HOUSE BILL No. 1071
DIGEST OF INTRODUCED BILL
Synopsis: Sheriff's suspensions. Reduces the maximum time that a
county police officer may be suspended without a hearing from 15 days
to five days. Specifies the use of calendar days.
Effective: July 1, 2003.
January 7, 2003, read first time and referred to Committee on Labor and Employment.
First Regular Session 113th General Assembly (2003)
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HOUSE BILL No. 1071
A BILL FOR AN ACT to amend the Indiana Code concerning local
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of Indiana:
SOURCE: IC 36-8-10-11; (03)IN1071.1.1. -->
IS AMENDED TO READ AS
FOLLOWS [EFFECTIVE JULY 1, 2003]: Sec. 11. (a) The sheriff may
dismiss, demote, or temporarily suspend a county police officer for
cause after preferring charges in writing and after a fair public hearing
before the board, which is reviewable in the circuit court. Written
notice of the charges and hearing must be delivered by certified mail
to the officer to be disciplined at least fourteen (14) calendar
before the date set for the hearing. The officer may be represented by
counsel. The board shall make specific findings of fact in writing to
support its decision.
(b) The sheriff may temporarily suspend an officer with or without
pay for a period not exceeding
fifteen (15) five (5) calendar
without a hearing before the board, after preferring charges of
misconduct in writing delivered to the officer.
(c) A county police officer may not be dismissed, demoted, or
temporarily suspended because of political affiliation nor after the
officer's probationary period, except as provided in this section. An
(1) be a candidate for elective office and serve in that office if
(2) be appointed to an office and serve in that office if appointed;
(3) except when in uniform or on duty, solicit votes or campaign
funds for the officer or others.
(d) The board has subpoena powers enforceable by the circuit court
for hearings under this section. An officer on probation may be
dismissed by the sheriff without a right to a hearing.
(e) An appeal under subsection (a) must be taken by filing in court,
within thirty (30) calendar days after the date the decision is rendered,
a verified complaint stating in a concise manner the general nature of
the charges against the officer, the decision of the board, and a demand
for the relief asserted by the officer. 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 only if the court finds that the board's
decision should be affirmed. The bond must be approved as bonds for
costs are approved in other cases. The county must be named as the
sole defendant and the plaintiff shall have a summons issued as in other
cases against the county. Neither the board nor the members of it may
be made parties defendant to the complaint, but all are bound by
service upon the county and the judgment rendered by the court.
(f) 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 board was made. Within ten (10) calendar days
after the service of summons, the board shall file in court a complete
written 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
board before the appeal is filed, if requested. The court shall review the
record and decision of the board on appeal.
(g) 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 board appealed from should in all things be affirmed,
its judgment should so state. If the court finds that the decision of the
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
(1) reverse the decision of the board; or
(2) order the decision of the board to be modified.
(h) 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 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
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.
(i) 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 rules of trial procedure govern in all matters of
procedure upon the appeal that are not otherwise provided for by this
(j) An appeal takes precedence over other pending litigation and
shall be tried and determined by the court as soon as practical.