TEMPLE, TX (June 19, 2020) – The following is a message from Chief of Police Shawn M. Reynolds:"During my first few weeks in Temple, the Police Department has received several questions regarding the state of relations between police and the public, both in our community and throughout the country.After listening to those conversations, we have done our best to consolidate answers to several of the questions we have received frequently.I would also like to reassure residents that the Department has a comprehensive set of policies and procedures which all officers are required to follow. Last year, TPD received recognized status under the Texas Police Chiefs’ Association Best Practices Accreditation. Requirements for entry into the program included a two-year application and review process where the Department’s policies and procedures were thoroughly examined. TPD is one of just 152 departments within the state to receive such a distinction.I believe it is important that residents take an active role in their communities, and it is encouraging to see so many Temple residents doing just that. We are grateful for the opportunity to have an open dialogue and we look forward to many more productive conversations in the future." Does TPD follow the recommendations of the “8 Can’t Wait” campaign?Temple PD meets the requirements of seven of the “8 Can’t Wait” recommendations. The Department does not require officers to exhaust all alternatives before using deadly force if the circumstances would make it unreasonable to do so.If so, which criteria is Temple PD complaint with?
More information on employment requirements can be found online at jointemplepd.comWhy aren’t the videos from body worn cameras released to the public?The Texas Occupations Code and the Texas Government Code govern release of recordings made by law enforcement officers’ body worn cameras. Section 1701.660 of the Texas Occupations Code (TOC) addresses the release of recordings created with an officer’s body worn camera that documents an incident involving the use of deadly force by an officer, or that is otherwise related to a disciplinary or criminal investigation of a police officer. The following rules apply to this specific type of body worn camera recording:The (TOC) generally prohibits release to the public of a recording created with a body worn camera that documents an incident involving the use of deadly force by a police officer, or that is otherwise related to a disciplinary or criminal investigation of a police officer until all criminal matters have been finally adjudicated and any disciplinary investigations have concluded.The TOC permits a law enforcement agency to allow a person who is depicted in this type of recording or, if the person is deceased, the person’s authorized representative, to view the recording if the agency determines that a law enforcement purpose would be served, and if the person viewing the recording was not a witness to the incident. The authorized person may be allowed to view the recording but is not permitted to duplicate or capture video or audio from the recording. Allowing an authorized person to view the recording is not a public release of the recording for purposes of the Texas Public Information Act.The TOC also permits a law enforcement agency to release this type of recording to the public if the agency determines that a law enforcement purpose would be served by doing so.Unauthorized release of a body worn camera recording by a police officer or other employee of a law enforcement agency is a Class A misdemeanor.Section 552 of the Texas Government Code, also known as the Texas Public Information Act, authorizes a law enforcement agency to withhold information, including recordings made by officers’ body worn and dash cameras, in two specific instances. First, an agency may withhold information that deals with the detection, investigation, or prosecution of a crime if releasing the information would interfere with the ongoing detection, investigation or prosecution of crime. Second, an agency may withhold information related to any closed criminal investigation that did not result in a conviction or a deferred adjudication community supervision.
What are the demographics of TPD Officers?The Temple Police Department strives to maintain a workforce that is representative of the community it serves. The following chart provides a breakdown of demographics within the sworn members of this department.Since 2009, the department’s minority ranks have grown. In 2009, minorities (such as those listed in this report) represented 20.6% of the officers employed by this agency. Today that number is 24%.The City of Temple population demographics are 54% white, 17% black, 23% Hispanic/Latino, 2% Asian/Pacific Islander. Note: These figures are from the 2010 census.