Martinez, Calif. – Contra Costa County District Attorney Diana Becton announces today a new policy for the DA’s Office investigations into fatal incidents involving members of law enforcement. At the conclusion of the criminal investigation, DA Becton will publicly release a report in all law enforcement involved fatal incidents if no charges are filed. The reports will be posted on the office’s website.
“One of the primary concerns I heard from residents upon taking office in 2017 was the need for greater transparency in the criminal justice system. With this permanent policy in place, I am confident my office will continue to provide information to the public in a timely and transparent manner,” DA Becton said.
The public reports will summarize the results of the independent criminal investigation and give a legal analysis of the facts. DA Becton will review the report prepared by the assigned deputy district attorney before they are released. Previously, reports were not publicly released from the district attorney’s office in a consistent manner.
Under the County’s Law Enforcement Involved Fatal Incidents Protocol, the District Attorney’s Office conducts an independent criminal investigation when an officer or civilian is shot, killed or dies during an encounter with a law enforcement agency. This new policy change does not impact the Protocol or the DA’s role in following the Protocol. The purpose of the DA’s investigation is to determine if any criminal conduct occurred during the incident.