AccountableAuthority : The Database of Corrupt Officers
This site is helping to clean up police departments all over the country, purging bad officers who have a history of illegal arrests, false reports, excessive force, sexual assault, extortion, racism, and more.
To keep a publicly accessable record of complaints against officers to create a solid foundation for their dismissal from public office, realease of false charges against their victims, and criminal and civil prosecution against them.
Much like a community watch organization, we allow for people to connect and share information on corrupt cops in their neighborhood. The advantage of using this public database instead of reporting to police agencies, is that the agencies typically keep this information and the results of their investigations on these claims a secret. This could be because corruption reaches the top of the organization, or it could be to keep a clean image for the department and prevent any civil liability that might arise from actually admitting they have a corrupt officer employed.
Who does it benefit?
This site will benefit the following people
• Those who are wrongfully accused of crimes, or victims of planted evidence, coercive confessions, etc.
• Those who are injured by an officer acting outside of his duties and responsibilities to the community.
Let's say you are falsely accused of a crime, or there are circumstances where your constitutional rights were violated but can not be proven. Research the officer on this site. If the officer is listed, your attorney might be able to use past complaints of similar circumstances in your defense.
Whether you have been charged with a crime or not, you should report all illegal police activity. Many people are afraid to report it, because they fear retaliation. This is typically not the case. But unfortunately, when these crimes go unpunished, you're only helping that officer hurt more people.
Isn't there a government agency you can report this to?
Yes. However, you will usually get the runaround, and not much will come of the investigation. That's why we started this site.
The district attorney's office would be the one to prosecute criminally in cases where there is an assault by an officer, theft, fraud, etc. The district attorney will recommend that you file a complaint with the officer's agency. They might do an investigation but will typically not tell you the results. If they find that this officer should be charged criminally, they will make a complaint and file it with with DA, who will take it to court. However, if the criminal act of the officer was one that is distorted and embraced by the department as simply an act of heroism against crime - you can be assured that it will not be reported to the DA. Even if it is, the DA has no legal obligation to press charges - perhaps that officer brings in many of the criminals with false statements that make it easy for the DA to prosecute.
Should I file a complaint with the officer's agency?
Absolutely. While we have a great deal of information on officers here, a department can deny any knowledge of any incident if it has not been reported to them. This is their easy way out. If you submit the complaint by mail, send it certified, and put the tracking number on your post to this website. While most people are scared of retaliation by an officer, imagine the consequences if this officer is allowed to continue this behavior and injure other people.
Be safe. If you file your complaint and you go to a police station for an interview about the complaint, be safe by letting a few people know where you are going, why you are going, and even have a few of your friends search you. This way you have additional witnesses who can testify that you did not have anything illegal in your possession if the officers try to plant anything on you such as drugs or a weapon. Make sure that no illegal or threatening items can be found on your person or in your car. Have a friend come with you. Even if they can't come into the interview room, they can wait outside and will reduce the chances of something bad happening. If you are concerned that the department or it's officers are racist, bring a friend of an ethnicity that would not be threatening to the officers.
It's not just criminals who shouldn't talk to cops:
How can I help?
The best way to help is to keep an eye out for suspicious police activity. It is generally not an idea to engage the police, especially if they are acting in misconduct, as it may result in your arrest. However, if you suspect they are engaging in misconduct, try to keep your distance. If you can take pictures or video, even if all you have is your cell phone. Try to get the officer's name and badge number. Do not interfere with his activity, as he could claim that you are obstructing justice. Report any information you have to this website. If you can talk to the person being harassed by the officer, tell them you will post this incident to AccountableAuthority.com. If the two of you can communicate confidentially through this site, then there is a greater chance you can cause the agency to terminate the officer.
If you are unfortunate enough to be the person targeted by the actions of a corrupt officer, try to remember as many details as possible. Get the officers name - he will usually have this first initial and last name on his uniform, and will have an ID number. Make sure you get the correct name of the agency - it is important that you do not confuse Culver City PD for Los Angeles PD, although they are not always easy to tell apart and operate on opposite sides of the street.
Got him on video?
Upload the video to Youtube.com and use the embed code to post the video to this site in your complaint.
Officer Smith doesn't like young people. He profiles them constantly. He pulls over Johnny for going 37 MPH in a 35 zone. He asks Johnny to get out of the car, and plants marijuana on him. Johnny is arrested and charged with possession. Johnny finds out that the video from Officer Smith's police car clearly shows officer Smith planting the drugs. Johnny files a complaint with the police department, but they refuse to tell him the results of the investigation. Johnny also reports this incident anonymously to AccountableAuthority.com, naming the officer who arrested him. He sends that to the police department, asking for a thorough investigation and response.
A month later, Mike is pulled over By Officer Smith. Officer Smith plants evidence on Mike, but this time he is smart enough to hide it from the camera. Mike hires an lawyer. His lawyer tries to ask the police department for a list of similar complaints against the department. The department somehow can't find any record of this report, or the judge deems it unrelated and does not show it to the Mike's lawyer, if he even acknowledges it's existence. However, Mike's lawyer also checks AccountableAuthority.com. He finds that there have been previous reports of Officer Smith planting evidence. Although he doesn't know Johnny's name or email address, he can send him a message asking for details about when he filed his complaint. Mike's lawyer can use that additional information to cite a specific incident that Officer Smith's department should have on file. He can also ask Johnny to testify against Officer Smith's credibility and in Mike's Defense.
Many officers will tell you "once a criminal, always a criminal". Well if that's true, then any officer committing these crimes should be immediately removed from their position as a public servant. Many officers will repeat the same crimes over and over again. But since their actions result in a higher conviction rate by the department, and also because of unions, an officer committing illegal acts can be employed for many years. Sometimes these bad cops end up killing someone, and even then, their employment can sometimes continue.
Criminals need to be in jail, not working for the police department.