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Winter Haven Emergency Information and Resources

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Police Department

Biased-based Profiling

Biased-based Profiling

A legitimate objective of law enforcement agencies is protecting the public by enforcing law in a fair and impartial manner, recognizing both statutory and judicial limitations of police authority, while protecting rights of all persons.

Anyone may file a complaint with the Department if they feel they have been stopped or searched based on racial, ethnic, or gender-based profiling, and no person shall be discouraged, intimidated, or coerced from filing such a complaint, or discriminated against because they have filed a complaint. Complaint procedures and their investigations are outlined in Departmental General Orders.

On an annual basis, the Department prepares a summary and analysis of all filed complaints. With this summary, practices of departmental personnel, along with the concerns of the citizens of this community, will be reviewed. Supervisors may periodically review profiling complaints, reports filed on stops by officers, respond at random to back up officers on police actions and shall take appropriate action whenever it appears this policy is being violated. They shall be particularly alert to any pattern or practice of bias-based profiling by individual officers or groups. If identified, disciplinary action shall be taken as outlined in Departmental General Orders.

The Winter Haven Police Department will make available to the public, information pamphlets regarding interacting with law enforcement officials and procedures to file a commendation or complaint on a Department member. These pamphlets are available in the Police Department lobby and provided to citizens staff may come in contact with. Other avenues to disseminate this information may include meetings with civic groups, crime watch and citizen police academy programs.