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HomeMy WebLinkAboutPolicy 202 – Domestic AbuseOSHKOSH POLICE DEPARTMENT POLICY AND PROCEDURE TITLE: DOMESTIC ABUSE POLICY SERIES: 202 Effective Date: April 30, 2020 Date Issued: April 15, 2020 Chief of Police: Dean Smith (Signature on file) Date Signed: April 15, 2020 CALEA Standard: 55.2.2; 55.2.5; 82.2.1 WILEAG Standard: 6.3.9; 6.3.10 Statutory References: 968.075 Review Date: Annual (February) Review By: PSB Captain Rescinds Policy Dated: December 26, 2019 SECTION DESCRIPTION 202.01 Purpose and General Policy 202.02 Definitions 202.03 Duties of Communication Personnel 202.04 Resolution of Non -Violent Dispute 202.05 Resolution of Violent Dispute 202.06 Probable Cause to Arrest 202.07 Restraining Orders / Injunctions / Harassment 202.08 Referral To Domestic Abuse Services 1 202.09 Required Reports 202.10 Release of Arrested Person 202.11 Employee Involved Domestic Violence Appendix A Domestic Abuse Worksheet Appendix B Relationship History Between the Parties Appendix C Intimate Partner Violence Lethality Screen for Law Enforcement Appendix D Non-violent Domestic Referral Form 202.01 PURPOSE AND GENERAL POLICY Members of the Oshkosh Police Department recognize that domestic violence is not a private matter, but a crime against the State of Wisconsin. Prosecution does not depend upon the willingness of the victim to prosecute. Consequently, officers shall arrest the person suspected of committing a crime when investigating a domestic dispute/abuse call after finding that probable cause exists and we are able to identify a predominant aggressor. The intent of this policy is to focus on criminal conduct, not on the relationship of the parties involved. This policy is designed to deter future acts of domestic violence, protect victims of domestic violence, and provide them with support to reduce potential injury to officers by mandating an arrest of the predominant aggressor without a warrant when supported by probable cause for all cases of domestic violence. 202.02 DEFINITIONS A. Domestic abuse: means any of the following engaged in by an adult person against his or her spouse, or former spouse, against an adult with whom the person resides or formerly resided, or against an adult with whom the person has a child in common. (WI §968.075(1)(a)) 1. Intentional infliction of physical pain, physical injury or illness 2. Intentional impairment of physical condition 3. Sexual Assault, WI §940.225 (1-3) 2 4. A physical act that may cause the other person to reasonably fear imminent engagement in the conduct described in sections (1-3) above C. Intimate partner: is any person who meets one or more of the following criteria: 1. Spouse or former spouse 2. An adult with whom the person resides or formerly resided 3. An adult with whom the person has a child in common B. Probable Cause: The amount of evidence that would lead a reasonable police officer to believe that the defendant probably committed a crime. It is not necessary that the evidence giving rise to such probable cause be sufficient to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. C. Protection order: refers to any injunction or other order issued by a court, including criminal or civil orders of protection, regardless of form, content, length, layout, or name (such as stay away, restraining, criminal, and emergency or temporary protection orders or injunctions), issued for the purpose of preventing the following: 1. Violent or threatening acts against another person 2. Stalking or harassment of another person 3. Contact or communication with another person 4. Physical proximity to another person D. Resident: The act or fact of living in a place as a dweller, and to live in a place for an extended or permanent period of time. Visitors or guests staying on a temporary basis are not considered residents. E. Temporary Restraining Order (TRO): It is a protection for victims of domestic abuse. It makes contact with the victim by the abuser illegal up to the hearing date specified in the order but not to exceed seven (7) days. Violation of a TRO is a crime mandating arrest per Wisconsin State Statute §813.12. 3 202.03 DUTIES OF COMMUNICATIONS PERSONNEL It is important that responding officers be made aware of all available information surrounding the incident. Communications personnel shall keep responding officers fully informed about any new developments as they occur. Communications personnel should whenever possible: A. Obtain the following information from the caller: 1. Name, address, and telephone number 2. Location of the dispute 3. Callers involvement 4. What has occurred 5. Any injuries involved 6. Weapons present or threats made 7. Present location of the disputing persons 8. Whether any of the disputants are intoxicated 9. Whether children or others are present B. Send a minimum of two officers to the scene, whenever possible, and: 1. Inform officers if contact is broken or unable to obtain complete description of the situation. 2. Inform officers if there is an indication of violence and deploy additional personnel as may be necessary. 3. If two (2) officers are not available to respond to a domestic abuse call, the dispatcher shall immediately notify the shift supervisor. C. Occasionally, customer service desk personnel receive inquiries relating to actual or potential domestic disturbance situations. These matters should be referred to a sworn officer, preferably a supervisor, so that an assessment and some decision can be made as to whether an officer response and report is necessary or appropriate. 202.04 RESOLUTION OF NON-VIOLENT DISPUTE A. If the officer determines that no criminal act has been committed, there are no 4 personal injuries, no property damage and no apparent danger to anyone involved in the incident, the officer may suggest one or more parties leave the premises until tempers have subsided. B. Officers should encourage both parties to utilize the domestic abuse services that are available and provide them with information concerning the services available in our community. C. Officers should be alert to the potential of the domestic dispute escalating into a criminal matter. D. The investigating Officer may short form the incident if it does not result in in a mandatory arrest and complies with directive 227 — Short Forming of Complaints. Detailed CAD comments must be entered when short forming a non-violent domestic disturbance complaint. E. If a non-violent domestic disturbance is short formed, the Non -Violent Domestic Referral Form (Appendix D) shall be completed. The completed form shall be routed to the Lieutenant of the Criminal Investigations Division (CID). The form should be completed electronically whenever possible and sent via department email. F. When the initial investigation is completed, the investigating Officer shall classify the incident as a domestic disturbance call type and clear the incident in CAD using the code "Cleared with Report" or "Short Form" for all non-violent domestic abuse investigations. A copy of every long form incident report or Non - Violent Domestic Referral Form will be forwarded to the District Attorney's Office by CID personnel. 202.05 RESOLUTION OF A VIOLENT DISPUTE A. Circumstances requiring arrest in a domestic abuse incident: 1. Notwithstanding WI §968.07 (Arrest by a Law Enforcement Officer) and except as provided in WI §968.075(2)(b), a law enforcement officer shall arrest and take a person into custody if: a. The officer has probable cause to believe that the person is committing or has committed domestic abuse and that the person's actions constitute the 5 commission of a crime, and b. Any of the following circumstances are present: i. The officer has reason to believe that continued domestic abuse against the alleged victim is likely ii. There is evidence of physical injury to the alleged victim iii. The person is the predominant aggressor B. Oshkosh police officers with probable cause shall arrest and incarcerate the person whom the officer believes to be the Predominant Aggressor , as defined in WI §968.075 (1)(c). The Predominant Aggressor is the "most significant", but not necessarily the first aggressor in the domestic abuse incident. Only the Predominant Aggressor should be arrested (WI 968.075(2)(am), unless another party has an active warrant or is in violation of a court order, injunction or restraining order. Generally, dual arrests should not be made for domestic abuse incidents. C. In determining who is the predominant aggressor, Oshkosh police officers MUST consider ALL of the following: 1. History of domestic abuse between the parties a. Facts from previous incidents b. Previous charges and/or convictions c. Signs of possible domestic abuse, such as damaged walls and furniture, injuries to children or animals 2. Statements made by witnesses 3. Relative degree of injuries a. Severity of injury by itself is not a determining factor. Officers need to determine if injuries are consistent with reasonable force used in defending oneself. 6 b. An officer's decision not to arrest may not be based solely upon the absence of visible indications of injury or impairment. i. Present level of fear exhibited by each person involved ii. Threats to harm the person or his/her family iii. Whether either party acted in self-defense or defense of another person D. Dual arrests are discouraged. However, should extenuating circumstances exist relating to arrest and incarceration, such as the need to make a dual arrest or the presence of small children, a supervisor should be consulted concerning the possibility of referring one individual into court in lieu of incarceration. Officers must document the circumstances relating to these situations in an incident report. An officer shall not issue a citation to a person for domestic abuse related crimes as a resolution to the initial on -scene investigation. E. The first priority of the officer at the scene is to restore order and to ensure that emergency medical care is provided when necessary. F. The suspect shall be arrested and taken into custody when probable cause exists that a crime has been committed, even if the victim declines to prosecute. G. If the suspect is not at the scene or cannot be located, the investigating officer shall fill out the Domestic Abuse Suspect Contact Form and submit it to the Shift Commander. Supervisors must assign officers from following shifts to attempt to locate the subject and document those attempts. When the time has expired or the suspect is arrested, the form should be placed in the Record Bureau complaint file and a supplement report completed by the arresting officer. H. Absent extenuating circumstances, arrest and incarceration is mandatory if the report is filed (and probable cause for arrest is established) within 28 days of the incident and the suspect is located within 72 hours of the report. I. If a suspect is arrested, officers are required to inform the victim of the following: 1. The 72 hour no contact provision of the law 7 2. Whether or not the suspect can be released on bond 3. The amount of bond 4. The fact that bond may be posted upon arrival at the Sheriff's Department Jail or any time thereafter 5. If bond is not posted, release will likely occur after a bond hearing (usually 1:30 p.m. the next working day) J. If the suspect cannot be located within 72 hours of the incident, a copy of the complaint shall be forwarded by the Court Clerk Liaison to the District Attorney's office for review. K. The officer shall provide the victim with information concerning the domestic abuse services available in our community and encourage the victim to call Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services as soon as possible so the victim may be informed of how to obtain an emergency shelter or restraining order. L. Officers should inform the victim that Domestic Abuse Restraining Orders are free of charge. The victim should be advised to contact Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services for complete information. M. Officers shall inform victims of their rights and issue a Victim Crime Rights Form in accordance with Policy 146 Victim Witness Assistance. (Appendix 146 A) 202.06 PROBABLE CAUSE TO ARREST A. The basis for probable cause include, but is not limited to, the following: 1. Bodily harm or pain to the victim (visible injury is not required for arrest WI §939.22(4) & (14) 2. The actions were not in self-defense 3. The statements of the victim, including non -consent to the offense 4. Statements of family members, including children 8 5. Statements of friends or neighbors 6. Statements of suspects (When possible these should be taken individually without other suspects present) 7. Observations of the scene and victim 8. Previous calls at same location or with same parties 9. Previous threats/offenses against the victim by the suspect 202.07 RESTRAINING ORDERS / INJUNCTIONS / HARASSMENT A. Before making an arrest for violation of temporary restraining order (7 days) or permanent injunction (up to 2 years), the officer shall check with the Winnebago County Sheriff's Office Dispatch personnel to determine: 1. That the temporary restraining order has been served on the defendant a. If the restraining order has been issued but not served, the officer may serve the defendant the plaintiff's copy by placing the date, time, place of service, and the officer's name and badge number on the copy and serving it on the person. b. The officer must then fill out a certificate of service for the Sheriff's Department records. c. The officer will ensure the copy used for service will be replaced. 2. That the temporary restraining order/permanent injunction is not expired. 3. The suspect must be arrested even if the victim permitted the suspect to return contrary to the injunction or restraining order. The victim/petitioner may not be charged with party to a crime of authorizing a violation of a Court Order if he/she admits into his/her residence a person ordered under WI §813.12 (3) or (4) to avoid the residence. (WI §813.12 (8)(b)) 9 202.08 DOMESTIC ABUSE SERVICES A. The investigating/arresting officer will ensure that the victim is provided contact information for the following services: 1. Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services a. 800-261-5998 2. Catholic Charities Green Bay Diocese- Refugee Family Strengthening a. 920-235-6002 3. Reach Counseling Services for sexual assaults. a. 920-722-8150 This shall be done to provide the victim with immediate support and services, emergency shelter, transportation, child care, assistance with prosecution or obtaining an emergency restraining order. The officer should encourage this process by offering to call the appropriate service provider if the victim would like assistance with making the contact. B. The officer must obtain a telephone number or address where the victim may be reached in case further contact is necessary related to the investigation. Victims should also be reminded to notify the District Attorney of any address changes. C. The victim may be provided transportation to the shelter facility if no other option is available. D. Occasionally, the District Attorney's Office will refer complaints back to our department for the issuance of a summons. These complaints will be forwarded by the CID Lieutenant for review. If probable cause is established to show an ordinance violation was committed, the CID Lieutenant will forward the complaint to the arresting officer for issuance of a summons. 202.09 REQUIRED REPORTS A. All domestic abuse incidents should be classified as a domestic/domestic disturbance call type. The disposition to be used for a domestic abuse 10 incident when an arrest is made or is going to be made should be "Cleared with Arrest". B. All initial arrests for domestic abuse violations shall be made as a crime under the Wisconsin State Statutes. An incident report shall be completed and filed with the District Attorney's office for all domestic abuse cases. 1. A copy of the police report for all domestic abuse incidents involving an arrest shall be sent to the District Attorney's office via the electronic e-referral system. 2. The report shall contain the statement of the victim, witnesses, defendant (if defendant is willing to provide a statement) and include the fact that they did not consent to the crime. 3. If the victim cannot or will not give a written statement, the officer can take a verbal statement and include it in the report. The verbal statement is essential should the victim later become uncooperative in the prosecution of the offense at which time the case may depend on the thoroughness of the officer's report and the quality of the investigation. 4. The officer shall document in the incident report all complaints of pain and physical injuries. Photographs shall be taken where visible injuries occur. Property damage also should be photographed. 5. Officers shall document in their reports if the parties responded to the Christine Ann Domestic Abuse Services, or any of the other services listed in this policy, while in the officer's presence. 6. Officers shall determine if the subjects involved have any children who live in the home. If children reside in the home the Department of Human Services shall be contacted at (920) 236-4615 during business hours or (920) 233-7707 if after business hours. 7. A Domestic Abuse Victim Worksheet (Appendix 202 A) shall be completed by the investigating officer and attached to the officer's incident report for all incidents when an arrest was made. 11 8. Officers shall complete a Relationship History Between the Parties form (Appendix 202 B) for each victim and defendant involved in a domestic abuse situation that results in an arrest. 9. Officers shall complete the Intimate Partner Violence Lethality Screen for Law Enforcement (Appendix 202 C) whenever a domestic situation results in an arrest. a. If when completing the lethality assessment document, and a "yes" response is checked for any of questions 1-3 it is considered a high danger assessment. b. If when completing the lethality assessment document, and a "yes" response is checked for at least four of the questions regarding questions 4-12 it is considered a high danger assessment. c. If the assessment is a high danger assessment, the officer shall notify the Christine Ann Center while still at the scene. d. The Officer shall answer questions of the Christine Ann Center staff and allow them to speak with the victim if they are willing. i. The officer shall only provide the victim's initials to the Christine Ann Center staff, unless the victim gives consent for their name and contact information to be shared. ii. The officer shall document in their report whether the victim consented to the sharing of their name and contact information and if that information was shared with the Christine Ann Center. e. Officers may complete the lethality assessment during non -arrest domestic situations or non -domestic related situations involving intimate relationships at the officer's discretion. f. The lethality assessment shall be turned in to report processing with all other paperwork. The information from the assessment shall be entered into the online Lethality Assessment Program database (wilap.org) by report processors. 12 10. The arresting/transporting officer shall notify the jail that the arrest is a domestic abuse related charge. 11. Officers will complete an incident report or detailed short form complaint and Non -Violent Domestic Referral Form for all non-violent domestic disputes when no arrest is made.. 202.10 RELEASE OF ARRESTED PARTY A. Victims of crime have the right to information regarding the defendant's custody status. The investigating officer shall provide the victim with the location where the defendant is incarcerated immediately following the arrest and a contact number for the facility. B. The officer will explain the Wisconsin Victim Information and Notification Everyday (VINE) program to the victim during the initial investigation. This program allows the victim to register to receive information on the defendant's custody status, including when they are released. This information is available by telephone or Internet. The officer will provide the victim with the telephone number and website for VINE: 1. We site i , eli<< 1 .co 2. Telephone 1-888-944-8463 C. An agency may not release a person arrested for domestic abuse, unless and until the person either posts bond or goes before a judge who determines there is sufficient grounds for a criminal complaint. 1. A law enforcement officer is immune from civil and criminal liability arising out of a decision by the officer to arrest or not arrest an alleged offender, if the decision is made in a good faith effort to comply with the law (WI §968.075(6m)) D. At the time of the arrest, the arresting agency shall inform the victim of the 72-hour "No -Contact" provision (WI §968.075) and of the option of signing a waiver lifting the no contact restriction. 13 E. The victim shall be informed that they must sign the form in order to waive the 72-hour "No Contact" provision. If they refuse to sign the form, the no contact provision will be enforced. F. The victim shall also be advised that if they desire to waive the no contact clause after it has been enforced, that they can do so by reporting to the Oshkosh Police Department and signing the waiver form. G. Unless there is a waiver, during the 72 hours immediately following an arrest for a domestic abuse incident, the arrested person shall: 1. Avoid the residence of the victim 2. Avoid any premises temporarily occupied by the victim 3. Avoid contacting or causing any person other than a law enforcement officer or an attorney for the arrested person and alleged victim to contact the alleged victim. (WI §968.075(5)(a)) 4. The arrested person must have been informed orally and in writing of the 72 hour "No -Contact" provision. The arresting officer should complete this form and give a copy to the defendant. Prosecutions for violations of this provision may not take place if the form is not properly completed. 5. Upon release, the arrested person must sign an acknowledgment on the written 72 hour No -Contact notice that they have received the notice and understand the requirements and the consequences of violating the requirements, as well as the provision of WI §939.621. If the arrested person refuses to sign the notice, they may not be released from custody. (WI §968.075(5)(b)) 6. If a released party intentionally violates the 72-hour "No Contact" provision, they shall be arrested for contact prohibition. (WI §968.075 (5)(a)) 202.11 EMPLOYEE INVOLVED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE 14 This section provides guidelines to establish clear procedures for investigating, reporting and responding to domestic abuse incidents involving law enforcement officers and Oshkosh Police Department Personnel. A. Communications Personnel Responsibilities 1. Upon receiving a report of any domestic abuse incident involving a law enforcement employee, two officers shall be dispatched. 2. A supervisor shall also be immediately dispatched. B. Responding Officer Responsibilities 1. Officers shall request a supervisor in the event one has not been assigned. 2. Pending arrival of the supervisor, officers shall secure the scene and separate the parties involved. 3. A written report shall be prepared for all domestic abuse incidents involving a law enforcement employee. C. Supervisor Responsibilities 1. The responding supervisor is responsible for determining the employing agency of the law enforcement employee(s). a. In the event the employee is from an agency other than the Oshkosh Police Department, the supervisor shall be responsible for coordinating a complete investigation. b. In the event the employee is a member of the Oshkosh Police Department, the supervisor shall immediately contact the Operations Captain or other command staff member by phone. A determination will be made whether another agency will be asked to conduct an investigation. 15 2. If an employee of the Oshkosh Police Department is arrested, the supervisor will place the employee on paid administrative leave and seize all agency -owned weapons, identification, and public safety building access key card. The supervisor will submit a written memorandum to the Chief of Police summarizing the circumstances involving the arrest within 24 hours. 3. In all cases of domestic abuse involving a law enforcement employee of another agency, the supervisor shall make every effort to notify a supervisor of that agency. D. Any employee who becomes aware of domestic abuse involving another employee shall immediately report this information to a supervisor. Any supervisor receiving this information shall report it to the appropriate Bureau Captain. E. In the event the victim of domestic abuse is an employee of the Oshkosh Police Department, the department will make available, in addition to any other domestic abuse services offered, access to the City of Oshkosh Employee Assistance Program. Furthermore, the department will appoint a liaison to assist the victim employee with safety concerns and questions regarding the process. F. If an employee of the Oshkosh Police Department is involved in an incident involving a domestic disturbance outside of the City of Oshkosh or they are the respondent of any protective order the employee shall notify a supervisor immediately. G. In the event an employee of the Oshkosh Police Department is arrested for a crime involving domestic abuse, an internal investigation shall be initiated in accordance with the Policy 103, Complaints Against Department Policies, Procedures and employees. H. The Oshkosh Police Department shall maintain relationships with victim advocacy groups and domestic abuse professionals in the community and ensure employees are educated about intimate abuse and avenues for assistance. 16 I. If warning signs or other concerning information exists prior to an occurrence of a domestic abuse incident, procedures outlined in Policy 175 - Early Intervention Systems (EIS) shall be followed. 17