Charleston WV Police Department

Professional Standards Division

The Professional Standards Division (PSD) was established in 1996 and operates under the authority of the Office of the Chief of Police. The Division is charged with ensuring Departmental compliance with established policies and procedures.

It is an inherent goal of the Charleston Police Department to safeguard and maintain public trust and confidence by its responsiveness to community needs. To this end, the PSD monitors employee behavior to identify and implement corrective training in recognized areas. The Division also investigates or coordinates investigations of all complaints and/or reports of officer misconduct that tends to discredit an officer or the Police Department. In addition, the PSD reviews all use of force and vehicle pursuit incidents.

The Professional Standards Division is also responsible for updating policies, developing new policies and keeping them in conformity with our ever changing laws and statutes.

The Professional Standards Mission Statement

The Mission of the Professional Standards Division is to review officer involved critical incidents and investigate complaints received on sworn and non-sworn employees of the Charleston Police Department. Further, to identify any training issues and notify the Administration of such needs. All complaints, whether received from residents or from agency employees, will be thoroughly investigated to ensure the integrity of the Charleston Police Department.

Lt. Brian Bennett

Professional Standards Division Commander


Sgt. Jason Spurlock

Professional Standards Investigator


Sgt. James Duncan

Professional Standards Investigator


Julie Null

Administrative Assistant


If you have a compliment or complaint

You can call: The on-duty Shift Commander at 304-348-6829. If you have trouble contacting the Shift Commander you can call our Records Division 24 hours a day at 304-348-6400. They will contact the Shift Commander for you.

You can mail a comments to: Charleston Police Department, Professional Standards Division, PO Box 2749, Charleston, WV 25330

You can e-mail a comments to the Charleston Police Department

Common Questions

Does this mean that the Police Department Seeks Complaints?

No. However, we want to be told if a job appears to have been done ineffectively, or if there’s an area of service that can be improved.

But will you listen to my complaint?

Certainly, we will listen to your complaint and will investigate it thoroughly.

Who will investigate my complaint?

Either a special investigator from the Professional Standards Division or the officer’s supervisor will investigate a complaint against a member of the department.

But I want to take this all the way to the top. I want the Chief of Police to know.

And he will. The Chief of Police is briefed daily about all complaints against officers. Each of the officer’s supervisors are notified as well.

Do I have to give my name to file a complaint?

We will investigate anonymous complaints. However, such complaints can be very difficult to investigate as additional information may be needed, and therefore, the outcome may not be what the complainant expected. Additionally, we cannot notify the complainant of the outcome of the investigation.

Do I have to complain in person?

We prefer to talk to you in person so that your information can be represented more thoroughly, but we will accept a complaint by telephone, letter, the attached form or on our web page, We may need to contact you for additional information to fully investigate your complaint. In some situations, such as a formal complaint, it will be necessary to speak with you in person. This meeting could take place in the police station, at your home, or other reasonable location.

Will my complaint be published in the newspaper?

No. All complaints against department employees are kept confidential by the department. (Unless a court order is issued to the contrary)

Will the police officer know that I have made a complaint against him or her?

Yes, the officer has a right to know the charge made against him/her and the identity of the person making the allegation.

Will the department retaliate against me for making a complaint against an officer?

Absolutely not! It is essential to maintain public confidence in the ability of the department to investigate and properly adjudicate complaints against its members.

I’m under 18. Do I have the right to complain?

Yes. Just bring one of your parents, guardians, or a responsible adult in with you.

What will happen to the officer?

That will depend on what the officer did. If the officer’s actions were criminal, the Kanawha County Prosecutor’s Office will be notified of the investigation and will help determine a course of action. If the officer’s actions were improper, but not criminal, corrective action will be taken by the Chief of Police. If the facts of the investigation support the conclusion that the officer’s actions were legal and proper, he/she will be exonerated. Should the facts indicate that your complaint is false, the complaint will be declared unfounded. We will follow the guidelines of the West Virginia Police Officer’s Bill of Rights. You will, in any event, always be notified of the results of our investigation.

Sgt. W. Winkler was appointed the Commander of the Professional Standards Division in January 2014.

He joined the department in September 1995 and has been assigned to the Patrol Division, Traffic Division, Criminal Investigation Division, an assistant Commander of the Traffic Division, assistant Commander of the Metro Drug Unit, SWAT team member and SWAT sniper.