Illegal Profiling Policy

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1. POLICY

Members of the Odessa Police Department will not engage in any activities that are discriminatory or indicative of the practices of racial profiling or bias based profiling. Personnel will focus on the conduct of the individual and/or specific suspect information in taking police action. Individuals will not be targeted for enforcement action, detention, field contacts, asset seizure and forfeiture efforts, or interdictions solely on the basis of race, ethnic background, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, religion, economic status, or age. 

This directive does not prohibit police personnel from stopping or detaining individuals if a specific report exists in which an individual's race, ethnicity, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, religion, economic status, or age is a factor in determining the existence of probable cause for taking police action.

2. DEFINITIONS

Racial Profiling - A law enforcement initiated action based on an individual's race, ethnicity or national origin rather than on the individual's behavior or on information identifying the individual as having engaged in criminal activity, (CCP, Art. 3.05). 

Bias Based Profiling - A law enforcement initiated action based on an individual's gender, sexual orientation, religion, economic status, or age rather than on the individual's behavior or on information identifying the individual as having engaged in criminal activity. 

Motor Vehicle Stop – means an occasion in which a peace officer stops a motor vehicle for an alleged violation of a law or ordinance, (CCP, Art. 2.132). 

Race or Ethnicity – means of a particular descent, including Caucasian, African, Hispanic, Asian, Native American or Middle Eastern descent, (CCP, Art. 2.132). 

3. PROCEDURES:

  • No employee shall engage in racial profiling or bias based profiling.
  • All motor vehicle stops will be captured on digital in-car video equipment, pursuant to Code of Criminal Procedure Articles 2.132 and 2.135 and Department General Orders.
  • Digital video captured by in-car video equipment will be uploaded into a secure server maintained by the Department for that purpose.
  • All complaints related to racial profiling or bias based profiling will be handled by Internal Affairs. Any officer found to have engaged in racial profiling or bias based profiling, following a complete investigation, will face appropriate corrective action, which may include diversity training, counseling, verbal warning, written warning, written reprimand, suspension, demotion, and/or termination.
  • The following information will be collected for all motor vehicle stops in which a citation is issued and  arrests made as a result of those stops:
    • race or ethnicity of the individual detained; and
    • whether a search was conducted and, if so, whether the individual detained consented to the search;
    • whether the peace officer knew the race or ethnicity of the individual detained before detaining that individual.
  • Prior to March 1st of each year, a report detailing this information for the previous calendar year shall be submitted to the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Education (TCLEOSE) and to the City Manager with a recommendation that said report should be passed on to each member of the City Council.
  • Public education regarding the process by which citizens may make complaints to Internal Affairs regarding racial profiling or bias based profiling shall be accomplished by news releases as deemed necessary by the Chief of Police, by the publication in English and in Spanish of brochures detailing the process, and by the posting of this General Order on the Department's website.

To contact the Administrative Offices call:

  • (432) 335-3335.