The members of the Mahwah Police Department are committed to providing law enforcement services that are fair, effective and impartially applied. It is in everyone's best interest that complaints about the performance of an individual officer are resolved fairly and promptly. The Mahwah Police Department has formal procedures for investigating your complaint. These procedures ensure fairness and protect the rights of both individual citizens and police officers.

Your complaint will be sent to a supervisor or a specially trained Internal Affairs Officer who will conduct a thorough and objective investigation.

 
 

In accordance with New Jersey Attorney General Guidelines even anonymous complaints made against a Police Officer must be thoroughly investigated. If you wish to provide your name you may be asked to help in the investigation of the complaint by giving a detailed statement about what happened or by providing other important information which includes the names of other individuals who may have witnessed the event.

All complaints against police officers are completely investigated. You will be advised in writing of the outcome of the investigation. If our investigation reveals that a crime has been committed, the Bergen County Prosecutor's Office will be notified in accordance with strict guidelines.

You may call Mahwah Police headquarters and ask for the Internal Affairs Officer at 201-529-1000 with any additional information about the complaint or if you have any questions about the status of the investigation. If internal affairs personnel are not available, supervisory personnel should accept reports of officer misconduct, and if no supervisory personnel are available, complaints should be accepted by any law enforcement officer.

Statistical information is available upon request to our agency.



In addition, the responsibility of Internal Affairs investigations is included in the Administrative Division.

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.

In accordance with the New Jersey Attorney Generals Office 2018 requirement that all law enforcement agencies must employ an early warning system to track use of force reports and ensure an early warning system, the Mahwah Police Department has in place, an early warning system. Although this requirement is new, the Mahwah Police Department has had an early warning reporting system in place for nearly 12 years. The system allows the department to document and track use of force reports and review them for policy compliance, ensuring the public that all officers act within the guidelines of state law at all times. You can review the NJ Attorney General’s requirements here: NJ Attorney General Use of Force Early Warning System Directive To read more about the policy click here.

 
 

Complaints and Internal Affairs Investigations 2015 - 2018

Year 2015 2016 2017 2018
External Citizen Complaints 9 6 10 13
Sustained 0 0 1 0
Not Sustained 2 1 1 7
Unfounded 1 1 0 0
Exonerated 3 3 6 6
 
Year 2015 2016 2017 2018
Internal / Directed Complaint 3 2 7 6
Sustained 1 0 1 0
Not Sustained 1 0 0 0
Unfounded 1 0 0 0
Exonerated 0 0 2 0
 

Biased Based Police Complaints 2015 - 2018

Complaints From 2015 2016 2017 2018
Traffic Contacts 0 1 2 1
Field Contacts 0 1 0 0
Asset Forfeiture 0 0 0 0
 

 

Drug Testing policy for law enforcement

In accordance with the New Jersey Attorney General’s Law Enforcement Drug Testing Policy and the New Jersey Attorney General’s Law Enforcement Directive No. 2018-2, this is official and required notification that the Mahwah Police Department, which is a CALEA Accredited agency, has a drug testing policy in place. To read more about the policy click here.