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Attend the annual Goshen Memorial Day Parade

Monday, May 20, 2024

The Goshen VFW (Veterans of Foreign Wars), American Legion, and DAV (Disabled American Veterans) are once again hosting the Annual Memorial Day Parade on Monday, May 27, 2024. The event will start with a brief service at Powerhouse Park at 8:45 a.m. From there, another service will be at the Elkhart... more

Work on Wilden Avenue to happen Tuesday, May 21

Monday, May 20, 2024

The approaches to Wilden Avenue on 1st, 2nd, and 3rd streets to Wilden Avenue will be closed tomorrow, Tuesday, May 21 as Reith-Riley Construction Co. finishes up final construction items on Wilden Avenue. Work should only last one day, and Wilden Avenue will continue to remain open. more

Parks and Recreation Department kicks off summer of events with free movie in the park

Thursday, May 16, 2024

The City of Goshen Parks and Recreation Department will kick off a summer full of family-fun events and programming with a free showing of The Little Mermaid (2023) at Shanklin Park on Friday, May 24, 2024, at 7 p.m. Bring blankets and lawn chairs to enjoy a movie on a beautiful summer evening.... more

Upcoming Events All »

Board of Works

Thursday, May 23, 2024, 4:00pm

To join the webinar please copy and paste this link on your browser:

Free Outdoor Movies: The Little Mermaid

Friday, May 24, 2024, 7:00pm

Free outdoor movie at Shanklin Park

Memorial Day -- City Offices Closed

Monday, May 27, 2024

Officer Complaints and Internal Investigations

Officer Complaints and Internal Investigations

The Goshen Police Department knows the importance of community relations between citizens and the police who serve the community, and has hired a special civilian police officer who is assigned to Community Relations and Investigations. Part of this officer’s job is to take citizen complaints in regards to the interaction with the police. This special police officer position is filled by a retired police officer who has vast experience in investigations and public relations. 
The administration takes every complaint with concern for the professionalism in which they strive to seek and protect. Police are governed to perform their duties by city policy, police department policies and directives from the chief, and then are required to follow the State of Indiana’s laws. Listed below you will find sections of Indiana law that deal with police discipline. The high standard of conduct is most important to the administration as they demand a high level of integrity, and moral standards, as well as a code of ethics.
INDIANA STATE LAWS are spelled out concerning the safety boards; and disciplinary procedures, for police officers, most listed below.

IC 36-8-3-4

Sec. 4. (a) This section also applies to all towns and townships that have full-time, paid police or fire departments. For purposes of this section, the appropriate appointing authority of a town or township is considered the safety board of a town or township. In a town with a board of metropolitan police commissioners, that board is considered the safety board of the town for police department purposes.

     (b) Except as provided in subsection (m), a member of the police or fire department holds office or grade until the member is dismissed or demoted by the safety board. Except as provided in subsection (n), a member may be disciplined by demotion, dismissal, reprimand, forfeiture, or suspension upon either:

(1) conviction in any court of any crime; or

(2) a finding and decision of the safety board that the member has been or is guilty of any one (1) or more of the following:

(A) Neglect of duty.

(B) A violation of rules.

(C) Neglect or disobedience of orders.

(D) Incapacity.

(E) Absence without leave.

(F) Immoral conduct.

(G) Conduct injurious to the public peace or welfare.

(H) Conduct unbecoming an officer.

(I) Another breach of discipline.

The safety board may not consider the political affiliation of the member in making a decision under this section. If a member is suspended or placed on administrative leave under this subsection, the member is entitled to the member's allowances for insurance benefits to which the member was entitled before being suspended or placed on administrative leave. In addition, the local unit may provide the member's allowances for any other fringe benefits to which the member was entitled before being suspended or placed on administrative leave.

 (c) Before a member of a police or fire department may be suspended in excess of five (5) days without pay, demoted, or dismissed, the safety board shall offer the member an opportunity for a hearing. If a member desires a hearing, the member must request the hearing not more than five (5) days after the notice of the suspension, demotion, or dismissal. Written notice shall be given either by service upon the member in person or by a copy left at the member's last and usual place of residence at least fourteen (14) days before the date set for the hearing. The hearing conducted under this subsection shall be held not more than thirty (30) days after the hearing is requested by the member, unless a later date is mutually agreed upon by the parties. The notice must state:

(1) the time and place of the hearing;

(2) the charges against the member;

(3) the specific conduct that comprises the charges;

(4) that the member is entitled to be represented by counsel;

(5) that the member is entitled to call and cross-examine witnesses;

(6) that the member is entitled to require the production of evidence; and

(7) that the member is entitled to have subpoenas issued, served, and executed in the county where the unit is located.

If the corporation counsel or city attorney is a member of the safety board of a city, the counsel or attorney may not participate as a safety board member in a disciplinary hearing concerning a member of either department. The safety board shall determine if a member of the police or fire department who is suspended in excess of five (5) days shall continue to receive the member's salary during the suspension.

     (d) Upon an investigation into the conduct of a member of the police or fire department, or upon the trial of a charge preferred against a member of either department, the safety board may compel the attendance of witnesses, examine them under oath, and require the production of books, papers, and other evidence at a meeting of the board. For this purpose, the board may issue subpoenas and have them served and executed in any part of the county where the unit is located. If a witness refuses to testify or to produce books or papers in the witness's possession or under the witness's control, IC 36-4-6-21 controls to the extent applicable. The proper court may compel compliance with the order by attachment, commitment, or other punishment.

     (e) The reasons for the suspension, demotion, or dismissal of a member of the police or fire department shall be entered as specific findings of fact upon the records of the safety board. A member who is suspended for a period exceeding five (5) days, demoted, or dismissed may appeal the decision to the circuit or superior court of the county in which the unit is located. However, a member may not appeal any other decision.

     (f) An appeal under subsection (e) must be taken by filing in court, within thirty (30) days after the date the decision is rendered, a verified complaint stating in concise manner the general nature of the charges against the member, the decision of the safety board, and a demand for the relief asserted by the member. A bond must also be filed that guarantees the appeal will be prosecuted to a final determination and that the plaintiff will pay all costs adjudged against the plaintiff. The bond must be approved as bonds for costs are approved in other cases. The unit must be named as the sole defendant, and the plaintiff shall have a summons issued as in other cases against the unit. Neither the safety board nor the members of it may be made parties defendant to the complaint, but all are bound by service upon the unit and the judgment rendered by the court.

     (g) In an appeal under subsection (e), no pleading is required by the unit to the complaint, but the allegations are considered denied. The unit may file a motion to dismiss the appeal for failure to perfect it within the time and in the manner required by this section. If more than one (1) person was included in the same charges and in the same decision of dismissal by the safety board, then one (1) or more of the persons may join as plaintiffs in the same complaint, but only the persons that appeal from the decision are affected by it. The decision of the safety board is final and conclusive upon all persons not appealing. The decision appealed from is not stayed or affected pending the final determination of the appeal, but remains in effect unless modified or reversed by the final judgment of the court.

     (h) A decision of the safety board is considered prima facie correct, and the burden of proof is on the party appealing. All appeals shall be tried by the court. The appeal shall be heard de novo only upon any new issues related to the charges upon which the decision of the safety board was made. The charges are considered to be denied by the accused person. Within ten (10) days after the service of summons the safety board shall file in court a complete transcript of all papers, entries, and other parts of the record relating to the particular case. Inspection of these documents by the person affected, or by the person's agent, must be permitted by the safety board before the appeal is filed, if requested. Each party may produce evidence relevant to the issues that it desires, and the court shall review the record and decision of the safety board upon appeal.

     (i) The court shall make specific findings and state the conclusions of law upon which its decision is made. If the court finds that the decision of the safety board appealed from should in all things be affirmed, its judgment should state that, and judgment for costs shall be rendered against the party appealing. If the court finds that the decision of the safety board appealed from should not be affirmed in all things, then the court shall make a general finding, setting out sufficient facts to show the nature of the proceeding and the court's decision on it. The court shall either:

(1) reverse the decision of the safety board; or

(2) order the decision of the safety board to be modified.

     (j) The final judgment of the court may be appealed by either party. Upon the final disposition of the appeal by the courts, the clerk shall certify and file a copy of the final judgment of the court to the safety board, which shall conform its decisions and records to the order and judgment of the court. If the decision is reversed or modified, then the safety board shall pay to the party entitled to it any salary or wages withheld from the party pending the appeal and to which the party is entitled under the judgment of the court.

     (k) Either party shall be allowed a change of venue from the court or a change of judge in the same manner as such changes are allowed in civil cases. The Indiana Rules of Trial Procedure govern in all matters of procedure upon the appeal that are not otherwise provided for by this section.

     (l) An appeal takes precedence over other pending litigation and shall be tried and determined by the court as soon as practical.

     (m) Except as provided in IC 36-5-2-13, the executive may reduce in grade any member of the police or fire department who holds an upper level policy making position. The reduction in grade may be made without adhering to the requirements of subsections (b) through (l). However, a member may not be reduced in grade to a rank below that which the member held before the member's appointment to the upper level policy making position.

     (n) If the member is subject to criminal charges, the board may place the member on administrative leave until the disposition of the criminal charges in the trial court. Any other action by the board is stayed until the disposition of the criminal charges in the trial court. An administrative leave under this subsection may be with or without pay, as determined by the board. If the member is placed on leave without pay, the board, in its discretion, may award back pay if the member is exonerated in the criminal matter.

Our Mission

The primary mission of the Goshen Police Department is to improve the quality of life in the City of Goshen. This goal will only be accomplished through the cooperation of the Police Department and the community it serves. By working together, we can maintain the peace, provide safety and security for our citizens, reduce the fear of crimes and solve problems. To be successful in our mission requires the commitment of the Administration, every employee of this Department and the citizens of our City, all working together to maintain the Goshen Police tradition as a trusted source of help.


Our Values


The Goshen Police Department recognizes that its members are its greatest asset, and our actions shall reflect this belief. The members will respect the citizens and recognize their ethnicity and diversity. We will respect each other as professionals and fellow human beings.


We believe in the principles stated in the Constitution. We recognize the authority of federal, state and local ordinances. Honesty and truth must be standards in all our interactions with the community and with our members.


We strive for personal and professional excellence, dedication to duty and delivery of quality service to the public. We are part of a team dedicated to the safety and protection of our community.Ouractions will reflect intelligence, sincere, efficient and courteous service.


All members of the Goshen Police Department shall conduct themselves, whether off duty or on duty, in accordance with the United States and Indiana Constitutions and all applicable law, ordinances, and rules enacted or established pursuant to legal authority.

Members shall familiarize themselves with policies and procedures and are responsible for compliance each.


This page serves as information to the public in regards to what happens when someone complains about a member of the Goshen Police Department

How to make a complaint against a member of the police department.

  1. The public can pick up an officer complaint form on station weekdays between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm.
  2. Can call the police department weekdays between 8:00 am and 5:00 pm.
  3. Can request to speak with supervisor at any time.
  4. Email the police department. (Email is only reviewed from 8:00 am to 5:00.)
  5. Click on link to make a complaint. Link to web form

When a complaint comes in to the police department, it goes to the Special Investigations and community relations officer, and is reviewed. Each complaint is reviewed and contact is made with the complainant, and then again if they wish to be notified with the outcome of the complaint.

All audio and video files are reviewed in attempt to verify the complaint. The officer reviewing the complaint will then decide as to the status of the complaint. Listed below indicates the outcome of the complaint:


  1. Exonerated. An Act occurred, but the actions were justified, legal and proper
  2. Not Sustained. Investigation produced insufficient facts to prove or disprove the allegations.
  3. Sustained. The allegation is supported by sufficient facts to indicate that the accused employee committed one or more of the alleged acts of employee misconduct.
  4. Policy Failure. The investigation determined a policy failure contributed to or caused the incident.
  5. Referred to outside agency review. Complaints in which a criminal act may have occurred, the department will have another outside agency conduct the investigation for review and follow up. This would include all officer involved shootings, or a case that might present a conflict of interest within the police department.   


Also described are the procedures used to review certain types of GPD employee conduct (such as response to resistance and emergency vehicle operations), which the department deems so important that we do not wait for a citizen or police employee to complain in order to investigate whether the rules of our organization were followed. A response to resistance board takes each of the above cases described above and officers will provide a response to resistance and emergency vehicle operations report, and reviews all the evidence and documentations available and looks for policy violations, and educational flaws of each incidents. If any of the reviews produces concerns, the case will be looked at further by special investigator and community affairs officer.   


Frequently asked questions:

  1. How do I know what happens after I complain? The complaint is looked at in detail and concern. The special police investigator or other administrator will make sure that all complaints are responded to and provide an answer or determination of the results of the complaint. Depending on the nature of the complaint, disciplinary actions can be taken by a member of the administration.
  2. How do I know I won’t be targeted by officers after I make a complaint? The Goshen Police Department and investigator will assure you that you will not be targeted for retaliation, and document any conduct by any of our members of the department by following up with complainant.
  3. If I am an illegal immigrant I’m afraid of being deported for making a complaint. The Goshen Police Department will not deport anyone who complains, because all immigrations laws are dealt with by federal agencies, and not the local police department.
  4. So, what happens to the officer if my complaint proves to be true and accurate? We may respond by retraining, reprimanding, suspending or recommending the termination of the employee, depending on the nature of the complaint. It is important to the administration that everyone that comes into contact with the police be treated fairly without fear of improper conduct, or retaliation.  


In policing, one of our greatest assets is trust between police and the public. Without sufficient trust, we will not get enough information from the public about crime problems and possible offenders. Without trust, we cannot build effective problem-solving partnerships with our community. Those partnerships are key to our properly serving and protecting the public. There are many things we do to try to earn and keep the trust of the increasingly diverse public we serve. One of these things is remaining open to hearing any and all complaints, no matter who files them and whether or not the complainant is identified. Another crucial asset in any organization is trust among the employees of all ranks. Absent sufficient trust, we would work ineffectively, inefficiently, and more dangerously than necessary.


Because our police department is committed to continuous improvement, we take all the feedback we get, including positive and negative reviews, as opportunities to learn how we do our jobs more effectively, efficiently, and legitimately.