Florida Senate - 2024                                     SB 576
       By Senator Ingoglia
       11-00323-24                                            2024576__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to the investigation of complaints
    3         against law enforcement and correctional officers;
    4         amending s. 112.533, F.S.; providing legislative
    5         intent; revising the definition of “political
    6         subdivision”; prohibiting a political subdivision from
    7         adopting or attempting to enforce certain ordinances
    8         relating to the receipt, processing, or investigation
    9         of complaints against law enforcement officers or
   10         correctional officers, or relating to civilian
   11         oversight of law enforcement agency investigations of
   12         complaints of misconduct by such officers; making
   13         technical changes; amending s. 112.532, F.S.;
   14         conforming a cross-reference; making technical
   15         changes; providing an effective date.
   17  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   19         Section 1. Section 112.533, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   20  read:
   21         112.533 Receipt and processing of complaints.—
   22         (1) It is the intent of the Legislature to make the process
   23  for receiving, processing, and investigation of complaints
   24  against law enforcement or correctional officers, and the rights
   25  and privileges provided in this part while under investigation,
   26  apply uniformly throughout this state and its political
   27  subdivisions.
   28         (2)As used in this section, the term “political
   29  subdivision” means a separate agency or unit of local government
   30  created or established by law or ordinance and the officers
   31  thereof and includes, but is not limited to, an authority, a
   32  board, a branch, a bureau, a city, a commission, a consolidated
   33  government, a county, a department, a district, an institution,
   34  a metropolitan government, a municipality, an office, an
   35  officer, a public corporation, a town, or a village.
   36         (3)A political subdivision may not adopt or attempt to
   37  enforce any ordinance relating to either of the following:
   38         (a)The receipt, processing, or investigation by any
   39  political subdivision of this state of complaints of misconduct
   40  by law enforcement or correctional officers, except as expressly
   41  provided in this section.
   42         (b)Civilian oversight of law enforcement agencies’
   43  investigations of complaints of misconduct by law enforcement or
   44  correctional officers.
   45         (4)(a) Every law enforcement agency and correctional agency
   46  shall establish and put into operation a system for the receipt,
   47  investigation, and determination of complaints received by such
   48  agency from any person, which must shall be the procedure for
   49  investigating a complaint against a law enforcement or and
   50  correctional officer and for determining whether to proceed with
   51  disciplinary action or to file disciplinary charges,
   52  notwithstanding any other law or ordinance to the contrary. When
   53  law enforcement or correctional agency personnel assigned the
   54  responsibility of investigating the complaint prepare an
   55  investigative report or summary, regardless of form, the person
   56  preparing the report shall, at the time the report is completed:
   57         1. Verify pursuant to s. 92.525 that the contents of the
   58  report are true and accurate based upon the person’s personal
   59  knowledge, information, and belief.
   60         2. Include the following statement, sworn and subscribed to
   61  pursuant to s. 92.525:
   63  “I, the undersigned, do hereby swear, under penalty of perjury,
   64  that, to the best of my personal knowledge, information, and
   65  belief, I have not knowingly or willfully deprived, or allowed
   66  another to deprive, the subject of the investigation of any of
   67  the rights contained in ss. 112.532 and 112.533, Florida
   68  Statutes.”
   70  The requirements of subparagraphs 1. and 2. must shall be
   71  completed before prior to the determination as to whether to
   72  proceed with disciplinary action or to file disciplinary
   73  charges. This subsection does not preclude the Criminal Justice
   74  Standards and Training Commission from exercising its authority
   75  under chapter 943.
   76         (b)1. Any political subdivision that initiates or receives
   77  a complaint against a law enforcement officer or correctional
   78  officer shall must within 5 business days forward the complaint
   79  to the employing agency of the officer who is the subject of the
   80  complaint for review or investigation.
   81         2. For purposes of this paragraph, the term “political
   82  subdivision” means a separate agency or unit of local government
   83  created or established by law or ordinance and the officers
   84  thereof and includes, but is not limited to, an authority,
   85  board, branch, bureau, city, commission, consolidated
   86  government, county, department, district, institution,
   87  metropolitan government, municipality, office, officer, public
   88  corporation, town, or village.
   90  Notwithstanding the rights and privileges provided under this
   91  part or any provisions provided in a collective bargaining
   92  agreement, the agency head or the agency head’s designee may
   93  request a sworn or certified investigator from a separate law
   94  enforcement or correctional agency to conduct the investigation
   95  when a conflict is identified with having an investigator
   96  conduct the investigation of an officer of the same employing
   97  agency; the employing agency does not have an investigator
   98  trained to conduct such investigations; or the agency’s
   99  investigator is the subject of, or a witness in, the
  100  investigation and such agency is composed of any combination of
  101  35 or fewer law enforcement officers or correctional officers.
  102  The employing agency must document the identified conflict. Upon
  103  completion of the investigation, the investigator shall present
  104  the findings without any disciplinary recommendation to the
  105  employing agency.
  106         (5)(a)(2)(a) A complaint filed against a law enforcement
  107  officer or correctional officer with a law enforcement agency or
  108  correctional agency and all information obtained pursuant to the
  109  investigation by the agency of the complaint is confidential and
  110  exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1) until the
  111  investigation ceases to be active, or until the agency head or
  112  the agency head’s designee provides written notice to the
  113  officer who is the subject of the complaint, either personally
  114  or by mail, that the agency has concluded the investigation with
  115  either a finding:
  116         1. Concluded the investigation with a finding Not to
  117  proceed with disciplinary action or to file charges; or
  118         2. Concluded the investigation with a finding To proceed
  119  with disciplinary action or to file charges.
  121  Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions, the officer who is the
  122  subject of the complaint, along with legal counsel or any other
  123  representative of his or her choice, may review the complaint
  124  and all statements regardless of form made by the complainant
  125  and witnesses and all existing evidence, including, but not
  126  limited to, incident reports, analyses, GPS locator information,
  127  and audio or video recordings relating to the investigation,
  128  immediately before beginning the investigative interview. All
  129  statements, regardless of form, provided by a law enforcement
  130  officer or correctional officer during the course of a complaint
  131  investigation of that officer must shall be made under oath
  132  pursuant to s. 92.525. Knowingly false statements given by a law
  133  enforcement officer or correctional officer under investigation
  134  may subject the law enforcement officer or correctional officer
  135  to prosecution for perjury. If a witness to a complaint is
  136  incarcerated in a correctional facility and may be under the
  137  supervision of, or have contact with, the officer under
  138  investigation, only the names and written statements of the
  139  complainant and nonincarcerated witnesses may be reviewed by the
  140  officer under investigation immediately before prior to the
  141  beginning of the investigative interview.
  142         (b) This subsection does not apply to any public record
  143  which is exempt from public disclosure pursuant to chapter 119.
  144  For the purposes of this subsection, an investigation is shall
  145  be considered active as long as it is continuing with a
  146  reasonable, good faith anticipation that an administrative
  147  finding will be made in the foreseeable future. An investigation
  148  is shall be presumed to be inactive if no finding is made within
  149  45 days after the complaint is filed.
  150         (c) Notwithstanding other provisions of this section, the
  151  complaint and information must shall be available to law
  152  enforcement agencies, correctional agencies, and state attorneys
  153  in the conduct of a lawful criminal investigation.
  154         (6)(3) A law enforcement officer or correctional officer
  155  has the right to review his or her official personnel file at
  156  any reasonable time under the supervision of the designated
  157  records custodian. A law enforcement officer or correctional
  158  officer may attach to the file a concise statement in response
  159  to any items included in the file identified by the officer as
  160  derogatory, and copies of such items must be made available to
  161  the officer.
  162         (7)(4) Any person who is a participant in an internal
  163  investigation, including the complainant, the subject of the
  164  investigation and the subject’s legal counsel or a
  165  representative of his or her choice, the investigator conducting
  166  the investigation, and any witnesses in the investigation, who
  167  willfully discloses any information obtained pursuant to the
  168  agency’s investigation, including, but not limited to, the
  169  identity of the officer under investigation, the nature of the
  170  questions asked, information revealed, or documents furnished in
  171  connection with a confidential internal investigation of an
  172  agency, before such complaint, document, action, or proceeding
  173  becomes a public record as provided in this section commits a
  174  misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s.
  175  775.082 or s. 775.083. However, this subsection does not limit a
  176  law enforcement or correctional officer’s ability to gain access
  177  to information under paragraph (5)(a) (2)(a). Additionally, a
  178  sheriff, police chief, or other head of a law enforcement
  179  agency, or his or her designee, is not precluded by this section
  180  from acknowledging the existence of a complaint and the fact
  181  that an investigation is underway.
  182         Section 2. Paragraph (b) of subsection (4) of section
  183  112.532, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  184         112.532 Law enforcement officers’ and correctional
  185  officers’ rights.—All law enforcement officers and correctional
  186  officers employed by or appointed to a law enforcement agency or
  187  a correctional agency shall have the following rights and
  188  privileges:
  191         (b) Notwithstanding s. 112.533(5) s. 112.533(2), whenever a
  192  law enforcement officer or correctional officer is subject to
  193  disciplinary action consisting of suspension with loss of pay,
  194  demotion, or dismissal, the officer or the officer’s
  195  representative must shall, upon request, be provided with a
  196  complete copy of the investigative file, including the final
  197  investigative report and all evidence, and with the opportunity
  198  to address the findings in the report with the employing law
  199  enforcement agency before imposing disciplinary action
  200  consisting of suspension with loss of pay, demotion, or
  201  dismissal. The contents of the complaint and investigation must
  202  shall remain confidential until such time as the employing law
  203  enforcement agency makes a final determination whether or not to
  204  issue a notice of disciplinary action consisting of suspension
  205  with loss of pay, demotion, or dismissal. This paragraph does
  206  not provide law enforcement officers with a property interest or
  207  expectancy of continued employment, employment, or appointment
  208  as a law enforcement officer.
  209         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2024.