The Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner’s role in the police complaint process is to ensure that the complaint process is conducted with impartiality and fairness to both the complainant and the police officer.
Police Act complaint investigations are conducted by the Professional Standards Section of the involved member’s department. However, in some cases, the Police Complaint Commissioner may direct that another police department conduct the investigation.
A Professional Standards Investigator will be assigned to the investigation and an analyst with the Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner will monitor the investigation contemporaneously. The Police Complaint Commissioner, in consultation with the Discipline Authority, can direct investigative steps during the investigation phase of the complaint process.
The respondent member will be required to respond to the complaint in the manner determined by the investigator. The member’s statement is inadmissible in evidence in court or in any other proceeding except: a discipline proceeding, Public Hearing or Review on the Record concerning the conduct under investigation; in a prosecution for perjury in respect of sworn testimony; in a prosecution for an offence under the Police Act; or in an application for Judicial Review or an appeal from a decision with respect to that application.
The member may consult with an agent or representative prior to responding to complaints, provided it does not unduly delay the investigation. In addition, where an interview has been scheduled, members may elect to have a representative present during the interview.
For a more in-depth explanation please consult the BC Police Act or the appropriate party within your organization.