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General Policy Information


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Audit, Policy & Research Unit Manual

Code of Ethics

Mission Statement and Priorities

Recently Updated

Cross Reference

Latest Revision Date: 12/1/2014

Title 1 - Department Administration

1.010 - Authority and Jurisdiction

1.020 - Chain of Command

1.030 - Department Span of Control Chart

1.040 - Budget

1.050 - Grants

1.060 - Consultant Contract Administration

1.070 - Training

1.080 - Inspection and Audits

1.090 - Ticket Chain of Custody

1.100 - Ticket Audits

1.110 - Media Relations

Title 2 - Department Employment

2.020 - Appointments and Probation

2.030 - Retirements and Separations

2.050 - Collective Bargaining and Contract Management

2.060 - Grievances

2.070 - Performance Evaluations

Title 3 - Employee Welfare

3.035 - Reasonable Accommodation (ADA)

3.040 – Airborne Pathogens Control

3.045 - Bloodborne Pathogens Exposure Control

3.050 - Coordinating Officer Fatalities

3.070 - Performance Mentoring Program

3.080 - Travel Training System

3.090 - Employee Recognition Awards Program

3.170 - Honoring Those Killed in the Line of Duty

3.270 - Police Charity Committee

3.290 - Pre-Service/In-Service and Specialized Training

3.330 - Workplace Safety

3.340 - Employee Involvement Committees_JLMC

Title 4 - Human Resources

4.000 - Employee Move Tracking System (EMT)

4.005 - Police Employee Data System (PEDS)

4.010 - Employee Time Off

4.015 - Restricted Time Off for a Pre-Planned Event

4.020 - Reporting and Recording Overtime/Out of Classification Pay

4.030 - Jury Duty

4.040 - Sick Leave

4.050 - On-Duty Illness or Injury

4.060 - Long Term Disability Benefits

4.070 - Limited Duty Assignments

4.080 - Pregnancy

4.090 - Leave of Absence Without Pay

4.100 – Family and Medical Leave

4.110 - Sick Leave Donation

4.120 - Domestic Violence, Sexual Assault, and Stalking Leave

4.130 - Military Leave

4.140 - Military Spouse/Domestic Partner Leave

4.150 - Funeral Leave

Title 5 - Employee Conduct

5.001 - Standards and Duties

5.002 - Responsibilities of Employees Concerning Complaints of Possible Misconduct

5.010 - Civil Actions

5.020 - Gifts and Gratuities

5.030 - Preparing for Criminal Case Interviews

5.040 - EEO Complaints and Investigations

5.060 - Employee Political Activity

5.090 - Operations Bureau General Personnel Matters

5.100 - Operations Bureau Individual Responsibilities

5.120 - Secondary Employment

5.130 - Supervisor/Employee Relationships

5.140 - Bias-Free Policing

Bias-Free Policing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

5.150 - Use of Private Vehicles for City Business

5.160 - Citizen Observation of Officers

5.170 - Alcohol and Substance Use

5.175 - Critical Incident Stress Management Communications

5.190 - Court Appearances and Legal Proceedings

5.200 - Americans With Disabilities Act

Title 6 - Arrests, Search and Seizure

6.010 - Reporting Arrests and Detentions

6.020 - Arrests and Detentions of Foreign Nationals

6.030 - Body Cavity Searches

6.060 - Collection of Information for Law Enforcement Purposes

6.120 - Impounding Vehicles

6.130 - Informant Management

6.135 - Cooperating Witnesses

6.140 - Locating a Cell Phone during an Emergency

6.150 - Advising Persons of Miranda

6.180 - Searches-General

6.181 - Performing Inventory Searches

6.185 - Search Warrants

6.210 - Strip Searches

6.220 - Voluntary Contacts, Terry Stops & Detentions

6.250 - Use of Non-SPD Canines

6.280 - Warrant Arrests

6.290 - Juvenile Investigations and Arrests

Title 7 - Evidence and Property

7.010 - Submitting Evidence

7.020 - Found Property

7.030 - Firearms & Shell Casings

7.040 - Dangerous or Hazardous Evidence

7.050 - Checking Out Evidence for Court

7.060 - Releasing Evidence

7.070 - Converting Evidence for Department Use

7.080 - Money Evidence

7.090 - Photographic Evidence

7.100 - Fingerprint Evidence

7.110 - Recorded Statements

7.120 - Narcotics Evidence

7.130 – Narcotics Training Aid and Investigative Use Drug Property Release

7.140 – Firearm Training Aid and Investigative Use

7.150 - Non-Detainee Property for Safekeeping

Title 8 - Use of Force

8.000 - Use of Force Core Principles

8.050 - Use of Force Definitions

8.100 - Using Force

8.200 - Use of Force Tools

8.210 - OC Chain of Custody

8.300 - Use of Force Reporting and Investigation

Use of Force Public Safety Statement Card

Investigating Supervisor Scene Guide

Investigating Supervisor Precinct Guide

Investigating Supervisor Documentation Guide

Involved Officer Statement Guide

Witness Officer Statement Guide

8.400 - Reviewing Use of Force

Reviewing Lieutenant Guide

Reviewing Captain Guide

8.500 - Firearms Discharge Investigations

Officer Involved Shooting-Public Safety Statement Card

8.600 - Review of Firearms Discharges

Use-of-Force Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Title 9 - Equipment and Uniforms

9.010 - Employee Dress Standards

9.020 - Uniform

9.030 - Equipment

Equipment Reference Catalog

9.040 - Uniform and Equipment Committee

9.050 - Clothing Allowance and Reimbursement for Personal Property

9.060 - Firearms

9.065 - Firearms Training and Qualification

9.100 - Department Firearms Management

Title 10 - Police Facilities & Security

10.010 - Parking at Department Facilities

10.020 - Physical Security of Police Facilities

10.060 - Holding Cell Camera System

Title 11 - Detainee Management

11.010 - Detainee Management in Department Facilities

11.020 - Transportation of Detainees

11.030 - Guarding Detainees at a Hospital

11.040 - Booking Adult Detainees

11.050 - Detainee Property

Title 12 - Department Information Systems

12.010 - Communications

12.030 - Computer Hardware & Devices

12.040 - Computer Software

12.045 - Booking Photo Comparison Software

12.050 - Criminal Records

12.055 - Criminal Justice Research

12.060 - Department Forms Control

12.070 - Department Publications

12.080 - Department Records Access, Inspection & Dissemination

12.090 - Departmental Correspondence

12.091 - Mobile Reporting Entity (MRE) Laptops

12.110 - Use of Department E-mail & Internet Systems

12.111 - Use of Cloud Storage Services

12.120 - Telephone and Facsimile Machine Use

Title 13 - Vehicle Operations

13.010 - Collisions Involving Department Vehicles

13.015 - Collision Review Board

13.030 - Emergency Vehicle Operations

13.031 - Vehicle Eluding/Pursuits

13.040 - Patrol Operations Equipment, Police Vehicles and Facilities

13.050 - Policing by Mountain Bike

13.060 - Specialty Vehicles & Equipment

13.080 - Use of Department Vehicles

Title 14 - Emergency Operations

14.010 - After-Action Reports

14.040 - Hazardous Conditions

14.060 - Serious Incident Plan

14.070 - Serious Injury or Fatality to a Police Officer

14.080 - Task Force Mobilization

14.090 - Demonstration Management

ICS Debrief Form

14.100 - Special Event Planning

Title 15 - Primary Investigation

15.010 - Arson Investigations

15.015 – Bomb Threats and Explosive Devices

15.020 - Charge by Officer

15.055 - Death Investigations

15.080 - Follow-up Unit Notification and Follow-up Investigation

15.090 - Graffiti Incidents

15.100 - Kidnapping

15.120 - Malicious Harassment

15.130 - Missing Persons

15.140 - Narcotics Activity Report

15.150 - Narcotics

15.160 - Marijuana Enforcement

15.180 - Primary Investigations

15.185 - Vulnerable Adults-Elder Abuse and Neglect

15.190 - Theft and Recovery of Vehicle, License Plates, or License Tabs

15.200 - Retail Theft Program

15.210 - Investigating Property Held by a Pawnshop or Used-Goods Store

15.215 - Domestic Violence Firearms Surrender

15.220 - Child Welfare

15.230 - Animal Control

15.240 - Boating Accidents

15.250 - Interpreters/Translators

15.260 - Collision Investigations

15.270 - Trespass Warning Program

15.275 - Enforcing Trespass in Parks

15.280 - DUI Investigations

15.290 - Stay Out of Areas of Prostitution (SOAP)

15.300 - Stay Out of Drug Areas (SODA)-Define Boundaries

15.310 - Foreign Nationals Seeking Asylum

15.320 - Police Action on Military Reservations

15.330 - Responding to Threats and Assaults on Officers

15.340 - Robbery Response

15.350 - Significant Incident Report

15.360 - Mobile Identification Devices

15.370 - Sexual Assault Investigation

Title 16 - Patrol Operations

16.010 - Adult Entertainment

16.020 - Alley Closure

16.030 - Citizen Rider Program

16.040 - Community Police Teams

16.050 - Death Notifications

16.070 - Responding to Monitored Alarms

16.080 - Fireworks Disposal and Disposition

16.090 - In Car Video System

16.091 - Body-Worn Video Pilot Program

16.100 - Patrol Training and Publications

16.110 - Crisis Intervention

16.130 - Sick and Injured Persons

16.135 - Excited Delirium

16.140 - Traffic Direction and Control

16.150 - Snow and Ice Plan

16.160 - Ticket Vendors

16.170 - Automatic License Plate Readers

16.180 - Patrol Operations Order

16.190 - Labor Management Disputes

16.230 - Issuing Tickets and Traffic Contact Reports

16.231 - Cancelling and Voiding Tickets

16.240 - Mutual Assistance

16.250 - Interaction with the University of Washington Police Department

12.050 – Criminal Records

Effective Date: 5/24/2011

Criminal Justice Information Services Security Policy

WSP ACCESS/WACIC/NCIC/User Acknowledgement


Inquiries through ACCESS, or any other criminal justice record system, are only to be made for legitimate law enforcement purposes. This includes, but is not limited to, inquiries made to DOL, DOC, WACIC, WASIS, NCIC III, LinX, and any inquiries processed through NLETS to other states. Inquiries made for personal use, or inappropriate use or dissemination of the information, can result in internal discipline, as well as penalties under Federal and State law.

I. Definitions

A. Criminal History Record Information: Information contained in records collected by criminal justice agencies, other than courts, on individuals, consisting of identifiable descriptions and notations of arrests, detentions, indictments, information, or other formal criminal charges, and any disposition arising there from, including sentences, correctional supervision, and release. The term includes information contained in records maintained by or obtained from criminal justice agencies, other than courts, which records provide individual identification of a person together with any portion of the individual’s record of involvement in the criminal justice system as an alleged or convicted offender, except:

1. Posters, announcements, or lists for identifying or apprehending fugitives or wanted persons,

2. Original records of entry maintained by criminal justice agencies to the extent that such records are compiled and maintained chronologically and are accessible only on a chronological basis,

3. Court indices and records of public judicial proceedings, court decisions, and opinions, and information disclosed during public judicial proceedings, and

4. Records of traffic violations that are not punishable by a maximum term of imprisonment of more than ninety days.

B. Dissemination: Disclosing criminal history record information, or the absence of criminal history record information, to any person or agency outside the agency possessing the information, subject to the following exceptions:

1. Agencies participating in a single (joint) record keeping department,

2. Furnishing information to process a matter through the criminal justice system (information to a prosecutor), and

3. Reporting events to a record-keeping agency.

C. NCIC III is the National Crime Information Center Interstate Identification Index and is managed by the FBI and state law enforcement agencies. The NCIC Advisory Policy Board has established a set of standards and goals that the FBI and state agencies enforce. The information contained in the NCIC includes all records collected by criminal justice agencies on individuals including identifiable descriptions, notations of arrests, detentions, indictments, formal criminal charges, dispositions, sentences, correctional supervision, and release. Federal, state and local laws and regulations dictate that this information is to be accessed and used only by authorized individuals within a criminal justice agency, that this information is to be used for criminal justice reasons, that this information is to be kept confidential, and that this information is to be stored in a secure location.

1. Employees must be working for the Seattle Police Department in an on-duty or extra-duty capacity and investigating a criminal offense.

2. Employees shall not run names or make inquiries through NCIC III, or any other criminal record system while working for an off-duty employer or on behalf of an off-duty employer.

II. ACCESS / Washington Criminal Information Center (WACIC) Certification

A. National Crime Information Center (NCIC) policy mandates that all employees who use terminals that have access to information in WACIC / NCIC files be certified.

1. For inquiries only, employees shall attain Level I certification.

2. If employees make data entries into the system, they shall attain Level II certification.

B. After initial certification, employees shall take a recertification test every two years.

III. ACCESS/WACIC/NCIC User Acknowledgement

A. The ACCESS/WACIC/NCIC User Acknowledgement is the formal agreement between WSP and SPD. SPD must remain in compliance with the User Acknowledgement or risk termination of one or more of the services provided. This document acknowledges the standards established in the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Service Security Policy. The standards require accuracy, completeness, timeliness, and security in the dissemination and recording of information.

IV. Technical Agency Coordinator (TAC)

A. The Seattle Police Department must designate a Technical Agency Coordinator (TAC) to act as the point of contact for the WSP and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).l The individual designated to function as a TAC must sign the TAC Acknowledgement, read and sign the TAC Guide, and will be responsible to ensure compliance with state and National Crime Information Center (NCIC) policies and regulations. The TAC must maintain a level II training certification and attend TAC training once every three years. Additionally, the TAC shall participate in and ensure that all appropriate records be available during the triennial audit conducted by the ACCESS audit staff. Responsibility for proper operator performance, strict adherence to regulations, prompt notification of CJIS violations to the ACCESS Section, and subsequent training rests with the TAC. The SPD TAC is the Data Center Manager.

V. Criminal History (WASIS/NCIC) Inquiries

A. Use of WASIS (Washington State Identification and Criminal History Section) and NCIC Interstate Identification Index (NCIC III)) is regulated by the FBI and WSP in accordance with the 28 CFR Part 20, WAC 446-20-260, and RCW Chapter 10.97. Improper use of the system may result in severe penalties to the Department and the individual user. Therefore, all employees shall adhere to the following WASIS and NCIC policies:

1. Any information obtained through these systems shall not be disseminated to anyone outside the Department, except to a prosecutor. If necessary, officers may confirm to a criminal justice agency the WASIS or FBI number, if it is known.

a. Examples of agencies and/or organizations to whom we cannot release criminal history information include, DSHS, Passport Agencies, CPS, Adult Protective Services, Crimestoppers, victims, and witnesses.

b. Inquiries for criminal history information from outside agencies, organizations, and individuals should be referred to Washington State Patrol.

2. Inquiries into these systems shall not be made in response to a request by another criminal justice agency or by any retired employees, including those holding any extended authority, special police commission, or similar police commission.

3. The Department of Justice Criminal Justice Information System (CJIS) restricts the use of all criminal related data bases to official investigations when conducted while working for a criminal justice organization. As a result, no employee shall run names or make inquiries through ACCESS, WACIC, WASIS, NCIC III, LInX, or any other criminal record system while working for an off-duty employer or on behalf of an off-duty employer.

4. All NCIC III queries made through Versadex are stored in the system. A program has been developed to create an automated user log from that data.

5. This log is audited by the Washington State Patrol, the FBI, and the Compliance Section, and shall be available for inspection by any of the agencies at any time. The following procedures must be followed when accessing the Criminal History Database:

a. All NCIC III queries should be made using Transaction Code CQCH – Common Query Criminal History

b. The Purpose Code box must be filled in with 1 of the 3 authorized Purpose Codes that appear in the pull-down. The query will not go through if the box is left blank. The only authorized Purpose Codes are:

C – Criminal Justice purposes

J – Criminal Justice employment

F – Concealed Pistol License and evidence return

c. The Reason field must be filled in with a specific criminal justice reason. The general offense number should always be listed in the reason field if available. If a general offense number has not been generated the specific criminal justice reason must be listed in the reason field such as theft, narcotics, homicide, missing person, or criminal justice applicant. Listing terms such as investigation, arrest, criminal history, or employment in the reason field are not valid. Listing abbreviations of any kind in the reason field is not authorized unless the abbreviation has been approved and is on file with the department TAC.

6. An automated user log for all queries made using the Omnixx system has been created for Data Center and Public Request Unit Personnel that access the Omnixx system. The following information must be included in the Attention Field (ATN) when making a criminal history inquiry using Omnixx:

a. Requestor’s SPD serial number.

b. Specific criminal justice reason such as theft, narcotics, homicide, or general offense number.

c. Examples:

ATN/4000 WP Entry 10-5678

ATN/4000 Burglary

ATN/4000 14-16735

d. Use of abbreviations is acceptable but must be on file and approved by the department TAC.

e. The proper purpose code must be used for all inquires.

7. The NCIC III system is to only be used by personnel involved in criminal investigations, background investigations, and processing of concealed weapons permits.

8. It is the responsibility of the unit/precinct Captain to ensure that a copy of the log for each computer terminal capable of making III inquiries is retained on file at the end of each month. The unit Captain will maintain NCIC III logs for current year plus one. Units will be audited periodically for the accuracy of their NCIC III logs. (The terminal identification number must be written on the log. This is the number that begins WASPD…and is followed by four numbers or a letter number combination. This is a unique number that individually identifies each computer that can make a NCIC III inquiry.) .

9. MDCs and PDTs (mobile and portable data computers/terminals) are not authorized to access NCIC III information because the terminals are unable to comply with NCIC audit requirements.

10. It is equally important to enter inquiries to the Criminal History Records system properly. The following information must be accurate and complete on the inquiry mask:

a. The “Purpose Code” must be entered correctly, “C”, for criminal investigation, or another appropriate code. See NCIC manual for details.

b. The “Requestor Full Name/Serial” must contain the name and SPD serial number of the person making the inquiry. It is not acceptable to use “Det”, “Off”, or the “unit title” in this field.

VI. Criminal History Dissemination

A. The Washington State Criminal Records Privacy Act (RCW 10.97) provides for the completeness, accuracy, confidentiality, and security of criminal history record information, as well as victim, witness, and complainant record information. Employees shall not discuss or provide information to any person who is not a member of the criminal justice system (prosecuting attorney, court, etc.) without the permission of the Chief of Police, or by due process of law. Violations may lead to criminal sanctions.

B. Criminal Records Release Procedures

1. Criminal history record information dissemination to individuals, agencies, or groups outside the Department shall be administered by the Records Files and Data Center Section.

2. Juvenile record information dissemination to individuals, agencies, or groups outside the Department shall be administered by the Youth Crimes Section.

3. Requests for information shall be referred to the appropriate section.

4. Printouts of criminal history record information from the Department’s computerized and manual files are prohibited except when:

a. Required for a detective investigative file,

b. Required by a prosecuting attorney,

c. Required by agencies or individuals authorized by the Records, Evidence and Identification Section access procedures,

d. Required in a mutual criminal investigation with a court or government agency authorized by the Washington State Patrol to receive criminal history record information. The Records Files and Data Center Section shall maintain a current list of agencies so authorized,

e. Authorized by a watch, section, or unit supervisor as required for an investigation or in an emergency.

5. When releasing criminal history information to a prosecutor the release tracking function in Versadex should always be used to indicate release to either King County Prosecutor’s Office or the City Law Department. The release tracking serves as the automated secondary dissemination log.

6. In authorized instances when criminal history is secondarily disseminated to any agency or person the following information relating to secondary dissemination of criminal history record information shall be maintained by the appropriate section in the form of a manual log and will include the following:

a. An indication of to whom (agency or person) criminal history information was released,

b. The date of release, and

c. A brief description of the information released.

C. The disposal of printouts from computer terminals shall be by destruction.

VII. Individual Rights of Inspection and Review

A. Policy

1. Individuals shall have the right to inspect and review their criminal history record information maintained by the Department.

2. An individual’s right to access and review of their criminal history record information shall not extend to data contained in intelligence, investigative, or other related files and shall not be construed to include any information other than that defined as Criminal History Record Information by RCW 10.97.030.

3. An individual will be provided an opportunity, following review of the criminal history record information collected, stored, and maintained by the Department, to challenge the accuracy and completeness of the data and request deletion of certain non-conviction arrests.

4. If the challenge is rejected, the individual has a right to appeal the decision to the Office of the Chief of Police.

B. Procedures

1. In order to inspect, review, or challenge and have deleted criminal history record information, the individual must appear in person at the 1st floor of the Police Headquarters Building 610 Fifth Avenue, Monday through Thursday (excluding holidays) between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., and make a request in writing on the forms provided.

2. Employees are responsible for directing individuals to the Records Files and Data Center Section in order to facilitate review of their criminal history record information.

3. It shall be the duty of the Records Files and Data Center Section managers and supervisors to administer the rules pertaining to an individual’s right to review their criminal history record information, concurrent with the aforementioned laws, regulations, and ordinances.

4. A copy of the Department Operating Instruction titled, “Inspection and Review of Criminal History Record Information” and “Challenge and Deletion of Criminal History Record Information” shall be maintained at locations where the public can make inquiries concerning Department procedures.

VIII. Security

A. ACCESS requires all personnel who use ACCESS to have a background re-investigation every five years. This mirrors the CJIS Security Policy recommendation. To complete this compliance measure the Seattle Police Department must:

1. Run a criminal history inquiry using purpose code “J”. Use “Criminal Justice Re-background” as a reason. Log the date and SID# of the employee. Do not retain rap sheet information.

a. If there are felony findings within the employee’s rap sheet they will be denied continued use and certification with ACCESS. The TAC must notify the WSP Information Security Officer of any findings.

b. If there are charges pending a disposition, the TAC must notify the WSP Information Security Officer.

c. If there are misdemeanor findings the TAC shall notify the WSP Information Security Officer. The Seattle Police Department will ultimately decide whether to limit ACCESS.

d. Keep a log of all personnel SID numbers and the date of the background re-investigation for future ACCESS audits.

B. All upper management, administrators, and law enforcement cadets must review the Peer Training. This is for those who are not authorized to make queries in the Criminal History Information System, have opted out of the certification training, but could be in a position to look over a Criminal History Rap Sheet or other Criminal History confidential information and those who are not Access certified but oversee certified Access users. Upon completion of the training they must sign the CJIS Security Letter.

C. Maintaining security of the terminal sites and information received is the responsibility of agency personnel operating the terminal, the TAC, and the agency head. Terminal locations must be secure from authorized access, and all employees authorized to use the system shall be instructed on the proper use of equipment and the dissemination of information received. Federal and state laws protect the information provided by ACCESS.

D. Violations of the rules, regulations, policies, or procedures developed by NCIC and adopted by the WSP or any other misuse or abuse of the ACCESS system may result in agency disciplinary measures and/or criminal prosecution. Disciplinary measures imposed by the WSP may include revocation of individual certification, discontinuance of system access to the department, or purging the department’s records.

E Any misuse of the NCIC III system must be reported to the TAC (Data Center Manager) immediately. The TAC shall report the misuse to the Washington State Patrol and the FBI. The violator’s chain of command will be notified of the misuse.


A. The Captain of the Compliance Section will assign personnel to conduct regular audits of the Department’s Criminal History Records Inquiries.

B. The Department audits will be completed biannually and the results of these audits will be reported to the Chief of Staff.

C. The audit will look for any violations of the CJIS Security Policy, The WSP User Acknowledgement, and Department Policy. Violations include but are not limited to:

1. Queries made for personal reasons.

2. Reason Field errors, such as using general terms such as investigation, arrest, warrant, criminal history. The Reason Field must contain a specific crime such as murder, assault, burglary.

D. Any users who are in violation of any or all of the above will have their access to the Criminal History system shut off. Access will be denied until they have attended a remedial class for making Criminal History inquiries.

1. An email will be sent to the employee and their immediate supervisor from the Compliance Section that their access to the Criminal History system has been denied.

2. The email will contain information about the remedial classes that they must take in order to regain access.

3. A copy of the email will be sent to the Data Center Manager/TAC for implementation.