ABERDEEN, S.D. (APD Facebook) – On Oct. 16 the Aberdeen Police Department was alerted to a social media post made by a retired officer from our department. The post contained an image of a burning Black Lives Matter flag. The posts, opinions, and statements of this retired officer do not represent the department or its current employees in any way. The Aberdeen Police Department is committed to serving and protecting all persons within our community without bias, prejudice, or discrimination, according to Police Chief Dave McNeil.
The following is the written policy of the Aberdeen Police Department:
BIASED BASED POLICING
I. Purpose: The purpose of this policy is to prohibit the use of race, ethnicity, gender, or national origin as a reason to restrict liberty, or exercise any other police power upon an individual, except in those cases where one of the classifications above is a descriptive factor concerning a suspect.
II. Policy: The policy of this department is to respect the rights of all persons who officers come into contact with during any law enforcement operation.
A. Biased-Based Policing – using race, ethnicity, gender or national origin as a reason to restrict a person’s liberty where race, ethnicity, gender or national origin is not a descriptive factor relating to a suspected criminal event.
A. All contacts made by members of this agency with any person must meet the requirements of the United States and South Dakota Constitutions.
B. Preventing Perception of Bias:
a. Officers should act with courtesy and professionalism on all stops and contacts.
b. At the outset of a contact, where feasible, officers should introduce themselves and inform the person of the reason for the stop. This introduction is not required where the introduction would compromise the safety of the officer or any other person.
c. Officers should continue the contact for only that time which is necessary to meet the objectives of that which justified the stop to begin with. i.e. if the stop is for a traffic violation, officers should not prolong the stop beyond the time it takes to write a citation. Where reasonable delays occur, the officer should keep the person informed of the reason for the delay.
d. Officers should answer questions posed by the persons stopped to the extent that is possible.
e. Provide his or her name and identification number when requested.
C. Complaints regarding bias: All complaints regarding bias, as defined by this policy shall be handled in accordance with the Citizen Complaints and Administrative Investigations Policy of this agency.
D. The agency shall conduct training for all personnel on this policy.