STATEMENT BY JOHN EVANS, PRESIDENT OF THE BUFFALO POLICE BENEVOLENT ASSOCIATION, REGARDING LIST OF CITIZEN COMPLAINTS AGAINST OFFICERS
BUFFALO, NY – “The recent media report about the list of Buffalo police officers with the most excessive force and citizen complaints over the last 5 years is proof of the infinitesimal number of such complaints filed against the hard working men and women of the Buffalo Police Department.
“There have been hundreds of thousands, if not more, engagements and interactions with people in the community with members of the Buffalo Police Department over the last five years. And while every citizen’s complaint is reviewed, in most of those instances the list shows that the majority of the complaints were not sustained or the officer was exonerated.
“This is exactly why we expressed serious concerns about the use of 50-a in obtaining these records. Even if an officer is exonerated or the complaint was not sustained, it creates a perception that we have bad cops and that is what happens when public policy decisions are made on emotion and not pragmaticism.
“As a community, we should be having a dialogue about the future of policing and less concerned about a list of unsubstantiated complaints that occurred in the past.”