Message from the Chief
(April 22, 2021) We’ve recently received inquiries regarding law enforcement management of demonstrations in Allen. We want to provide insight on how the Allen Police Department works to minimize the unintended impact of the event and protect the safety of all involved.
Our department balances two important objectives when dealing with demonstrations: our responsibilities to ensure public safety and the constitutionally guaranteed rights of individuals to peaceably assemble. Our officers treat all citizens with respect and these same standards apply to individuals involved in peaceful demonstrations.
The size of recent peaceful demonstrations has varied. There have been several stationary demonstrations that have been small enough to hold on a sidewalk. Other demonstrations have attracted larger crowds of individuals, making the requirement to stay on a sidewalk unrealistic. In those cases, it is more reasonable to safely divert traffic around the crowd. Traffic diversion around a demonstration is the safest and most effective option since motorists continue to move.
As unreasonable enforcement actions during peaceful demonstrations can negatively affect a crowd, our current strategy is not only the right thing to do in terms of protecting constitutional rights, but it is the best strategy for safeguarding everyone involved in and around the event.
It is understandable that there is a level of frustration in the community when disruption of traffic is encountered. Please understand that your Allen police officers are working to ensure a safe event outcome while keeping you on route to your destination. To the extent that we can better inform the public of scheduled demonstrations to help them avoid traffic issues, we will primarily be using Hyper-Reach, our urgent alerting system which provides notification sent out via text or voicemail through our dispatch operations. As we are able, will post information to our police department Facebook page.
(March 18, 2021) The Allen Police Department joins our community in sadness following the death of Marvin David Scott III. Mr. Scott died in custody at the Collin County jail following an earlier arrest by the Allen Police Department. I met with Mr. Scott’s family earlier this week to express condolences. When I asked how I could describe their son to our department and the Allen community, I learned that Marvin was a straight A student, a football player and generous to everyone around him.
The Texas Rangers are currently conducting an independent investigation into the cause of Mr. Scott’s death at the Collin County jail. The City of Allen and the Allen Police Department are cooperating fully with that investigation. To ensure the integrity of their investigation, the information we can provide is limited and may be reviewed below.
We offer our sincere sympathy to Mr. Scott’s parents, Marvin and LaSandra, and the rest of his family and friends during this difficult time.
Chief Brian Harvey
Allen Police Department
On March 14, Allen Police officers encountered Marvin David Scott III when responding to a disturbance call at Allen Premium Outlets. Our officers observed that Mr. Scott was acting in an erratic manner and were concerned for his safety due to the possible ingestion of drugs. They called for assistance from paramedics from Allen Fire Department. Mr. Scott was transported by ambulance to Texas Health Allen Hospital where he remained in the emergency room for approximately three hours.
Once he was released with a physician’s clearance that he could be taken into custody, Mr. Scott was processed at the Allen Police Headquarters holding facility and then transported and released to the custody of the Collin County Sheriff’s Office.
(June 9, 2020) – The entire Allen Police Department is saddened and outraged by the death of George Floyd and other victims of injustice. As the Chief of Police, I share our community’s high expectations for the men and women charged with keeping our community safe. Police officers swear an oath to serve and protect citizens, and we join law enforcement professionals across the nation in grief and anger when this oath is not upheld. Actions such as these place an indelible stain on the hard work and dedication of a vast number of officers.
We are stewards of your trust and strive each day to maintain it through transparency, accountability, adherence to best practices, ongoing training and overall customer service. The continuous improvement of our agency and our profession is one of our highest goals and we constantly evaluate the ways we are accomplishing that goal in partnership with the Allen community. Because of this, we are using this time to review our policies and procedures as well as listening to community concerns.
Following best practices
The Allen Police Department (APD) was an early adopter of the Texas Law Enforcement Best Practices Recognition Program through the Texas Police Chiefs Association Foundation. To become a Best Practice Agency, departments must comply with 166 best practice standards covering 12 critical areas of operation, including: use of force; search, seizure and arrest; care, custody and restraint of prisoners; and selection and hiring of officers, among others. APD achieved recognition as a Best Practice Agency in 2009 and has maintained this status each year to date.
APD uses a professional consultant to perform quarterly audits and compile, analyze and report racial profiling in accordance with Texas Racial Profiling reporting requirements. Additionally, body worn video review is conducted by supervisors on a regular and frequent basis.
Philosophy of policing
APD practices community-oriented policing which focuses on building ties and working closely with all members of the community. Some of these specific initiatives include our School Resource Officer partnership with Allen Independent School District (AISD), Citizens Police Academy, Citizen on Patrol, Volunteers in Policing, Rape Aggression Defense (RAD) Training and Project H.O.M.E. Details about these programs are available on the Community Relations web page.
Additional outreach includes AISD summer camps, tours of Allen Police Headquarters and, recently due to the pandemic, birthday and other special event parades. We are exploring new ways to connect with our community through virtual communication, as became necessary during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Hiring and training practices
Ethical policing begins with candidate screening. Applicants for law enforcement employment complete extensive preliminary interview questionnaires and personal history statements. They are interviewed, given polygraph tests and are psychologically evaluated. Character references, prior supervisors and co-workers are contacted. These initial contacts are asked for additional individuals to be interviewed to expand the department’s view of each candidate. Candidates are asked a myriad of questions that include why they want to join law enforcement and information about their associations. This extensive qualification process is designed to determine their potential for racism, bias and discrimination.
If accepted as recruits, candidates are further evaluated throughout a 26-week academy that includes instruction on professional policing, professionalism and ethics, cultural diversity, multiculturalism and human relations, communications and problem solving, crisis intervention training, de-escalation, ethics and mental health issues.
Upon graduation, recruits are placed in a 17-week field training program that scores new officers daily in 30 different categories including acceptance of criticism, attitude toward police work, problem solving and decision making, conflict control (verbal and physical) and relational skills with the public, ethnic groups, other officers and supervisors.
Considering the application process, basic training and field training, new officers are evaluated for approximately one year before receiving clearance to work independently within our community.
Addressing citizen concerns
When officers violate the public trust, it is right to question and condemn their actions. We greatly value the citizens who bring concerns before us, whether as the result of personal interactions with Allen Police Department employees or due to events happening on a national scale. As the Chief, I work to be accessible and can be reached directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are committed to continuous improvement as we serve the Allen community. We solicit feedback through citizen surveys following many types of common police calls. We also encourage members of the public to share their experiences with Allen law enforcement—whether positive or negative—by commending or reporting a police officer online. We know this accountability leads to a better department and a safer community for everyone.
Chief Brian Harvey
Allen Police Department
Allen Police Department has shared the policies and best practices which guide our department in eight areas of police action/accountability commonly known as “8 Can’t Wait.” Learn more.