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Characteristics of Complaints About Misconduct by Off Duty NSW Police Officers

NCJ Number
Julie People
Date Published
March 2010
24 pages
This study provides information about the characteristics of complaints regarding misconduct by off duty New South Wales (NSW) police officers in 2009.
Highlights of complaint characteristics include: 1) between May 2009 and July 2009, a total of 973 complaints were considered and 125 were described as an incident that occurred when a police officer was off duty; 2) the most common types of alleged off duty misconduct were related to secondary employment, offenses punishable by conviction, improper associations and harassment; 3) more than one-third of all alleged misconduct issues within the complaints led to disciplinary action; 4) 136 officers who were the subjects of complaints were alleged to have engaged in misconduct while off duty; 5) more males than females were the subjects of complaints about alleged off duty misconduct; and 6) three-quarters of all alleged off duty misconduct considered in this study occurred within the same Local Area Command in which an officer was employed. In New South Wales (NSW), little is known about the inappropriate behavior of police officers while they are off duty. The objective of this study was to provide information on the frequency and characteristics of complaints about off duty misconduct by NSW police officers. Data for this study were derived from complaints about NSW police officers that described incidents of misconduct that occurred between 1 May 2009 and 31 July 2009 (N = 125). For this study, a police officer was considered to be the subject of a complaint about off duty misconduct if the incident described in the complaint occurred when the police officer was not rostered on duty. Tables