As district police officers, we understand that working and having relationships with students and their families is critical to the success of those we serve. In the spirit of having good relationships with our students, we believe that student behavior management is often best addressed by school personnel. Certainly, we are always available to counsel a student to direct them into making better decisions or advise them on how to be in control of their welfare and safety.
Unfortunately, there will be some decisions and behaviors of students or any other person that may be of a criminal nature or criminal intent, is it these incidents that school personnel normally are required to contact law enforcement personnel, or at times find the need to seek our input or law enforcement counsel.
It is the criminal incidents the may require police involvement and the adherences to prescribed laws related to formal police actions. Police officers often base formal decisions on the allowance of discretion and the lawful requirement to implement certain departmental and legislative procedures.
Criminal Investigations and Information Confidentiality
It is the same or related lawful requirements that also require the specific management of criminal cases, investigations and the information collected during police involvement. The legislative requirements for confidentiality are required by law and have criminal penalties if violated by any person that is in control of such information.
Custodial Status of Law Enforcement Information versus FERPA
On-going, open investigation or cases pending judicial disposition are exempt from the release of information requests to any person not involved in the particulars and disposition of the case. Information collected or evidence collected by the police department are also not included in FERPA requests for release, this includes school security video, photography or other hard evidence. Although certain individual information may be released as prescribed by law, and under the direction of the Chief of Police.
Disposition of Investigative Cases and Information
The general role of a law enforcement investigation is gather facts or information that may lead to the identification of a possible crime and persons involved. The information is then turned over to the prescribed courts or government attorneys, such as the adult and juvenile criminal district attorneys for review and final disposition. These same offices have the lawful authority to release the same information.
Frenship ISD Police traffic or minor offense citations are referred to the Lubbock County Justice of the Peace. PCT. 1.