New York police officers interact with residents and visitors every day. Members of the NYPD have a duty to fight crime, enforce the law and protect the lives and property of citizens.
They also have considerable power to use force or restrict the freedom of individuals. If police officers overstep their authority, they face probation and possible dismissal from the force.
New York police officers protect the safety and security of those who live and work in the city. They have discretion in the way they go about their duties but face disciplinary action if they go beyond the guidelines. In 2019, a panel of judges and former prosecutors made recommendations for additions to the existing disciplinary process. A police officer can incur penalties for violating department rules and for misconduct when engaging with members of the public. The panel’s recommendations, now in place, included three types of probation:
1. Entry-level Probation
NYPD new hires are on entry-level probation for a period of two years. For a disciplinary infraction, the Department can terminate a new police officer without a formal hearing.
2. Promotion Probation
Promotion probation is for officers who have received a civil service promotion. For example, the Department can place those who have achieved the rank of Sergeant, Lieutenant or Captain on promotion probation for one year.
3. Dismissal Probation
An NYPD officer facing dismissal probation will be terminated from the police force and must acknowledge this in writing. However, the Department will delay actual termination for one year while the officer goes on dismissal probation and is subject to monitoring. Depending on the severity of an offense or civil rights violation, the Department can also dismiss an officer without a formal hearing. Moreover, the Police Commissioner can impose disciplinary measures over and above these guidelines.