Investigating Complaints

Investigating any complaint involves enquiries which seek to find information and evidence to indicate whether there is any substance to the allegation.

Looking in detail at events which may have happened decades ago is a specialised form of investigation, with its own demands and which require a specialised skill set.

The work includes speaking to members of bereaved families, former members of the RUC and members of the public to help gather as much factual information as possible and in doing so get a better understanding of the time and place under investigation.

Whether a person has brought a complaint to us or they are a former police officer who is providing us with witness evidence, we make the following commitments:

• We will deal with them in an independent manner; none of our staff have any connection to the matters they investigate.
• We will be influenced only by relevant information and evidence and not be subject to undue influence from the police or the community.
• We will deal with them in a manner which recognises they may have been, or still are, deeply affected by the events under investigation.
• We will not discuss our investigations in public, nor will make public the names of individuals who are involved in the case or provide us with information.
• We will make and honour a ‘communication contract’ with them. We will appoint a member of staff to keep them updated on the progress of the investigation when and how they choose.
• We may appoint a Liaison Officer to support members of the bereaved families.

We ask that:
• People cooperate with us and provide us with as much information as they can throughout the investigation
• People do not undermine the investigation in any way. Investigations can be put at risk by discussing issues in public.

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