The Internal Affairs Unit has the responsibility to investigate all allegations of misconduct by members of the department, and to review and adjudicate all minor complaints which are handled by supervisors. In addition, the Internal Affairs Unit will review all firearms discharges by Ridgewood Police personnel that are not related to training, all use of force incidents, all vehicle pursuits undertaken by our personnel and all collisions involving police department owned vehicles.
Complaints will be accepted in person, by telephone, by letter or email. It is preferred that the complaint be made in person by the individual who is directly involved in the allegation against the Ridgewood Police Department employee, so we can ascertain as much information as possible to effectively investigate the complaint. Usually a Supervisor will take the initial report but any law enforcement officer of the police department must take your complaint.
Your complaint will be sent to a member of the Internal Affairs Unit, staffed with officers specially trained in the investigation of Internal Affairs complaints. You might be asked to help in the investigation by giving a detailed statement about what happened or by providing other important information. All complaints against law enforcement officers are thoroughly investigated. You will be advised in writing of the outcome.
If our investigation shows that a crime might have been committed, the county prosecutor will be notified. You might be asked to testify in court. If our investigation results in an officer being charged with a violation of department rules or regulations, you might be asked to testify in a departmental hearing. If our investigation shows that the complaint is unfounded or that the officer acted properly, the matter will be closed. All disciplinary hearings shall be closed to the public unless the defendant officer requests an open hearing.
But if a person deliberately makes a false complaint and statement against a member, that person may be criminally prosecuted or held civilly liable.
N.J.S. 2C:28-3 Unsworn Falsification to Authorities states, ” A person commits a crime of the fourth degree if he makes a written false statement which he does not believe to be true, on or pursuant to a form bearing notice, authorized by law, to the effect that false statements made therein are punishable.” Those who provide false information to members of the Internal Affairs Unit will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.
Also keep in mind that internal affairs will not lead to a dismissal of traffic tickets or criminal complaints.
Once the investigation is concluded, you will be advised of the outcome in written form. Complaints from the public, whether substantiated or not, increase the awareness of the leadership of this agency to actual or potential problems, as well as the perceptions of the community. This feedback will ultimately assist in determining whether the mission statement and goals of this agency are being attained
This 2018 Internal Affiars Summary Report is being made available to the public for reference purposes only. Any misuse of this information for unlawful purposes will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
If you require any further information regarding Internal Affairs complaints, please call our Public Information / Community Relations Unit.
Copyright © 2020 Village of Ridgewood Police Department
All Rights Reserved
Location: 131 N Maple Ave
Non-Emergency Phone: (201) 652-3900
Emergency Dial 9-1-1