Transparency and Information

Transparency and Information

1. At a Glance

We believe in honoring and recognizing our diversity and we believe in making every effort to not only acknowledge challenges in our community but working together to build one another up and move ever forward, together. 

Here at the Livermore Police Department, we wanted to take a moment to provide additional information on the questions we're receiving. 

Guiding Principles:

We have received many inquiries from the Livermore community about our police department’s policies. We’ve examined our policies and feel they directly align with the spirit of what is being asked for in the recommendations from police reform organizations such as Campaign Zero and 8cantwait.org, but there are nuances in verbiage. For example, this is how our policies compare to the 8cantwait.org recommendations:

  • Ban chokeholds and strangleholds – These techniques are not permitted in our policies. On June 5, 2020, LPD removed the carotid restraint from our policy.
  • Require de-escalation – De-escalation is interwoven into the department’s operations and is included in the department’s policies for crisis intervention, conducted energy devices (Tasers), mental illness, and civil disputes. De-escalation techniques are included in various continued professional training topics and reality-based scenario training.
  • Require warning before shooting – In situations of a person fleeing who an officer reasonably believes will cause death or serious injury if not immediately apprehended, the officer, where feasible, will identify themselves and warn deadly force may be used
  • Exhaust all other means before shooting – Our policy requires officers evaluate the use of other reasonably available resources and techniques when determining whether to use deadly force, and deadly force is only used when there is an imminent threat of death or serious injury to the officer or another person.
  • Duty to intervene and stop excessive force by other officers – Our policy mandates a duty to intercede if any officer observes another officer using force that is unreasonable.
  • Ban shooting at moving vehicles – While our policy does not ban shooting at moving vehicles, it discourages shooting at moving vehicles. It is only allowed when the driver poses a deadly threat. Campaign Zero’s report provides a similar exception.
  • Require use-of-force continuum – Our policies require officers to use only that amount of force that reasonably appears necessary given the facts and totality of the circumstances. Continuum’s do not require officers start with one level of force before moving to another.  
  • Require comprehensive reporting each time an officer uses forces or threatens to do so – All law enforcement actions are documented, to include uses of force. The department provides data regarding all officer-involved shootings and incidents involving use of force resulting in serious bodily injury to the California Department of Justice.

For these reasons, we feel our policies align with the recommendations being advocated for. The Livermore Police Department recognizes and respects the value of all human life and dignity without prejudice to anyone. Vesting officers with the authority to use reasonable force and to protect the public welfare requires monitoring, evaluation and a careful balancing of all interests.

We hear you, and we know there may continue to be questions about what our policies are, which is why we have this page now dedicated to covering these topics in further detail.

This is a living web page, and we will add more to it in the coming days. For now, at your convenience, you can view our policies that ensure all members of our community remain safe.

We will continue to dialogue and engage with the community on our policies, and we will continue to work to move forward with intention with our community. 

Transparency and trust in our community with regards to how we protect and serve you is top of mind for us – we understand that the more we are able to open our doors to you on all levels, the more we can connect, communicate, and work together. The information provided here is a compilation of information you may find in other areas of our website, including our annual report, our policies, and more.

2. Training of LPD Officers

Before becoming an officer, new recruits are required to attend and successfully graduate from California Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) certified police academy.

Academy students train eight hours a day, five days a week for six months. This equates to a total of 1,046 hours of training in various topics including, but not limited to:

  • Becoming an Exemplary Peace Officer
  • Professionalism and Ethics
  • Cultural Diversity
  • Principled Policing in the Community
  • Crisis Intervention Techniques
  • De-escalation During Law Enforcement Encounters
  • Use of Force
  • Laws of Arrest
  • Law of Search and Seizure
  • Awareness and Engaging People with Disabilities
  • Anti-Discrimination

For more information on specific classes and the actual textbooks academy students study, visit the California POST website.

After successfully completing the police academy, new officers begin work at the Livermore Police Department (LPD), starting in the Field Training Officer (FTO) Program. LPD’s Field Training and Evaluation program is a 20-week intensive on-the-job training program. New officers receive daily performance evaluations and are required to meet specific performance standards before being certified for solo patrol duty. The training is conducted by field training officers (FTO), an FTO Sergeant, and an FTO Lieutenant.

Once an officer receives solo patrol status, they join the remainder of LPD officers in the many ongoing trainings conducted annually. California’s POST requires officers receive training in certain topics in order to maintain certification. For example, California police officers receive Tactical Communication and De-escalation training every two years. In an effort to go above the State standard, LPD officers receive ongoing and regular training in Tactical Communication and De-escalation. We accomplish this by incorporating these topics into many other regular LPD trainings such as, Reality Based Scenario training, On-Duty Scenario training, Range training, Defensive Tactics training, and Crisis Intervention Techniques training, and De-escalation training. All of our trainers are certified and considered experts in their field.

All LPD officers are certified in Crisis Intervention Techniques that specifically address how officers are to interact and communicate with individuals who are in mental crisis or suffer from a mental disorder. Additionally, all LPD officers are trained in recognizing implicit bias and preventing racial profiling. LPD conducts multiple scenario-based trainings throughout the year that test an officer’s ability to de-escalate a situation and make good critical decisions.

Here are just a few of the training topics LPD officers receive on a regular basis:

  • Crisis Intervention Technique training
  • Recognizing Implicit Bias
  • Preventing Racial Profiling
  • Procedural Justice
  • Tactical Communication
  • Engaging with People with Disabilities
  • Recognizing Excited Delirium
  • Decision Making Under Stress and Time Compressed Encounters
  • De-escalation
  • Defensive Tactics
  • Use of Force training
  • Reality Based Scenario training
  • Policy training
  • Case Law and Legal Authority training
  • Emergency Vehicle and Operation training

The Livermore Police Department is proud of the officer training program it has instituted, especially as the Department trains above the State requirements.

3. Accountability

The Livermore Police Department has a rigorous accountability procedure that aligns with the department’s mission, vision, and values. Here are just a few examples of how LPD ensures a culture of accountability, building trust between the police and the community.

 

Use of Force Review

Every use of force by an officer in our department, by policy, has to be reported and documented in a police report and a supervisor has to be notified at the time of the incident. The review of a reported of use of force is a multi-layered process. Each use of force is reviewed up the chain of command and a determination is made whether or not the use of force was within Livermore Police Department policy and lawful.

The use of force review is then forwarded to the Professional Standards Unit. The Professional Standards Unit is an extension of the Office of the Chief of Police and reports directly to the Chief. Once the reports reach the Professional Standards Unit, the entire report with all conclusions are examined to ensure it was lawful and within department policy.

The Professional Standards Unit also examines the use of force for training opportunities as well as ways to improve. This information is shared with our department’s Training Division for future training development.

Use of Force Policy

 

Vehicle Pursuit Review

The Livermore Police Department also conducts vehicle pursuit reviews of all vehicle pursuits. Our vehicle pursuit review is identical to our use of force review. Every vehicle pursuit is reviewed up the chain of command and a determination is made whether or not the vehicle pursuit was within Livermore Police Department policy and lawful.  

The Professional Standards Unit also examines all vehicle pursuits for training opportunities as well as ways to improve. This information is shared with our department’s Training Division for future training development.

Vehicle Pursuit Policy

 

Critical Incident Review

The Livermore Police Department has had a Critical Incident Review policy in existence for some time. The policy outlines the incidents that are required to be reviewed and establishes review timelines and a required reporting format.

These reviews are used to identify opportunities for the department to make improvements with regards to policy, training, tactics and response.

Critical Incident Review Policy

 

Body Camera Audits

In an effort to perform quality and assurance checks on our employees, supervisors conduct regular audits of an Officer’s body camera footage. The supervisor will randomly select a recorded incident and evaluate whether the Officer performed according to LPD policy and the standards we have set as an agency. Additionally, the supervisors review the body camera for training opportunities and areas of improvement, if any.

Portable Audio/Video Recorders Policy

 

Internal Affairs Investigations

The Livermore Police Department’s Professional Standards Unit to receives allegations of misconduct from the members of the public in a professional and courteous manner. If the agency believes there might be misconduct or a policy violation by an officer, the agency will initiate an internal affairs investigation.

All allegations are investigated, and a finding is made at the conclusion of the investigation. Internal affairs investigations may make one of the following findings, refer to dispositions:

  • Sustained – The investigation disclosed enough evidence to clearly prove the allegation.
  • Not Sustained – The investigation failed to reveal enough evidence to clearly prove or disprove the allegation.
  • Exonerated – The act which provided the basis for the complaint did occur; however, the investigation revealed the act was justified, lawful and proper.
  • Unfounded – The investigation produced enough sufficient evidence to prove that the alleged act or acts did not occur. This finding shall also apply when the individual personnel named in the complaint were not involved in an act that did occur.

In 2019, LPD had ten Internal Affairs Investigations (IAs) that investigated sixteen allegations of policy violations. Six of the IAs were the result of personnel complaints made by members of the public and four of the IAs were the result of internally-generated investigations. In certain circumstances, the citizen made more than one allegation in their complaint. Each allegation receives a disposition. Out of the sixteen allegations, seven received a disposition of exonerated, six were determined to be unfounded, and three were found to be sustained.

In 2019, the Livermore Police Department had a total of 67,144 calls for service. When comparing complaints by the members of public to the number of calls for service, a citizen complained 0.008% of the time.

In 2019, the Livermore Police Department made 3,531 arrests. When comparing complaints by the members of public to the number of arrests made, a person who was subjected to arrest complained 0.16% of the time.

 

Chief’s Review

On a regular basis, the Professional Standards Unit Sergeant meets with the Chief of Police and shares the data collected from internal affairs investigations, use of force incidents, vehicle pursuits, vehicle collisions involving city vehicles, instances of an employee losing or damaging city property, and training.

 

Annual Review and Analysis

Annually, the Professional Standards Unit Sergeant completes a review and analysis of the data collected from internal affairs investigations, use of force incidents, vehicle pursuits, vehicle collisions involving city vehicles, instances of an employee losing or damaging city property, training, and fair and impartial policing data. This information is shared with the Chief of Police, Command Staff and Training Unit.

The Livermore Police Department completes a yearly review of policy to ensure they are current.

4. Duty to Intercede

The Livermore Police Department (LPD) has a long-standing policy requiring officers to intercede and stop unacceptable behavior of another officer. These policies enforce LPD’s Mission, Values, and Vision and ensures our officers are providing the best service to the community.

LPD’s policy prohibiting bias-based policing provides guidance to officers in support of LPD’s commitment to fair and objective policing. It prohibits bias-based policing and directs officers to intercede to prevent any biased-based actions by another member of the department.

Bias-Based Policing Policy

LPD’s use of force policy also requires officers to intercede when observing another officer using force that is clearly beyond that which is objectively reasonable under the circumstance. If the officer fails to intervene, they are subject to discipline.

Use of Force Policy

Additionally, LPD conducts regular reality-based scenario trainings where officers are intentionally tested to recognize their duty to intercede when actions of another officer are outside of policy.

LPD is proud of our policies and training program that emphasize the importance of an officer’s duty to intercede. Our officers recognize the trust that has been placed upon them to uphold the high standards of conduct that the community expects and the department demands.

5. Community Engagement

We Value Our Relationship with You!

The Livermore Police Department (LPD) recognizes the importance of strong police-community relations. We focus on maximizing open communication and transparency with community members to identify their needs and concerns. We seek to truly understand community issues and their causes. Collaborating with our community, we develop and participate in many special public outreach programs. We take great pride in these programs as they have proven to be wonderful mediums to enhance our level of service to the great people of Livermore.

Please enjoy an overview of several of these formal programs:

  • Citizens Police Academy
    The Citizen's Police Academy (CPA) was developed to further the department’s goal of expanding the Community Oriented Policing philosophy. The CPA provides participants with a unique insight into the Livermore Police Department. By presenting the functions, capabilities, and limitations of the department, this course helps to increase the level of trust, respect, and sense of understanding and awareness between the department and the community. The CPA is a 17-week program filled with presentations, demonstrations, practical application scenarios, and tours of the police department facilities. Each session is taught by a member of the Livermore Police Department who has special expertise and years of practical experience in their respective subject. To date, LPD has completed 37 Citizen’s Academies reaching approximately 1,100 community members. 
  • LPD’s Volunteer and Reserve Officer Program
    LPD has over 100 dedicated men and women who selflessly devote their time to help make the City of Livermore a safer place and enhance our service to the community. These invaluable individuals support and assist the department in various ways. LPD’s Reserve Officers and Volunteers offer their individual expertise and time to assist the Livermore Police Department with events and programs throughout the year, including Citizen’s on Patrol, Community Event/Barricade Duty, Drug Take Back, and many more. Often, these volunteers will be our role players in our department training.
  • Coffee with a Cop
    The Livermore Police Department partners with local coffee and tea shops to host pop-up community engagement events with no particular agenda. Community members are invited to come with questions or to just enjoy a nice chat with members of our organization.
  • Stuff-A-Cruiser
    The Livermore Police Department works with Horizons Family Counseling and local businesses to collect and distribute school supplies to students in need throughout our community. Community members graciously donate to this program each year, making it an overwhelming success. We collect an average of 500 fully stocked backpacks to help our local students in need start the school year.
  • National Night Out
    This is an annual national campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie. Livermore generally has between 40-55 neighborhood block parties graciously hosted by residents. This is yet another opportunity for us to engage with our community to present, answer questions or concerns, and enjoy the company of one another.
  • Trick or Treat Trail
    In 2014, the Livermore Police Department created this unique opportunity for youth and their families to tour our police facility while it is decorated for Halloween. The various division workspaces are decorated according to a theme and guided groups walk through and appreciate the creativity of our employees. LPD has recently partnered with the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Foundation, who generously provides food and outdoor activities. Approximately 4,000 community members typically participate in this event.
  • Shop with a Cop
    Towards the end of each year, as the winter holidays approach, the Livermore Valley Joint Unified School District (LVJUSD) and the Livermore Police Department collaborate with Starbucks and Walmart to treat local children in need to a morning Starbucks treat and a Walmart shopping experience like nothing they have experienced before. LVJUSD identifies students in financial need and who may otherwise not have the opportunity to purchase gifts for the winter holidays. Community members donate funds to the program. These donated funds provide each student the opportunity to buy presents for their family members or themselves, helping to ensure a brighter holiday. The Livermore Police Officer’s Association, along with volunteers from LPD staff and family, cook and serve the group breakfast while wrapping gifts together.
  • Law Enforcement Torch Run and “Tip a Cop”
    Annually, the Livermore Police Department joins law enforcement on a national level to carry the “Flame of Hope” with Special Olympics athletes to the Opening Ceremonies. LPD also participates in Special Olympic fundraising platforms such as “Tip a Cop.” We team up with local restaurant establishments who allow members of LPD to serve their customers and collect “tips” to support the Special Olympics.
  • Social Media Outreach
    Over the last few years, the Livermore Police Department has increased outreach and news reporting through social media.LPD has developed a Public Information Officer team that includes individuals from various divisions within the organization. The team’s goal is to provide timely safety information, crime prevention tips, safety suggestions, and publicize current community events and news.

We at the Livermore Police Department believe in partnering with our community to promote collaborative problem solving and enhance relationships and overall quality of life. We believe the police-community partnership is stronger than ever because of our continued collaborative efforts.

Our efforts to creatively engage the Livermore community allow us to remain in line with the mission, vision and values of the Livermore Police Department.

6. Use of Force

Some people think police officers use force on a regular basis. When it comes to the Livermore Police Department, this is simply not true. The ultimate objective of every law enforcement encounter is to avoid or minimize injury. In 2019, the Livermore Police Department (LPD) had 67,144 police contacts, which included all calls for service and officer-initiated activity. When comparing the number of police contacts with use of force, LPD officers used force only 0.07% of the time. In those rare cases when force was used, 69% of those incidents involved subjects who were under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol.

The Livermore Police Department’s policy is clear and consistent with the law. LPD officers are only allowed to use the amount of force that reasonably appears necessary given the facts and totality of the circumstances. In accordance with LPD policy, our officers are also trained to intervene and report if they observe another officer using force that is unreasonable.

The Livermore Police Department relies on the Lexipol policy platform to host our policy manual and to provide daily training bulletins. Lexipol is the leading nationwide platform for comprehensive public safety and local government agency policy development. Using this platform ensures that staff have the most up to date resources and best practices to carry out their duties and ensure public safety. LPD ensures that our personnel are consistently exposed to policy and are tested on various aspects of it each day they are at work. Lexipol is the leading platform for comprehensive public safety and local government agency policy development, to ensure our staff have the most up to date resources to carry out their duties and ensure public safety. Lexipol’s group of attorneys develop evidence-based policies. The Livermore Police Department reviews and updates the policy manual annually, with additional updates made as needed throughout the year.

LPD’s use of force policy does not allow chokeholds or strangleholds. On June 5, 2020, the Livermore Police Department removed the carotid restraint technique from our policy (Use of Force Policy). For information on the 8CantWait campaign, refer to the At a Glance section.

All LPD officers wear assigned body cameras. They are required to activate their body cameras for all calls for service (Portable Audio/Video Recorders Policy). This allows for our agency to properly examine use of force applications and develop trainings to better prepare officers to deal with certain encounters. Again, our officers can only use the amount of force that is reasonably necessary given the facts and totality of the circumstances. Please refer to the following force options policies for further information:

Handcuffing and Restraints Policy

Control Devices and Techniques Policy

Conducted Energy Weapon Policy

The Livermore Police Department’s training division is committed to providing the highest quality education and training for employees, consistent with best practices, policy, and the law. LPD takes pride in being on the cutting edge of a wide range of training in how to de-escalate situations and reduce use of force. LPD officers also complete training in case law, legal authority, and legal standing.

The heart of LPD’s training program starts with the value and sanctity of human life. The Livermore Police Department has a robust de-escalation training program that is intertwined throughout department policy. LPD officers are trained to use a critical decision-making model when responding to critical incidents. LPD officers have been trained in Crisis Intervention Techniques where they enhance their communication skills and their skills in de-escalating situations involving individuals suffering from mental crisis or a mental disorder.

The Livermore Police Department has a Force Options Unit that is comprised of 22 instructors who hold state certification in their area of expertise. The level of training LPD officers receive is among the best in the state. The training program includes classroom training, static movement training, and reality-based scenario training. The success of the training program is evident as our officers have successfully de-escalate situations and find peaceful solutions.

As is described in the Accountability section, every use of force by an officer in our agency, by policy, must be documented in a police report and a supervisor must be notified at the time of the incident. Each use of force incident is reviewed up the chain of command and a determination is made as to whether the use of force was lawful and within Livermore Police Department policy.

The use of force review is then forwarded to the Professional Standards Unit where the entire report with all conclusions is examined to ensure that the use of force was reasonable, lawful, and within department policy. The Professional Standards Unit also examines the use of force for training opportunities and collaborates with the LPD Training Division for future training development.

 

7. Early Warning Intervention System

In 2006, the Livermore Police Department introduced a law enforcement Early Warning and Intervention System (EWIS). An EWIS is a personnel management tool that is designed to identify potential individual or group concerns at the earliest possible opportunity, allowing the department to proactively prevent harmful behaviors by employees before they happen. We proactively incorporated this platform which supports frontline documentation, supervisory oversight, and organizational accountability. Our organization sets high expectations of our employees. The EWIS tracks data from certain performance activities of our officer such as:

  • Use of Force
  • Vehicle Pursuits
  • Officer Involved Shootings
  • Complaints
  • Vehicle Collisions
  • Lost or Damaged City Property
  • Firearm Discharges

Once the EWIS database is “triggered” by specific behavior or performance of an officer, a supervisor reviews all the officer’s activities and productivity and meets one-on-one with the officer. At the conclusion of the meeting, the supervisor completes a EWIS review and forwards it through the chain of command for notification and additional review. The EWIS allows supervisors and command staff to compare data between individual officers, different units, and watch teams at any time.

The Livermore Police Department subscribes to the notion that an organization is only as good as the personnel that are part of it. EWIS helps ensure LPD officers continue to provide quality service in line with the department’s <mission, vision, and values.> By tracking these evidence-based indicators, the platform serves as a tool for early identification and intervention with the overall goal of re-directing performance and behaviors toward LPD’s organizational goals.

We are proud of EWIS as it allows us to identifying behavior and actions which may not be in-line with our overarching goal to provide quality service through best practices and proactive approaches.

8. Recruiting and Backgrounds

Recruiting

The Livermore Police Department is proud to have a recruiting team comprised of both sworn and civilian staff who collaborate with the Human Resources Department. Our recruiters are committed to connecting with qualified individuals who have a desire to serve the Livermore community. The goal of our recruiting team is to exceed the level of excellence in our police organization, today and into the future. Our recruiting team proactively seeks suitable applicants through various avenues. Some of our recruiting efforts include:

  • The Livermore Police Department’s Explorer and Police Cadet Programs develop young individuals into productive, responsible citizens through leadership, team building, and hands-on activities, while inspiring the pursuit of a law enforcement career.
  • The LPD recruiting team attends community events in a recruiting capacity. Events attended in an effort to seek qualified and motivated applicants include Livermore Downtown Street Fest, Farmer’s Market, Livermore Half Marathon, Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department’s Hook and Ladder Run, Independence Day celebration, the Livermore Rodeo, high school career fairs, and many more.
  • Members of the LPD recruiting team travel locally and throughout the state attending job fairs at colleges, diversity employment day career fairs, military veteran career services, and more.

 

Hiring Process

Applications to work for the Livermore Police Department are screened through the City of Livermore’s Human Resource Division. Applicants are required to pass a California Peace Officer and Standards (POST) written exam and physical exam, depending on the position for which they are applying.

Applicants meeting the required qualifications set forth by California POST and the City of Livermore will be invited to an Oral Board interview. The Oral Board interview consists of a panel of two police officers and one local community member who ask a series of questions designed to evaluate the applicant’s suitability for the position. The panel evaluates the applicant’s ability to communicate, their level of preparation, and decision making. If the applicant receives a passing score from the oral board panel, they are placed on an eligibility list. Those having desirable qualifications and test scores will be asked to complete a POST Personal History Statement, which is then provided to LPD’s Background Investigation Unit for review.

 

Backgrounds

The Livermore Police Department’s Background Investigation Unit is committed to providing the Livermore community with the highest quality of police department employees. Our goal is to employ a work force comprised of individuals who are committed to excellence and who have the highest standard of ethics.

The background investigation includes an extensive look into the applicant’s:

  • Criminal history, both as an adult and a juvenile
  • Drug use
  • Driving history
  • Education
  • Credit checks
  • Past relationships
  • Military
  • Immigration / Nationalization

The background investigator interviews:

  • Friends
  • Family
  • Past and current employers
  • Past and current co-workers
  • Past and current landlords
  • Past and current roommates
  • Any other acquaintances
  • Neighbors and prior neighbors

It is imperative that all information an applicant provides is truthful and accurate. Any measurement short of this does not meet the Livermore Police Department’s standards and is grounds for disqualification.

As part of the background investigation, the applicant is required to submit to a drug test and polygraph examination. The polygraph examination is another valuable tool used to verify an applicant’s truthfulness through the process.

At the conclusion of the background investigation process, the applicant may be invited to an interview with the Chief of Police. This is a formal job interview, after which the applicant may receive a conditional job offer. A conditional offer of employment is contingent upon the applicant successfully passing a psychological examination with a State certified psychologist. Psychologists used during the hiring process specialize in the screening of law enforcement candidates. The psychological exam consists of a written exam and a lengthy interview designed to identify any biases or behavior patterns that are considered problematic for the profession. After the exam and interview, the psychologist makes a professional determination about whether the applicant is psychologically suitable for law enforcement.

After the psychological exam and interview, applicant is required to complete a medical screening with a medical doctor.

The Livermore Police Department’s hiring process is an extremely challenging and extensive process. The process allows for only the most qualified candidates to succeed.

The background investigation and screening process used and endorsed by POST is very rigorous. Only about 5-10% of law enforcement applicants are successfully hired into the profession.

We at the Livermore Police Department believe hiring standards should remain strict to respect the power and discretion that comes with all jobs in our organization. We are proud of the process and the quality of law enforcement officers we have working at LPD.

9. 2020 Uniform Crime Report (UCR) for Part I Crimes

Each year, the Livermore Police Department reports our Part I crimes to the Department of Justice (DOJ). After submitting this report to the DOJ, it usually takes several months for the report to be published.

To maintain the highest level of transparency, we are providing the report to our community at the same time we submitted it to the DOJ. View the 2020 UCR for Part I Crimes