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Title Administration / Policy B-13
Effective Date 02-10-10
Rescinds 09-12-07
Subject Organizational Structure
Purpose To establish the department’s organizational structure.
Scope This directive applies to all personnel.
Reference UTPD Organizational Chart
CALEA Chapters 11, 12, and 15
  1. Organizational Structure/Chart:
    1. The UTPD organizational structure is depicted on the UTPD organizational chart. The office of the Chief of Police distributes and updates the organizational chart. The organizational chart is attached to this policy and a detailed version is available on the departmental web page.
  2. Function:
    1. The Chief of Police directly supervises one Assistant Chief, Internal Affairs Investigator, and Senior Administrative Manager.
    2. The Assistant Chief directly supervises two Captains.
    3. The Field Operations Captain commands the following:
      1. Patrol
      2. PTO Training
      3. Communications Center
      4. Training
    4. The Support Services Captain commands the following:
      1. Criminal Investigation Unit
      2. Crime Prevention Unit
      3. Special Events
      4. Recruiting
      5. Accreditation
      6. Evidence Management
      7. Lost and Found
    5. The Administrative Manager directly supervises
      1. Personnel
      2. Accounting
      3. Records
      4. Procurement
  3. Rank / Classifications:
    1. Chief of Police:
      1. The Chief of Police is appointed by the Vice President for University Operations and as executive officer of this department, shall be a sworn peace officer of the State of Texas.
      2. Subject to pertinent laws, UT Austin policy and procedure, written directives of System Police and UT at Austin Police Department and under the direction of the Vice President, the Chief of Police has authority over all members of the UTPD.
      3. The Chief of Police may promulgate to the department such orders or instructions, written or oral, which are not inconsistent with the law, written directives, the Regents' Rules, or any orders or instructions of the Vice President. Directives and/or other means of conveying policies and commands may be issued in one of the following formats: police regulations; general orders; special orders; memorandums; policies; procedures; manuals; bulletins; or verbal orders.
      4. The Chief of Police is responsible to the Vice President for University Operations for the execution of the police mission. The Chief of Police shall promptly execute all lawful orders and observe all regulations prescribed by the Vice President and shall be responsible that all such orders and regulations are obeyed and carried out. The Chief of Police shall be directly and personally responsible to the Vice President for the discipline, training, efficiency, and morale of the department. The Chief of Police shall keep their office open and staffed during times prescribed by the Vice President.
      5. The Chief of Police shall make certain that the operation of all divisions and special units under their control mutually support one another in all matters requiring support and that a high degree of lateral cooperation and exchange of information is maintained.
      6. The Chief of Police shall institute a study of factors which might prevent the department from functioning efficiently, including any possible morale-destroying situations or influences. The Chief of Police shall ascertain that all books and records are kept in accordance with the requirements of the department.
      7. The Chief of Police shall cause a general inspection to be made of all members of the department at least once a month and shall establish such other systems of inspections and control as may be necessary to ensure the efficient administration of the department.
      8. The Chief of Police shall regulate their office so that at all times when they are absent, it shall be under the command of a senior officer, not lower in rank than a lieutenant, designated by the Chief. This officer while in temporary command shall be regarded as the representative of the Chief and their commands shall be obeyed throughout the department. In the event no superior is designated during such absence, the senior commander shall so act.
      9. Goals and Objectives: Annually the Chief of Police shall present to the Vice President a memorandum will be made available to all agency personnel. This memorandum will be made available to all agency personnel. It shall include the following:
        1. The organizational chart.
        2. Mission statement and motto.
        3. Culture statement.
        4. Description of customers.
        5. Strengths and weaknesses.
        6. Strategic goals and objectives.
    2. Assistant Chief of Police:
      1. The Assistant Chief of Police shall serve by appointment and shall be a sworn peace officer for the State of Texas.
      2. The Assistant Chief of Police, in the normal course of their duties, is directly responsible for the supervision of the Field Operations Division and the Support Services Division.
      3. During the absence of the Chief of Police, the Assistant Chief of Police may promulgate to the department such orders or instructions, written or oral, which are not inconsistent with the law, written directives, the Regents' Rules, or any orders or instructions of the Vice President. Orders to the department shall be issued by the Chief of Police, by direction or approval of the Vice President. Directives and/or other means of conveying policies and commands may be issued in one of the following formats: police regulations; general orders; special orders; memorandums; policies; procedures; manuals; bulletins; or verbal orders..
    3. Captain:
      1. Captains exercise line command over the employees of their assigned divisions. Additionally, by utilizing resources available to them, they assume staff responsibility over matters relating to the operation within their commands.
    4. Lieutenant:
      1. Lieutenants exercise line command over the employees of their assigned shifts/sections. They provide advice and guidance to the personnel assigned and are responsible for keeping the respective commander informed about the activities and accomplishments of their officers.
    5. Sergeant:
      1. Sergeants exercise line command over the employees of their assigned unit and function as the first line supervisory level within the department. They are responsible for ensuring service delivery and compliance with policy and make recommendations to their lieutenants for improvements in operations.
    6. Detective:
      1. Detectives conduct criminal investigations, interview witnesses and suspects, and assist citizens in filing complaints for criminal acts committed against them.
    7. Police Officer:
      1. Police officers make up the majority of the department’s sworn personnel and often are the first to make contact with the public. Assignments vary in content but generally include district patrol and community interaction. They are responsible for keeping their supervisors informed about their activities and accomplishments.
    8. Guard / Civilian:
      1. Non-sworn personnel are responsible for positions that do not require police authority to effect a custody arrest.
  4. Direction:
    1. Unity of Command:
      1. Each component of the Department is normally under the direct command of one supervisor. Within each established chain-of-command, the appropriate supervisor is responsible and accountable for the performance of employees under their control.
      2. In routine operations, each employee is normally accountable to only one supervisor at any given time. Situations may exist where supervisors issue commands to employees outside the chain-of-command. On scene supervisors will be responsible for control and command of subordinates at those incidents.
    2. Succession of Command:
      1. The Chief of Police shall have the authority to designate a person to act in their place as Department head on any occasion when plans require them to be absent from duty, or otherwise unavailable to perform the duties of office.
      2. Should the Chief of Police become incapacitated through illness, death, or any other reason, or should they be absent from duty, or otherwise unavailable to perform the duties of office without having designated a person to command the Department during the absence, the assistant Chief of police will assume command. If the assistant chief is unable to command, the duty shall move to a captain in order of seniority.
    3. Delegated Authority:
      1. At all levels of the Department, authority will be delegated to employees to make decisions necessary for the effective execution of their responsibilities.
      2. Employees are accountable for the use of, or the failure to use, delegated authority.
  5. Routine Command Protocol:
    1. At the scene of any police incident, the ranking officer, or senior officer if of the same rank, shall assume command of the scene and operations until relieved by a supervisor, or until the conclusion of the incident.
    2. Crime scene supervision is normally conducted by the senior officer present. This officer has the authority to direct and oversee the processing of a scene unless relieved by a supervisor or detective.
    3. At the scene of police incidents involving more than one segment of the Department, the ranking supervisor shall assume command of the scene and operations.
  6. Major Incident Command Protocol:
    1. At major incidents which field operations initially responds to, such as hostage/barricaded subject situations, crowd control situations, or other large scale emergencies, a patrol supervisor will be designated to assume and maintain immediate control. Overall control will be assumed by a shift lieutenant or captain.
    2. This Department supports and will adhere to the Austin-Travis County Multi-Agency Incident Command System. The fundamental principle of ICS is that of “unified command” at certain large scale incidents requiring multi-agency coordination.
  7. Obedience to Orders:
    1. System Police Code of Conduct Sections 4.5 and 4.6 require that officers shall, at all times, respond to the lawful orders of superior officers and other proper authorities as well as requests for police assistance from citizens. That failure or deliberate refusal of any officer to obey a lawful order given by a superior officer shall be considered insubordination.
    2. This applies even though the supervisor is not in the employee’s normal chain-of-command.
    3. Employees will also obey orders that are relayed from a supervisor of higher rank by an employee of the same or lower rank.
    4. Employees are required to obey any lawful order of a supervisor regardless of the method of conveyance.
    5. Employees who are given an otherwise proper order which appears to be in conflict with an existing policy or previous order shall respectfully inform the supervisor issuing the order of the conflict.
      1. If the supervisor issuing the order does not alter or retract the conflicting order, the order shall stand.
      2. The supervisor issuing the conflicting order shall be responsible for the consequences, if any, of the conflicting order.
    6. An employee who is given a lawful order, but which he/she believes constitutes a safety hazard or in some other way is improper, shall respectfully inform the supervisor issuing the order of such belief. If the supervisor does not alter or retract the order, the order shall stand and shall be obeyed. The employee may then initiate a grievance through his/her chain of command to the Chief of Police.
    7. No supervisor shall knowingly or willfully issue any order which is a violation of any federal or state law.
      1. Obedience to an unlawful order is not considered a defense for an unlawful action.
      2. Responsibility for refusal to obey rests with the employee. He/she shall be strictly required to justify the action.
      3. No employee will obey an order that is contrary to federal or state law.
      4. If in doubt as to the legality of an order, employees shall either request clarification of the order or confer with higher authority.
      5. Any employee receiving an unlawful order will notify the issuing supervisor that compliance with the order, as issued, is unlawful.
      6. If the supervisor does not rescind the order, the employee shall request the presence of the next-level manager in the chain-of-command.
      7. The supervisor will contact the next-level manager and request their presence at the scene.
      8. Any employee receiving an unlawful order shall, at the first opportunity, report the fact in writing to the Chief of Police, through the chain-of-command. The report shall contain the facts of the incident and the actions taken.
  8. Exchange of Information:
    1. Supervisory and management staff will participate in routine and periodic staff meetings. These meetings are intended to promote effective communication and support the exchange of information between departmental components so that activities are coordinated in an effort to support the departmental mission, goals and objectives. The minutes to each meeting will be made available to all agency personnel.
    2. Commander’s Meeting:
      1. Convened each Tuesday and attended by the Chief of Police, Asst. Chief of Police, Division Commanders, Shift Commanders, Administrative Assistant, Accreditation Manager, Records Supervisor, and Chief’s Administrative Manager. The Network Analyst for UTPD and a Parking and Transportation Supervisor are encouraged to attend.
    3. Supervisor’s Meeting:
      1. Convened the first Wednesday of each month and attended by those who attend the Commander’s meeting as well as all sergeants. Supervisors shall arrange for officers, guards and civilian personnel to attend supervisor’s meetings.
    4. All employees are assigned a phone voice mail box and University email account to facilitate communication and exchange of information.