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When Police Investigate Police: A View From Complainants

NCJ Number
Canadian Journal of Criminology Volume: 38 Issue: 3 Dated: (July 1996) Pages: 291-315
T Landau
Date Published
25 pages
Interviews with 104 individuals who had made formal complaints against the Metropolitan Toronto Police in Ontario, Canada formed the basis of an analysis of their attitudes regarding the handling of complaints.
The research was part of a larger study of people who had made formal complaints against the police agency. The study integrated attitudes and experience with both the internal Public Complaints Investigation Bureau of the Metropolitan Toronto Police and the external civilian Office of the Police Complaints Commissioner in the context of their respective mandates. The analysis revealed that participants perceive the internal handling of complaints to be inherently unfair and prejudicial to complainants. The existence of the Police Complaints Commissioner did not appear to alleviate concerns of complainants, due to its limited role in the investigation and adjudication of complaints. Overall, complainants were highly dissatisfied with their experience of making a formal complaint against the police. Tables, note, and 43 references (Author abstract modified)