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CITY OF SAN ANTONIO

OFFICE OF THE CITY MANAGER

TO: Mayor and City Council


FROM: Sheryl Sculley, City Manager
COPIES TO: Chief William McManus; Executive Leaders 'p Team

SUBJECT: Special Victims Unit

DATE: April 25, 2018

In October of this past year, I directed the City Attorney to do an independent review of the Special
Victims Unit (SVU) of the San Antonio Police Department and all cases assigned to it. The City
Attorney hired Lisa Tatum, a former President of the State Bar of Texas and a former Bexar County
Assistant Criminal District Attorney, to lead the independent review. A team of eight attorneys,
including five former Assistant Criminal District Attorneys, reviewed more than 10,000 closed SVU
felony cases and more than 1,500 closed SVU misdemeanor cases from 2014 to 2017. The review
team also looked at certain active SVU cases currently under investigation and the SW's Standard
Operating Procedures.
The team found "no discernable pattern or practice" of detectives mishandling cases. The full
independent review is attached for your review.
The report did recommend revisions to the unit's Standard Operating Procedures to strengthen
oversight by the detectives' supervisors and improve the investigative process. Chief McManus
formed an internal review committee and an external stakeholder group to gather input regarding
enhancements to the SVU's Standard Operating Procedures.
Attached is a memo from Chief McManus that details the changes in procedure that have been
implemented in response to the recommendations in the review of the Special Victims Unit.
A press conference is planned for 10:00 AM on Thursday April 26, 2018 to share these reports
with the public.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
San Antonio Police Department
Special Victims Unit
Fact Investigation

April 23, 2018

LM -TATUM, PLLC®
TATVIvt LAW PRACTI e
Table of Contents

I. Executive Summary ...............................................................................................................................3


II. Background .............................................................................................................................................3
III. Methodology ...........................................................................................................................................3
IV. Determinations ..........................................................................................................................................3
V. Factual Investigation ................................................................................................................................5
A. Review of Closed SVU Case Files .....................................................................................5
B. Closed SVU Felony Case File Review ..............................................................................6
C. Closed SVU Misdemeanor Case File Review ..................................................................8
D. Referrals from the City Attorney's Office or the City Manager's Office .......................10
E. Meeting with SVU Detectives and Active Case File Review ..........................................11
F. Review of the SVU Standard Operating Procedures .......................................................12
G. The Unit Directors (Lieutenants) .......................................................................................12
H. Unit Supervisor (Sergeants) ...............................................................................................13
I. Unit Investigator (Detectives) ............................................................................................15
Civilian and Administrative Staff .............................................................................................17
K. Community Supervisor — Civilian .....................................................................................17
L. Unit Secretary — Administrative Assistant II ....................................................................17
M. Unit Secretary — Administrative Associate ........................................................................17
N. Administrative — Front Desk Team ...................................................................................18
0. Proposed Revisions and Recommendations to the SVU Standard Operating Procedures 19
VI. Determinations and Recommendations ................................................................................................20
VII. Conclusion ..............................................................................................................................................22

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San Antonio Police Department Special Victims Unit Fact Investigation
April 23 2018
I. Executive Summary
At the request of the City Manager, LM Tatum, PLLC (Tatum Law) was engaged by the City of San Antonio's
City Attorney's Office to review the San Antonio Police Department's Special Victims Unit processes, including
its handling of case files. The primary purpose of this investigation is to (1) determine if any systemic or process
issues exist at the Special Victims Unit of the San Antonio Police Department with respect to the handling of
cases and (2) provide legal advice on the improper handling of the Special Victims Unit cases of the San Antonio
Police Department by conducting an independent fact investigation of the case files of the Special Victims Unit
(SVU or Unit) of the San Antonio Police Department (SAPD).

Background
On November 2, 2017, San Antonio City Manager Sheryl Sculley and Police Chief William McManus addressed
the public, announcing the discovery of an officer mishandling of SVU cases. The discovery was made as a result
of an internal SAPD audit, and the mishandled cases traced back to one Detective, Detective Kenneth Valdez, a
17-year SAPD veteran, who was discovered to have mishandled a number of sex crime and family violence cases.
His mishandling of cases involved (a) a failure to submit forensic evidence to the crime lab for testing, (b) a
failure to act on information received that may have led to the successful prosecution of a suspect and (c) a failure
to properly handle evidence.

III. Methodology
Tatum Law reviewed the SVU felony cases that were closed between October 1, 2014 and September 30, 2017,
as well as a representative sample of the SVU misdemeanor cases closed in the same date range as requested by
the City Attorney for the City of San Antonio. Cases filed with the Bexar County District Attorney's Office
(District Attorney's Office) were not a part of this review. An integral part of accepting this engagement was the
approval of a review team to work with our office to assist with/collaborate on the review of closed felony and
misdemeanor cases. A review team (Review Team), which consisted of a group of qualified attorneys - three
former Bexar County Assistant Criminal District Attorneys, including Lisa Tatun of Tatum Law, who are
independent of the San Antonio City Attorney's Office, two former Bexar County Assistant Criminal District
Attorneys who are employed by the San Antonio City Attorney's Office and three litigators from the San Antonio
City Attorney's Office reviewed the closed SVU case files. The Review Team developed a course of action to
govern the closed case file review allowing each reviewer (Reviewer) the opportunity to individually assess
whether a case had fulfilled the requirements of the SVU processes (Process Fulfillment) and also gain knowledge
and perspective while maintaining a systematic approach and consistent methodology to the review process. The
case file review included the review of certain active cases under investigation by Detectives of the SVU and the
Unit's Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). Our investigation also included interviews with certain personnel
and individuals referred to our office by the City Attorney's Office and the City Manager's Office.

IV. Determinations
We reviewed 10,522 closed felony cases, and 1,585 closed misdemeanor cases provided by City staff. We
determined, even in light of the SVU record management system issues discussed later in this report, the 1,585
closed misdemeanor cases to be an adequate representative sample based upon the information available to us.
In our review, we identified some process concerns associated with case file workflow. There is a need for a true
record management system that (1) facilitates the criminal investigation workflow process as well as the related
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administrative reporting responsibilities, (2) enables sworn and civilian personnel to work more efficiently and
effectively and (3) reduces or eliminates some systemic process issues as identified within this document.
Standard Operating Procedures need to be updated and implemented that speak to the criminal investigation
process from case inception through to closure, specifically related to the handling and management of forensic
evidence lab results. Additionally, current day-to-day functions, duties and responsibilities of personnel with
additional consideration to the associated reporting responsibilities should be included in the updates.

In light of the current ratio of Lieutenants and Sergeants to officers and staff, consideration should be given to
ways through which the span of control can be optimized. Lieutenants and Sergeants are supervising a large
number of personnel for a Unit that handles more complex investigations with a delicate and specialized set of
victims.
In light of the heavy caseload and significant changes in technology causing investigations to take longer to
complete, consideration needs to be given to the ways the SAPD can increase efficiencies for the SVU's already
maximized personnel.
Facilitating the SVU's desire to provide additional SVU training to Detectives, particularly who are six months
into their assignment, will improve case management and enhance case investigation skills decreasing the
likelihood and frequency of fatigue and burn out.
Continued and increased cross training of the civilian administrative staff will further ensure continuous coverage
of tasks and continuous support for the Sworn Officer team.
Some of these process issues are being addressed. All of these process challenges can be addressed and refined
to further reduce the possibility of Detective misconduct going undetected and enhance case management and
case investigation productivity. A review of the SVU through its files and its operations indicate that the
mishandling of cases by Detective Kenneth Valdez or the mishandling of cases generally, is specific to individual
behavior and not attributable to the SVU as a whole.

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I. Factual Investigation

A. Review of Closed SVU Case Files

One of the challenges we faced in the early stages of our review was the inability to determine the number of
cases we were dealing with within the record management system. There are limitations to the record
management system because it is not actually a case management system. The record management system does
not have a case management interface, so it does not easily lend itself to running certain reports. A great deal of
energy and time was expended by City staff who supported the investigation by manually extracting information
from the record management system for our purposes. The difficulty faced in supporting our review efforts
became clear, when we learned that reports are not solely generated by the record management system software,
but are manually extrapolated from the records housed within the record management system. Therefore, any
reports City staff generated for our purposes could not be identically replicated even though the same
methodology of extrapolation was used to gather the information, as we understand it.

This uncertainty of numbers is a challenge, in part, because of the limited ability to pull certain data from the
system by generating reports. In our investigation, we learned that personnel knowledge of the record
management system and personnel proficiency levels vary throughout the SVU, just as they appear to vary
throughout the SAPD. In daily use, for example, there can be the unintentional creation of duplicate files which
can occur at the time of case creation in the record management system or even at the input of additional data by
another member of the Department.

The case file review process developed was purposeful to (1) not step into the Detectives' shoes without their
skill set or the context of their knowledge; (2) not step into the role of the District Attorney's Office with a
standard of review focused on the cases' preparation for trial and prosecution, which is often perceived to be a
more scrutinizing review; and (3) diligently assess the case from a prosecutor's knowledge base and
understanding of criminal investigations. The Review Team, with the information available, reviewed cases
with a questioning eye toward (a) what actions were taken, (b) what actions were not taken, (c) what actions
should have been or could have been taken and were not, specifically what if anything may have been learned in
the investigation that would help determine whether the elements of the offense were satisfied, warranting a filing
of charges with the District Attorney's Office.
The Review Team was also charged with reviewing the investigative processes used by the Detectives in their
investigation, as indicated by the closed case files, and providing any recommendations that may improve
processes. This approach was designed to review these closed files with a single encompassing inquiry, whether
the processes had been fulfilled, and avoid the perception that this review is simply to "verify" the work of the
Detectives of the SVU. To that end, using the Standard Operating Procedures and their respective knowledge
base as a guide, each Reviewer was to assess and evaluate each individual case reviewed as well as the entire
SVU, over the course of this closed case review, on (a) whether processes were being followed, (b) if a
process is not followed, is there a pattern or practice that deviates from the process, (c) if the process is not
followed what is the impact of not following the process and (d) what can be accomplished to refine, improve, or
change the process in light of what has been observed. Cases that were filed with the Bexar County DA's Office
were not considered by the Review Team.

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B. Closed SVU Felony Case File Review

The Review Team reviewed closed SVU felony cases dating back to October 1, 2014, which totaled a review of
10,522 closed felony cases. Tatum Law's review of the closed SVU felony cases began on October 30, 2017,
after City staff began preparing for our firm's arrival and one day after part of the Review Team began to review
closed SVU felony cases. In the first day only 100 cases were reported to have been reviewed, leaving the
majority of the review to continue under the engagement, direction and purview of the independent investigator,
Tatum Law. The experience of the Review Team combined with Tatum Law's experience working with four
members of the Review Team, who worked with Lisa Tatum at the Bexar County Criminal District Attorney's
Office, provides Tatum Law with a confidence that the first 100 cases reviewed were assessed in conformity with
the review course of action established by the Review Team. The review of the closed SVU felony cases consisted
of a review of the physical closed files and concluded on December 4, 2017. The Review Team made a number
of observations through this phase of the process.

I. The Review Team noted and was most concerned about what appeared to be a lack of Standard
Operating Procedures and documentation through the actual investigation of cases, specifically the
handling of forensic evidence, including lab results. The Review Team noted cases were
frequently closed using the code "Closed: Pending Further Investigation" as CTL submittals
(CILs), requests for lab testing went out and evidence was sent to the lab for testing. The Review
Team also noted and was concerned about the lack of information or documentation readily
available to determine when results came back, whether the results were reviewed by the assigned
and/or requesting Detective for further investigation or action, or whether the results were simply
filed away.
2. The Review Team had recurring questions surrounding the closure of files and understanding the
reason for case closure/disposition. The Review Team observed an inconsistency with the manner
in which cases were closed that made it difficult to determine why certain case files were closed.
3. The Review Team learned that there is a section in the record management system that requires
SVU supervisor approval in order to close a case. During the review, it was revealed that case
closure could be completed by anyone with access to the record management system who had
knowledge of the Supervisor's Employee Number. For example, a Supervisor's employee number
was used to closed case files by a verbal authorization of a Supervisor to the Detective assigned,
which would also allow cases to be closed without the Supervisor's knowledge or consent. As the
questions were raised about the access to this section of the record management system, our office
was advised that the authorization levels within the record management system had been modified
in early October of 2017, to prevent such action from occurring. According to an Operational
Assessment of the Special Victims Unit dated September 22, 2017, the security levels were
modified by the Chiefs Technology Team to ensure that only Supervisors have access to this
section of the record management system and the policy update became effective on September
13, 2017. However, according to information Tatum Law received during interviews with SAPD
personnel, the modification to the Supervisor Approval section of the record management system
actually became effective in the month of October 2017.
4. Another challenge for the Review Team was the discovery of the information gap that exists
between the physical file and any information that may be entered into the record management
system. The Review Team was limited as to the amount of information contained in the physical
file. This challenge was met by conducting a follow up review, with the assistance of SVU, of
certain closed SVU felony cases that exemplified the Review Team's recurring questions. This
follow up, by way of additional information being reported back to Ms. Tatum by SVU, revealed
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in many instances that additional information was available and housed in the record management
system, a database the entire Review Team was not afforded access to for security reasons.
As our office gathered closed case file information and relevant data working with City staff, we were provided
with the Review Team's closed SVU felony case file review feedback in data form on December 8, 2017. In the
review of these 10,522 closed SVU felony cases, the Review Team commented on 891 closed felony case files,
amounting to 8.5% of all reviewed closed felony files, identifying some aspect of the review that did not meet
Process Fulfillment. A closer look at the questions raised or issues presented by the Review Team led to the
following breakdown in terms of the percentage of the 891 reviewed closed felony files. [The total percentages
listed do not amount to 100% and only reflect the Review Team's concerns as articulated during the review.]

1. 0.897% of the 891 cases were cases that were filed with the District Attorney's Office. Cases that
are prepared to be filed with the District Attorney's Office contain two documents, a Prosecution
Guide and a Charge and Disposition Sheet (C&D). The files reviewed contained Prosecution
Guides but either were missing the C&D or had an incomplete C&D.
2. 35.02% of the 891 cases involved forensic evidence, primarily SANE Kit testing, but there were
also buccal swabs and fingerprints, for example. Reviewers had questions because the
information in the file was unclear about either testing, lab results or the reason for closure.
3. 2.13% of the 891 cases were duplicate filings. Cases may be created in duplicate because they
have multiple suspects or multiple victims. Some cases in a set of multiples may be filed with
the District Attorney's Office and others may be closed Pending Further Investigation or closed
because the evidence shows a particular suspect was not involved, for example.
4. 22.67% of the 891 cases the Review Team had questions because there was not enough
information contained in the physical file to help the Reviewer understand the rationale behind
the decision not to file with the District Attorney's Office and close the case file.
5. 5.61% of the 891 cases the Review Team had questions about what happened to the rest of the
investigation and then learned the case was transferred to another unit in the Department or out
of the jurisdiction.
6. 0.11% of the 891 cases were closed with a note indicating the file was being closed because the
offense alleged was addressed with other cases. The Review Team did not learn the answer, but
we presume the suspect may have had a number of charges, companion cases, or other cases that
were filed with the District Attorney's Office.
7. 0.89% of the 891 cases were assigned to Detectives after significant delay. The Review Team
learned post-review, through requested follow up in the record management system by City staff,
that several cases were discovered during a 2016 audit not to have been assigned. Those cases
were assigned to Detectives upon discovery.

The SVU's work is being performed well by a small team of Detectives who handle a large volume of cases of a
nature that is unique and specialized. The Review Team did not identify any negative pattern or practice that
deviates from the process; however, the Review Team did identify two systemic processes in need of
improvement. First, the way that the SANE kits, buccal swabs and other forensic evidence is documented and
incorporated into the criminal investigative process does not adequately lend itself to an outsider, whether the
outsider is another Detective, their Supervisors, or the Unit Director, let alone an independent Reviewer, being
able to discern whether the elements of the offense were satisfied, warranting a filing of charges with the District
Attorney's Office. The Review Team recommends the Standard Operating Procedures be updated to establish a
clear pathway in the use of the physical file and the record management system as to how forensic evidence
should be documented throughout the entire case investigation through to case closure. The lack of an easily

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located case file update makes the basis for the closing decision difficult to understand or determine during any
follow up or audit, even if the appropriate decision was reached.
This aspect of the criminal investigation was so readily apparent that the Review Team began to ask questions
about the SANE kit process and handling of lab results. At Tatum Law's request, City staff facilitated an
opportunity for the Review Team to visit with a former Unit Director on October 31, 2017, to learn more about
the SANE kits and the evidence portion of the case investigation process. The Review Team learned that the
Crime Lab delivers the lab results only to the Detective assigned. Notification is by electronic mail and only to
the Detective assigned. The Review Team identified this notification as a challenge questioning what happens if
a Detective is out sick or injured or if the Detective had retired or been transferred to another unit. About one
week later, the Review Team was advised by the same former Unit Director, through City staff, that the
notification had been changed. The lab results were now being delivered to the Unit Supervisor as well the
Detective assigned by electronic mail. This change in process further ensures that incoming results will be
attended to in a timely manner. The need for these changes had also been identified in the September 23, 2017,
assessment of the SVU and was reported to have been changed for CODIS hit notification effective August 24,
2017. This change alone does not speak to the other concerns involving forensic evidence raised by the Review
Team. The change is a step in the direction of improved processes.

Second, beyond the handling of forensic evidence, the Standard Operating Procedures are quite detailed to a point,
and then the processes simply do not speak to the investigation process or case closure determination/decision.
There may be some Unit processes in place of which this Review Team is unaware. What the Review Team sees,
as an outside reviewing body, is that there is a clear direction in which each investigation goes, and then it seems
to open up into a silent abyss. The Review Team suggested that there should be more process clarity including a
stated reason for closure and a chronology of forensic evidence (to include submittals, results, and subsequent
review of the case after results have been received). SVU personnel are best equipped to speak to how best to
both articulate and implement such an update. Again, consistent documentation of these aspects of the case
investigation enables and simplifies internal and external audits, enabling someone to come behind a Detective
more easily.
In addition to the Review Team's observations and recommendations, Tatum Law made the following
observation. As we worked to track closed SVU felony file review progress, we learned there are limitations to
the records management system related to the ability to generate reports on the numbers of files in the system,
specifically those in the purview of the SVU, with certainty. We learned that there are uncertainties due to the
existence of duplicate filings, filings in error, and "ghost files".

C. Closed SVU Misdemeanor Case Files Review


The review of a representative sample of SVU misdemeanor cases, which amounted to a review of 1,585 closed
SVU misdemeanor cases out of 4,666 cases dating back to October 1, 2014, identified by City staff, began
immediately after the review of the closed SVU felony case files, as soon as the files were pulled from the file
center. A sample review was requested in light of the volume of misdemeanor cases, in an effort to control costs
and maximize Reviewer efficiency. This sample size provides us, as the independent investigator, with a certain
level of assurance through a Statistically Significant Percentage, a value that is statistically likely or probable to
be a true representation of the whole. The sample size was identified to produce the same or similar results as
though the entire pool of 4,666 closed SVLT misdemeanor cases had been reviewed and was derived using the
resource tool of Creative Research Systems which calculated a sample size of 1,585, approximately 1/3 (33.9%)
of the closed file Misdemeanor pool. The use of the Process Fulfilment approach which evokes a yes or no answer
from the Review Team, a 50/50 chance of fulfillment and a factor in this confidence calculation, puts this sample

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size within the 95% confidence level, an acceptable standard of measurement with a two point variance, between
93% and 97%.
With the sample size determined, a random selection of 1,585 cases was generated from the pool of closed SVU
misdemeanor cases using Microsoft Excel's random draw capability. We provided the random sample list of the
1,585 electronically selected SAPD Case Numbers to City staff on November 30, 2017, so that the case files could
be prepared for the Review Team's review. When the case files were available for review, the Review Team
began the closed SVU misdemeanor file assessment.

The review of the closed SVU misdemeanor case files initially began with an actual review of the physical closed
SVU misdemeanor case files. The Review Team was made aware of the fact that approximately 3,200 of the
4,666 closed SVU misdemeanor files are electronic files only and housed in the record management system.
Those files do not have jackets, physical files. City staff worked to make available the necessary electronic data
from the record management system in order for the Review Team to successfully complete the closed SVU
misdemeanor case file review. Inquiry was made to City staff and to various members of SVU to learn why
some files did not have physical files as well as an electronic record files. The answer to this question is discussed
later in this document.

The Review Team reviewed 1,585 closed SVU misdemeanor case files beginning with the physical files that were
available for review. Once those physical files were completed, the Review Team continued by reviewing the
remaining 237 electronic files in order to continue to make assessments as to Process Fulfillment, using the same
approach and methodology. The Review Team completed this review on December 8, 2017. As our office
gathered closed misdemeanor case file information and relevant data, working with City staff, we were provided
with the Review Team's closed SVU misdemeanor case file review feedback in data form on January 10, 2018.
A review of the data revealed that the case review was eleven misdemeanor case files short of the representative
sample review number. The explanation we received from City staff was that the outstanding file number was
due to either the case number being entered in error as a duplicate filing, or the file could not be located within
the system, both reasons were issues we had identified by this point in our independent investigation. To ensure
the representative sample was reviewed as required to meet our standards, our office pulled an additional eleven
closed SVU misdemeanor case file numbers from our internally generated random sample list. We simply added
the next eleven cases from the random sample list, as they appeared. Those eleven cases were reviewed by Tatum
Law, using independent access to the record management system, and the data was incorporated into the data list
provided to us on January 10, 2018.

On March 9, 2018, our office learned that the random sample case file list provided to the City on November 30,
2017, was not used, and our direction on case selection was not followed as instructed. Instead, City staff, without
the knowledge or consent of Tatum Law, selected closed SVU misdemeanor cases which had already been
reviewed during the review of closed SVU felony case files. During the review of closed felony cases, there
were a number of misdemeanor files that were also reviewed. It was the opinion of this office that the review of those
misdemeanor cases, pulled by City staff along with the felony cases, during the felony review, could only add to
the knowledge base of the Review Team about the processes followed. The closed misdemeanor case files were
not included in the closed felony case file review. The review of those files had not been contemplated to be part
of the separate and distinct misdemeanor case file review.
In light of this new disclosure, a failure to follow a directive given by our office, our office quickly reassessed the
data list provided on January 10, 2018, by City staff along with the supplemental eleven closed cases reviewed
exclusively by this office. Our determination is that this 1,585 closed SVU misdemeanor cases, though not
selected as we directed using our internally generated random sample list, is still an adequately sized random
sample and is the representative size we mandated.
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In the review of these 1,585 closed SVU misdemeanor cases, the Review Team commented on 43 closed
misdemeanor case files, amounting to 2.7% of all reviewed misdemeanor files, identifying some aspect of the
review that did not meet Process Fulfillment. A closer look at the questions raised or issues presented by the
Review Team led to the following breakdown in terms of the percentage of the 43 reviewed closed misdemeanor
files.

1. 79.06% of the 43 cases required the Review Team to investigate beyond the physical file
in an effort to understand the rationale behind the decision not to file.
2. 2.32% of the 43 cases involved uncooperative victims or victims that were unable to be contacted.
3. 0.46% of the 43 cases were transferred to another unit in the Department or out of the jurisdiction.
4. 0.23% of the 43 cases were duplicate filings.

The Review Team shared its observations from the review of the closed SVU misdemeanor case files, stating as
before, the Review Team did not identify any negative pattern or practice that deviates from the process. The
Review Team also held fast to its initial observations and recommendations, echoing its concerns, thereby
applying the same determinations to the entire closed SVU case file review ..

The majority of the closed SVU felony and misdemeanor cases reviewed contained sufficient information to
enable the Review Team to review and assess the closing decision reached by the Detective/Unit. There were
instances when the information in the physical file was not enough and questions or concerns were noted by the
Review Team as lacking Process Fulfillment. There were 891 cases of the 10,522 total reviewed felony case files
and 43 cases of the 1,585 total reviewed misdemeanor cases where there was not sufficient information in the
physical file or the electronically extracted data to determine whether the case process had been fulfilled. The
fact that the Review Team could not determine the process was fulfilled does not necessarily mean that any one
of those 891 felony case files or any one of those 43 misdemeanor case files, in particular, were mishandled.
What it does mean is that those identified closed case files had to be reviewed more closely, looking at the
information housed in the record management system, in an effort to determine whether there was Process
Fulfillment according to the policies and procedures in place. Researching more closely the facts of a case and
re-assessing the quality of the case investigation resides with and should remain with those who are specifically
trained as a Detective Investigator in criminal investigation, particularly in special victims, family violence and
sex crimes, and their supervisors and leadership. This is another reason why the simplified approach of the
Review Team is so effective. The Review Team focused on whether there was Process Fulfillment. If the Review
Team had to research to determine whether the process was fulfilled, then the process, for our purposes, lacked
fulfillment.

Tatum Law identified eight cases for follow up as a result of the closed case review. The Unit was asked to review
and re-assess those cases based upon the questions raised by the Review Team. Five of those cases had
outstanding questions the Review Team could not answer related to the chronology of the case after the lab results
had been returned to the Unit. Three other cases also had outstanding questions as well, but those questions were
not related to forensic evidence. All of these questions and the cases referred back to SVU exemplify the
challenges encountered by the Review Team as discussed above. Each of those cases were received by the Unit
Director and the Unit Supervisor for further review with action to be taken as SVU deems appropriate.

D. Referrals from the City Attorney's Office or the City Manager's Office
There were three individuals who were directed to Tatum Law from either the City Attorney's Office or the City
Manager's Office, who had expressed concern about either the handling of a criminal case investigation or the
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operation of SVU. The concerns raised involved the handling of cases and the management and operation of the
SVU. Tatum Law reviewed the closed case files specifically for their articulated concerns and met with each of
those individuals to learn of their concerns from them. Some information learned was not information contained
in the files reviewed, raising some questions. The closed cases were referred to the SVU Unit Director and Unit
Supervisor for review and with action to be taken as deemed appropriate by the Unit Director and Unit Supervisor.
Issues of concern that did not pertain to the scope of Tatum Law's work were referred to the City Attorney' Office
as well as the City of San Antonio's Human Resources Department. At no time did Tatum Law provide direction
as to what decisions should be made nor did it intimate a desired outcome. The office simply pointed out the
issues of concern and asked for a second review of the case.

E. Meeting with SVU Detectives and Active Case File Review


On December 20, 2017, Lisa Tatum, of Tatum Law, joined a representative of the Chief's Office, and presented a
briefing to SVU during Roll Call explaining the scope of the firm's charge and work of this independent
investigation. As part of that scope, she requested to meet with each of the Detectives and be provided a current
list of the active files on their desks. Working with the Chief's Office and Unit Supervisors, meetings with each
of the Unit's Detectives was coordinated. Meetings began after Roll Call on the same day. Ms. Tatum met with
Detectives in small groups averaging four at a time taking an opportunity to visit individually with each Detective.
Each Detective explained their workflow process and walked Ms. Tatum through one to three of their cases, active
and recently closed, so she could better understand the Unit's case investigation process, using both the physical
file and the record management system.

It was discovered that the workflow process for SVU Detectives is largely consistent. The Standard Operating
Procedures play a part in that uniformity. The Unit specific training and teamwork concept also attribute to the
consistency of their investigative work. Understandably, Detectives' method, style and approach to their
investigations will vary according to their workstyles and personalities. Throughout the interviews no negative
patterns or practices that deviate from the process, as established by the Standard Operating Procedures, were
observed or reported. Even through the interviews, while providing information to Tatum Law, Detectives were
learning from one another, mostly about how many different ways the Detectives use the record management
system. Many Detectives use a combination of the record management system, the physical file, and a PC based
document or documents in order to more effectively manage their case investigations and reporting duties.

The list of active cases for each Detective was provided to Tatum Law. The total active case list included 760
active case files. Ms. Tatum was granted access to the record management system and was provided with tutoring
on the use of the system in order to conduct an electronic review of the active case files, directly and independent
of City staff support. Each of those cases were reviewed electronically to ensure that the physical file and all
things related to the physical file remained at the assigned Detective's disposal for their investigative purposes.

There were challenges to the electronic review: (1) the Reviewer is limited to reviewing only the activity
documented in the record management system; (2) the Reviewer cannot review the entire process, unless the case
was completed prior to the electronic review, and assess Process Fulfillment; (3) the Reviewer's access to very
little case file information is presumably due to a fluid situation or an investigative style where the physical file
or PC based document houses the detail. The benefit of the active case file review is that many of the reported
changes to the SVU investigation process and case management could be seen in action. In October of 2017, the
record management system was enhanced, electronically limiting access to close a file to only authorized
personnel. During the review of active case files, it was readily apparent that (1) the change to Supervisor
Approval section is consistently applied and (2) the changes made for closing a case Pending Further Investigation
(when CILs and lab results are pending) are more easily identified. There was also a noticeable increase in detail
input into the record management system. Some examples of that more consistent detail are case file notations

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such as when the case was assigned, when the Detective received the case and more electronic noting of inbound
and outbound calls. A review of the active case files affirmed the Review Team's position that access to certain
information makes it easier to understand the investigative process and basis for Detective decisions.
It is worth noting at this point that the physical case files, particularly in felony cases, are often the primary source
of case investigation workflow, but not the only source of information in the Detectives' criminal investigation.
There is also workflow information/data contained within the electronic file in the record management system.
The physical file and the electronic record management file may not contain all of the same information. One
file necessarily complements the other as part of the criminal investigation workflow. The physical felony file,
for example, contained the CIL submission, a request for lab testing, and the lab results while the record
management system did not. A misdemeanor physical file contained returned Certified Mail Return Receipt
Requested green cards and the related letters to contact the victim and the suspect, where the record management
system did not. Similarly, the record management system file on a case may contain Detective notes from the
last call to a victim, who did not want to pursue the case with the District Attorney's Office, before making a
decision to file the case with the District Attorney's Office, and those notes are not part of the physical file. And,
a Detective may also work using PC based documents complementing these other two mediums. Each medium
serves a purpose and maintains the workflow.
F. Review of the SVU Standard Operating Procedures

As part of the review of SVU operations, Tatum Law reviewed the SVU Standard Operating Procedures and met
with certain SVU personnel to better understand roles and responsibilities of the Unit. In addition to meeting
with SVU personnel, Tatum Law reviewed SVU personnel reporting documents as required by the SOPs for the
same three year period. The Unit goals and objectives are articulated in the SVU Standard Operating Procedures
as reporting tasks that are quantifiable, however, the tasks do not appear to have a defined measurement. The
information the Unit captures is based upon the number of reported incidents that have been assessed, actual cases
that are or have been addressed, and the clearance rate of each of those criminal investigations. The information
is quantified using case assignment logs and periodic reporting. These reports are delivered through the chain of
command to division and section Commanders.

When SVU personnel were asked to describe the role and primary activity, the response frequently received was,
It is [their] job to catch the bad guys. That's what we do." It became important to address the everyday aspects
of operations versus written policy. In discussions about the administrative duties, we learned that there are often
extra measures the SVU team must take in order to complete their administrative tasks, frequently requiring work
on their own time outside of the standard working hours (overtime). What follows is a discussion of the SVU
roles we found key to SVU's process function in our review.

G. The Unit Directors (Lieutenants)

According to the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs), Lieutenants direct the work of the Unit Supervisors
(Sergeants) who oversee both the sworn and civilian personnel, most directly supervising the Sergeants and
civilian supervisors. They review major investigations and may assume direct control over any investigation.
Lieutenants are responsible for monitoring compliance and identifying training needs. They generally operate as
a resource to all Unit personnel up through the Chain of Command to the Office of the Chief and the Chief of
Police. The SOPs show this role to be highly administrative in nature establishing and managing budgets,
reviewing major investigations, ensuring compliance with established rules and procedures as well as identifying
and addressing training needs of the Unit. Lieutenants are also charged with coordinating activities, serving as a
liaison to outside agencies and maintaining media relations.
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The Lieutenants primarily consider themselves "fixers" and report they spend the majority of their time "putting
out fires" and responding to inquiries from nongovernmental organizations and the Chain of Command. They
often engage in the handling of hot cases and are mindful of media coverage and inquiries. The Lieutenant's role
is clearly distinct from any position below it. There is some frustration in stepping into the role because there is
no particularized training offered in management/administration or time management, as they move through the
ranks of the SAPD. Assistance with these skills sets would benefit the Lieutenants and the 65-67 officers under
their command.

When asked about their administrative duties, Lieutenants reported there are constraints to the use and
functionality of the record management system that make managing Detective caseloads and their reporting
responsibilities more difficult. Most importantly for the Lieutenants, managing the Unit Detectives' caseload is
the point of greatest concern. As the Unit struggles to meet the demands placed upon it by the volume of cases
with the manpower on hand, the Lieutenant works to ensure the cases are investigated and the Detectives
investigating them do not burn out in the process. These Lieutenants and their Sergeants struggle with managing
the risk of increasing case volume. Second to case load management, is the desire to address the training needs
of newly assigned Detectives. Detectives that are new to SVU require both initial SVU training and, as an
aspirational goal, follow up training six months into the assignment in order to most effectively fulfill their duties.
Lieutenants are eager to send their team members to trainings when the opportunity presents itself. They keep an
eye out for funding sources and trainings useful to SVU. The challenges when these opportunities are identified
is whether the team can afford to send someone and whether the Detectives presented with the chance to go train
are willing to take advantage of the training at the risk of increasing their caseload and/or delaying ongoing
investigative efforts.

In response to questions about the monitoring of investigations from a compliance perspective, we learned the
limitations of the record management system are simply described as a lack of a true case management system.
References to the previous Audix system and its ability to generate case reminders, such as monthly SANE kit
listings advising personnel of the number of SANE kits a Unit has in the Property Room, exemplify the
Lieutenants challenges with the present record management system. They put significant energy in being able to
understand case numbers, to track case movement through the investigative process, and to track forensic
evidence, such as the SANE kits, to ensure timely submission for lab testing. They are successful in these efforts
but likely could benefit significantly from greater system functionality as well as administrative support,
particularly with analytics. The September 23, 2017, assessment of SVU made a related observation. The
assessment noted that a monthly query from the File On Q system used to determine which SANE kits had not
been sent to the lab for processing by the handling detective, and some type of software "glitch" had caused the
system's monthly reporting to cease. Moreover, the assessment stated that a "glitch" had been "fixed" and
Supervisors will be notified of the system's resumed functionality. By all accounts, every member of SVU works
as best they can with whatever resources they have. The greatest challenges seem to rest with case management
resources and the reality that, as the Lieutenants add to their teams' workloads, productivity slows, if they cannot
provide tools to efficiently manage that workload.

H. Unit Supervisor (Sergeants)

The Sergeants oversee, guide, and direct the Detective Investigators, Patrol Officers and Civilian Staff (which
also includes volunteers) that serve in the Unit. It is the Sergeants' primary duty to monitor all SVU criminal
investigations. In doing so, the Sergeants are also responsible for identifying training needs and monitoring work
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product and performance. Administratively, the Sergeants are responsible for the weekly and monthly collection
and analysis of Unit crime data relevant to the Unit's activities as may be requested by the Chain of Command.

The in-person interviews with Sergeants provided a more in-depth perspective of the Sergeant's duties and
responsibilities. To ensure adequate monitoring of SVU case investigations, Sergeants ensure communications
between the Unit and the other Units and teams that intersect SVU's specialized work. The Sergeants establish
and maintain communications with Night Criminal Investigation Detail (CID), Traffic Investigation Detail (TID)
and the teams that are essential to SVU who fill a gap between SVU shifts and/or handle cases throughout the
night. This helps better ensure that as case investigations come to SVU, the handoff is as seamless as possible.

In an effort to improve the quality and efficiency of SVU criminal investigations, the Sergeants work closely with
the Crisis Response Team (CRT), meeting monthly and provide training to further enable CRT to identify,
recognize, and handle family violence cases in the field. In working with CRT, which consists of locations at
the six substations, the Sergeants are mindful that each substation reflects the culture of the community it serves,
and, consequently, the nature of identifying and handling of family violence cases varies from location to location.
Sergeants, often the face of the Unit, work with SVU partners such as the Rape Crisis Center and Childsafe, and
participate in outreach events and activities. They are more than simply the faces of SAPD. The Sergeants work
with these community partners as they do with the F.A.C.T. volunteers educating and training, increasing their
partners' and the community's understanding of family violence and understanding the nature of sex crimes.
These efforts are in addition to attending to the duties listed in their job descriptions as presently stated.

In the execution of their duties, Sergeants work together while overseeing more directly their individual teams.
Four Sergeants collectively oversee approximately 53 Sworn Officers, 3 Patrol Officers, 14 Civilian Staff, and
approximately 85-100 volunteers. Sergeants have the responsibility of maintaining the cohesion, efficiency and
proficiency of the Unit. At the heart of this, is managing Detectives' caseloads. The Detectives report monthly
to the Sergeant, advising of the active cases on their desks. The Sergeant works from this list and from the
Sergeant's list of assigned cases, to track and monitor the cases that have been assigned. The record management
system does not have a case management component that facilitates Sergeants determining what cases have come
into the Department that are to be handled by SVU. These incoming cases are identified by using multiple cross
searches to "mine" out all cases SVU is to handle by both the Sergeants and the support staff.

Through the interviews it became apparent how time consuming this task can be. Making the best of the resources
available, SVU has developed the best alternative it can. Through the efforts of the Sergeants, an excel program
was developed that calculates the most equitable case distribution management system to date. The program is
based upon actual Detective hours worked, using the previous week's data, to project the next week's assignment
and taking into consideration additional factors such as scheduled time off. The program does not work alone.
Case management in assigning cases also requires the Sergeants' understanding of their team's needs, balancing
hot cases, special assignments, major cases like serial rapists, for example, and interpersonal dynamics within the
Sergeant's purview. The result, generally, is a targeted average caseload assignment of: 6-8 cases per week for
crimes involving a child; 11-12 cases per week for combined adult and child victim crimes; 18-20 cases per week
for Family Violence cases and 12-16 cases per week for Sex Crimes. The Detective active case lists provided
during the December 20, 2017, interviews averaged 20 cases per Detective, regardless of the nature of the case.
The Lieutenants and Sergeants work diligently and seemingly ceaselessly to implement highly customized
business models and frameworks in order to identify and address gaps, weaknesses and challenges in the record
management system.

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Another significant responsibility of the Sergeants is to evaluate the performance of each member of the Unit
team. Performance evaluations are conducted annually and include a planning phase for career development. It
is noteworthy that while these performance evaluations may incorporate a personal improvement plan,
performance assessments are not tied to pay. Our review does not speak to the validity or effectiveness of the
evaluation system. We leave that for the SAPD and City leadership. In working with and evaluating Detectives,
the Sergeants become aware of the training needs of their team. In addition to formal training settings, there is
the opportunity to lead by example. They lead as do other members of the Unit. Detectives come to SVU with
the training they received prior to arriving in the Unit. New Detectives to SVU receive internal Unit training and
the standard SAFVIC training, a three day course.
Experience has shown that the real questions and challenges to working SVU cases arise after a Detective has
been with the unit a while and is trying to manage a growing and dynamic caseload. Throughout the Unit, in all
sworn positions, there is a desire to learn more. The team helps one another when a Detective has questions or
reaches an impasse to site two examples. One aspect of the SVU Detective learning curve is that many of the
tactics and approaches that worked in other units or field areas do not necessarily translate as effectively into this
Unit. Understanding the sensitivity of the victim and the victimology of the family violence and sexual Violence
and abuse are essential to case investigation success. When victims and suspects live in the same household or a
part of a larger family unit, things get complicated. These cases are unique and family dynamics can make these
cases very complex to solve. The way information is gathered is different. Victims of ongoing or continuous
abuse seek help in a different manner and they often, especially the child victims, tell their story very differently
from other crimes. Detectives learn to work with case workers and healthcare providers in addition to learning
how to talk to children. Put simply it is the intimate nature of the crime.
The Unit has developed internal training tools for its Detectives and administrative staff. Currently, there is a
training compilation in electronic form, which is under consideration, for all new detectives, which includes forms
and other frequently used resources to streamline case investigation. The Unit has also developed trainings used
throughout SAPD, by SVU partners, and participants in the SVU hosted Biannual Crimes Against Children
Conference. SVU could still stand to benefit from additional training, acting only as the trainees. The most
effective premise under which SVU operates is this, "start by believing" the victim while also being mindful of
what is at stake for the suspect if untrue. The other noteworthy statement about investigations we gathered from
our interviews is that Detectives need to be cautious and conscientious against judgment and doubt. It is not for
the Detective to adjudicate the matter but rather to gather the facts so that the matter can be adjudicated.

There are important observations Tatum Law made during this phase of the review. (I) There is seemingly a
small number of Sergeants supervising a large number of personnel for a Unit that handles such a delicate and
specialized set of victims. (2) The individual Detective caseload seems high and the Department may wish to
assess the individual caseload size to similarly situated Departments and national standards. (3) The work of
CRT and SVU is intertwined and there may be ways for these teams to work more effectively, particularly in light
of the incredible volume of misdemeanor offenses. (4) The Sergeants are passionate about their work, care deeply
about the people that serve with them, and, though sex crimes appear to be trending upward bringing increased
scrutiny to their work, they, along with the Detectives, remain committed to quality investigations and "catching
the bad guys".
I. Unit Investigator (Detectives)

The Detectives are the trained investigators. Their primary responsibility is to investigate cases as assigned,
determining whether a crime has been committed by the accused, based upon the evidence and facts presented.
They respond to crime scenes and coordinate with other Units and outside law enforcement agencies as necessary
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and appropriate. Detectives work individually and as a team, investigating cases, obtaining statements, and
performing any other function furthering an investigation.

In the course of fulfilling their investigative duties, Detectives report daily to Roll Call where they receive
briefings and updates from the Sergeants and Lieutenants. They pick up newly assigned cases and continue to
investigate the active cases assigned to them. In addition to the individually assigned cases, Detectives rotate
additional duties to include, phone duty, handling walk-in complaints, handling escalated calls from
administrative staff, and fielding calls from and assisting officers in the field. The Detectives' daily routine
consists of regular interruptions. As hot cases come into the Unit, special assignments are issued and as other
administrative duties arise, Detectives balance their growing caseloads as best they can, ensuring there is always
forward movement toward case closure. In developing cases, Detectives use the tools provided by SAPD, the
records management system, the physical case file and the department PC. In her meetings with Detectives, Lisa
Tatum learned that the Detectives use these tools, along with other available resources, to investigate and manage
their cases in their own working styles. Detectives consistently rely upon these three mediums. In our
observations, this is a well working process, particularly because it allows each Detective to work the way he or
she works best. Too much rigidity in working up these individual investigations may actually hamper a method
that has proven to be very successful for the Detective assigned.

The Detectives use the three mediums to complement one another and accomplish the work that needs to be
performed. The record management system has limitations for some Detectives. For example, the Activity Log
module has space limitations. If a Detective wishes to enter more lengthy data, the Detective must elect to use
either the Narrative module or the Interview module which permits larger entries. During the interview process,
Detectives learned from one another the different uses and capacities of the record management system. It turns
out that very few Detectives know how to turn off the "All Caps" function, when producing a record management
generated Prosecution Guide. Even fewer know how to manage the timetable of the Activity Log module which
automatically generates in the Prosecution Guide, without using chronological order, fotcing the reader to jump
around and find the chronology himself. Still other Detectives feel the use of the record management system is
too time consuming with its limitations, and they document their activity in more of a journal style using a Word
document, avoiding limitations and allowing them to maintain all of the information in one place as the
investigation develops. The Detectives also reported they could work more efficiently if the record management
system could interface with other agencies like Bexar County. An interface by their account would enable them
to work more smoothly through the course of their investigations instead of logging into several different
databases to work up their cases. During the interviews, Detectives continued to cross-train and collaborate just
as they do while attending to their individual responsibilities.

There are a few other challenges the Detectives experience working with the record management system.
Sometimes files cannot be matched up with Pseudonym Forms, and they have a difficult time finding the case
assigned. It is not unusual to discover duplicate filings of a criminal investigation case. It was explained that
sometimes this can occur when an End User enters additional names into a case in such a way that the record
management system generates a new case management number for the same assignment number.

The duration of the investigative process has increased over the years as it should, recognizing that often much
more information is available now than before. Advances in technology mean that Detectives now are assessing
more potentially relevant information. They are reviewing footage from mobile phones, surveillance cameras to
include doorbell cameras, COBAN (on board cameras) and body cameras. An average felony case may have 15-
17 videos to review just from the responding officers. And, with the greater severity of the crime, comes an

16
increase in the amount of footage to be reviewed. The more officers that respond translates into a higher number
of video feeds to be reviewed in the course of the investigation. In addition, a growing number of the sexual
assault and human trafficking cases involve social media aspects. In discussions with Detectives, Sergeants and
Lieutenants, there has not been a recent assessment of the SVU investigative process to determine what, if
anything, needs to change in light of what an investigation entails today, whether the change is in resources,
staffing or training. Though the outside world may perceive a Detective's time to be unlimited, there is only so
much time in a workday that can be poured into case investigation before tripping into time constraints. The
Detectives and their leadership rely upon Measurable Solvability to manage caseloads and help determine
when it is time to make a decision on a case. For the sworn officers involved, the work is never over. The only
time that their work ends is when the Detective leaves the Unit.

Though the investigative process, through case file review, when it comes to handling SANE kits and other
forensic evidence, was initially a bit difficult to grasp for Tatum Law, the Detectives handling of all forensic
evidence does not raise a concern. The challenge for the Review Team and this office was focused upon what
happened during the case investigation after the evidence was sent to the Crime Lab for testing.

J. Civilian and Administrative Staff

Collectively, the Civilian Administrative Staff is comprised of fourteen internal civilian employees who support
the Detectives. Handling of the phones, file creation, file maintenance, inventory and supplies, and mail, are
part of their individual and collective duties under the direct supervision of the Community Services Supervisor,
a civilian. Another facet of their job responsibilities includes Victim Assistance. Duties and responsibilities are
specific to the individual staff titles.

K. Community Supervisor - Civilian


The Community Supervisor oversees the civilian side of the SVU under the direction and guidance of the
Sergeants and the Lieutenant. The Community Supervisor oversees the civilian staff which includes the
administrative staff as well as the specialists and therapists located at headquarters, the Family Justice Center
and Municipal Court. It is the Community Supervisor's responsibility to coordinate the F.A.C.T. Volunteer
Program and the work with the Volunteer in Policing (VIP) program staff. This role is also tasked with providing
training, maintaining relationships with community groups addressing domestic violence, and representing
SAPD at events and meetings as assigned by the Chain of Command.

L. Unit Secretary — Administrative Assistant II (Administrative Assistant II)


The Administrative Assistant II provides clerical support for the Unit to include compiling statistical information
for weekly, monthly and quarterly reports, assisting outside agencies with statistical information, and
maintaining the filing system, logs, and pay sheets, as well as performing computer research and data entry as
required. As part of those duties and responsibilities, this role maintains all documentation related to personnel
assignments, attendance and pay sheets. It is also part of the charge to prepare monthly phone duty schedules
for the Detectives, manage inventory of office supplies and equipment as well as the archiving and destruction
of files.

M. Unit Secretary — Administrative Associate (Administrative Associate)


The Administrative Associate also performs clerical support for the Unit to include answering the telephones,
maintaining the filing system, handling walk-in inquiries, controlling waiting area activity, typing, computer
research and data entry as required. This role includes finalizing and duplicating case files to be forwarded and

17
filed with the District Attorney's Office. The Administrative Associate also processes Open Records Requests.
Most impactful to the Unit Detectives are: (1) preparing case files for 2089s, (2) checking Pseudonym Forms,
(3) downloading 911 audio recordings, (4) tracking SANE exam reports, (5) maintaining the file center, and (6)
handling incoming and outgoing mail.
N. Administrative — Front Desk Team (Front Desk Team)

The position of those who work the Front Desk is not included in the SVU Standard Operating Procedures. The
role is significant to the day-to-day operations of the Unit and consideration should be given to formalizing the
structure of this role within SVU. This team fields the incoming calls from victims, relatives of suspects,
witnesses, and other individuals as well as from CPS and Childsafe. They, too, play a large part in the creation
of misdemeanor case files as do the heavily utilized light duty officers who often help the Unit, attending to
misdemeanor case investigations.
Collectively, as was learned during the interviews, the civilian support is integral to the function of the SVU,
allowing the Detectives to focus more heavily on their investigative responsibility, as they balance all that is
demanded of them. The civilian support is the frontline of information share. They receive, retrieve and maintain
the reports and records, and answer the incoming calls. They prepare and log files and compile data. The front
desk team also serves as the hospitality for walk-in guests. The administrative staff is interdependent, largely
based upon tenure in the unit. Newer team members are introduced to greater responsibility and more cross-
training in an effort to better provide coverage when someone is out, on leave, or when there is a departure from
the Unit. This makes for a more proficient process workflow. The Detectives are not only supported but also
serve as a resource to this team, if a matter exceeds the scope of the civilian staff's range of authority or
experience.

With the objective of supporting the Detectives, this staff team reported spending a significant amount of
personnel hours "mining" for the kind of cases SVU handles. In addition to the cases housed in the record
management system, CRT often walks cases over to SVU. Cases also come in from other jurisdictions as they
are reported and investigated by other law enforcement agencies. Staff members must search CRT, PMNI, IXC
and sometimes conduct other searches to identify SVU cases, in an effort to ensure every file the unit is supposed
to handle gets assigned to a SVU Detective. This task is performed two to three times a week, each time taking
two to three hours by most accounts. This has been discussed above but warrants noting here, because this task
of combing through the record management system involves the Sergeants, the Detectives and the support team.
If a streamlining opportunity can be discovered, it is encouraged in order to free up time and redirect it to better
support the Detectives' case investigations. The Unit does a remarkable job, thanks to the Unit's leadership,
having streamlined the misdemeanor process from case creation to case closures, to include the manner of case
delivery of filed charges to the District Attorney's Office.
One item of note, regarding file creation and management, is the fact that misdemeanor files are not created
without a completed 2089 Form. This is a partial explanation as to why some 3,200 misdemeanor cases are not
tethered to a physical file. No file may have been created if the 2089 Form was not completed. We also learned
that there may be other reasons why a misdemeanor file may not be created. Other reasons are that cases are
created in error, and that cases are entered multiple times creating duplicate filings. Though we did not clearly
understand the various circumstances for which a physical file is not created, it appears that some of the reasons
are also part of the streamlining efforts of the Lieutenants and Sergeants to effectively use the personnel hours
of the Unit productively in light of the misdemeanor volume balanced against other Unit demands.
Save the exceptions discussed above, a physical file is created for all known cases that are assigned to the Unit.
In 2016, the Unit further restricted access to files and transitioned from an alphabetical system to a numeric
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system using the SAPD assignment number. The Unit uses the SAPD assignment number along with the victim's
name, date of birth, and the offense to readily identify a particular case. The number of persons handling the
files, as they come into and go out of the file center, has significantly reduced the frequency of misfiling.
Based upon the interviews, there is a great deal of institutional knowledge that is possessed by only a few
members of the civilian staff team. One of those individuals retired during the course our investigation, leaving
the Unit with two individuals whose knowledge may be vital to the smooth operation of SVU support. The
cross-training, that was reported, will further ensure that the Sergeants and Detectives get the support they so
greatly need with consistency even as individuals transfer in and out of the Unit.

0. Proposed Revisions and Recommendations to the SVU Standard Operating Procedures

The SVU Standard Operating Procedures addressing the position of Detective Investigator and criminal
investigations are concrete, and from our review and that of the Review Team, are effective. The Unit specific
modifications reported to have been made, dating back to 2012 through our review, are compliant with the current
SOPs and appropriate for the Unit's needs, increasing Unit effectiveness and efficiency. The current SOPs
provide a definitive pathway, and the closed case files review and active case file review as well as the interviews
conducted, demonstrate they are being followed.

The SVU SOPs addressing the duties and responsibilities of the Lieutenants, Sergeants and Civilian staff appear
to be the most in need of review and possible updating. There were also accounts from support staff that some
reports are generated but never reviewed, used, or relied upon, raising the question whether the reports are
necessary and/or appropriate. From an outsider's perspective, it may be useful to revisit the reporting
requirements (1) to ensure the reports being generated are useful or required for regulatory purposes and (2) to
ensure that the useful and/or necessary reports are not being duplicated unnecessarily.

The investigative process has changed to meet the changes in available information, from Polygraphs to social
media and surveillance, to include COBAN, body cameras, mobile devices and doorbell cameras, and the SOPs
should reflect those changes. Both the investigative process and the file management policies and procedures
should also consider including those items unique to SVU, forensic interviews, CPS investigations, and forensic
evidence lab results.

It is our understanding that the Department conducted a review of the SVU Standard Operating Procedures in the
fall of 2017. There were six recommendations made by the Department's review group which are under
consideration.

1. A recommendation has been made to revise the review and approval process by the Unit Supervisor
in order to close cases. This change requires that all felony and misdemeanor cases be reviewed and
approved by the Sergeant. Misdemeanor cases may now only be closed without a Unit Supervisor's
approval when authorized by the Unit Director. Tatum Law has observed this change in operation. We
noted there may be a challenge with this change specific to the authorization from the Unit Director. This
change seems to necessitate some additional action to ensure that the Unit Supervisor's monthly reports
are accurate, reflecting all cases in the Sergeant's active cases audit, and allow for an accurate trail for
audit or review.
2. A recommendation has been made to require an audit of each Detective by their Unit Supervisor,
for the total number of active cases, to ensure proper caseload and disposition of cases. This is encouraged
by this office. An accurate monitoring of Detective caseload is not only helpful to the Unit Supervisor but
also for the Unit Director and Chain of Command. Such audit reporting would enable assistance to the
Unit by Chain of Command, to further ensure that caseloads are and become more manageable,
reducing and
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monitoring the risk exposure for the Unit and SAPD. Such support would be well received and greatly
appreciated based upon our investigation.
3. A recommendation was made to revise the documentation and handling of evidence. Documentation and
notification to the Property Room would be required when no testing is required in an investigation.
Additionally, notification will come from DPS on all cases with CODIS hits to the Unit email system and
to the Sex Crimes Detail Sergeants, and the Property Room will send a monthly audit of SANE kits that
have not been sent to the Crime Lab within the 30 day requirement, as outlined in Government Code
420.042, to the Unit email system and the Unit Director. Recognizing this is a time consuming task, SAPD
may wish to consider whether it would be more prudent to send an audit every 20 days, instead of every 30
days, giving the Unit and investigation an opportunity to comply with the Government Code rather than a
notification after the lapse of time.
4. A recommendation was made to expand the policy addressing the handling of U-Visas. Tatum Law
did not review operations specific to the administration of U-Visas.
5. A recommendation was made to expanding the policy for handling Human Trafficking cases. Human
Trafficking is a unique offense that often takes a significant amount of time to investigate and frequently
requires immediate movement on hot leads in order to be successful. Additional policies are warranted in
light of the Human Trafficking landscape. Similarly, the Department may wish to consider assessing the
need for additional resources toward these investigations.
6. A recommendation was made to add another Sergeant to the Unit. This addition, based upon our review,
would be more than appropriate and a welcome start to alleviating what appears to be a significantly
overtaxed Unit. It would allow for there to be more than one Sergeant on duty over the weekend and permit
a healthier distribution of the Sergeant workflow, a start.
Tatum Law noted one other opportunity for consideration and review in updating the SVU Standard Operating
Procedures. Reviewing the daily functions of the civilian support team, it is unclear whether certain compliance
controls are in place related to personnel files, the recording of approval of leave and payroll processing. It may
be that HIPAA compliance and other confidentiality concerns are addressed elsewhere along with other financial
controls such as filtering certain requisite approvals through an administrative partner for approval and
processing.. If these controls are not in place, SAPD may wish to consider implementing them.

Determinations and Recommendations


With the review of 10,522 closed SVU felony files, 1,585 closed SVU misdemeanor files, and 760 active SVU
files (a total of 12,867 cases) dating back to October 1, 2014, Tatum Law met with all of the Detectives assigned
to SVU and reviewed the SVU Standard Operating Procedures now in effect, and those currently proposed. We
met with individuals referred to our office who raised concerns about case handling and Unit operations. In
addition, interviews were conducted with key personnel, current and former, of the Special Victims Unit to better
understand what the work of this Unit entails, what has been working well for the Unit, and what challenges this
Unit faces from the Unit's perspective. Our work has been intense and our work has been diligent. Our
investigation has made several determinations in light of all that we have observed.
There are some process issues associated with the workflow of the case investigations of the Special Victims
Unit. All members of the Unit experience some type of drag in their workflow, working with a record
management system that does not more readily support the duties they are assigned. For the Lieutenants and
Sergeants, they are hampered in their ability to identify all of the cases the Unit is assigned to handle, monitor
Unit performance, oversee case investigations and manage Detective caseloads. For the Detectives, they are
slowed down by occasional challenges locating assigned cases in the record management system and by the fact
that the system does not interface with other agency programs used regularly to investigate cases. They have

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created a methodology, using three different mediums, that enables each Detective to investigate their cases. An
Operational Assessment of the Special Victims Unit was conducted in September of 2017. That assessment
reviewed current investigatory and supervisory practices, policies and procedures with the purpose of identifying
deficiencies in the current structure. The assessment identified the inefficiency of the record management system
stating that when a companion software package is brought online, productivity tracking and auditing tools will
improve. It appears to be a known fact that the current record management system is in real need of improvement
in order to improve workflow. There is a need for a true case management system that (1) facilitates the criminal
investigation workflow process as well as the related administrative reporting responsibilities, (2) enables sworn
and civilian personnel to work more efficiently and effectively and (3) reduces or eliminates some systemic
process issues as identified within this document.

The SVU Standard Operating Procedures need to be updated and expanded to provide a uniform approach to the
entire criminal investigation process all the way through to case closure. The Review Team was challenged, not
unlike any supervisor, fellow Detective or support staff member, when reviewing a case file to understand the
basis on which decisions were made whether the purpose is to review and monitor a case, to provide coverage or
to field a phone call. This was particularly troublesome for the Review Team when reviewing closed cases in
which forensic evidence was involved. It was challenging to follow case activity after lab testing was requested,
the case was closed "Pending Further Investigation", and when there were lab results in the physical file with no
indication of whether the case was reopened to assess results or whether the lab results were even seen by the
Detective. Expanding the SOPs to provide guidance to the Detectives on how to note their case file to better
enable someone to come behind them and review the case, will cause the next reviewer to be less likely to
deem a case lacking Process Fulfillment and will be more readily able to affirm a case was appropriately
handled.

Standard Operating Procedures should be updated to reflect current day-to-day functions, duties and
responsibilities of personnel, with additional consideration to the associated reporting responsibilities. As
discussed above, there are a number of duties and responsibilities that are not listed in the job descriptions and
are attended to frequently, if not daily. Some updates may not be necessary, to include tasks performed by
personnel that will be eliminated by the implementation of a true case management system.

There is a seemingly small number of Lieutenants and Sergeants supervising a large number of personnel for a
Unit that handles more complex investigations with a delicate and specialized set of victims. With nearly two
hundred people under the supervision of one Unit Director and four Unit Supervisors, the span of control seems
low, which increases the risk of something going wrong, of missing something that would otherwise be seen and
corrected or addressed, mismanagement, and mishandling. The ratio alone warrants review and consideration.
Here, too, the September 23, 2017, SVU assessment recognized the span of control in the Unit is unacceptably
low according to a 2010 study. The assessment noted SVU's ratio to be I supervisor to 11.25 Detectives. This
ratio was identified to be greater than any other unit in SAPD. Considering the nature of these more intimate
crimes and the uniqueness of the victims in these types of offenses, this Unit's specialized training alone may be
insufficient to manage and keep such risks as low as possible.

Similarly, there is risk involved in the size of Detective caseloads. Measurable Solvability may not be an option
with crimes involving children to the degree that it may be acceptable for another criminal offense. What this
office has observed is that no member of SVU, wants to see a case that should have been prosecuted not make its
way to the District Attorney's Office. The significant changes in technology are causing investigations to take
longer to complete. And, for these Detectives, these cases require the time that it takes to learn all the information
available to determine whether a case satisfies the elements of an offense, and warrants filing with the District
Attorney's Office. Their reality is that more times than they would like, there is not enough time to do more. The
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Detectives are balancing the demands of all of the victims and their other duties as best they can, prioritizing as
they must. For the Lieutenants and Sergeants, this means they are monitoring time management, work product
and work performance with a watchful eye to ensure their team members do not become too fatigued or burn out.
One solution to case management that the SVU has recognized is how helpful and often necessary it is to provide
additional SVU training to Detectives who are about six months into their assignment. By all accounts, this is
when managing the caseload becomes very challenging and the Detectives begin to show signs of stress or
distress. Facilitating an opportunity for relatively new Detectives to receive additional training, without the
Detective or the Unit suffering from the temporarily reduced manpower hours, may go a long way in alleviating
the time management and case management challenges that develop. It makes sense that new Detectives would
have more questions after serving in the Unit a while. Some questions you do not even know to ask, until you
learn what you do not know.
The work of the support staff is significant and they seem to do a fine job at the execution of their duties. We
learned the Unit has begun cross training the front desk team allowing them to support the Administrative
Associate, as we understand the current job descriptions. More extensive cross training will ensure continuous
coverage of tasks and continuous support for the Sworn Officer team, allowing for coverage during illness,
vacations and transfers. This cross training and any relief that comes with a case management system would likely
increase the personnel hours the support staff have available to even better support the Unit.

Our office was charged with determining whether or not there are any systemic problems within the SVU. We
defined a systemic problem to be a problem that is due to issues inherent in the overall system, rather than due to
a specific, individual, isolated factor. This definition, for us, does not mean that there is inherently some negative
impact that necessarily results from a systemic problem being identified. eft is our opinion that there are some
problems within the operation of ,SiiigaiiialINIMIIIINVIDat these problems are otoreA•curately
workflow.pkoc_css_issy And, while some of these process issues are being addressed, all of these
process challenges can be a ressed and refined to further reduce the possibility of Detective misconduct going
undetected and enhance case management and case investigation productivity. It is also our opinion, upon
completion of this investigation that the mishandling of the cases by Detective Kenneth Valdez, the mishandling
of cases generally, is specific to individual behavior and is not attributable to the Special Victims Unit or the
Unit's operations or general processes as a whole.

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CITY OF SAN ANTONIO
Office of the Chief of Police
INTERDEPARTMENTAL CORRESPONDENCE

TO: Sheryl Sculley, City Manager

THRU: Erik Walsh, Deputy City Manag k


FROM: W i l l i a m P. M c M a n u s , C h i e f o f P o l i c e

COPIES: Mayor & City Council q/Z /41

SUBJECT: SVU Independent Assessment

DATE: April 25, 2018

At your request, in November 2017, LM Tatum, PLLC, initiated an independent review of the Special
Victims Unit (S'VU) in coordination with the City Attorney's Office. The review consisted of the
following:
· Determine if the mishandling of cases was isolated to one individual
· Identify process improvements to include SOP reviews, technology review, caseload
and span of control analysis
· Determine if any operational or process issues were present within the SVU
· Conduct an independent review of SVU case files for the period of 2014-present

It is important to note that the final report confirms that the mishandling of cases was limited to Officer
Valdez. However, the report does identify opportunities to strengthen the investigative process related to
technology, span of control and caseload. The following sections outline the findings and actions taken
by the SAPD to address these findings.

SOP Review

Findings
The report recommends SOP revisions to strengthen supervisory oversight and achieve investigative
process improvements. It is acknowledged within the report that several SOPs were proactively modified
by the Department to address identified issues.

Actions
Upon learning of the mishandling of SVU cases, I immediately formed an internal review committee
comprised of sworn subject matter experts to review all SOPs and to identify all opportunities to enhance
the Department's investigative and supervisory processes. As a result of this effort, SOP improvements
were created to achieve the following:

· Enhance supervisory review of case assignments


· Establish case audit schedule
· Establish communication guidelines with crime victims

In addition, I also created a community group to gather input and feedback with respect to the SOP
enhancements. This group included external stakeholders from advocacy agencies, local universities and
neighborhood organizations.
The SAPD presented the SOP improvements to the Public Safety Committee on January 23, 2018 in
coordination with Mr. Bob Stewart who was selected by the Department to complete a review of all
investigative SOPs. Mr. Stewart confirmed that all SOP revisions identified and implemented by the
SAPD achieved the objective of establishing a more defined supervisory process to improve case
management and customer service.
Technology
Findings
The lack of a dedicated case management system limits the ability of staff to efficiently and accurately
document and access critical information related to individual cases.
Actions
The SAPD, in coordination with 1TSD, is in the process of acquiring a new Case Management and
Records Management System to provide the Department with a comprehensive data management tool
that will offer more robust and detailed reporting features to increase the validity and accuracy of
reporting.
Column Case Management software has been installed, integration to other key systems has been
developed, and code deployed in a test environment. The Hexagon Records Management software has
also been upgraded. Functional user testing of the system is currently underway with a planned June
2018completion.

Upon system test completion, officers will begin training on the new case management system and
changes to the existing records management system. It is anticipated that training on both systems will be
complete by December 2018.
Concurrently, the team has also begun industry research for a new public safety records management
system of the future.

Span of Control

Findings
Although there is no formal national guideline with respect to span of control, it is generally accepted that
the preferred supervisor to detective ration is 9:1. Currently, within SVU, there are approximately 11
detectives per Sergeant. Decreasing span of control will allow for greater oversight of case progress and
interaction with detectives to enhance accountability.
Actions
The SAPD has requested funding for two additional sergeant positions for the SVU as part of the FY

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2018 Mid-Year Budget Improvement. The addition of two supervisory positions will result in a span of
control consistent with the recommended ratio with approximately 8 detectives per Sergeant.

Windings
A review of detective caseload confirmed that detectives on average handle 20 active cases. In light of
the nature of the crimes investigated by the SVU, efforts should be made to decrease individual detective
caseload to conform to national standards.
Actions
There are currently 19 patrol officers assigned to the Crisis Response Team (CRT) through the SAFFE
Units in each service area. These officers perform a variety of Family Violence services to
include
writing the original offense report, taking photographs of injuries, obtaining victim statements on SAPD
form 2089, and in certain cases obtaining arrest warrants, However, their classification as patrol officers
precludes them from filing the Charge and Disposition (C&D) necessary to file the complete
misdemeanor case with the District Attorney's Office.

To increase efficiency and investigative capacity, moving forward the Department will staff CRT with
detectives which will allow personnel within each respective service area to complete entire case packet
at the substation closest to the victim's home. As a result, misdemeanor caseload will be assigned to 19
decentralized detectives. This will allow the four SVU detectives currently handling misdemeanor cases
to focus exclusively on the felony caseload which will reduce the monthly SVU detective felony caseload.
Should you have any questions or need additional information please contact me at 210-207-7360,