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Got a complaint about a Fort Worth police officer? Or a compliment? A new portal makes it easier.

Downtown Fort Worth
Fort Worth residents can now use an online portal to submit complaints or compliments about the city's police officers.

Fort Worth residents can now use an online portal to submit complaints, kudos or just comments about the city’s police officers.

The city’s Office of the Police Oversight Monitor opened the new portal. The OPOM, which the city established in 2020, is separate from the police department and has a watchdog role.

The monitor can’t tell the police chief what to do, but can make policy change recommendations. The office tracks data, like police officers' use of force, to identify trends and monitors police investigations into officer misconduct.

Before, the police monitor’s office only accepted complaints and commendations in person, over the phone, or through a form people had to download, said Catherine Huckaby, the deputy police monitor. The new portal is easier to access, and it’s also easier to track that complaint data.

“The great thing about this form is that it all goes into a database where we can share the lessons learned: any policy changes that have been made based on some of that data,” Huckaby said.

The new portal asks for information like the date of the incident, where it happened, details about the allegations and whether a police officer ticketed or arrested anyone. The more information someone shares, the better, Huckaby said. The data will help her office identify trends down to individual police divisions and even neighborhoods.

People can also submit complaints directly to the Fort Worth Police Department, but they may not want to, Huckaby said.

“Our office was created not only to monitor the investigations that internal affairs does, but also to be that neutral place that community members can go to if they want to start the process with us,” she said.

The review process works like this:

  • The police monitor’s office receives a person's complaint or kudos. 
  • The office then forwards the complaint or commendation to FWPD's internal affairs division, which oversees investigations of police misconduct. Any complaint submitted through the police monitor’s office gets investigated, Huckaby said. 
  • The FWPD can take up to 90 days to investigate a complaint. The police monitor’s office keeps an eye on the investigation during this time. 
  • After the investigation is complete, the police monitor’s office will retrace internal affairs’ steps, looking at evidence like body cam footage and witness reports to make sure FWPD saw everything and that everyone came to the same conclusions, Huckaby said. 

If the police monitor’s office finds any missed facts or opportunities for policy changes, it sends those recommendations back to internal affairs.

The police monitor’s office plans to make data about complaints and the resulting policy changes public. However, it’s not clear whether the recommendations the police department rejects will be made public, too.

Huckaby said she could not share any examples of rejected policies, but that her office’s goal is to put a dashboard up on its website tracking recommendations and their status.

“So far, the chief has been open to many of the suggestions,” she said. “And if he's not, then we move on to the next one because there's always something else that we can be working on."

The police monitor’s office also plans to submit its first biannual report to the city manager and the public by April 1st.

Got a tip? Email Miranda Suarez at You can follow Miranda on Twitter @MirandaRSuarez.

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Miranda Suarez is KERA’s Tarrant County accountability reporter. Before coming to North Texas, she was the Lee Ester News Fellow at Wisconsin Public Radio, where she covered statewide news from the capital city of Madison. Miranda is originally from Massachusetts and started her public radio career at WBUR in Boston.