Law Enforcement Transparency

California’s existing confidentiality rules about police conduct are among the most protective in the country. Until recently, the public and hiring agencies did not have access to substantiated reports of officer misconduct. The confidentiality restrictions on police misconduct records have stood out when compared to the way California law treats similar disciplinary records for doctors, lawyers, contractors and even real estate agents; all of which are available to the public.

The recent enactment of State Bill 1421, which took effect on January 1, 2019, levels this landscape in favor of greater transparency. The new legislation, with some exceptions, makes law enforcement records related to officer use of force and discharge of a firearm, and our investigations of SFDA peace officers that resulted in sustained findings of on-the-job sexual assault, or intentional job-related dishonesty publicly available.

You can find these public records below. Given the rigorous and time-consuming process involved with reviewing and determining disclosable records and making necessary redactions[1] (in the interests of public safety), more files will be added, but it will take time. To expedite the process, video and audio files, which require significantly more resources to review and redact, are not being disclosed at this time. Existing files will be updated as necessary (the date in the file name reflects the updated date).

The San Francisco District Attorney’s Office is taking this proactive step to ensure that officer misconduct records deemed public under SB 1421 are accessible to all of the public, not only those who request them.

Our Investigative Files (by decedent)

Steve Harris: Report (Last Updated: 7/24/2019)

Herbert Omar Benitez: Part 1 | Part 2 |​ Part 3 |​ Part 4 |​ Part 5 |​ Part 6 | Part 7  (Last Updated: 7/24/2019)

Officer Involved Shooting of Jason Seymour: Report (Last Updated: 7/24/2019)


[1] Please note that records of attorney work product have been withheld in accordance to Cal. Govt. Code § 6254(k); Cal. Code Civ. Proc. §2018.030, as have records related to active criminal or administrative investigations per Penal Code Section 832.7(b)(7) and CORI and CLETs (California Law Enforcement Telecommunications Systems) data per California Penal Code sections 13201 and 13102. Appropriate redactions have also been made pursuant to Penal Code Section 832.7(b)(5) and (6).