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289 complaints of police misconduct

Shoutout to our note-taker, Robert Gonzalez, for his work on this write-up!

The Office of Public Safety Accountability’s (OPSA) 2021 annual report goes over case reviews, statistics, data, community issues, crime reports, etc. The City of Sacramento created the OPSA in 1999 for the purpose of monitoring the investigations of citizens' complaints against the Sacramento Police Department regarding misconduct by their officers.

Sac Historic City Hall pictured above

According to their 2021 report (presented at the 7/26 Council meeting):

In 2021, OPSA documented 289 complaints of police misconduct with a total of 707 allegations….There were 242 complaint investigations completed during the year, closing a total of 706 allegations. Of those, 128 complaints were originally filed in 2021 and the remaining 114 complaints were from older 2019 and 2020 cases. A total of 279 allegations were Sustained and referred to Police Command Staff for disciplinary action

Additionally, they found the following regarding the fire department:

There were 74 misconduct complaints filed against the Sacramento Fire Department with a total of 167 allegations during 2021. Of those 2021 cases, 69 cases were investigated and completed by the Sacramento Fire Department’s Professional Standards Unit giving dispositions to 157 allegations. 55 of those allegations were Sustained and referred to Fire Command Staff for disciplinary action

No Public comment was given on these case review numbers but it is concerning to see hundreds of complaints and allegations be made against the police department without any clear consequences.

The sheer number of allegations is staggering, and this report does not go into detail on the types of allegations these include nor provide an update on how the department is handling them beyond a vague reference to 'disciplinary action'

The City Councilmembers themselves didn’t have much to say on this issue either. Not one member acknowledged the amount of allegations filed against the police department.

Based on the number of citizen complaints being made, there is a desperate need to hold local police accountable for their actions, yet our local government seems uninterested in doing so.

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