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Miscellaneous Rule Amendments, Including Sexual Harrassment

Rule status: Adopted

Agency: CCRB

Effective date: March 27, 2021

Proposed Rule Full Text
CCRB-Proposed-Rule-Sexual-Harrassment-1.pdf

Adopted Rule Full Text
CCRB-RULES-Sexual-Harassment-.pdf

Adopted rule summary:

Amends rules governing the investigation of Sexual Misconduct allegations, untruthful material statements made to CCRB and intentionally untruthful testimony and written statements made against members of the public in the performance of official police functions, the expanded number of board members, and clarification of the board’s voting and meeting requirements.

Online comments: 11

  • Amanda Smock

    I fully support giving the CCRB power to investigate police sexual misconduct. It is mind boggling that victims of NYPD must go through an NYPD process to get restitution. I can only imagine that it revictimized people over and over.

    NYPD and their associated unions fight tooth and nail against even the barest minimum of oversight or transparency. They have made it nearly impossible to hold anyone accountable. So when I see that we’re back to the drawing board because of the Police Benevolent Association’s lawsuit, that only makes me support it more.

    NYPD and their unions are nothing but thugs and mobsters. This summer and fall they have show over and over and over and over that they don’t believe in serving NYC. Thus we need far more oversight. Having the CCRB investigate sexual complaints is an obvious tiny step in the right direction.

    Comment added November 10, 2020 1:49pm
  • Graciela

    I fully support giving the CCRB power to investigate police sexual misconduct. Let me tell you a true story of an NYPD officer who has 4 substantiated complaints of sexual proposition and harassment. It was substantiated in 2018 and case closed in 2019, which then means he was probably put on probation for one year. In 2020, NYPD promoted this officer or should I say “rewarded” and condoned the actions of this officer by making him a Sergeant when they should have terminated him or at the very least demoted him. Why? Within one year of the case being substantiated and while he was probably on probation following the case being closed, this NYPD officer was brazen enough and took his behaviors that he exhibited while wearing the Badge of Honor and Blue Uniform and did the EXACT same behaviors while at his second job wearing a Green Uniform. . The only thing this individual did differently was there was also a sexual assault that took place. Who is going to believe this? Obviously, the NYPD didn’t pay too much attention to the first Complainant who filed sexual harassment, sexual proposition, sexual harassment, and word. To be brazen and do this again while he was not only on probation, but continued during his probation, and during his month training at Sergeant Academy School.

    It was premeditated and this individual has sexual impulses he cannot keep in check since he came up from behind. That’s a coward. Past behavior determines future behavior. NYPD is to blame for this because they do not hold sexual aggressors or predators accountable – they reward them. My God 00 within a year of the case being closed he was sent to Police Academy studying to be a Sergeant while working on his next vulnerable victim. That’s why he exhibited these exact behaviors again – he just took the behaviors to his second job. Thank you NYPD. This is why the public is having difficulty trusting police officers. Not only does NYPD need to hold those accountable, but these individuals are being rewarded not only by promotions but using taxpayers money while they secure higher pensions. Taxpayers should are insisting on accountability. HOLD NYPD officers accountable to the sexual predators. It’s not his first time and I’m sure this wasn’t his second time either. But if NYPD is going to reward this individual by making him Sergeant then what incentive is there for any additional women to come forward only to be marginalized and dismissive. It’s still a “brotherhood” club. The NYPD women officers need to demand accountability of their brothers to respect women, not abuse them or objectify them. No means NO!!

    Comment added December 3, 2020 10:05pm
  • GS

    I fully support giving the CCRB power to investigate police sexual misconduct. Let me tell you a true story of an NYPD officer who has 4 substantiated complaints of sexual proposition and harassment. It was substantiated in 2018 and case closed in 2019, which then means he was probably put on probation for one year. In 2020, NYPD promoted this officer or should I say “rewarded” and condoned the actions of this officer by making him a Sergeant when they should have terminated him or at the very least demoted him. Why? Within one year of the case being substantiated and while he was probably on probation following the case being closed, this NYPD officer was brazen enough and took his behaviors that he exhibited while wearing the Badge of Honor and Blue Uniform and did the EXACT same behaviors while at his second job wearing a Green Uniform. . The only thing this individual did differently was there was also a sexual assault that took place. Who is going to believe this? Obviously, the NYPD didn’t pay too much attention to the first Complainant who filed sexual harassment, sexual proposition, sexual harassment, and word. To be brazen and do this again while he was not only on probation, but continued during his probation, and during his month training at Sergeant Academy School.

    It was premeditated and this individual has sexual impulses he cannot keep in check since he came up from behind. That’s a coward. Past behavior determines future behavior. NYPD is to blame for this because they do not hold sexual aggressors or predators accountable – they reward them. My God 00 within a year of the case being closed he was sent to Police Academy studying to be a Sergeant while working on his next vulnerable victim. That’s why he exhibited these exact behaviors again – he just took the behaviors to his second job. Thank you NYPD. This is why the public is having difficulty trusting police officers. Not only does NYPD need to hold those accountable, but these individuals are being rewarded not only by promotions but using taxpayers money while they secure higher pensions. Taxpayers should are insisting on accountability. HOLD NYPD officers accountable to the sexual predators. It’s not his first time and I’m sure this wasn’t his second time either. But if NYPD is going to reward this individual by making him Sergeant then what incentive is there for any additional women to come forward only to be marginalized and dismissive. It’s still a “brotherhood” club. The NYPD women officers need to demand accountability of their brothers to respect women, not abuse them or objectify them. No means NO!! Would it be any different if a woman came from behind and grabbed his Jewels, so why would it be any different? He should spend a night in jail because he’s a police officer, now Sergeant and knows better! No means NO!

    Comment added December 3, 2020 10:11pm
  • Sara Eldridge

    I strongly support giving the CCRB the power to investigate allegations of sexual misconduct by NYPD officers. I’m shocked they don’t have this authority already. Time and again we hear stories about NYPD officers who misuse their authority to sexually harass, assault, and rape the women and men they are supposed to protect, especially women of color, trans women and sex workers (and those who are falsely accused of being sex workers). Police officers should not be given free reign to mistreat and abuse members of the public. We need fair investigations of all police misconduct.

    Comment added December 8, 2020 11:20am
  • Erica B

    My grandfather was a police officer for 30 years in what became Fort Apache in the Bronx. He would be appalled at the state of the NYPD now.

    In the last several decades the NYPD, and its unions, have grown into the largest legal terrorist organization we have in New York. But I can’t entirely blame them because no one holds them accountable.

    Not only do they terrorize our streets, but their incidence of domestic abuse is 40% over that of the general population. When you know no one is going to hold you accountable, it makes it very easy to engage in shameful behavior.

    The sexual violence they commit is no different. From harassing people on the street, to outright documented cases of rape, these people need to be held accountable just like everyone else that commits these heinous acts. They should not be allowed to hide behind the veil of blue. But I also don’t have any faith in the CCRB, since it is only able to make recommendations which have no teeth.

    Who is going to do the right thing and defund the NYPD and move that money to public health where it belongs?

    Comment added December 8, 2020 5:09pm
  • Yuki S.

    I would like to propose some new additional obligations and amendment to the articles:
    (iii) the remaining five members shall be selected by the mayor.
    to be changed to define the authority to determine the casting of the remaining members as the agreed authority for the appointment of the remaining five members, and the selection process must go through the approval of other officials beside the Mayer’s determination prior to that, and the approval must reflect the ongoing trending modern civic issues at the time of the review.

    Other than that, I think the constant reflection and amendment of the police educational system to always keep updated with the newly uprising civic problems and the degree of the psychological damage that can be multiplied by the fact that the violence was made by the police officers that can be translated into the violence from the power authority that should be protective to the victims.

    -I did not understand why the following:
    “No members, except
    those designated by the police commissioner,”

    -Civil audit system for the open cases where for the degree of the complaint and the nature of it, the majority of the citizens are aware of the incidents.

    -The recruitment of the civil investigators must be reviewed by the multiple board members and would require more than two signatures.

    -(d.)2. The members must enforce their power to ensure the whistle blower protection to surpass the authority of the commissioner.

    Comment added December 12, 2020 12:00am
  • Cham M

    Yuki S. Great suggestions. Amanda and GS and Graciela , Erica, Sara, and Amanda, thank you for your posts in support of these changes. Keep them coming.

    Comment added December 14, 2020 11:33pm
  • Gabbie

    Police Officer Mark A Kistoo is a sexual predator who was promoted and rewarded for his behavior one year later to Sergeant. Think how the complainant must feel!

    Determine for yourself:
    https://projects.propublica.org/nypd-ccrb/complaints/39661

    NYPD needs to make transparent his arrest.
    NYPD needs to make transparent his crime.
    If he was arrested and there was a crime, why did they promote him to Sergeant, when they should have terminated.

    NYPD needs to stop rewarding Police Officers and either demote them or terminate them – instead of rewarding them. Hold Police Officers Accountable.

    Comment added December 16, 2020 9:55pm
  • Alexander Bartiromo

    I fully support giving the CCRB power to investigate police sexual misconduct. I remember following the case of Anna Chambers, who was raped by two NYPD officers after being arrested. I saw firsthand how the officers used the resources of the department to delay, divert, and narrow the scope of the legal case. This was a clear just and unjust outcomes, and I saw how the institutional weight of the department, and its need to defend itself, prevented the former from being carried out. It is a minimum requirement of accountability that there be an independent review of any major department or agency.

    Comment added January 2, 2021 10:52am
  • Tamika D. Payne

    On behalf of the New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault, its Executive Director and the Board of Directors, and New York State Coalition Against Sexual Assault, its Executive Director and the Board of Directors, I am here to express our support for changes to Chapter 18-A § 440 of the New York City Charter, expanding the CCRB’s authority to encompass police sexual misconduct.

    The New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault (the Alliance) is dedicated to advocating for all survivors and victims of sexual violence in the NYC metropolitan area and across the state. The Alliance’s mission is to prevent sexual violence and reduce the harm it causes through education, research and advocacy. The Alliance was founded by rape crisis centers in NYC to advocate for the needs of survivors and the programs that serve them. Through public education, cutting-edge programming, advocacy for survivors and the pursuit of legal and policy changes, the Alliance continues to expand as a hub for resources and information about sexual violence.

    The New York State Coalition Against Sexual Assault (NYSCASA) is dedicated to advocating for survivors and victims of sexual violence across New York State. NYSCASA’s mission is to end all forms of sexual violence and exploitation, and to address the impacts of sexual assault. NYSCASA has 83 member programs across the state of New York who offer support services to survivors of sexual violence.

    We are grateful for the Board’s commitment to investigating police sexual violence, a pervasive abuse of authority that requires oversight and accountability.

    As both research and experience tells us, officers too often (consciously or unconsciously) leverage their authority to sexually harass, coerce and abuse the most vulnerable members of our community. Women of color, young people, individuals with criminal records, sex workers, homeless people, people who use substances, immigrants, people with disabilities, LGBTQ+ and gender non-confirming people, indigenous people, and victims of domestic violence are disproportionately sexually victimized by law enforcement.

    As you know, sexual violence is an abuse of power, and far too many of our clients have had the unfortunate, first-hand experience of abuse of power at the hands of the NYPD. Research bears out our anecdotal experience. In one instance, a teenage survivor of police sexual violence reported that nine NYPD officers ascended upon her hospital room, and discouraged her from completing a rape kit and pressing charges. A 2010 study by the Cato Institute found that sexual misconduct by law enforcement is the second most common citizen complaints after excessive force nation-wide. And in 2015, a national survey found that, on average, a police officer is reported for sexual misconduct at least every five days. In NYC, a 2003 survey of young adults in NYC found that 2 in 5 young women reported sexual harassment by law enforcement, and half of those victimized were young women of color. Survivors of police sexual misconduct deserve accountability, and it is our duty to advocate on their behalf.

    Without independent oversight, police perpetrators often evade accountability. Internal reporting systems that represent law enforcement value internal, political and reputational protection and close cases above safeguarding the fundamental human rights of survivors. A 2018 report on discipline in the NYPD showed that only one percent of officers pleaded guilty or were convicted of disciplinary charges related to sexual misconduct. This is a cyclical problem that without attention, continues to escalate. A 2012 study found that 41% of officers eventually convicted were repeat offenders, with between 2 and 21 prior allegations. As a result of the current system’s failure to protect survivors, many survivors do not report sexual misconduct by law enforcement due intimidation, threats, and fear of retaliation. In order for NYPD officers to serve and protect New York City residents, independent oversight is essential.

    Voters have also expressed strong support for the expansion of CCRB’s jurisdiction. Currently, the NYPD does not publicly disclose information on sexual misconduct complaints. Accordingly, the CCRB’s ability to document complaints is paramount to identifying patterns, and crafting data-driven policies, vetting processes, trainings, and interventions to prevent and redress the issue effectively and ensure that survivors’ voices are heard. An independent review process can help create more agency for survivors whose power and voice have been stripped by the nature of this crime, and help build a bridge to supportive services.

    As the Board has attested, police acts of sexual violence undermine the public trust in law enforcement’s ability to keep New Yorkers safe. The inherent bias and conflict of interest present in the internal reporting system undermines survivors’ ability to pursue justice and healing, disproportionately impacting people of color and the underserved. In order to strengthen trust between civilians and law enforcement, sexual misconduct by law enforcement must be addressed in an impartial and thorough manner. Establishing an independent review process could deter police sexual misconduct, uphold police integrity and accountability, and ensure safeguards are put in place to protect our community.

    As the CCRB moves towards taking on this responsibility, we further recommend that the Council consider the following needs:

    Effectively addressing cases of sexual violence requires training that allows investigators to center the unique needs of survivors through an inclusive, anti-oppressive and trauma-informed framework. The CCRB can turn to communal expertise in these areas to prepare staff who will be taking on cases of sexual misconduct. The Alliance has had the privilege of providing trauma-informed training to CCRB over the past year, has hired an executive director with expertise in intersectionality and SV, and we have seen that CCRB staff are eager to gain adequate training to approach these difficult and nuanced cases with care.

    The CCRB must consider the nuances of the many factors that can prevent survivors from reporting police sexual misconduct. To dismantle these barriers, CCRB investigators must ensure that the reporting process is clear, conspicuous, and accessible to the public. This must also include access to translators familiar with trauma-informed care. Furthermore, the CCRB must formulate internal and external procedures to protect the privacy of survivors, while upholding the due process rights of those accused. Investigations must be executed in a timely manner, with a thorough communication system that keeps complainants informed throughout.

    Survivors of police sexual misconduct require unique resources. Any investigative process must ensure that they are afforded thorough safety and healing protections and resources. It is vital that survivors are connected to resources such as hospital services, mental health counseling, and supportive advocacy groups. To achieve this end, the CCRB could implement a coordinated response among these providers. Additionally, the CCRB could provide information and referrals to survivors. These endeavors would serve to address the holistic needs of survivors, minimize re-traumatization and re-victimization, and advance public welfare.

    Under rule §1-01 (Definitions, under Sexual Humiliation), we suggest the removal of the word “gratuitously” from the definition, in order to avoid making complainants reach an arbitrary standard of humiliation. Any and all shaming or degradation by police in relation to sexual misconduct is unjustifiable and an affront to human rights, and must be duly investigated.

    With regards to §1-01 (Definitions, under Mediation) and categories 17 and 18 of 38-A RCNY § 1-33(e), mediation is often not appropriate in cases of sexual harassment and assault because of the inherent power imbalance and often a feel intimidated or coerced into an agreement. This causes additional harm, when the purpose is to address the harm already exacted. Even if the alleged victim, victim, and complainant consents to this process initially they may feel reluctant to complete it.

    In that vein, we request that alleged victims, victims and complainants be given the opportunity to rescind their agreement to move forward with mediation before, during or after the mediation process. In cases such as these, alleged victims, victims and complainants should be allowed to have their cases reconsidered or reopened (§ 1-34 Cases Closed without a Full Investigation).

    As organizations dedicated to advancing civil and human rights, eliminating violence, and advocating for survivors, the New York State Coalition Against Sexual Assault and the New York City Alliance Against Sexual Assault overwhelmingly support the new policies and procedures related to changes to Chapter 18-A § 440 of the New York City Charter and the expansion of its authority, jurisdiction, composition, duties, and power to encompass sexual misconduct by police officers. Allowing an entity to investigate claims of sexual misconduct outside of NYPD or another entity where a conflict of interest presents itself is a major step in the right direction. In addition to investigating claims of sexual misconduct, all law enforcement agencies, including NYPD should have a sexual harassment and misconduct policy pertaining to their interactions with the public that is strictly enforced. Appendix B of the U.S Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office) report, Gender, Sexuality, and 21st Century Policing: Protecting the Rights of the LGBTQ+ Community includes a sample policy developed by Andrea J. Ritchie, and the Policing Subgroup of the LGBT/HIV Federal Criminal Justice Policy Working Group. We firmly believe that expanding the CCRB’s jurisdiction to include police sexual misconduct is essential to serving and protecting both survivors and the residents of New York City.

    Comment attachment
    CCRB-Comment-NYCAASA-NYSCASA-Final_1.6.21.pdf
    Comment added January 6, 2021 4:55pm
  • Cham M

    Ms. Tameka – Excellent and very well written, thank you! Excellent suggestion to provide resources and assistance to hospital and mental health counseling. Regarding those that have repeated offenses should immediately be terminated and removed. NYPD should also have conduct and misconduct policies when they are off duty as well. That fact that they are police officers and intimidate should not be only limited to when they are on duty or only wearing their Uniform. Complaints who are from the most vulnerable communities should be taken with consideration that they are from a “vulnerable” community and should undergo NYPD officers should be under even more scrutiny by targeting these vulnerable communities.

    Comment added January 11, 2021 8:24pm

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