What if I have been mistreated by the police?

Complaints About the N.Y.P.D.

Important: If you are a defendant in a criminal case, you must discuss with criminal attorney any action you might consider taking in connection with your mistreatment by the police.

There are several government agencies that review complaints against the N.Y.P.D. Anyone can file a complaint by contacting Civilian Complaint Review Board

  • Civilian Complaint Review Board
    40 Rector St. 2nd Floor.
    New York NY 10006
    Phone: (212) 442-8833.

C.C.R.B. complaints may be filed in person, by telephone, or by mail. Complaint forms are available at all New York City police stations.

The C.C.R.B. has authority to investigate and to recommend departmental action against officers engaging in excessive force, abuse of authority, discourtesy, and offensive language.

Complaints about stealing, bribe receiving or "moonlighting" by police should be referred to the N.Y.P.D. Internal Affairs Division by calling 1-800-PRIDE--PD , or (212) 741-8401. Complaints can also be made in person at:

  • Internal Affairs Division
    315 Hudson Street, 3rd floor
    New York, NY 10013.

Recurrent discriminatory practices at the precinct level should be referred to the State Attorney General, Civil Rights Bureau at (212) 416-8000 or by writing to:

  • New York State Attorney General
    Civil Rights Bureau
    120 Broadway, 25th floor
    New York NY 10271.

IMPORTANT: If you are a criminal defendant, or if you, a friend or a relative has been seriously injured by the police, you should consult an attorney before making a complaint to any government agency. Your statement to the government agency may be used against you in your criminal case, or may hurt your chances of winning a civil case. We strongly advise against initiating a civilian complaint on your own while a criminal or civil action is pending. The officer you are complaining about will be shown your C.C.R.B. complaint against him before your case is presented in court.

Both the C.C.R.B. and the I.A.D. will accept a complaint that is filed by your lawyer, and postpone taking your statement until your case is over.

Finding a Lawyer

The New York City Policing Roundtable (212) 244-4664 can provide you with the names of a number of experienced attorneys who specialize in cases involving police abuse and civil rights violations. Other organizations that may be able to assist you are:

  • The New York Civil Liberties Union
    125 Broad Street, 17th flr.
    New York, NY 10004
    Phone: (212) 344-3005
  • The Center for Constitutional Rights
    666 Broadway, 7th Floor
    New York, NY 10012
    Phone: (212) 614-6464
  • The National Lawyers Guild
    143 Madison Ave, 4th Floor
    New York, NY 10016
    Phone: (212) 679-5100
    New York Branch
    Phone:  (212) 679-6018