11.020 - Transportation of Detainees

Effective Date: 08/05/2019

11.020-POL

This policy applies to all employees who transport detainees or call Seattle Fire Department (SFD) or American Medical Response (AMR) to transport detainees.

- Transportation of a Detainee from the Location of Arrest to a Department Facility, see 11.020-TSK-1

- Transportation of a Detainee from the Department Facility to a Detention Facility, see 11.020-TSK-2

1. Employees Will Take Reasonable Steps to Ensure the Safety of a Detainee in Their Custody and for the Safekeeping of Detainee’s Property

2. Officers Will Perform a Custodial Search Before Transporting the Detainee

3. Officers Will Search the Transport Vehicle at the Beginning and on the Completion of a Transport

4. Officers Will Use the Transport Vehicle’s Seat Belts to Secure Detainees

Exception: This requirement does not apply to vehicles that do not have seat belts in the area that is used for transporting detainees.

Exception: If the circumstances do not allow the officer to safely secure the detainee, then the officer will transport the detainee unsecured. The officer must document the specific reason for the unsecured transport in the GO report.

5. Officers Ensure Detainees are Appropriately Restrained for Transport

SPD Vehicle

When transporting a detainee in a Department vehicle, officers will handcuff detainees behind the back.

Exception: Officers may handcuff the detainee in the front if officer safety is not compromised and the detainee’s physical ability is limited.

 

AMR Ambulance

When AMR is providing transportation of a detainee to a non-medical facility, such as the jail, officers will apply soft restraints to secure the detainee to the gurney if safe and feasible. AMR staff may assist, but they are not required to do so.

Exception: If the detainee’s level of resistance makes it unsafe to remove the handcuffs to apply soft restraints, the detainee will be transported with the gurney in the seated position.

When AMR is providing transportation of a detainee to a medical facility, AMR staff will apply the soft restraints.

 

SFD Medic Unit

When SFD is transporting a detainee in a medic unit, the detainee’s condition will typically be more serious and may require advanced medical care. In these cases, officers will consult with SFD personnel and determine the appropriate level of restraint, if any.

6. Officers Will Escort Non-Medical AMR Transports

When AMR is providing transportation of a detainee to a non-medical facility, such as the jail, at least one officer will ride inside the back of the ambulance with the detainee. A second officer will follow the ambulance to provide return transportation to the officer riding inside.

Note: In these cases, AMR staff are not required to ride in the back with the officer and the detainee. AMR may refuse the transport if an officer is not available to ride in the back with the individual.

7. Officers Will Complete an AMR Transport Form for Non-Medical Transports

When AMR is providing transportation of a detainee to a non-medical facility, such as the jail, officers will complete an AMR Transport Form (SPD form 6.0). The original will go to the AMR staff, and the copy will go to SPD Data Center via Department mail.

This form is not required when AMR transports to a medical facility.

8. Officers Will Use the In-Car Video System and Body-Worn Video to Record Transports and Escorts

Officers will activate ICV and BWV while following or riding in ambulances or medic units that are transporting detainees.

If the transport is not recorded with ICV or BWV, then the reason is documented in the Report.

See Manual Section 16.090 – In-Car and Body-Worn Video

9. Officers Will Transport Detainees in the Back Seat or Back Compartment of a Department Vehicle Equipped with a Screen or Partition Physically Separating the Officer from the Detainee

Exception: Captains of specialty units may issue standing approval for assigned personnel to transport detainees in unit vehicles that are not equipped with a screen or partition.

Exception: If operational necessity requires that a detainee is transported in a vehicle not equipped with a screen or partition, then a second officer will ride behind the driver and beside the detainee in the backseat.

Exception: Exigent circumstances may require using the front seat for a detainee transport. Officers will screen the transport with a sergeant explaining the exigency.

10. Officers Shall Transport Adult and Juvenile Detainees Separately

Officers shall transport juvenile detainees so that they do not have physical contact with adult detainees. Officers shall transport juvenile detainees out of the direct view of adult detainees.

Exception: Exigent circumstances may require transporting adults and juveniles together. Officers will screen the transport with a sergeant explaining the exigency.

11. Officers Will Transport Subjects of Different Gender Identities Separately

Exception: Officers operating transport vans may transport detainees of different gender identities in the same van if they are separated by individual compartments.

Exception: Exigent circumstances may require transporting detainees of different gender identities together. Officers will screen the transport with a sergeant and explain the exigency.

Officers will transport transgender subjects alone, whenever possible, in accordance with Manual Section 16.200 – Interaction with Transgender Individuals.

12. Officers Engaged in Transporting a Detainee Will Not Respond to Routine Calls

Officers will transport a detainee directly to the required destination.

Exception: Officers may respond to a threat to life safety.

13. Officers May Transport Department of Corrections Work Release Inmates with the Approval of a Sergeant

A sergeant must approve the request for transportation based on the following criteria:

- The inmate is violent or likely to become violent.

- The inmate is likely to escape if transportation is delayed.

- The inmate is a risk to the community, themselves, or the facility and its staff.

- The inmate has committed a new crime.

11.020-TSK-1 Transportation of a Detainee from the Location of Arrest to a Department Facility

When transporting a detainee in a Department vehicle from the scene to the Department facility the Officer:

1. Checks the detainee passenger area of the transport vehicle.

2. Searches the detainee.

3. Secures property removed from the detainee.

4. Secures the detainee in the transport area of the vehicle.

5. Updates the call as transporting a detainee and includes the current mileage.

a. If transporting a detainee without ICV or BWV recording, notifies Communications over the air at the start and conclusion of the transport and indicates current mileage.

6. Updates the call with the ending mileage at the end of the transport.

7. Removes the detainee from the vehicle and checks the detainee passenger area.

8. Escorts the detainee into the holding cell area.

See 11.010-TSK-1 Securing a Detainee in a Department Holding Cell

11.020-TSK-2 Transportation of a Detainee from the Department Facility to a Detention Facility

When transporting a detainee in a Department vehicle from a Department facility to a detention facility the Officer:

1. Completes the required information on the appropriate Detainee Log Sheet.

2. Removes the detainee from the holding cell and checks the holding cell.

3. Searches the detainee.

4. Secures property removed from the detainee.

5. Checks the detainee passenger area of the transport vehicle.

6. Secures the detainee in the transport area of the vehicle.

7. Updates the call as transporting a detainee and includes the current mileage.

a. If transporting a detainee without ICV or BWV recording, notifies Communications over the air at the start and conclusion of the transport and indicates current mileage.

8. Updates the call with the ending mileage at the end of the transport.