Nearly Half Of FTPD 2021 Internal Affairs Complaints Sustained

Slightly less than half of all Franklin Township Police Department internal affairs investigations opened in 2021 were sustained, with 40 percent of officers who were found to have violated policy or regulations issued a written reprimand or warning, according to statistics released by the state Attorney General’s Office.

In total, 44 percent of the complaints opened in 2021 were sustained, and another 35 percent of those investigations found the complaint was unfounded, while 13 percent were not sustained, the statistics show.

About 9 percent of the investigations resulted in the accused officers being exonerated, the statistics show.

Of those officers against whom the charges were sustained, in addition to the 40 percent who were issued written warnings or reprimands, 30 percent were given suspensions without pay and 30 percent were sent to “training/coaching/counseling,” according to the statistics.

In total, in 2021 there were opened 38 investigations involving 28 different officers and 36 unique incidents, according to the statistics. There were cases where single incidents involved multiple officers.

Information on New Jersey police departments’ internal affairs investigations and results was made public earlier this week on a dashboard at the Attorney Generals Office web site. The statistics did not include identifying information on the individual officers.

The statistics show that 66 percent of the cases against FTPD officers opened in 2021 were done so based on a civilian complaint, while 34 percent were opened by the agency.

Of the cases opened in 2021, 58 percent were for general rule violations, 32 percent were for “demeanor,” 8 percent were for “differential treatment” and 3 percent were for “excessive force,” according to the statistics.

The statistics show that 16 of the complainants were Black, four were white, two were Asian or Pacific Islander, two were Hispanic and 14 were listed as “other.”

Of the officers who were named in the complaints, 21 were white, eight were Black, five were Hispanic, three were “other” and one was Asian/Pacific Islander.

Among those allegations whose investigations were closed, 57 percent were listed as involving “other rule violation,” 39 percent were for demeanor and 4 percent were for “differential treatment,” according to the statistics.

In Somerset County, there were 204 total investigations begun in 2021 involving 161 officers in 174 incidents.

Of the 163 of those cases that were closed, 28 percent of the allegations were sustained, 20 percent were not sustained, 20 percent were found to be unfounded, 7 percent were closed administratively and 25 percent of the officers were exonerated, the statistics show.

The figures show that 66 percent of those county-wide cases were initiated by civilian complaints while 31 percent were brought by individual agencies.

Of the allegations made county-wide, 10 percent were for excessive force, 29 percent were for “demeanor,” 10 percent were for “differential treatment” and 43 percent were labeled “other rule violation.”

Public Safety Director Quovella Maeweather could not be reached for comment.

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