Complaints Against A Police Officer

photo of two police

A common complaint about police misconduct is that they have mistreated or used excessive force against a person during an arrest or while a person was detained. 

Police misconduct broadly means conduct of a police officer that: 

  • is disgraceful, improper or unbecoming of a police officer 
  • shows unfitness to be or continue as a police officer 
  • does not meet the standard of conduct the community reasonably expects of a police officer. 

If you have a more serious complaint about a police officer, you have to direct it to the Queensland Police Service or the Crime and Corruption Commission. 

The Police Service Administration Act 1990 (Qld) also requires all police officers and staff members who have any knowledge of, or reasonable suspicion about, the misconduct of another officer to report the matter to the Police Commissioner and the Crime and Corruption Commission. Additionally, the Crime and Corruption Act 2001 (Qld) requires the Police Commissioner to report any complaints of police misconduct to the Crime and Corruption Commission. 

For more information about making a complaint to a government department or agency, the Crime and Corruption Commission or the Commonwealth Ombudsman, and the mechanisms involved to investigate complaints and to ensure accountability of the system, read our newly updated chapter in the Queensland Law Handbook on ‘Complaints about Police and Public Officials’.