Commendations & Complaints
A Message from Chief Stephen Marsh
A relationship of trust and confidence between the employees of this police department and the community is essential to the successful accomplishment of law enforcement objectives. Our officers are sworn to protect the rights of all people, regardless of race, color, religion, national origin, sexual orientation, or disability. We take this duty seriously and for that reason we have adopted internal safeguards to prevent abuses of authority by police employees. Complaints of such abuses will be vigorously investigated.
If you believe that an employee of the WPI Police Department has acted in an abusive or unprofessional manner toward you or others, I encourage you to report that employee to a police supervisor. I also welcome your commendations for police department employees who have performed their duties in an admirable manner. The WPI Police Department prides itself on providing quality services to our community. We always encourage questions, complaints, and comments from the community. This input allows us to evaluate employee performance, review organizational procedures, and maintain high standards.
How to Commend a Police Department Employee
It is best to contact that employee’s supervisor as soon after the event as possible. You may make the commendation, however, at any time to any supervisor. You may contact the WPI Police Department 24 hours a day at 508-831-5433 and speak with a supervisor.
Your commendation will be recorded by the supervisor. The employee will be immediately advised and the commendation will be permanently recorded in his/her personnel file. The supervisor will also request that you submit a written commendation.
How to File a Complaint against a Police Department Employee
Any person, who witnesses or has direct knowledge of misconduct by a WPI Police Department employee, may file a complaint. The following misconduct should be reported immediately.
- Violations of State or Federal Laws
- Sexual Harassment
- Excessive Use of Force or Abusive Treatment
Any person who wishes to initiate a complaint against a police department employee should call by telephone or visit the WPI Police Department. You should always ask to speak with a supervisor. The supervisor may make an attempt to resolve your complaint. If the supervisor is unable to resolve the matter, you will be asked to forward a written complaint to the Office of the Chief of Police.
Information to Retain For Your Records
- Name of Supervisor Taking Complaint
- Date Reported
- Investigating Supervisor
- Employee(s) Involved
WPI Police Department supervisors are responsible for maintaining discipline and overseeing the conduct of employees assigned to them. In most cases when a complaint is filed, the supervisor will conduct an inquiry. This will usually involve speaking with the complainant and the police officer separately. If the complaint involves a less serious infraction, such as discourteousness, the supervisor may attempt to resolve the matter to the satisfaction of the complainant.
All reports, whether or not they are resolved, will be forwarded by the supervisor to the Office of the Chief of Police.
Serious incidents may be investigated by the Office of the Chief of Police in conjunction with the Department of Human Resources at WPI. Chief will assign an investigator who will report directly to the Chief of Police. The investigating officer will usually meet with the complainant to ask additional questions, interview witnesses, and gather physical evidence.
At the completion of his/her investigation, the investigating officer will forward the findings to the Chief of Police. If it is established that there is sufficient evidence that the employee committed the alleged misconduct, the Chief will determine what corrective action, if any, should be taken. The nature and severity of the misconduct will be considered in determining the corrective action, which may include retraining, reassignment, counseling, oral/written reprimand, suspension, or termination. Incidents involving criminal activity may be referred, by the Chief of Police, to the Worcester County District Attorney’s Office or the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office.
How You Will Be Notified of the Results of the Investigation
At the conclusion of the investigation, you will be notified, in writing, of the outcome. The investigating officer will make every attempt to complete the investigation within thirty days of the receipt of the complaint. If for some reason the investigation is not completed within thirty days, the investigating officer will notify you about the delay.