Sheriff Data Collection Request (2021)

Samuel Sinyangwe filed this request with the Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office of Yellowstone County, MT.


From: Samuel Sinyangwe

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to the Montana Freedom of Information Act, I hereby request the following records:

1. the total number of use of force incidents, separated by type of force and year used in 2021 (for example, information that specifies the number of taser incidents in 2021, baton incidents in 2021, etc.). Please include as part of this a breakdown of how many use of force incidents in each year were related to law enforcement operations and how many were related to correctional/custodial operations.

2. the total number of civilian complaints alleging any form of law enforcement misconduct that were reported and the total number sustained in 2021.

3. the total number of civilian complaints alleging law enforcement use of excessive force that were reported and the total number sustained in 2021.

4. the total number of civilian complaints alleging biased policing or racial profiling that were reported and the total number sustained in 2021.

5. the total number of civilian complaints alleging criminal conduct that were reported and the total number sustained in 2021.

6. the total number of officer involved shootings in 2021, both fatal and non-fatal.

When available, I would appreciate being sent individualized data for each item in this request in spreadsheet format. If individualized data are unavailable, please send information that includes aggregate statistics for the item instead.

Note that my requests for civilian complaints are specifically for civilian complaints alleging police misconduct, please do not include complaints filed by one officer/the department against another officer.

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 10 business days.


Samuel Sinyangwe

From: Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office

Good morning. I have received your request for use of force information for 2021, I believed my civil attorney contacted you back then to let you know that we do not have these records available.. However, since you keep sending the fax I assume you did not get her email.

Our records management system does not track use of force, civil complaints, or anything you have asked us to provide so there is no way I can find that information.

I am not aware of any complaints regarding racial profiling, criminal conduct, or any officer involved shootings within our department in 2021.

That is all the information I have available. Thank you.

Sheila DeVries
Records Supervisor
Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office
2323 2nd Ave North
Billings, MT 59101
Direct: (406) 256-2936
Fax: (406) 256-2934
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