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WHY SHOULD I REPORT A CRIME OR INCIDENT THAT MIGHT REQUIRE POLICE INTERVENTION OR INVESTIGATION?

 

Everyone is encouraged to report any type of criminal event or incident that may require police intervention or investigation. The phrase “If you see something, say something” is a good rule, regardless of the nature of the offense. You should never assume that the information you have is either trivial or insignificant, or that someone else has already reported it to the police.

 

Many crimes are solved when information is gathered from multiple sources and is evaluated collectively by the police department. They become parts of the puzzle that may lead to the successful conclusion of an investigation.

 

Accurate reporting of such crimes/incidents not only helps the victim, but can lead to the identification and apprehension of the suspect as well as providing the police administration useful information that can be utilized to help identify crime trends and patterns. These patterns impact their decisions regarding the allocation of personnel. Therefore, without an accurate accounting of actual crime, the ability of the police department to prevent crimes in the future may be significantly hampered.


 

WHAT IF I WITNESS A CRIME OR HAVE INFORMATION RELATED TO A CRIME?


If you witness a crime, and the police respond to conduct an initial investigation, you are encouraged to step forward to notify the investigating officer(s) as to what you witnessed. If you do not feel comfortable with stepping forward at the scene, you should call the police department at your earliest possible convenience and ask to speak to a detective from that agency.

 


HOW DO I REPORT A CRIME?

The first step to report any type of crime or incident that you feel the police should know about is to contact the police department where the incident occurred.


Contact your local police department


 

In most cases, the police department is responsible for conducting the initial investigation.  If the investigation involves major crimes or incidents that may involve multiple jurisdictions, the police department will contact the Prosecutor’s Office, who will evaluate the facts known at that particular time and make a determination if a joint investigation will be initiated. 


 

WHAT IF I AM THE VICTIM OF A CRIME?
You should notify and file a police report at the police department where the incident occurred. Regardless of the nature of the offense, you should not feel embarrassed or ashamed. Your actions may prevent the victimization of others.

 

Office of Victim Advocacy


Victim Assistance Resources


 

WHAT IF I AM THE VICTIM OF A SEXUAL ASSAULT?

 If you are looking to report a sexual assault, the first step is to call or respond to the police department where the assault occurred. You are entitled to have an advocate present for any police interview, forensic exam, or court appearance and may request law enforcement to contact an advocate for you at any time.

 

If you need your rights further explained, you may ask law enforcement or contact the Center for Empowerment at the 24-hour hotline 1-877-665-7273. The Center for Empowerment provides services for survivors of sexual assault.

 

Attorney General Standards for Providing Services to Victims of Sexual Assault


Middlesex County Center for Empowerment - brochure


Middlesex County Center for Empowerment - Website​


Victim Assistance Resources



 WHAT IF I WISH TO REPORT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE?

In drafting the domestic violence law, the legislature recognized some of the difficulties victims had in seeking protection. As a result, the law gives the victims of domestic violence expanded reporting options.

 

If you wish to report an incident involving domestic violence, you may go to the police department where the incident occurred, where the victim resides or is sheltered, or where the suspect resides.

 

The victim is encouraged to file the police report. Many police departments have Domestic Violence Crisis Intervention Teams on duty.   These teams offer counseling services and referrals, help guide the victim thru the legal process, and provide guidance in securing a restraining order, if necessary.


Victim Assistance Resources


 

WHAT IF I WANT TO REPORT A BIAS INCIDENT OR BIAS CRIME?
You should notify and file a police report the police department where the incident occurred.  Once the report is made, the police department will make a determination as to whether or not the incident qualifies as a bias crime pursuant to the Criminal Code of the State of New Jersey. The police department is also required to forward all such reports to the Prosecutor’s Office Bias Crime Unit for additional review. The Prosecutor’s Office will make a final determination as to whether or not the incident qualifies as a bias crime pursuant to the Criminal Code.



WHAT IF I WANT TO ANONYMOUSLY REPORT A CRIME?
To anonymously report a crime, or have information regarding the same, contact the Middlesex County Crime Stoppers Program by calling 1-800-939-9600 or visit their website
www.middlesextips.com. A link to the Crime Stoppers Program can also be found on the Prosecutor’s Office main webpage (Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office​).


 

WHAT IF I WANT TO MAKE A REPORT ALLEGING OFFICER MISCONDUCT?
All complaints of officer misconduct shall be accepted from all persons who wish to file a complaint regardless of the hour or day of the week. This includes reports from anonymous sources, juveniles and persons under arrest or in custody. Complaints should be accepted by any law enforcement officer in the event that the Internal Affairs officer or supervisory personnel are not available. Anonymous reports of improper conduct by an officer shall be accepted. All efforts will be made to encourage full cooperation by the complainant.

 

Citizens should submit their complaints as soon as possible after the incident. The Internal Affairs investigator, supervisor, or other officer receiving the complaint will explain to the complainant the department’s internal affairs process and what role the complainant can expect to play in the investigation.  Upon request, the complainant will be kept informed of the status of the complaint. In all cases, the complainant will be advised in writing of its ultimate disposition.

 

If a person comes to a particular law enforcement agency to make a complaint about a member of another law enforcement agency, he or she will be referred to the agency. If the complainant has fears or concerns about making the complaint, he or she should be go to the Prosecutor’s Office in the County where the officer is employed.

 

All complaints should be investigated, as long as there is sufficient factual information to warrant an investigation. All relevant facts known to the complainant should be told to the officer taking the complaint. Complaints will be professionally, objectively and expeditiously investigated in order to gather all information necessary to arrive at a proper disposition. After a thorough and impartial investigation, a decision will be made as to the proper disposition of the complaint.

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Got a Crime Tip? Submit it here:

If this is an urgent matter, please Dial 911
   
 
Or submit a tip to Crime Stoppers of Middlesex County here:
Hotline: 1-800-939-9600
Text-a-Tip: Text "MIDTIP plus your message" to 274637 (Crimes)
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