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UCPD Complaint Process

The University of California Police Department is committed to providing the highest quality law-enforcement services to the University Community and its visitors. We take pride in tailoring our services to the needs of our community and we welcome your constructive comments, feedback and input to ensure we are doing the best job possible.

A proper relationship between the police and the public they serve, fostered by confidence and trust, is essential to successful law enforcement. Police personnel must be free to exercise their discretion and best judgment in situations of danger or disorder and to initiate action in a reasonable, lawful and impartial manner without fear of reprisal, while also observing the rights of all people.


If you have a question or concern about a contact with the police or our services in general there are several options available to you:

  • Contact a supervisor, or the officer directly, #1 Sproul Hall, (510) 642-6760
  • Email us at
  • Complete our feedback questionnaire
  • Send a letter or email to the Chief of Police
  • File a formal or informal complaint (further information below)

How to make a complaint

A complaint may be made at any time of the day or night to any police department employee. Complaints received will normally be referred to the Duty Supervisor. Depending on the circumstances, they will either investigate immediately or forward a report to the Complaint Investigation Unit in the Office of the Chief.

Download the PDF version of the Citizen Complaint form.

The time limit for filing a complaint is 30 calendar days from the date of the alleged incident. Sexual harassment allegations will be accepted up to 90 calendar days after the alleged incident.

All citizen complaints against the sworn members of the UCPD, except the Chief or Assistant Chiefs or Captains, shall be processed under this procedure in accordance with the definitions and provisions thereof: no other campus review mechanisms or grievance procedures shall be applicable.

Complaint forms may be obtained, and complaints filed, at any of the following offices:

All complaints shall be forwarded immediately to the Chief of Police.

The campus ombuds offices are also available to assist with informal resolution of complaints. Assistance provided by the ombuds offices is separate from the formal process.

Informal complaints can be reported at the Ombuds offices:

  • Faculty (and non-Senate academics), (510) 642-4226
  • Staff, (510) 642-7823
  • Students, (510) 642-5754

The purpose of the Complaint Investigation Unit is to assure that complete, fair and impartial investigations are made of citizen complaints.


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Investigation procedure

The person receiving the complaint will ask you to provide as much information as possible. If you were involved in or witnessed the incident, it is extremely important to the investigation that a statement is obtained from you.

Once basic information has been received, the complaint may be handled in one of three ways.

Informal Resolution: If the complaint is a matter of such nature that it can be resolved or disposed of to the satisfaction of the complainant, or the complainant is satisfied with documenting their concerns, a Work File Memo will be completed and routed to the employee's immediate supervisor, or in the case of a policy or operational procedure issue, to the Division Manager. The Chief, Division Commander and Complaint Investigation Unit will be advised of the concern.

Mediated Resolution: Except in those cases alleging excessive force, the complainant may choose the option of mediation as an alternative to investigation. Mediation is an informal process, held before one Police Review Board member, and attended by the complainant and the subject officer for the purpose of thoroughly and frankly discussing the alleged misconduct and arriving at a mutually agreeable resolution of the complaint. The subject officer must agree to this form of resolution as well. If you elect mediation as a means for resolution of your complaint, please notify the supervisor you meet with when you file your complaint or contact the Complaint Investigation Unit.

Formal Resolution: an investigation will be conducted which will include the taking of formal statements from all persons concerned, and the gathering and presentation of physical evidence and other information pertaining to the case. Each allegation is examined on its own merits.

INFO on Conflict Resolution:

Regardless of the method of resolution, all complaints will be reviewed by the Chief of Police.

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Complaint Investigation Process

The investigation and review should be completed within 45 working days. The Complaint Investigation Unit (CIU) may extend the time frame targets for good cause only. In no event, however, will the process require more than 60 working days, total, unless the Chief of Police specifically approves the delay in writing.

There are five possible dispositions:

  • Work File Memo: The intake and preliminary investigation show there was no formal complaint justified, and that the matter is satisfied and the initial concern resolved and documented.
  • Unfounded: The investigation disclosed that the act(s) complained of did not occur. (The disposition also applies when the individual employee(s) were not involved in the act or acts which may have occurred).
  • Exonerated: The investigation discloses that the incident occurred, as charged in the allegation, but the act is found to be proper, lawful, and justified.
  • Not Sustained: The investigation discloses insufficient evidence to either prove or disprove the allegation(s) in the complaint.
  • Sustained: The investigation discloses a preponderance of evidence that supports the allegation(s) in the complaint.

A completed Report of Findings will be reviewed by the Sufficiency Review Board which will make recommendations to the Chief on the appropriate disposition for each allegation, and will also recommend any discipline or corrective measures. The Chief of Police will review the Report of Findings, and recommendations, and either approve or disapprove the Report and/or Recommendation. If the Chief of Police disapproves the case, it will be returned to the CIU for additional investigation or the SRB for other necessary action.

At the conclusion of the investigation, the Complaint Investigation Unit will forward a copy of the written report and other materials used as a basis for disciplinary action, to each employee named in the allegation. Complainants will receive a letter advising them of the completion of the investigation. The letter will contain what the finding was, but will not disclose what action was taken regarding the employee due to confidentiality laws.


If a complainant is not satisfied with these findings, they have 30 calendar days to appeal the investigation to a three person appeal panel appointed by the chair of the Police Review Board. The panel will review the investigative findings and determine whether to affirm the findings or refer the complaint on to the full Police Review Board for further investigation or review.


Police Review Board: The Chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley, has established a Police Review Board. Contact the Board at (510) 642-3100.


The University of California Police welcomes feedback from the community. Please contact the Complaint Investigation Unit at 510-642-1296 or at Room 1 Sproul Hall, Berkeley, California 94720-1199, if you have any comments or further questions. Contact Numbers


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