Reported to Law Enforcement
An official action was taken by a School Resource Officer (SRO) or a local Law Enforcement Officer such as: a case number was assigned, a report was filed, a civil citation was issued, an affidavit was filed, an investigation was conducted and found to be an incident reportable to SESIR, or an arrest was made. The presence of, notification of, or consultation with a Law Enforcement Officer or SRO, is not sufficient for an incident to be coded as "Reported to Law Enforcement."
- An arrest.
- A civil citation (such as a juvenile citation).
- A police report was filed.
- An affidavit (sworn statement) was filed.
- Assignment of a case number by the law enforcement agency.
In 2010, the “Reported to Law Enforcement (PDF)” data element was updated to include a code for “consultation” with law enforcement. This is an optional local code that districts may use to identify incidents where law enforcement was involved, but where no official action was taken.
Our School Resource Officers are issuing “juvenile citations” in lieu of arrest in some cases. The student is diverted to teen court and if they comply with the terms then they have no arrest record. Does this type of action constitute “Reported to Law Enforcement (PDF)”? Is this an official action? It is technically not an arrest.
- Issuing juvenile citations does constitute Reporting to Law Enforcement in SESIR. Civil citations are just another method to divert a student from the juvenile justice system. The student must accept responsibility for his/her actions in order to receive a juvenile civil citation. The officer conducts a complete investigation and generates a police report in order to issue a civil citation.
Prior to the 2010-11 school year, most SESIR incidents were required to be “Reported to Law Enforcement (PDF)”. Now the SESIR guidelines require that those same incidents involve “consultation” with law enforcement. Which incidents will require an “official action” by law enforcement and which require “consultation”?
- Eighteen of the 23 SESIR incidents now require consultation with law enforcement. This change was made to better align SESIR requirements with changes to the Zero Tolerance statute. Most of these 18 incidents (particularly the Level I and II incidents) will generate an official action by law enforcement (arrest, case number, etc.) and therefore will result in a “Yes” response under the “Reported to Law Enforcement (PDF)” data element. Level I incidents are generally violent offenses (Arson without injury is an exception). In each case, the school will consult with law enforcement and the officer would make the determination whether an official report should be written, an arrest should be made, etc.
Per 1006.13, Florida Statutes, "Zero-tolerance policies do not require the reporting of petty acts of misconduct and misdemeanors to a law enforcement agency, including, but not limited to, disorderly conduct, disrupting a school function, simple assault or battery, affray, theft of less than $300, trespassing, and vandalism of less than $1,000." [1006.13(4)(c)]
Office of Safe Schools
325 West Gaines Street, Room 1302
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0400