In 2002 Chief James Batelli formally implemented an Office of Professional Standards into the Department. The goal of this office is to monitor the performance of the Department and develop methods to measure and improve community satisfaction.
In addition the responsibility of Internal Affairs investigations is included in the Office of Professional Standards. The Mahwah Police Department works to improve the quality of police services. This is accomplished by fairly and impartially investigating all complaints of employee misconduct according to specific Attorney General Guidelines.
The Attorney General of New Jersey and the Mahwah Police Department take all legitimate complaints against police officers very seriously and conducts a very thorough investigation. After a complete and comprehensive examination of the facts surrounding an incident, an unbiased and impartial determination is made and a proper outcome delivered to the complainant and the involved employee. It is important the right legal rights of the officer as well as the accurate facts surrounding the incident are investigated. Both the employee and the citizen are advised in writing of the outcome of the investigation.
Information regarding the procedure involved in making a legitimate and factual complaint against a member of this agency is available at the police station any time.
The Mahwah Police Department views a personnel complaint as an official document. Every effort is made to ensure complaints are factual. The department views these complaints as it does all other official reports and knowingly filing a false police report or attempting to unjustly subject an officer or employee to undeserved discipline would result in criminal charges against the complainant.
While any sustained complained is unacceptable it must be pointed out that throughout the course of the year our officers come in contact with tens of thousands of citizens often under extremely stressful and unpleasant conditions. The minimal number of sustained complaints against our officers demonstrates the professional manner with which they conduct themselves.
2013 Yearly Summary Report
For the calendar year 2013 there were Thirteen (13) cases investigated by the Internal Affairs Office, with an additional two (2) cases still pending from 2012.
Of the Thirteen cases investigated six (6) were for demeanor complaints; three (3) were for rule violations; one (1) was for simple assault, one (1) for unlawful stop and one (1) for civil rights allegations.
Of the fifteen (15) cases investigated in 2013, one (1) resulted in a finding of exonerated (the officer acted properly), five (5) were not sustained, one (1) was unfounded, six (6) were sustained and two (2) were still pending.