NEW YORK — New Yorkers are now able to see the personnel records of any police officer with a history of complaints made to the Civilian Complaint Review Board.
The CCRB released officer histories Monday. The NYPD is expected to soon follow by releasing their own records, possibly next week.
The CCRB’s searchable database contains officer disciplinary histories that are sortable by officer command, rank, substantiated complaints, shield number and name. The information available includes complaint ID, incident date, FADO type, allegation, Board disposition, NYPD disposition, and NYPD penalty imposed. Other records, such as complaint narratives, will be available through the Freedom of Information Law, subject to the exemptions outlined by FOIL.
“Our information will look different than the CCRB’s,” Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said Thursday.
For decades, NYPD disciplinary records were shielded from the public under a law known as 50-a. It was passed in the 1970s. Amid unrest in 2020, including protests following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, state lawmakers repealed 50-a.
“I am proud the CCRB has acted quickly to once again provide New Yorkers with greater transparency,” said CCRB Chair Fred Davie.
The NYPD and CCRB signed a memorandum of understanding pledging to follow a new disciplinary matrix in February. The new guidelines are meant to provide clear, public, transparent discipline for officers who don’t follow the rules.
NYPD officials on Thursday said being this transparent, including the release of information on more than 83,000 active and retired officers, is a very tedious process but they are doing it to gain the trust of the community.
Under the disciplinary matric, any officer in violation of their patrol guide will have clear penalties and some will end up in the department’s trial room. Ultimately, the police commissioner has the final say, which some critics find problematic as they wonder if the commissioner can make a fair decision while leading the department.