By Community Alliance Staff
If you have a complaint you want to file against the Fresno Police Department, visit www.fresno.gov/Government/DepartmentDirectory/Police/IAComplaint.htm and fill out the form. Be sure to fill it out completely and state all facts relevant to your complaint. The filing of a complaint is not a mandatory prerequisite to filing a lawsuit, but be sure to do it if you have a complaint whether you intend to file a lawsuit or not. It should be submitted as soon as possible after the event.
Although an investigation of your complaint will not necessarily take place, the complaint itself will be retained for some time. If the officers involved are later part of the prosecution of another person, your claim will be found by that person’s defense attorney and you may be called as a witness regarding that officer’s behavior in relation to you. You may save someone else from a wrongful prosecution. It is important to always file a complaint if you have been treated wrongfully by an officer.
Filing a Tort Claim Against the Police or the Sheriff
If you believe you might have a lawsuit against the Fresno Police Department, it is essential you complete what is called a “tort claim” within six months of the incident. The six-month deadline on filing your tort claim is mandatory, and it is difficult to have it set aside.
To complete a tort claim against the Fresno City Police Department:
Visit www.fresno.gov, then select the following:
- Select the “Government” link located toward the top center of the page next to the “For Visitors” link.
- Select the “Department Directory” link.
- Select the “Risk Management” link under “Personnel Services.”
- Select the “Claim for Damages Form” link.
Note: You cannot save a completed copy of this form. You will only be able to fill out the form and print. Please print your completed form if you would like a copy for your records.
If you believe you have a lawsuit against the Fresno County Sheriff’s Department, you can fill out a tort claim at www.co.fresno.ca.us/DepartmentPage.aspx?id=16175.
Both agencies will thereafter notify you of the response to your claim (almost all will be denied) and, most important, the date by which you must file your lawsuit. The date the lawsuit must be filed is mandatory, and there is absolutely no way around it.
To pick up and/or submit your tort claims in person:
Fresno Police Department:
Risk Management Division in City Hall
2600 Fresno St., Room 1070
Fresno, CA 93721
Fresno County Sheriff’s Department:
Fresno County Board of Supervisors
2281 Tulare St., Suite 301, Hall of Records
Fresno, CA 93721-2198