The Bureau of State Investigations is responsible for conducting criminal, administrative and internal affairs investigations. The Bureau also coordinates the agency's Get Lean Hot-Line activity, inmate drug testing program, contraband interdiction program, "Prison Tips" program, and serves as the final reviewing authority for all "use-of-force" incidents.
When completed, criminal investigations are referred to the appropriate State Attorney's Office for prosecution. Administrative and internal affairs investigations are referred to management for appropriate follow-up action.
During the 2005-06 fiscal year, 24,896 incidents were reported to the Inspector General's Office. Those incidents were classified in the following categories:
|Legend||Classification of Incident||Number|
|CAS||Complaints Against Staff||7,352|
|IID||Inmate Injuries or Death||3,233|
|CPV||Crimes vs. Persons (Violent)||4,402|
|CPN||Crimes vs. Persons - Property (Non-Violent)||682|
|EAS||Escape / Attempted Escape||404|
|RPC||Recovery/Possession of Contraband||2,712|
Of these 24,896 incidents, 5,803 official investigations were assigned as indicated by the chart below.
|Field Office||Senior Inspectors||Institutional Inspectors||Total|
Of the 5,803 investigations assigned, 167 were forwarded to State Attorney's Offices throughout Florida for possible criminal prosecution.
As illustrated by the "Classification of Incident" chart above, the majority of reported incidents involved:
The bureau also coordinates department responses to suggestions and complaints received via the Comptroller's Get Lean Hot-Line. During FY 2005-2006, the bureau received 25 "Hot-Line" complaints. Of those, 22 involved complaints against department staff and 3 were suggestions for cost savings.
The Office of the Inspector General created the Corrections Intelligence Unit in 2005 as part of its Intelligence/Interdiction Unit. Two full-time analysts with the ability to conduct investigations are assigned to the unit. Unit activities include the following:
The bureau's Inmate Drug Testing Unit administers a statewide program in which randomly selected samples of the inmate population are tested each month for illegal substances. In addition to these random tests, the program also conducts "for cause" testing and testing of inmates enrolled in substance abuse treatment programs (SAP). "For cause" testing is conducted when there is a reasonable suspicion that an inmate is involved with alcohol or illegal substances. SAP guidelines require monthly testing of inmates enrolled in drug treatment. Testing is an integral part of the substance abuse treatment programs and also serves as a deterrent to illegal drug use in the correctional setting. It is recognized as an effective method for identifying inmates with substance abuse problems, and targeting them for further treatment and monitoring.
The Inmate Drug Testing Unit provides technical support for field staff
and analyzes test results to determine trends and problems areas. The
chart below shows test results for the last fiscal year.
|Inmate Drug Tests FY 2005-06|
|Reason for Test||Total Selected||Not Tested||Valid Tests||Negative Tests||Positive Tests||Percent Positive|
|Drug Treatment Program (SAP)||43,748||2,489||41,259||41,223||36||0.09%|
The Bureau oversees the "Prison Tips" program. The goal of the program is to garner valuable criminal intelligence on unsolved and ongoing criminal activity, both inside and outside the department, from inmates, probationers, and other persons who may have knowledge of this type of activity. The "Prison Tips" program offers an anonymous method to provide this information.
The system utilizes a special number where "TIPS" can be dialed from all inmate phones located inside all department facilities, as well as, 1-866-599-1778, which can be called from phones outside the facilities. All calls are received on a secured line that passes directly into a system monitored by the Office of the Inspector General. Information provided by callers is reviewed and forwarded to the appropriate Department staff or law enforcement agency having jurisdiction over the alleged activity.
Individuals calling have the option of establishing a voice mailbox, which can be accessed by a randomly generated pass code, to receive information back from the Inspector General's Office on the status of the information they provided. This will also provide a mechanism to stay in contact with the individual should they be eligible for a monetary reward offered by law enforcement.
Posters and brochures have been distributed to all department facilities and probation offices explaining how this system works.
The Use of Force Unit was established in August of 1999 and is staffed by an Inspector Supervisor and a Senior Inspector. The mission of the unit is to review all incidents of physical force at state correctional facilities and ensure compliance with established rules, procedures and statutes.
To accomplish this, the unit conducts an independent review and evaluation of all force incidents upon receipt of the required reports, associated documents and videotapes from each correctional facility or office. Use of force reports or videotapes that reveal possible procedural violations, inmate abuse, excessive/improper/unauthorized force, or battery by correctional employees are referred to the Bureau of State Investigations and an internal investigation is conducted.
The Use of Force Database has been enhanced to provide automatic notification to management of pertinent information regarding employee involvement in use-of-force incidents. Improvement to the database also allows the designation of major or minor use of force incidents based on standardized criteria, and the ability to provide ad hoc reports as necessary. Use-of-force incidents are classified as major incidents whenever chemical agent CS or the ERD is used, and/or whenever outside medical treatment is required for employees or inmates as a result of the incident of force.
The following chart categorizes all incidents reported to the Use of Force Unit from July 1, 2005 through June 30, 2006.
|Classification||Reason Force Was Used||Number|
|27C||Prevent Escape During Transport||4|
|27D||Prevent Property Damage||7|
|27E||Quell A Disturbance||1,509|
|27F||Physical Resistance to a Lawful Command||1,256|
|27H||Restrain Inmate for Medical Treatment||102|
|27J||Mental Health Restraint||199|
|27K||P & P Handcuffing||5|
The Contraband Interdiction Unit was established in 1993, and re-energized in early 2006. The unit's mission is to provide a safer environment for employees, inmates and visitors by discouraging the introduction of contraband, and in particular the introduction of illegal narcotics, at state correctional facilities.
The unit conducts unannounced interdiction operations at Department of Correction facilities, conducts searches for illegal narcotics utilizing Inspectors assigned to the unit and certified narcotic canines, as well as searches for other contraband. During interdiction operations, employees, visitors, volunteers, inmates, vehicles and areas on department grounds are searched for contraband. Employees, visitors, volunteers and inmates are also subject to inspection by a chemical detection unit that uses technology, referred to as the Ion Mobility Spectrometry, to find traces of illegal drugs.
In the latter part of this fiscal year the Office of the Inspector General began the process of restoring the Drug Detection Canine Unit for use in conducting Interdiction operations. When fully staffed, the unit will consist of nine full-time Canine teams with specially equipped vehicles, located strategically around the State. The Canine teams work in conjunction with the Inspector General's Contraband Interdiction Unit, participating in contraband interdictions and conducting searches at Department of Correction prisons and other facilities. The Canine teams also work closely with all of the Institutional Inspectors and provide investigative support whenever needed.