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 assist them with making better decisions or helping them to be in control of their welfare and safety.
Unfortunately, there are times when poor decisions result in criminal actions. In these instances, school personnel often are required to contact law enforcement. The nature and severity of the criminal offense will dictate whether charges are filed or if the matter can be handled via school disciplinary policies.
Criminal Investigations and Information Confidentiality
State law and established investigative practices require that some aspects of a criminal investigation remain confidential. FISD PD will maintain a policy of transparency in operations while at the time guarding the confidentiality of victims, juvenile offenders, and those who have merely been accused of, but not charged with, a crime.
Custodial Status of Law Enforcement Information versus FERPA
On-going, open investigations or cases pending judicial disposition are exempt from the release of information requests to any person not involved in the disposition of the case. Information and evidence collected by the police department are also excluded from FERPA requests for release. This includes school security video, photography or other hard evidence. Some 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 gathering facts or information that may lead to the identification of a crime and persons involved. The information is then turned over District Attorney’s office for determination of the filing of charges or further action. The District Attorney’s office decides what information is released on cases that have been filed with their office.
FISD Police traffic or minor offense citations are referred to the Lubbock County Justice of the Peace. PCT. 1.