Nassau County legislators propose police misconduct reporting system
Residents of Nassau County may soon be able to report allegations of police misconduct via a 24-hour toll-free hotline and website proposed by Nassau Democratic Minority Leader Kevan Abrahams and Legislator Siela Bynoe.
The proposed resolution comes as calls for police reform and more transparency in police departments continue on Long Island and across the country.
The resolution offers a system through which victims of alleged police misconduct can file complaints with an independent third party.
"It's going to add transparency as well as accessibility for our residents so that they can feel comfortable that there's a process,” says Abrahams. “And it's going to be documented and it's going to be tracked."
Abrahams says the public will be able to see the complaints, but he says until the cases are adjudicated, the names of the officers as well as the individuals’ filing the complaints will be blocked.
"We are not trying to hurt the police officers or the individuals,” says Abrahams. “We're not trying to expose anybody or put their information out there in a way that could be harmful to their safety."
Republican Presiding Officer Richard Nicolello declined an on-camera interview but issued a statement saying, “We will evaluate existing means to file complaints to determine if they are sufficient. The NCPD has done an extraordinary job keeping our communities safe and the overwhelming interactions of Nassau residents with the police are positive."
Nassau Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder was also unavailable to speak on camera and issued a statement that said in part, "...we are always looking to make things better. The Nassau County Police Department already has in place an extensive reporting system to report misconduct in person, by internet or by phone 24 hours a day, every day of the year.”
According to the proposal, the website would be created and maintained either by an outside vendor or the county's Department of Information Technology.