ASSESSMENT REVIEW

Officers will present the risk assessment form and other relevant documents (such as copies of search warrants and affidavits and arrest warrants) to their supervisor and the operations director/ investigative supervisor.

The supervisor and operations director / investigative supervisor shall confer and determine the level of risk. Supervisors should take reasonable actions if there is a change in circumstances that elevates the risks associated with the operation.

614.4.3 HIGH-RISK OPERATIONS

If the operations director / investigative supervisor, after consultation with the involved supervisor, determines that the operation is high risk, the operations director / investigative supervisor should:

  1. Determine what resources will be needed at the location, and contact and/or place on standby any of the following appropriate and available resources:
    1. Local agency tactical team
    2. Additional personnel
    3. Outside agency assistance
    4. Special equipment
    5. Medical personnel
    6. Persons trained in negotiation
    7. Additional surveillance
    8. Canines
    9. Property and Evidence or analytical personnel to assist with cataloguing seizures
    10. Forensic specialists
    11. Specialized mapping for larger or complex locations
  2. Contact the appropriate department members or other agencies as warranted to begin preparation.
  3. Ensure that all legal documents such as search warrants are complete and have any modifications reasonably necessary to support the operation.
  4. Coordinate the actual operation.

614.5 DECONFLICTION

Deconfliction systems are designed to identify persons and locations associated with investigations or law enforcement operations and alert participating agencies when others are planning or conducting operations in close proximity or time or are investigating the same individuals, groups or locations.

The officer who is the operations lead shall ensure the subject of investigation and operations information have been entered in an applicable deconfliction system to determine if there is reported conflicting activity. This should occur as early in the process as practicable, but no later than two hours prior to the commencement of the operation. The officer should also enter relevant updated information when it is received.

If any conflict is discovered, the supervisor will contact the involved jurisdiction and resolve the potential conflict before proceeding.

614.6 OPERATIONS PLAN

The operations director / investigative supervisor should ensure that a written operations plan is developed for all high-risk operations. Plans should also be considered for other operations that would benefit from having a formal plan.

The plan should address such issues as:

  1. Operation goals, objectives and strategies.
  2. Operation location and people:
    1. The subject of investigation (e.g., history of weapon possession/use, known mental illness issues, known drug use, threats against police, gang affiliation, criminal history)
    2. The location (e.g., fortification, booby traps, reinforced doors/windows, surveillance cameras and/or lookouts, number/type of buildings, geographic and perimeter barriers, the number and types of weapons likely to be present, information that suggests the presence of explosives, chemicals or other hazardous materials, the potential for multiple dwellings or living spaces, availability of keys/door combinations), including aerial photos, if available, and maps of neighboring yards and obstacles, diagrams and other visual aids
    3. Other environmental factors (e.g., nearby venues such as schools and day care centers, proximity of adjacent homes or other occupied buildings, anticipated pedestrian and vehicle traffic at the time of service)
    4. Identification of other people who may be present in or around the operation, such as other criminal suspects, innocent third parties and children
  3. Information from the risk assessment form by attaching a completed copy in the operational plan.
    1. The volume or complexity of the information may indicate that the plan includes a synopsis of the information contained on the risk assessment form to ensure clarity and highlighting of critical information.
  4. Participants and their roles.
    1. An adequate number of uniformed officers should be included in the operation team to provide reasonable notice of a legitimate law enforcement operation.
    2. How all participants will be identified as law enforcement.
  5. Whether deconfliction submissions are current and all involved individuals, groups and locations have been deconflicted to the extent reasonably practicable.
  6. Identification of all communications channels and call-signs.
  7. Use of force issues.
  8. Contingencies for handling medical emergencies (e.g., services available at the location, closest hospital, closest trauma center).
  9. Plans for detaining people who are not under arrest.
  10. Contingencies for handling children, dependent adults, animals and other people who might be at the location in accordance with the Child Abuse, Adult Abuse, Child and Dependent Adult Safety and Animal Control policies.
  11. Communications plan.
  12. Responsibilities for writing, collecting, reviewing and approving reports.

614.6.1 OPERATIONS PLAN RETENTION

Since the operations plan contains intelligence information and descriptions of law enforcement tactics, it shall not be filed with the report. The operations plan shall be stored separately and retained in accordance with the established records retention schedule.

614.7 OPERATIONS BRIEFING

A briefing should be held prior to the commencement of any high-risk operation to allow all participants to understand the operation, see and identify each other, identify roles and responsibilities and ask questions or seek clarification as needed. Anyone who is not present at the briefing should not respond to the operation location without specific supervisory approval.

  1. The briefing should include a verbal review of plan elements, using visual aids, to enhance the participants’ understanding of the operations plan.
  2. All participants should be provided a copy of the operations plan and search warrant, if applicable. Participating personnel should be directed to read the search warrant and initial a copy that is retained with the operation plan. Any items to be seized should be identified at the briefing.
  3. The operations director / investigative supervisor shall ensure that all participants are visually identifiable as law enforcement officers.
    1. Exceptions may be made by the operations director / investigative supervisor for officers who are conducting surveillance or working under cover. However, those members exempt from visual identification should be able to transition to a visible law enforcement indicator at the time of enforcement actions, such as entries or arrests, if necessary.
  4. The briefing should include details of the communications plan.
    1. It is the responsibility of the operations director to ensure that Transit Control Center is notified of the time and location of the operation, and to provide a copy of the operation plan prior to officers arriving at the location.
    2. If the radio channel needs to be monitored by Transit Control Center, the dispatcher assigned to monitor the operation should attend the briefing, if practicable, but at a minimum should receive a copy of the operation plan.
    3. The briefing should include a communications check to ensure that all participants are able to communicate with the available equipment on the designated radio channel.

614.8 TACTICAL TEAM PARTICIPATION

If the operations director / investigative supervisor determines that tactical team participation is appropriate, the director and the tactical team supervisor shall work together to develop a written plan. The tactical team supervisor shall assume operational control until all persons at the scene are appropriately detained and it is safe to begin a search. When this occurs, the tactical team supervisor shall transfer control of the scene to the handling supervisor. This transfer should be communicated to the officers present.

614.9 MEDIA ACCESS

No advance information regarding planned operations shall be released without the approval of the Chief of Police. Any media inquiries or press release after the fact shall be handled in accordance with the Media Relations Policy.

614.10 OPERATIONS DEBRIEFING

High-risk operations should be debriefed as soon as reasonably practicable. The debriefing should include as many participants as possible. This debrief may be separate from any tactical team debriefing.

614.11 TRAINING

The Training Supervisor should ensure officers who participate in operations subject to this policy should receive periodic training including, but not limited to, topics such as legal issues, deconfliction practices, operations planning concepts and reporting requirements.

615 - Scrap Metal Theft Investigation

615.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides guidance regarding scrap metal theft investigations.

615.1.1 DEFINITIONS

Definitions related to this policy include:

Scrap vehicle operator or operator - A person described in Minn. Stat. § 168A.1501 who engages in a transaction involving the purchase or acquisition of a scrap vehicle.

Scrap metal dealer or dealer - A person engaged in the business of buying or selling scrap metal, or both, as defined in Minn. Stat. § 325E.21.

615.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department recognizes the difficulty in preventing scrap metal theft and may investigate, place holds on or confiscate items as provided in this policy.

615.3 INSPECTIONS

An officer engaged in scrap metal theft investigations may (Minn. Stat. § 168A.1501; Minn. Stat. § 325E.21):

  1. Conduct inspections of any purchase and acquisition records maintained by scrap vehicle operators or scrap metal dealers.
  2. Inspect scrap vehicle or scrap metal received by an operator or dealer at any reasonable time.
  3. Inspect any video or still camera and any recordings or images required to be maintained by an operator or dealer.

Any refusal to allow such inspections should be referred to the local jurisdiction's attorney for criminal prosecution.

615.4 INVESTIGATIVE HOLDS

An officer who has probable cause to believe that a scrap vehicle or motor vehicle parts in the possession of a scrap vehicle operator, or that scrap metal in the possession of a scrap metal dealer, is stolen or is evidence of a crime may verbally order the operator or dealer not to process, sell, remove or allow the removal of the item for 30 days (Minn. Stat. § 168A.1501; Minn. Stat. § 325E.21).

The officer issuing the order is responsible for ensuring that the order to hold the item is confirmed in writing within 72 hours. If the item is identified as evidence in an active criminal case, the officer may extend the hold in writing. This extension must occur within 30 days of the original order and may remain in effect for as long as the investigation or prosecution is active.

615.5 SEIZING ITEMS

The investigating officer should confer with the prosecuting attorney to determine whether the item should be confiscated. If the item is evidence or otherwise needed for an investigation or prosecution, the officer may issue a written notice to confiscate any time during the investigative hold. The officer shall take custody of the item within 15 days of the notice to confiscate (Minn. Stat. § 168A.1501; Minn. Stat. § 325E.21).

When an item is confiscated, the officer shall:

  1. Provide the operator or dealer a property receipt that includes at least the following:
    1. The name and telephone number of the Department.
    2. The name and telephone number of the officer.
    3. The case number related to the confiscation.
  2. Deliver the item to the Property and Evidence.

When a confiscated item is no longer needed for an investigation or prosecution, it may be returned to a registered owner only after giving the operator or dealer from whom the item was seized written notice of intent to do so. The written notice should include notice of the right of the operator or dealer to make a written request for return of the item and that if the Department does not return the item within 48 hours of the request, excluding Saturday, Sunday or legal holidays, the operator or dealer may file a petition for the return of the item in the district court in the district in which the property was seized (Minn. Stat. § 626.04).

615.6 TERMINATION OF HOLD OR NOTICE TO CONFISCATE

At the conclusion of any investigation and prosecution, the officer who issued the investigative hold or a notice to confiscate property not yet confiscated shall notify the operator or dealer in writing that the hold or notice is no longer in effect (Minn. Stat. § 168A.1501; Minn. Stat. § 325E.21).

615.7 AUTOMATED PROPERTY SYSTEM

The Investigation Division supervisor is responsible for ensuring that the Department complies with the implementation and use of the Automated Property System (APS) (Minn. Stat. § 168A.1501; Minn. Stat. § 325E.21).

700 - Department-Owned and Personal Property

700.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Department employees are expected to properly care for Department property assigned or entrusted to them. Employees may also suffer occasional loss or damage to personal or department property while performing their assigned duties. Certain procedures are required depending on the loss and ownership of the item and officers should consult their contract for reimbursement information.

700.2 DOCUMENTATION OF ISSUED PROPERTY

All property issued shall be documented in the appropriate property sheet or equipment log and receipt acknowledged by signature. Upon an employee's separation from the Department, all issued equipment shall be returned and documentation of the return signed by a supervisor.

700.2.1 CARE OF DEPARTMENT PROPERTY

Employees shall be responsible for the safekeeping, serviceable condition, proper care, use and replacement of department property assigned or entrusted to them. An employee's intentional or negligent abuse or misuse of department property may lead to discipline including, but not limited to, the cost of repair or replacement.

  1. Employees shall promptly report through the chain of command, any loss, damage to or unserviceable condition of any department-issued property or equipment assigned for their use.
    1. A supervisor receiving such a report shall make an appropriate investigation and direct a memo to their appropriate supervisor that shall include the result of his/her investigation and whether the employee followed proper procedures. The supervisor's report shall address whether reasonable care was taken to prevent the loss, damage or unserviceable condition.
    2. A review by Staff to determine whether misconduct or negligence was involved should be completed.
  2. The use of damaged or unserviceable department property should be discontinued as soon as practicable and, if appropriate and approved by staff, replaced with comparable Department property as soon as available and following notice to a supervisor.
  3. Except when otherwise directed by competent authority or required by exigent circumstances, Department property shall only be used by those to whom it was assigned. Use should be limited to official purposes and in the capacity for which it was designed.
  4. Department property shall not be thrown away, sold, traded, donated, destroyed or otherwise disposed of without proper authority.
  5. In the event that any Department property becomes damaged or unserviceable, no employee shall attempt to repair the property without prior approval of a supervisor.

700.3 USE OF PERSONAL PROPERTY

The carrying of personal equipment on-duty or its use in the performance of duties requires prior written approval by the Chief of Police or designee. The employee should submit for approval the description of personal property the employee has requested to carry, the reason for its use and the term of its use. Personal property of the type routinely carried by persons not performing law enforcement duties nor comprising a weapon are excluded from this requirement. The Chief of Police or designee should review the request and approve or deny the request as appropriate.

700.3.1 DEFINITIONS

Personal Property - Items or equipment owned by, provided by or purchased totally at the expense of the employee. This definition includes optional equipment items identified in the Uniform Regulations Policy.

700.3.2 FILING CLAIMS FOR PERSONAL PROPERTY

Claims for reimbursement for damage or loss of personal property must be made on the proper form. This form is submitted to the employee's immediate supervisor. The supervisor may require a separate written report of the loss or damage.

The supervisor receiving such a report shall make an appropriate investigation and direct a memo to their supervisor that shall include the result of his/her investigation and whether reasonable care was taken to prevent the loss, damage or unserviceable condition.

Upon review by staff and a finding that no misconduct or negligence was involved, repair or replacement may be recommended by the Chief of Police, who will then forward the claim to the Finance Department.

The Department will not replace or repair costly items (e.g., jewelry, exotic equipment) that are not reasonably required as a part of work.

700.3.3 REPORTING REQUIREMENT

A verbal report shall be made to the employee's immediate supervisor as soon as circumstances permit.

A written report shall be submitted before the employee goes off-duty or within the time frame directed by the supervisor to whom the verbal report is made.

700.4 LOSS OR DAMAGE OF PROPERTY OF ANOTHER

Officers and other employees intentionally or unintentionally may cause damage to the real or personal property of another while performing their duties. Any employee who damages or causes to be damaged any real or personal property of another while performing any law enforcement function shall report it as provided below.

  1. A verbal report shall be made to the employee's immediate supervisor as reasonably soon as circumstances permit.
  2. A written report shall be submitted before the employee goes off-duty or within the time frame directed by the supervisor to whom the verbal report was made.

700.4.1 DAMAGE BY PERSON OF ANOTHER AGENCY

If employees of another jurisdiction cause damage to personal property or property belonging to the Metropolitan Council or Metro Transit, it shall be the responsibility of the employee present or the employee responsible for the property to make a verbal report to his/her immediate supervisor as reasonably soon as circumstances permit. The employee shall submit a written report before going off-duty or as otherwise directed by the supervisor.

702 - Personal Communication Devices

702.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to establish guidelines for the use of mobile telephones and communication devices whether issued or funded by the Department or personally owned, while on-duty or when used for authorized work-related purposes.

This policy generically refers to all such devices as Personal Communication Devices (PCD) but is intended to include all mobile telephones, personal digital assistants (PDA) and similar wireless two-way communications and/or portable Internet access devices. PCD use includes, but is not limited to, placing and receiving calls, text messaging, blogging and microblogging, e-mailing, using video or camera features, playing games and accessing sites or services on the Internet.

702.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department allows employees to utilize department-issued or funded PCDs and to possess personally owned PCDs in the workplace subject to certain limitations. Any PCD used while on-duty, or used off-duty in any manner reasonably related to the business of the Department, will be subject to monitoring and inspection consistent with the standards set forth in this policy.

The inappropriate use of a PCD while on-duty may impair officer safety. Additionally employees are advised and cautioned that the use of a personally owned PCD either on-duty or after duty hours for business-related purposes may subject the employee and the employee’s PCD records to civil or criminal discovery or disclosure under applicable data practices laws and rules of civil or criminal procedures.

Employees who have questions regarding the application of this policy or the guidelines contained herein are encouraged to seek clarification from supervisory personnel.

702.3 PRIVACY POLICY

Employees shall have no expectation of privacy with regard to any communication made with or stored in or through PCDs issued by the Department and shall have no expectation of privacy in their location should the device be equipped with location detection capabilities. The use of any department-provided or -funded PCD, computer, Internet service, telephone service or other wireless service while on-duty is without any expectation of privacy that the employee might otherwise have in any communication, including the content of any such communication. Communications or data reception on personal, password-protected, web-based e-mail accounts and any other services are subject to monitoring if department equipment is used.

In accordance with this policy, supervisors are authorized to conduct a limited administrative search of electronic files without prior notice, consent or a search warrant, on department- issued or personally owned PCDs that have been used to conduct department-related business. Administrative searches can take place for work-related purposes that may be unrelated to investigations of employee misconduct and, as reasonably practicable, will be done in the presence of the affected employee. Prior to conducting any search of personally owned devices, supervisors shall consult with the Chief of Police or designee. All such searches shall be fully documented in a written report.

702.4 DEPARTMENT-ISSUED PCD

Depending on an employee’s assignment and the needs of the position, the Department may at its discretion issue or fund a PCD. Department-issued or funded PCDs are provided as a convenience to facilitate on-duty performance only. Such devices and the associated telephone number shall remain the sole property of the Department and shall be subject to inspection or monitoring (including all related records and content) at any time without notice and without cause.

Unless an employee is expressly authorized by the Chief of Police or the authorized designee for off-duty use of the PCD, the PCD will either be secured in the workplace at the completion of the tour of duty or will be turned off when leaving the workplace.

702.5 PERSONALLY OWNED PCD

Employees may carry a personally owned PCD while on-duty subject to the following conditions and limitations:

  1. Carrying a personally owned PCD is a privilege, not a right.
  2. The Department accepts no responsibility or liability for loss of or damage to a personally owned PCD.
  3. Employees shall promptly notify the Department in the event the PCD is lost or stolen.
  4. The PCD and any associated services shall be purchased, used and maintained solely at the employee’s expense.
  5. The device should not be used for work-related purposes except in exigent circumstances, (e.g. unavailability of radio communications). Employees have a reduced expectation of privacy when using a personally owned PCD in the workplace and have no expectation of privacy with regard to any department business-related communication.
    1. Members may use personally owned PCDs on-duty for routine administrative work as authorized by the Chief of Police.
  6. The device shall not be utilized to record or disclose any business-related data, including photographs, video or the recording or transmittal of any data or material obtained or made accessible as a result of employment with the Department, without the express authorization of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.
  7. Use of a personally owned PCD constitutes consent for the Department to access the PCD to inspect and copy data to meet the needs of the Department, which may include litigation, public records retention and release obligations and internal investigations. If the PCD is carried on-duty, employees will provide the Department with all telephone access numbers of the device.
  8. All work-related documents, e-mails, photographs, recordings or other public records created or received on a member’s personally owned PCD should be transferred to the Metro Transit Police Department and deleted from the member’s PCD as soon as reasonably practicable but no later than the end of the member’s shift.

Except with prior express authorization from their supervisor, employees are not obligated or required to carry, access, monitor or respond to electronic communications using a personally owned PCD while off-duty. If an employee is in an authorized status that allows for appropriate compensation consistent with policy or existing collective bargaining agreements, or if the employee has prior express authorization from his/her supervisor, the employee may engage in business-related communications. Should employees engage in such approved off-duty communications or work, employees entitled to compensation shall promptly document the time worked and communicate the information to their supervisors to ensure appropriate compensation. Employees who independently document off-duty department-related business activities in any manner shall promptly provide the Department with a copy of such records to ensure accurate record keeping.

702.5.1 PUBLIC RECORDS

Work related information including data created, received, recorded or stored on a personally owned PCD in the course of department duties is considered government data subject to the requirements of the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act and discovery obligations (Minn. Stat. § 13.01 et seq.).

702.6 USE OF PERSONAL COMMUNICATION DEVICES

The following protocols shall apply to all PCDs that are carried while on-duty or used to conduct department business:

  1. A PCD shall not be carried in a manner that allows it to be visible while in uniform unless it is in a carrier approved by the department.
  2. All PCDs in the workplace shall be set to silent or vibrate mode.
  3. A PCD may not be used to conduct personal business while on-duty except for brief personal communications (e.g., informing family of extended hours). Employees shall endeavor to limit their use of PCDs to authorized break times unless an emergency exists.
  4. Employees may use a PCD to communicate with other personnel in situations where the use of the radio is either impracticable or not feasible. PCDs should not be used as a substitute for or as a way to avoid or in lieu of regular radio communications.
  5. Officers are prohibited from taking pictures, video or making audio recordings or making copies of any such picture or recording media unless it is directly related to official department business. Disclosure of any such information to any third party through any means without the express authorization of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee or contrary to data practices policies and procedures may result in discipline.
  6. Employees will not access social networking sites while on-duty for any purpose that is not official department business.
  7. Using PCDs to harass, threaten, coerce or otherwise engage in inappropriate conduct with any third party is prohibited. Any employee having knowledge of such conduct shall promptly notify a supervisor.

702.7 SUPERVISORY RESPONSIBILITIES

Supervisors should ensure that members under their command are provided appropriate training on the use of PCDs consistent with this policy. Supervisors should monitor, to the extent reasonably practicable, PCD use in the workplace and take prompt corrective action if an employee is observed or reported to be improperly using a PCD. An investigation into improper conduct should be promptly initiated when circumstances warrant.

If, when carrying out any provision of this policy, the need to contact an employee who is off- duty arises, supervisors should consider delaying the contact, if reasonably practicable, until the employee is on-duty as such time may be compensable.

702.8 USE WHILE DRIVING

The use of a PCD while driving can adversely affect safety, cause unnecessary distractions and present a negative image to the public. Officers operating emergency vehicles should restrict the use of these devices to matters involving official duties and, where reasonably practicable, stop the vehicle at an appropriate location to use the PCD (Minn. Stat. § 169.475).

Except in an emergency, employees who are operating non-emergency vehicles shall not use a PCD while driving unless the device is specifically designed and configured to allow hands-free use (Minn. Stat. § 169.475). Hands-free use should be restricted to business-related calls or calls of an urgent nature.

702.9 OFFICIAL USE

Employees are reminded that PCDs are not secure devices and conversations may be intercepted or overheard. Caution should be exercised while utilizing PCDs to ensure that sensitive data is not inadvertently transmitted. As soon as reasonably possible, employees shall change over to conduct sensitive or private communications on a land-based or other department communications network.

The following situations are examples of when the use of a PCD may be appropriate:

  1. Barricaded suspects
  2. Hostage situations
  3. Mobile Command Post
  4. Catastrophic disasters, such as plane crashes, earthquakes, floods, etc.
  5. Major political or community events
  6. Investigative stakeouts
  7. Emergency contact with an allied agency or allied agency field unit
  8. When immediate communication is needed and the use of the radio is not available or appropriate and other means are not readily available

704 - Vehicle Maintenance

704.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Employees are responsible for assisting in maintaining Department vehicles so that they are properly equipped, maintained, refueled and present a clean appearance.

704.2 DEFECTIVE VEHICLES

When a department vehicle becomes inoperative or in need of repair that affects the safety of the vehicle, that vehicle shall be removed from service for repair. Proper documentation shall be promptly completed by the employee who becomes aware of the defective condition. Paperwork, describing the correction needed, shall be promptly forwarded to vehicle maintenance for repair.

704.2.1 DAMAGE OR POOR PERFORMANCE

Vehicles that may have been damaged or perform poorly shall be removed from service for inspection and repair as soon as practicable.

704.2.2 SEVERE USE

Vehicles operated under severe use conditions, which include operations for which the vehicle is not designed or that exceed the manufacturer's parameters, should be removed from service and subjected to a safety inspection as soon as reasonably possible. Such conditions may include rough roadway or off-road driving, hard or extended braking, pursuits or prolonged high-speed operation.

704.2.3 REMOVAL OF WEAPONS

All firearms, weapons and control devices shall be removed from a vehicle and properly secured in the department armory prior to the vehicle being released for maintenance, service or repair.

704.3 VEHICLE EQUIPMENT

Certain items shall be maintained in all Department vehicles for emergency purposes and to perform routine duties.

704.3.1 PATROL VEHICLES

Officers shall inspect the patrol vehicle at the beginning of the shift and ensure that the following equipment, at a minimum, is present in the vehicle:

  • 6 emergency road flares
  • 2 sticks of chalk and/or window paint
  • 2 rolls crime scene barricade tape (1 yellow and 1 red)
  • 1 first aid kit, CPR mask
  • 1 blanket
  • 1 fire extinguisher

704.3.2 UNMARKED VEHICLES

An employee driving an unmarked department vehicle shall ensure that, at minimum, the equipment listed below is present in the vehicle:

  • 6 emergency road flares
  • 2 rolls crime scene barricade tape (1 yellow and 1 red)
  • 1 first aid kit, CPR mask
  • 1 blanket
  • 1 fire extinguisher

704.4 VEHICLE REFUELING

Absent emergency conditions or supervisor approval, officers driving patrol vehicles shall not place a vehicle in service that has less than one-quarter tank of fuel. Whenever practicable, vehicles should be fully fueled when placed into service and refueled before the level falls below one- quarter tank.

Vehicles shall only be refueled at an authorized location.

704.5 WASHING OF VEHICLES

All units shall be kept clean at all times and, weather conditions permitting, shall be washed as necessary to enhance their appearance.

Officers on patrol shall notify the Transit Control Center (TCC) upon their arrival at the car wash.

Employees using a vehicle shall remove any trash or debris at the end of the shift. Not public data should be placed in a designated receptacle provided for the shredding of this matter.

704.6 NON-LICENSED EMPLOYEE USE

Non-licensed employees using marked vehicles shall ensure all weapons are removed from the vehicle before going into service. Non-licensed employees shall also prominently display the "out of service" placards or light bar covers at all times. Non-licensed employees shall not operate the emergency lights or siren of any vehicle unless expressly authorized by a supervisor.

706 - Vehicle Use

706.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The purpose of this policy is to establish a system of accountability to ensure department vehicles are used appropriately. This policy provides guidelines for on- and off-duty use of department vehicles and shall not be construed to create or imply any contractual obligation by the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit to provide assigned take-home vehicles.

706.2 POLICY

The Metro Transit Police Department provides vehicles for department-related business and may assign patrol and unmarked vehicles based on a determination of operational efficiency, economic impact to the Department, requirements for tactical deployments and other considerations.

706.3 USE OF VEHICLES

706.3.1 SHIFT ASSIGNED VEHICLES

The Shift Supervisor shall ensure a copy of the shift assignment roster, indicating member assignments and vehicle numbers, is completed for each shift and retained in accordance with the established records retention schedule. If a member exchanges vehicles during his/her shift, the new vehicle number shall be documented on the roster.

706.3.2 OTHER USE OF VEHICLES

Members utilizing a vehicle for any purpose other than their normally assigned duties or normal vehicle assignment (e.g., transportation to training, community event) shall first notify the Shift Supervisor. A notation will be made on the shift assignment roster indicating the member’s name and vehicle number.

This subsection does not apply to those who are assigned to transport vehicles to and from a maintenance facility or car wash.

706.3.3 INSPECTIONS

Members shall be responsible for inspecting the interior and exterior of any assigned vehicle before taking the vehicle into service and at the conclusion of their shifts. Any previously unreported damage, mechanical problems, unauthorized contents or other problems with the vehicle shall be promptly reported to a supervisor and documented as appropriate.

The interior of any vehicle that has been used to transport any person other than a member of this department should be inspected prior to placing another person in the vehicle and again after the person is removed. This is to ensure that unauthorized or personal items have not been left in the vehicle.

When transporting any suspect, prisoner or arrestee, the transporting member shall search all areas of the vehicle that are accessible by the person before and after that person is transported.

All department vehicles are subject to inspection and/or search at any time by a supervisor without notice and without cause. No member assigned to or operating such vehicle shall be entitled to any expectation of privacy with respect to the vehicle or its contents.

706.3.4 SECURITY AND UNATTENDED VEHICLES

Unattended vehicles should be locked and secured at all times. No key should be left in the vehicle except when it is necessary that the vehicle be left running (e.g., continued activation of emergency lights, canine safety, equipment charging). Officers who exit a vehicle rapidly in an emergency situation or to engage in a foot pursuit must carefully balance the need to exit the vehicle quickly with the need to secure the vehicle.

Members shall ensure all weapons are secured while the vehicle is unattended.

706.3.5 MOBILE DIGITAL COMPUTER

Members assigned to vehicles equipped with a Mobile Digital Computer (MDC) shall log onto the MDC with the required information when going on-duty. If the vehicle is not equipped with a working MDC, the member shall notify Transit Control Center. Use of the MDC is governed by the Mobile Digital Computer Use Policy.

706.3.6 VEHICLE LOCATION SYSTEM

Patrol and other vehicles, at the discretion of the Chief of Police, may be equipped with a system designed to track the vehicle’s location. While the system may provide vehicle location and other information, members are not relieved of their responsibility to use required communication practices to report their location and status.

Members shall not make any unauthorized modifications to the system. At the start of each shift, members shall verify that the system is on and report any malfunctions to their supervisor. If the member finds that the system is not functioning properly at any time during the shift, he/she should exchange the vehicle for one with a working system, if available.

System data may be accessed by supervisors at any time. However, access to historical data by personnel other than supervisors will require Captain approval.

All data captured by the system shall be retained in accordance with the established records retention schedule.

706.3.7 KEYS

Members approved to operate marked patrol vehicles should be issued a copy of the key as part of their initial equipment distribution. Members who are assigned a specific vehicle should be issued keys for that vehicle.

Members shall not duplicate keys. The loss of a key shall be promptly reported in writing through the member’s chain of command.

706.3.8 AUTHORIZED PASSENGERS

Members operating department vehicles shall not permit persons other than Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit personnel or persons required to be conveyed in the performance of duty, or as otherwise authorized, to ride as passengers in the vehicle, except as stated in the Ride- Along Policy.

706.3.9 ALCOHOL

Members who have consumed alcohol are prohibited from operating any department vehicle unless it is required by the duty assignment (e.g., task force, undercover work). Regardless of assignment, members may not violate state law regarding vehicle operation while intoxicated.

706.3.10 PARKING

Except when responding to an emergency or when urgent department-related business requires otherwise, members driving department vehicles should obey all parking regulations at all times.

Department vehicles should be parked in assigned stalls. Members shall not park privately owned vehicles in stalls assigned to department vehicles or in other areas of the parking lot that are not so designated unless authorized by a supervisor. Privately owned motorcycles shall be parked in designated areas.

706.3.11 ACCESSORIES AND/OR MODIFICATIONS

There shall be no modifications, additions or removal of any equipment or accessories without written permission from the assigned vehicle program manager.

706.3.12 NON-LICENSED MEMBER USE

Non-licensed members using marked emergency vehicles shall ensure that all weapons have been removed before going into service. Non-licensed members shall prominently display the "out of service" placards or light bar covers at all times. Non-licensed members shall not operate the emergency lights or siren of any vehicle unless expressly authorized by a supervisor.

706.4 INDIVIDUAL MEMBER ASSIGNMENT TO VEHICLES

Department vehicles may be assigned to individual members at the discretion of the Chief of Police. Vehicles may be assigned for on-duty and/or take-home use. Assigned vehicles may be changed at any time. Permission to take home a vehicle may be withdrawn at any time.

The assignment of vehicles may be suspended when the member is unable to perform his/her regular assignment.

706.4.1 ON-DUTY USE

Vehicle assignments shall be based on the nature of the member’s duties, job description and essential functions, and employment or appointment status. Vehicles may be reassigned or utilized by other department members at the discretion of the Chief of Police or the authorized designee.

706.4.2 UNSCHEDULED TAKE-HOME USE

Circumstances may arise where department vehicles must be used by members to commute to and from a work assignment. Members may take home department vehicles only with prior approval of a supervisor and shall meet the following criteria:

  1. The circumstances are unplanned and were created by the needs of the Department.
  2. Other reasonable transportation options are not available.
  3. The member lives within a reasonable distance (generally not to exceed a 60-minute drive time) of the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit jurisdiction.
  4. Off-street parking will be available at the member’s residence.
  5. Vehicles will be locked when not attended.
  6. All firearms, weapons and control devices will be removed from the interior of the vehicle and properly secured in the residence when the vehicle is not attended, unless the vehicle is parked in a locked garage.

706.4.3 ASSIGNED VEHICLES

Assignment of take-home vehicles shall be based on the location of the member’s residence; the nature of the member’s duties, job description and essential functions; and the member’s employment or appointment status. Residence in the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit jurisdiction is a prime consideration for assignment of a take-home vehicle. Members who reside outside the Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit area may be required to secure the vehicle at a designated location or the Department at the discretion of the Chief of Police.

Department members may be required to sign a take-home vehicle agreement that outlines certain standards, including, but not limited to, how the vehicle shall be used, where it shall be parked when the member is not on-duty, vehicle maintenance responsibilities and member enforcement actions.

Members are cautioned that under federal and local tax rules, personal use of a Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit vehicle may create an income tax liability for the member. Questions regarding tax rules should be directed to the member’s tax adviser.

Criteria for use of take-home vehicles include the following:

  1. Vehicles shall only be used for work-related purposes and shall not be used for personal errands or transports, unless special circumstances exist and the Chief of Police or designeegives authorization.
  2. Vehicles may be used to transport the member to and from the member’s residence for work-related purposes.
  3. Vehicles will not be used when off-duty except:
    1. In circumstances when a member has been placed on call by the Chief of Police or designee andthere is a high probability that the member will be called back to duty.
    2. When the member is performing a work-related function during what normally would be an off-duty period, including vehicle maintenance or traveling to or from a work- related activity or function.
    3. When the member has received permission from the Chief of Police or designee.
    4. When the vehicle is being used by the Chief of Police, Deputy Chief, Captainsor members who are in on-call administrative positions.
    5. When the vehicle is being used by on-call investigators.
  4. While operating the vehicle, authorized members will carry and have accessible their duty firearms and be prepared to perform any function they would be expected to perform while on-duty.
  5. The two-way communications radio, MDC and global positioning satellite device, if equipped, must be on and set to an audible volume when the vehicle is in operation.
  6. Unattended vehicles are to be locked and secured at all times.
    1. No key should be left in the vehicle except when it is necessary that the vehicle be left running (e.g., continued activation of emergency lights, canine safety, equipment charging).
    2. All weapons shall be secured while the vehicle is unattended.
    3. All department identification, portable radios and equipment should be secured.
  7. Vehicles are to be parked off-street at the member’s residence unless prior arrangements have been made with the Chief of Police or the authorized designee. If the vehicle is not secured inside a locked garage, all firearms and kinetic impact weapons shall be removed and properly secured in the residence (see the Firearms Policy regarding safe storage of firearms at home).
  8. Vehicles are to be secured at the member’s residence or the appropriate department facility, at the discretion of the Department when a member will be away (e.g., on vacation) for periods exceeding one week.
    1. If the vehicle remains at the residence of the member, the Department shall have access to the vehicle.
    2. If the member is unable to provide access to the vehicle, it shall be parked at the Department.
  9. The member is responsible for the care and maintenance of the vehicle.

706.4.4 ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS

When driving a take-home vehicle to and from work outside of the jurisdiction of the Metro Transit Police Department or while off-duty, an officer shall not initiate enforcement actions except in those circumstances where a potential threat to life or serious property damage exists (see the Off-Duty Law Enforcement Actions and Law Enforcement Authority policies).

Officers may render public assistance when it is deemed prudent (e.g., to a stranded motorist).

Officers driving take-home vehicles shall be armed, appropriately attired and carry their department-issued identification. Officers should also ensure that department radio communication capabilities are maintained to the extent feasible.

706.4.5 MAINTENANCE

Members are responsible for the cleanliness (exterior and interior) and overall maintenance of their assigned vehicles. Cleaning and maintenance supplies will be provided by the Department. Failure to adhere to these requirements may result in discipline and loss of vehicle assignment. The following should be performed as outlined below:

  1. Members shall make daily inspections of their assigned vehicles for service/maintenance requirements and damage.
  2. It is the member’s responsibility to ensure that his/her assigned vehicle is maintained according to the established service and maintenance schedule.
  3. All scheduled vehicle maintenance and car washes shall be performed as necessary at a facility approved by the department.
  4. The Department shall be notified of problems with the vehicle and approve any major repairs before they are performed.
  5. All weapons shall be removed from any vehicle left for maintenance.
  6. Supervisors shall make, at a minimum, monthly inspections of vehicles assigned to members under their command to ensure the vehicles are being maintained in accordance with this policy.

706.5 UNMARKED VEHICLES

Unmarked vehicles are assigned to various divisions and their use is restricted to the respective division and the assigned member, unless otherwise approved by a supervisor. Any use of unmarked vehicles by those who are not assigned to the division to which the vehicle is assigned shall also be recorded with the Shift Supervisor on the shift assignment roster.

706.6 DAMAGE, ABUSE AND MISUSE

When any department vehicle is involved in a traffic collision or otherwise incurs damage, the involved member shall promptly notify a supervisor. Any collision report shall be filed with the agency having jurisdiction (see the Traffic Collisions Policy).

Damage to any department vehicle that was not caused by a traffic collision shall be immediately reported during the shift in which the damage was discovered, documented in memorandum format and forwarded to the Shift Supervisor. An administrative investigation should be initiated to determine if there has been any vehicle abuse or misuse.

706.7 TOLL ROADS

Law enforcement vehicles are not routinely exempt from incurring toll road charges.

To avoid unnecessary toll road charges, all members operating department vehicles on a toll road shall adhere to the following:

  1. Members operating department vehicles for any reason other than in response to an emergency shall pay the appropriate toll charge or utilize the appropriate toll way transponder. Members may submit a request for reimbursement for any toll fees incurred in the course of official business.
  2. Members passing through a toll plaza or booth during a response to an emergency shall notify, in writing, the appropriate Captain within five working days explaining the circumstances.

706.8 ATTIRE AND APPEARANCE

When operating any department vehicle while off-duty, members may dress in a manner appropriate for their intended activity. Whenever in view of or in contact with the public, attire and appearance, regardless of the activity, should be suitable to reflect positively upon the Department.

710 - Cash Handling, Security and Management

710.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The proper handling and documentation of cash transactions and the maintenance of accurate records of cash transactions is important to protect the integrity of police operations and ensure the public trust.

710.2 PETTY CASH FUNDS

Employees designated as fund managers and authorized to maintain and manage petty cash funds are the Records Supervisor and Administration Supervisor. These persons may delegate this responsibility to another person in their absence. All funds require the creation and maintenance of an accurate and current transaction ledger and filing of invoices, receipts and expense reports by the fund manager.

710.3 PETTY CASH TRANSACTIONS

The fund manager shall document all transactions on the ledger and other appropriate forms and each person participating in the transaction shall sign the ledger attesting to the accuracy of the entry. Transactions should include the filing of an appropriate receipt or invoice. Transactions not documented by a receipt, invoice or cash transfer form require an expense report.

710.4 PETTY CASH AUDITS

The manager of a petty cash fund shall audit the fund no less than once every six months. This audit requires that the manager and at least one other person, selected by the fund manager, review the ledger, records, receipts and funds, verifying the accuracy of the accounting. Each participant of the audit shall sign the ledger attesting to the accuracy of all documentation and fund accounting. A discrepancy in the audit requires documentation by those performing the audit and immediate reporting of the discrepancy to the Chief of Police.

Should fund management be transferred to any person, each transfer of this responsibility shall require completion of a separate Petty Cash Audit by those persons involved in the transfer.

A separate audit by the Chief of Police or the Metropolitan Council should be completed on a random date approximately once each year on each petty cash fund.

710.5 ROUTINE CASH HANDLING

Members of the Department authorized to routinely handle cash as part of their assignment are property officers. Routine cash handling shall be pursuant to their specific policies (see the Informants and Property and Evidence policies).

710.6 OTHER CASH HANDLING

Members of the Department who, within the course of their duties come into the possession of cash that is not their property or is outside their defined cash handling duties shall, as soon as reasonably practical, verify the amount of cash, summon another employee to verify their accounting, and process the cash as safekeeping, evidence or found property. Cash in excess of $500 requires immediate notification of a supervisor as well as special handling, verification and accounting by a supervisor. Each employee involved in this handling, verification or processing of cash shall complete an appropriate report or record entry as may be appropriate (including using the Cash Envelope).

800 - Crime Analysis

800.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

Crime analysis should provide currently useful information to aid operational personnel in meeting its tactical crime control and prevention objectives by identifying and analyzing methods of operation of individual criminals, providing crime pattern recognition and providing analysis of data from field interrogations and arrests. Crime analysis can be useful to the Department's long-range planning efforts by providing estimates of future crime trends and assisting in the identification of enforcement priorities.

800.2 DATA SOURCES

Crime analysis data is extracted from many sources including, but not limited to:

  • Crime reports
  • Field Interviews
  • Parole and probation records
  • Computer Aided Dispatch data
  • Department of Public Safety - Crime Records Service

800.3 CRIME ANALYSIS FACTORS

The following minimum criteria should be used in collecting data for crime analysis:

  • Frequency by type of crime
  • Geographic factors
  • Temporal factors
  • Victim and target descriptors
  • Suspect descriptors
  • Suspect vehicle descriptors
  • Modus operandi factors
  • Physical evidence information

800.4 CRIME ANALYSIS DISSEMINATION

For a crime analysis system to function effectively, information should be disseminated to the appropriate units or persons on a timely basis. Information that is relevant to the operational and tactical plans of specific line units should be sent directly to them. Information relevant to the development of the Department's strategic plans should be provided to the appropriate staff units. When information pertains to tactical and strategic plans, it should be provided to all affected units.

802 - Communication Operations

802.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The basic function of the communications system is to satisfy the immediate information needs of the law enforcement agency in the course of its normal daily activities and during emergencies. The latter situation places the greatest demand on the communications system and tests the capability of the system to fulfill its functions. Measures and standards of performance are necessary to assess the effectiveness with which any organization, large or small, uses available information technology in the fulfillment of its missions.

802.1.1 FCC COMPLIANCE

Metro Transit Police Department radio operations shall be conducted in accordance with Federal Communications Commission (FCC) procedures and guidelines.

802.2 COMMUNICATION OPERATIONS

This organization provides 24-hour service to the public for information or assistance that may be needed in emergencies. The ability of citizens to telephone quickly and easily for emergency service is critical. This organization provides access to the 9-1-1 system with a single emergency telephone number.

This organization has two-way radio capability providing continuous communication between Transit Control Center and officers.

802.2.1 COMMUNICATIONS LOG

It shall be the responsibility of Transit Control Center to record all relevant information on calls for criminal and non-criminal service or self-initiated activity. Employees shall attempt to elicit, record and share as much information as possible to enhance the safety of the officer and assist in anticipating conditions to be encountered at the scene. Desirable information would include, at a minimum, the following:

  • Control number
  • Date and time of request
  • Name and address of complainant, if possible
  • Type of incident reported
  • Involvement of weapons, drugs and/or alcohol
  • Location of incident reported
  • Identification of officer(s) assigned as primary and backup
  • Time of dispatch
  • Time of the officer's arrival
  • Time of officer's return to service
  • Disposition or status of reported incident

802.3 RADIO COMMUNICATIONS

Operations are more efficient and officer safety is enhanced when dispatchers, supervisors and fellow officers know the status of officers, their locations and the nature of cases.

802.3.1 OFFICER IDENTIFICATION

Identification systems are based on factors such as beat assignment and officer identification numbers. When calling Transit Control Center or another unit, the calling unit should state the call sign of the called unit followed by their own call sign, then pause for the called unit to reply. Employees initiating communication with other agencies shall use their entire call sign. This requirement does not apply to continuing conversation between the mobile unit and dispatcher once the mobile unit has been properly identified.

804 - Property and Evidence

804.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

This policy provides for the proper collection, storage and security of evidence and other property. Additionally, this policy provides for the protection of the chain of evidence and those persons authorized to remove and/or destroy property. Property belonging to persons in custody should be handled pursuant to policies/procedures from the Metro Transit Police Department.

804.1.1 PROPERTY AND EVIDENCE SECURITY

The Property and Evidence Unit shall maintain secure storage and control of all property necessitating custody by the Department. The property and evidence technician(s) reports to the Administrative supervisor and is responsible for the security of the Property and Evidence. Property and Evidence keys/pass codes are maintained only by the property and evidence technician(s), Administrative supervisor, Investigative supervisor. An additional key is in a sealed and initialed envelope maintained in the safe in the office of the Chief of Police. The property and evidence technician(s) and others shall not loan Property and Evidence keys/pass codes to anyone and shall maintain them in a secure manner.

Any individual entering the Property and Evidence room other than the property and evidence technician(s) must be accompanied by the property and evidence technician (or authorized party).

804.2 DEFINITIONS

Property - Includes all items of evidence, items taken for safekeeping and found property.

Evidence - Includes items taken or recovered in the course of an investigation that may be used in the prosecution of a case. This includes photographs and latent fingerprints.

Safekeeping - Includes the following types of property:

  • Property obtained by the Department for safekeeping, such as a firearm.
  • Personal property of an arrestee not taken as evidence.
  • Property taken for safekeeping under authority of a law.

Found Property - Includes property found by an employee or citizen that has no apparent evidentiary value and where the owner cannot be readily identified or contacted.

804.3 PROPERTY HANDLING

Any employee who first comes into possession of any property, shall retain such property in his/her possession until it is properly inventoried and placed in the designated property locker or storage room. Care shall be taken to maintain the chain of custody for all evidence.

Any property seized by an officer with or without a warrant shall be safely kept for as long as necessary for the purpose of being produced as evidence (Minn. Stat. § 626.04 (a)). Seized property held as evidence shall be returned to its rightful owner unless subject to lawful detention or ordered destroyed or otherwise disposed of by the court (Minn. Stat. § 626.04 (b) and Minn. Stat. § 629.361).

An officer arresting a person for burglary, robbery or a theft offense shall use reasonable diligence to secure the property that was alleged to have been stolen and shall be answerable for it while it remains in his/her custody (Minn. Stat. § 629.361).

Where ownership can be established as to found property that has no apparent evidentiary value, such property may be released to the owner. The property documentation must be completed to document the release of property not inventoried. The owner shall sign the documentation acknowledging receipt of the item(s) and officers should photograph the property if possible.

804.3.1 PROPERTY BOOKING PROCEDURE

All property must be inventoried prior to the employee going off-duty. Employees inventorying property shall observe the following guidelines:

  1. Complete the property form describing each item of property separately, listing all serial numbers, owner's name, finder's name and other identifying information or markings.
  2. Complete an evidence/property label and attach it to each package or envelope in which the property is stored.
  3. When the property is too large to be placed in a temporary property locker, the item may be temporarily stored in any department supply room or other location that can be secured from unauthorized entry. The location shall be secured to prevent entry and a completed property form placed into a numbered property locker indicating the location of the property.

Officers shall pay particular attention to bags and/or backpacks entering the Property and Evidence Unit. Perishable items shall be discarded and items such as medication, currency/coin etc., shall be counted and inventoried separately. Officers shall make a notation in their report if they inventory medication, currency/coin or other noteworthy item(s). The Property and Evidence Technician receiving these items shall double check that the above procedure has occurred.

804.3.2 CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES

All controlled substances shall be inventoried separately from drug paraphernalia.

The officer seizing the narcotics and dangerous drugs shall place them in the designated property locker (typically the "drop" locker). All narcotics shall be inventoried at the Metro Transit Police Department.

804.3.3 EXPLOSIVES

Officers who encounter a suspected explosive device shall promptly notify the immediate supervisor or the Shift Supervisor. The local agency Bomb Squad, or contracted Bomb Squad, will be called to handle explosive-related incidents and will be responsible for the handling, storage, sampling and disposal of all suspected explosives.

Explosives will not be retained in the police facility. Only fireworks that are considered stable and safe and road flares or similar signaling devices may be booked into property. All such items shall be stored in proper containers and in an area designated for the storage of flammable materials.

804.3.4 EXCEPTIONAL HANDLING

Certain property items require a separate process. The following items shall be processed in the described manner:

  1. Bodily fluids such as blood or semen stains shall be air-dried prior to inventorying.
  2. License plates found not to be stolen or connected with a known crime, should be inventoried as found property. The Property and Evidence Unit may attempt to contact the registered owner or return the license plates to the Minnesota Department of Driver and Vehicle Services.
  3. All bicycles and bicycle frames require a property report. Property labels will be securely attached to each bicycle or bicycle frame. The property may be released directly to the property and evidence technician, or placed in the bicycle storage area until a property and evidence technician can log the property.
  4. All currency shall be counted in the presence of another officer and the money envelope initialed by both officers. A supervisor shall be contacted for cash in excess of $250. The supervisor shall also witness the count, and will initial and date the property documentation and specify any additional security procedures to be used.
    1. All currency shall be counted by a minimum of two officers. The currency shall be placed into a money envelope which will then be secured with evidence tape and initialed by both officers.
    2. Any currency over the amount of $250 must be verified by a Supervisor and the Supervisor must initial the money envelope.
    3. Property and Evidence technicians receiving money envelopes shall place them into the safe.
  5. All evidence collected by personnel processing a crime scene requiring specific storage requirements pursuant to laboratory procedures should clearly indicate storage requirements on the property report.

Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit property, unless connected to a known criminal case, should be released directly to the appropriate Metropolitan Council / Metro Transit department. No formal inventorying is required. In cases where no responsible person can be located, the property should be inventoried for safekeeping in the normal manner.

804.3.5 COURT-ORDERED FIREARM SURRENDERS

  1. Although not required, this department generally will accept firearms surrendered by an abusing party or defendant pursuant to a court order. A decision to refuse a surrendered firearm should be approved by a supervisor (Minn. Stat. § 260C.201, Subd. 3; Minn. Stat. § 518B.01, Subd. 6; Minn. Stat. § 609.2242, Subd. 3; Minn. Stat. § 609.749, Subd. 8).
  2. Members accepting surrendered firearms should complete a standardized Firearms Proof of Transfer form, if available. If a standard form is not available, use an Evidence/Property form and include the following information:
    1. Whether the firearm is being transferred temporarily or permanently
    2. The abusing party or defendant’s name
    3. The date and time of the transfer
    4. Complete description of all firearms surrendered (e.g., make, model, serial number, color, identifying marks)
  3. In certain circumstances, a court may issue an order for the immediate transfer of firearms of an abusing party or defendant.
    1. MTPD may serve the court order either by assignment or when an officer comes into contact with an abusing party or defendant for which a court order has been issued but has not been served, or for which they are in violation. In such cases, if there are firearms that may be lawfully seized, they should be seized and submitted to the Property and Evidence pursuant to standard protocol.
    2. If the abusing party or defendant is not cooperative, seek guidance from legal counsel to ensure that firearms are seized lawfully.
    3. Permits possessed by the abusing party or defendant should be returned to the Sheriff where the person resides.
  4. The Property and Evidence shall develop and maintain a process to store, transfer or release firearms ordered surrendered by a court. The procedures shall:
    1. Provide for adequate storage and protection so as to preserve the condition of the firearms.
    2. Require a valid court order or written notice from the abusing party or defendant to be presented before any transfer of the firearms.
    3. Ensure that recipients of transferred firearms are not legally prohibited from possession of firearms under state or federal law.
    4. Ensure that proper affidavits or proof of transfer are obtained from any designated firearms dealer or third party.
    5. Ensure that prior to disposition of unclaimed firearms, abusing parties or defendants are notified via certified mail.

804.4 PACKAGING OF PROPERTY

Packaging will conform to the Property and Evidence Packaging Manual maintained by the Property and Evidence Unit. Certain items require special consideration and shall be inventoried separately as follows:

  1. Controlled substances
  2. Firearms (ensure they are unloaded and inventoried separately from ammunition).
  3. Property with more than one known owner
  4. Drug paraphernalia
  5. Fireworks
  6. Contraband

804.4.1 PACKAGING CONTAINER

Employees shall package all property, except controlled substances in a suitable container available for its size. Knife boxes should be used to package knives, handgun boxes should be used for handguns and syringe tubes should be used to package syringes and needles. If the proper property storage containers are not available, officers are asked to improvise a package keeping the safety of the officer as well as Property and Evidence Unit staff in mind.

A property report label shall be attached to the outside of all items or group of items packaged together.

804.4.2 PACKAGING CONTROLLED SUBSTANCES

The officer seizing controlled substances shall retain such property in his/her possession until it is properly weighed, packaged and placed in the designated storage locker (typically the "drop" locker). Prior to packaging and if the quantity allows, a presumptive test should be made on all suspected controlled substances. If conducted, the results of this test shall be included in the officer's report (e.g. positive or inconclusive).

Controlled substances shall be packaged in an envelope/evidence bag of appropriate size. The inventorying officer shall initial the sealed envelope and initial the evidence tape used to seal the package if applicable. Controlled substances shall not be packaged with other property.

The inventorying officer may weigh the suspected narcotics or dangerous drugs in the container in which it was seized. A full description of the item, along with packaging and total weight of the item as seized, will be placed in the case report.

804.4.3 RIGHT OF REFUSAL

The property and evidence technician has the right to refuse any piece of property that is not properly documented or packaged. Should the property and evidence technician refuse an item, he/she shall maintain secure custody of the item in a temporary property locker and inform the supervisor of the submitting officer.

804.5 RECORDING OF PROPERTY

The property and evidence technician receiving custody of evidence or property shall be responsible for tracking those items. The tracking of items is completed using the records management system (RMS).

Any changes in the location of property held by the Metro Transit Police Department shall be noted in the RMS.

804.6 PROPERTY CONTROL

Each time the property and evidence technician receives property or releases property to another person, he/she shall enter this information into the RMS. Officers desiring property for court shall, if possible, contact the property and evidence technician at least one week prior to the court day.

804.6.1 RESPONSIBILITIES OF OTHER PERSONNEL

Every time property is released or received, an appropriate entry shall be made within the RMS to maintain the chain of possession. No property or evidence is to be released without first receiving written authorization from a supervisor or investigator.

Officers requesting analysis for items other than controlled substances shall confer with an investigator regarding the details of the case.

804.6.2 TRANSFER OF EVIDENCE TO CRIME LABORATORY

The transporting employee will check the evidence out of property, indicating the date and time in the RMS and the request for laboratory analysis.

The property and evidence technician releasing the evidence must complete the required information in the RMS. The lab forms will be transported with the property to the examining laboratory. Upon delivering the item involved, the officer will record the delivery time and indicate the locker in which the item was placed or the employee to whom it was delivered. The original copy of the lab form will remain with the evidence and a copy of the receipt from the lab shall be returned to the Property and Evidence Unit for filing with the case.

804.6.3 STATUS OF PROPERTY

Each person receiving property will make the appropriate entry to document the chain of evidence. Temporary release of property to officers for investigative purposes, or for court, shall be noted in the RMS, stating the date, time and to whom it was released.

The property and evidence technician shall obtain the signature of the person to whom property was released, and the reason for release. Any employee receiving property shall be responsible for such property until it is properly returned to property or properly released to another authorized person or entity.

The return of the property should be recorded in the RMS, indicating date, time and the person who returned the property.

804.6.4 AUTHORITY TO RELEASE PROPERTY

The property and evidence technician shall not release any evidence without approval from an authorized member of the Department. The Investigation Division shall authorize the disposition or release of all evidenccoming into the care and custody of the Department (unless the item is only being held for safekeeping).

Property held as evidence for a pending criminal investigation or proceeding shall be retained for a period of time no less than that required pursuant to Minn. Stat. § 628.26.

For property in custody of the Department for investigatory or prosecutorial purposes and owned by a victim or witness, a property and evidence technician shall, upon the request of the owner:

  1. Provide a list describing the property unless such release would seriously impede an investigation.
  2. Return the property expeditiously unless the property is required as evidence.

Upon the direction of a prosecuting attorney, property held as evidence of a crime may be photographed and released to the owner of the property in accordance with the requirements of Minn. Stat. §609.523.

804.6.5 RELEASE OF PROPERTY

All reasonable attempts shall be made to identify the rightful owner of found property or evidence not needed for an investigation. Release of all property shall be properly documented in RMS.

With the exception of firearms and other property specifically regulated by statute, found property and property held for safekeeping shall be held for a minimum of 60 days. During such period, property personnel shall attempt to contact the rightful owner by telephone and/or mail when sufficient identifying information is available. Property not held for any other purpose and not claimed within 60 days after notification (or receipt, if notification is not feasible) shall be properly disposed. The final disposition of all such property shall be fully documented in related reports.

A property and evidence technician shall release the property upon proper identification being presented by the owner for which an authorized release has been received. The owner shall also pay any costs incurred by the agency, including costs for advertising or storage. A signature of the person receiving the property shall be recorded in the RMS.

Upon release or other form of disposal, the proper entry shall be recorded.

804.6.6 STOLEN OR EMBEZZLED PROPERTY

Stolen or embezzled property or property believed to be stolen or embezzled that is in the custody of this department shall be restored to the owner (Minn. Stat. § 609.523 Subd. 3). Such property may be released from law enforcement custody when the following are satisfied:

  1. Photographs of the property are filed and retained by the Property and Evidence Unit.
  2. Satisfactory proof of ownership of the property is shown by the owner.
  3. A declaration of ownership is signed under penalty of perjury.
  4. A receipt for the property is obtained from the owner upon delivery.

804.6.7 DISPUTED CLAIMS TO PROPERTY

Occasionally more than one party may claim an interest in property being held by the department, and the legal rights of the parties cannot be clearly established. Such property shall not be released until one party has obtained a court order or other proof of the undisputed right to the involved property.

All parties should be advised that their claims are civil. In extreme situations, legal counsel for the Department may be asked to file an interpleader in court to resolve the disputed claim.

804.6.8 RELEASE AND DISPOSAL OF FIREARMS

A firearm may not be released until it has been verified that the person receiving the weapon is not prohibited from receiving or possessing the weapon by 18 USC § 922.

The Department shall make best efforts for a period of 90 days after the seizure of an abandoned or stolen firearm to protect the firearm from harm and return it to the lawful owner (Minn. Stat. § 609.5315 Subd. 7). At the expiration of such period, the firearm or other deadly weapon may be processed for disposal consistent with this policy.

804.7 DISPOSITION OF PROPERTY

All property with an identified owner and/or an owner that has been notified, must be held for at least 60 days. If the owner is notified and fails to claim the property within the 60 days, it may be disposed of in compliance with existing laws and in accordance with Metro Transit’s Property Retention Policy. The property and evidence technicians shall request a disposition or status on all property being held in conjunction with a pending criminal investigation or proceeding that has been held in excess of 60 days and for which no disposition has been received from a supervisor or investigator.

If the property owner is not located or is unknown, the property is deemed abandoned and may be disposed of after 30 days.

804.7.1 EXCEPTIONAL DISPOSITIONS

The following types of property shall be destroyed or disposed of in the manner and at the time prescribed by law, unless a different disposition is ordered by a court of competent jurisdiction:

  1. Weapons declared by law to be nuisances.
  2. Animals, birds and equipment related to their care and containment that have been ordered forfeited by the court.
  3. Counterfeiting equipment.
  4. Gaming devices.
  5. Obscene matter ordered to be destroyed by the court.
  6. Altered vehicles or component parts.
  7. Controlled substances.
  8. Unclaimed, stolen or embezzled property.
  9. Destructive devices.

Money found in gambling devices by any peace officer, other than a municipal police officer, shall be paid into the county treasury. Money found in gambling devices by a municipal police officer shall be paid into the treasury of the municipality (Minn. Stat. § 626.04 (b)).

804.7.2 UNCLAIMED MONEY

If found or seized money is no longer required as evidence and remains unclaimed after three years, the money is presumed abandoned property and is reportable as specified in section 804.8, Minn. Stat. § 345.38 and Minn. Stat. § 345.75).

804.7.3 RETENTION OF BIOLOGICAL EVIDENCE

The Property and Evidence Unit Supervisor shall ensure that no biological evidence held by the Department is destroyed without adequate notification to the following persons, when applicable:

  1. The defendant
  2. The defendant's attorney
  3. The appropriate prosecutor
  4. Any sexual assault victim
  5. The Criminal Investigations Division Supervisor

Biological evidence shall be retained for a minimum period established by law, the Property and Evidence Unit Supervisor or the expiration of any sentence imposed related to the evidence (Minn. Stat. § 590.10), whichever time period is greater. Following the retention period, notifications should be made by certified mail and should inform the recipient that the evidence will be destroyed after a date specified in the notice unless a motion seeking an order to retain the sample is filed and served on the Department within 90 days of the date of the notification. A record of all certified mail receipts shall be retained in the appropriate file. Any objection to, or motion regarding, the destruction of the biological evidence should be retained in the appropriate file and a copy forwarded to the Criminal Investigations Division Supervisor.

Biological evidence related to a homicide shall be retained indefinitely and may only be destroyed with the written approval of the Chief of Police and the head of the applicable prosecutor's office.

Bulk evidence may be destroyed prior to these minimum retention periods only pursuant to a court order or if the Property and Evidence Unit Supervisor determines that such destruction is consistent with Minn. Stat. § 590.10 and the above notices have been made.

804.8 REPORT OF ABANDONED PROPERTY (MONEY)

The Property and Evidence Unit supervisor shall complete an annual report of presumed abandoned property as described in law to the Commissioner of Commerce. The report is to cover the 12-month period ending July 1 each year and is to be filed before October 31 each year (Minn. Stat. § 345.41).

804.9 INSPECTIONS OF THE PROPERTY AND EVIDENCE

On a routine basis, the Administrative Division supervisor shall inspect the evidence storage facilities and practices to ensure adherence to appropriate policies and procedures.

  1. Unannounced inspections of evidence storage areas shall be conducted annually as directed by the Chief of Police.
  2. An audit of evidence held by the Department may be conducted by a person(s) who is not routinely or directly connected with evidence control, as assigned by the Chief of Police.
  3. Whenever a change is made in personnel who have access to the Property and Evidence Unit, an inventory of all evidence/property shall be made by an individual(s) not associated with the Property and Evidence Unit or function to ensure that records are correct and all evidence property is accounted for.
  4. A quarterly audit of all property contained in the safe shall be conducted by a person who is not routinely or directly connected with evidence control. These audits shall be documented.

806 - Records Section Procedures

806.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The Records Supervisor shall maintain the Department Records Section Procedures Manual on a current basis to reflect the procedures being followed within the Records Section. Policies and procedures that apply to all employees of this department are contained in this chapter.

806.1.1 NUMERICAL FILING SYSTEM

Case reports are filed numerically within the Records Section by Records Section personnel.

Reports are numbered commencing with the last two digits of the current year followed by a sequential number beginning with 000001 starting at midnight on the first day of January of each year. As an example, case number 10-000001 would be the first new case beginning January 1, 2010.

806.2 FILE ACCESS AND SECURITY

All reports including, but not limited to, initial, supplemental, follow-up, evidence and all reports related to a case shall be maintained in a secure area within the Records Section, accessible only to authorized Records Section personnel. The Metro Transit Police Department currently utilizes an online based reporting system which is maintained by an outside vendor. Access to that system is granted by the Metro Transit Police Department and different levels of access are granted to authorized users.

806.2.1 REQUESTING ORIGINAL REPORTS

Should a copy of a report be needed for any reason (other than an officer's copy), the requesting party shall be referred to Records Section personnel. All released reports provided by the Metro Transit Police Department shall be recorded in the Dissemination tab of the online reporting system of the individual case. If an employee is not aware of when a report may be released, the individual requesting a copy of the report shall be directed to Records Section personnel.

806.3 RECORDS MANAGER TRAINING

The Records Supervisor shall receive training in records management, including proper maintenance, retention and disposal of records and the proper release of records under the Minnesota Government Data Practices Act (MGDPA).

808 - Restoration of Firearm Serial Numbers

808.1 PURPOSE AND SCOPE

The primary purpose for restoring firearm serial numbers is to determine the prior owners or origin of the item from which the number has been recovered. Thus, property can be returned to rightful owners or investigations can be initiated to curb