Chicago Police DepartmentSpecial Order S07-01
Processing Property Under Department Control
Issue Date:15 October 2015Effective Date:15 October 2015
Rescinds:14 April 2015 version
Index Category:Processing Property
I.Purpose
This directive:
  • A.provides the procedures to be followed when handling property taken into Department control.
    NOTE:
    Department members will refer to the General Order entitled "Processing Property Under Department Control" for the policy governing property taken into custody.
  • B.establishes responsibilities and procedures for entering and approving information entered into the eTrack inventory system.
  • C.establishes procedures for transferring inventoried property from the unit of inventory to a different location.
  • D.describes procedures for returning and disposing of property.
  • E.satisfies CALEA Law Enforcement Standard Chapter 84.
II.General Information
  • A.The eTrack inventory system is a web browser-based computer application designed to provide for real-time data entry of evidence and other inventoried property into a database accessible from any Department computer. eTrack allows for easy duplication of data entry for items sharing attributes, the ability to associate inventories created by several persons at different times to the same incident, and provides an interface with the Illinois State Police Crime Lab to view the results of forensic testing. Members are also able to query by district or unit to identify what property has been inventoried.
  • B.eTrack is “package-driven,” meaning that an inventory unit will consist of whatever property can be appropriately grouped and packaged together inside a single sealed package. With only a few exceptions, all property taken into Department control will be sent to its destination in a sealed (heat-sealed or self-sealing) plastic bag.
  • C.Only Chicago Police Department personnel are authorized to inventory property in the eTrack system. Members of other agencies must use their own inventory processes.
  • D.Members will enter property information directly into eTrack and supervisors will approve inventories directly in eTrack. Any required paper copies will be printed only after supervisor approvals are entered.
  • E.The eTrack system will be used to record all inventories other than the items described in the Special Order entitled "Inventorying Arrestees' Personal Property." Only in the event of an eTrack system outage or other exception as described in the Special Order entitled “Procedures in the Event of System Outage or Requirement for On-Scene Inventory” will any member use the Property Inventory book formset (CPD-34.523) to record the inventory of property or evidence.
  • F.All inventories which are improperly packaged (i.e., wrong packaging type, not sealed) will not be accepted for transport by couriers assigned to the Police Document Section. In addition, inventories which do not have a validated incident number cannot be manifested and therefore, cannot be transported from the unit of inventory until the incident number is validated.
  • G.Units can verify ERPS and/or the Forensic Services Division receipt of inventories by viewing the eTrack database.
III.Property Inventory Procedures
  • A.Other than property described in the General Order entitled "Processing Property Under Department Control," all property taken into custody by Department personnel shall be inventoried pursuant to this directive and the following directives, as applicable:
    • 1.prisoner personal property is described in the Special Order entitled "Inventorying Arrestees' Personal Property.”
    • 2.money, including bulk currency, is described in the Special Order entitled "Inventorying Money."
    • 3.narcotics, including bulk narcotics, is described in the Special Order entitled "Inventorying Narcotics Evidence."
    • 4.jewelry is described in the Special Order entitled "Inventorying Jewelry."
    • 5.firearms are described in the Special Order entitled "Firearms Taken Into Custody or Turned In."
    • 6.evidence related to counterfeit, stolen, forged, or altered Treasury Department checks, United States Savings Bonds, or documents containing threats against the President of the United States, President-elect, Vice President of the United States, Vice President-elect, any other officer next in the order of succession to the Office of the President, Presidential and Vice Presidential candidates, former Presidents, their spouses, and visiting heads of foreign states is described in the Special Order entitled "United States Secret Service."
    • 7.property to be transported to or from the Medical Examiner's Office is described in the Special Order entitled "Processing and Transportation of Deceased Persons."
  • B.The classification action of “Pickup Pursuant to Notice of Return Policy” will be used for all property inventoried in eTrack when there is an identified owner and the property is not subject to asset forfeiture and is not evidence.
  • C.The inventorying officer will print a "Notice to Property Owner" form (CPD-34.523) when printing Copy 4 - Citizen Copy of the inventory in eTrack and give the form to the arrestee / owner. A copy of the "Notice to Property Owner" can also be generated by accessing the Department Directives System through the CLEAR intranet site.
  • D.Evidence technicians inventorying evidence which requires testing for blood, DNA, or fingerprints will package that evidence in paper or other packaging as appropriate. Department members inventorying this type of evidence will contact the Forensic Services Division for packaging directions.
  • E.Property which poses a biological hazard will be processed in compliance with the Department directive entitled “Communicable Diseases and Infection Control.”
  • F.Suspect bombs, explosives (including fireworks), or dangerous substances will not be handled, transported, or disposed of by Department members other than Bomb Squad or Arson Section personnel, as appropriate.
IV.Specific Procedures
  • A.Receiving Property and Establishing Ownership
    The inventorying officer will:
    • 1.take custody of the property, ensure its safekeeping, and transport the property to the appropriate police facility for inventory.
    • 2.when possible, identify the owner of the property.
      • a.Officers will check recovered property for identifying marks, which include but are not limited to:
        • (1)social security numbers,
        • (2)serial numbers,
        • (3)driver's license numbers,
        • (4)other identifying numbers, marks, or information.
        NOTE:
        Found, abandoned, and disavowed property, including electronic devices, may be examined in order to attempt to locate identifying information.
      • b.If recovered property has identifying information, the recovering officer will perform a records inquiry to attempt to ascertain ownership information, including:
        • (1)CLEAR inquiry,
        • (2)Hot Desk inquiry through CLEAR,
        • (3)CHRIS inquiry, or
        • (4)telephoning the Field Inquiry Section, Records Division.
          NOTE:
          The Field Inquiry Section maintains files of registered firearms, bicycles, and all identifiable property that have been reported lost or stolen. This information is available at all times.
  • B.Returning Property When Ownership has Been Established
    If ownership of the property is established, the recovering officer will:
    • 1.contact the owner as soon as feasible to arrange pick-up of the property if it is not evidence, not needed for court, not contraband, nor subject to forfeiture.
      • a.If an attempt to contact the owner is unsuccessful, the member will mail the Copy 4 - Citizen Copy of the inventory and a copy of the "Notice to Property Owner" form to the owner's listed address by:
        • (1)obtaining a Chicago Police Department labeled envelope,
        • (2)legibly printing the owner's name and listed address on the envelope,
        • (3)placing the Copy 4 - Citizen Copy of the inventory and a copy of the "Notice to Property Owner" form inside the envelope, and
        • (4)putting the unsealed, unstamped envelope inside the police mail basket/envelope.
      • b.All attempts to make contact with the owner will be documented in the comments section of the inventory.
    • 2.return the property to the owner through the eTrack Field Turnover procedures.
  • C.Sorting, Packaging, and Labeling Inventoried Property
    • 1.The inventorying officer will:
      • a.separate the property according to the following attributes:
        • (1)time of recovery;
        • (2)place of recovery;
        • (3)classification as evidence or non-evidence;
        • (4)destination, such as ERPS, Forensic Services Division, and the like;
        • (5)manner obtained, such as by search warrant, seizure, or recovery;
        • (6)owners or possessors;
        • (7)narcotic evidence, money, jewelry, and firearms will be inventoried separately from each other type of item, each on its own inventory;
          NOTE:
          Narcotics, including bulk narcotics, will be inventoried following the procedures described in Special Order entitled "Inventorying Narcotics Evidence."
        • (8)only one bicycle per inventory.
      • b.obtain appropriate packaging for the property, based on the size and number of items, the destination, and the requirements to separate property as identified in Item IV-C-1-a.
    • 2.All property or evidence identified in one inventory must be packaged in the same container.
    • 3.All non-bulk evidence or property taken into Department control will be sent to its destination in a sealed (heat-sealed or self-sealing) plastic bag. EXCEPTIONS:
      • a.Sharp, edged evidence, and liquids must be placed in the appropriate containers (i.e., boxes, vials).
        • (1)An evidence vial may be used to secure a sample of an evidentiary substance, such as liquor, which:
          • (a)is found without a container or in one that is opened or inadequate, or
          • (b)would otherwise leak or dissipate if left in its natural state or in an inadequate container, or
          • (c)is of no monetary value as found, and
          • (d)does not require total seizure for evidentiary purposes.
        • (2)A sample of such a substance may be put into an evidence vial and the remainder, but not the container, will be properly discarded.
        • (3)The property inventory number will be printed or typed on a gummed label and affixed to the vial.
        • (4)The evidence vial will be placed into a transparent protective plastic tube.
        • (5)The protective plastic tube will be sealed using the supplied gummed seal.
        • (6)The sealed protective tube containing the evidence vial will be attached to the original container using transparent tape.
          NOTE:
          If the original container is breakable, such as a glass bottle or jar, the container will first be secured in an inventory box and the protective plastic tube will be securely taped to the box.
        • (7)Evidence which must be placed in other containers (i.e., vials, boxes) will be packaged by placing the container inside a plastic bag and sealing it.
        • (8)The description of the suspected contents and approximate quantity originally found (e.g., one quart bottle of amber liquid, approximately half full) will be entered in eTrack.
        NOTE:
        Evidence vials may be requisitioned from the Equipment and Supply Section, and, in emergency situations, an evidence technician may be called to provide a needed vial.
      • b.Unopened or securely contained substances will be inventoried and transported as found. Original containers will not be opened in order to use the evidence vials.
      • c.Suspected controlled substances recovered in liquid form will be inventoried in the original container and hand carried to the Forensics Services Division. Vials will not be used for substances such as suspected controlled substances / cannabis substances where proof of quantity has a direct bearing on a case.
      • d.Fireworks will be packaged in paper or plastic bags secured by tape. Do not heat-seal a package containing fireworks. Upon notification, Bomb Squad personnel will take possession of the inventoried fireworks for disposal. Suspect bombs and explosives will be handled, inventoried, transported, and disposed of only by Bomb Squad personnel.
      • e.Bomb or arson evidence, suspect incendiary devices, and flammable chemicals or liquids (such as gasoline) will be inventoried and packaged by Arson Section personnel as appropriate.
      • f.Evidence requiring testing for blood, DNA, or fingerprints will be inventoried by evidence technicians, who will package that evidence in paper or other packaging as appropriate. Other Department members inventorying this type of evidence will contact the Forensics Services Division for directions.
      • g.Perishable items that will rot or decompose, such as fruit or meat, and not specifically excluded by this directive will not be retained after being inventoried. Inventorying officers will instead complete the inventory, obtain the designated supervisor's approval, and dispose of the perishable item. Perishable item disposal procedures are described in Item V-J of this directive.
        NOTE:
        Department members will not use perishable items for personal use.
      • h.For bulk items, the inventorying member will complete the inventory process and attach the printed inventory sheet(s) to the item(s) in a secure manner.
        NOTE:
        Members may contact  ERPS Monday through Friday between 0600 and 2200 hours for instructions on inventorying bulk items. For bulk seizure inquires during off hours, members may contact CPIC.
      • i.Bulk seizures of narcotics will be inventoried according to the procedures described in the Department directive entitled "Inventorying Narcotics Evidence."
    • 4.All evidence which will be examined by the Forensic Services Division or the Illinois State Police Crime Lab will be packaged in separate packages or containers and accompanied by a copy of the case or supplementary report. Evidence which does not require examination or analysis will be sent directly to ERPS.
  • D.Recording Inventory in eTrack
    • 1.Inventorying Officer Responsibilities
      • a.The inventorying officer will enter the property information - including ownership information if established - into the eTrack system.
        • a.If the inventorying officer is not the recovering officer, the inventorying officer will enter the name of the recovering officer in the eTrack system.
        • b.Selecting the Incident Number
          Members will select the incident number in the following priority order:
          • (a)RD number
          • (b)CB number
          • (c)ANOV number
          • (d)Traffic citation number
          • (e)OCDI number - Organized Crime Division Investigation number for members of the Bureau of Organized Crime only.
          NOTE:
          Members will take special care to enter the associated incident number correctly. Incorrectly entered incident numbers can cause numerous problems. In narcotics inventories, an incorrectly entered RD number will delay the submission of the evidence to the Illinois State Police Lab for analysis, likely resulting in the inability of the State’s Attorney to obtain lab results prior to the scheduled preliminary hearing. Members who inventory narcotics with incorrect incident numbers will be required to report to the Forensic Services Division to re-inventory the narcotics with the correct incident number.
        • c.Selecting Transport Mode
          Determines how property will be transported to the location where it will be stored.
          • (a)ERPS Pickup - Selected for bulk items only.
          • (b)Police Mail - Selected for inventories that are to be transported via courier.
          • (c)Recovering Unit Personnel - Selected for items that are to be hand carried by recovering/inventorying member.
        • d.The initial storage location is the unit where the inventory is created. Members will not change the unit of inventory/initial storage location. Movement from the unit of inventory to any other unit must be accomplished through an eTrack manifest. Manifest procedures are described in Item IV-E of this directive.
          NOTE:
          Modifying the unit of inventory from the actual unit where the inventory is created can prevent an appropriate eTrack manifest from being created.
      • b.The inventorying officer will complete the information fields on the outside of the bag.
        NOTE:
        The inventory number is located at the top of the eTrack page. Multiple inventories for a single recovery may not be sequentially numbered.
      • c.After submitting the inventory for approval, the inventorying officer will log off the system and take the property in the unsealed package to a supervisor for approval. Members will complete and submit all inventories for approval prior to the end of their tour of duty.
        NOTE:
        If the inventoried package will be stored in a different location than at the unit where the inventory is created, the inventorying officer will create an eTrack manifest. Manifest procedures are described in Item IV-E of this directive.
      • d.After a supervisor approves the inventory, the inventorying officer will sign the package in the signature box, seal it in the station supervisor's presence, and attach a printout of the inventory with the bar code visible and in the upper left corner of the package. Once inventoried, the property will not be moved from the unit of inventory unless a manifest is created as described in Item IV-E of this directive.
      • e.If a member inventorying property needs to leave the computer where the eTrack data entry process has begun, the member will save the partially completed inventory by selecting the "Save" button and then logging off the system. Failure to log out of the eTrack system when leaving the computer can subject a member's entries to the risk of tampering. Members are accountable for any data entered under their PC login number.
      • f.To speed the process of entering information for multiple inventories, members can copy all information from one inventory to a new inventory by:
        • (1)either saving or submitting the first inventory,
        • (2)selecting the "View" button,
        • (3)selecting the "Copy" button,
        • (4)entering new property information into the eTrack copy.
        NOTE:
        Members will need to review the new inventory (Screen 8) in order to determine if any other data fields require changing before submitting the subsequent inventory.
      • g.Department members inventorying non-narcotic-related money designated as either "Hold in Original Form" or "Hold for Investigation" will follow the procedures described in the Department directive entitled "Inventorying Money."
      • h.If an inventory has been returned to the inventorying member by a supervisor for correction or update, the member will log back into the eTrack system, make the necessary changes, and resubmit the inventory for approval.
      • i.If an inventory is in preliminary status and the inventorying officer determines that the item(s) inventoried are not needed, the inventorying officer will delete the inventory.
      • j.If an inventory has been approved by a supervisor and the inventorying officer determines that the item(s) inventoried are not needed, the inventorying officer will return the inventoried item(s) through the field turn-over procedures described in Item V-F-2 of this directive.
      • k.Voiding an Inventory
        • 1.An inventory will be voided in only one circumstance: when duplicate inventories have been created and both inventories have been approved.
        • 2.To void an inventory, the inventorying officer will:
          • (a)prepare a To-From-Subject report addressed to the Commander, ERPS, and with the following approval lines:
            • i)Station supervisor or designated unit supervisor and
            • ii)unit commander.
          • (b)include in the To-From-Subject report both inventory numbers and a request that the duplicate inventory be voided,
          • (c)obtain the designated supervisor's signature,
          • (d)fax a copy of the To-From-Subject report to ERPS, and
          • (e)submit the To-From-Subject report to the unit commander.
      • l.Re-Inventory Procedures
        • (1)When changes or edits need to be made to an existing inventory that has been approved by a supervisor, the inventory will be re-inventoried.
        • (2)To re-inventory an inventory that is in approved status, the designated supervisor or original inventorying officer will:
          • (a)log onto the system and query the inventory by unit of inventory or star number of the inventorying member and select the relevant inventory.
          • (b)in the upper right side of the inventory locate and select "Re-inventory."
          • (c)make the needed edits.
          • (d)submit the re-inventory to a supervisor for approval.
        • (3)The re-inventory is assigned a new inventory number. This number cross-references the previous inventory number.
    • 2.Designated Supervisor Responsibilities
      • a.Reviewing and Approving an Inventory
        • 1.To review and approve a submitted inventory, the station supervisor, designated unit supervisor, or designee will:
          • (a)log onto the system, query the inventory by unit of inventory or star number of the inventorying member and select the relevant inventory.
          • (b)verify that the package contents match the property described in the inventory being reviewed; that the appropriate item type, transport mode, and classification action have been selected for the property; and that all required information is recorded.
          • (c)if verified and the information is accurate and complete, select the "Approve" box. The designated supervisor will sign the packaging in the space provided.
          • (d)if not verified or additional information is needed, select "Return to Originator" and enter instructions for correcting the inventory. The packaging containing the inventory will also be returned to the inventorying member.
          • (e)if approved, print the following copies by selecting “Submit Report”:
            • a.A Copy 1 - Inventory Copy, which will be attached (i.e., stapled, taped) to the sealed package in a manner so that the printed bar code is easily seen;
            • b.If an arrest had been made, a Copy 3 - Court Copy, which will be included with the arrest paperwork;
            • c.If a finder, owner, or arrestee is present, a Copy 4 - Citizen Copy and a copy of the "Notice to Property Owner" form, which will be given to the appropriate person.
          • (f)ensure that the package is sealed and secured until it is returned to the owner or picked up for transport. Inventory packages containing money or jewelry will be secured in an appropriate secured-storage area for that facility. The designated supervisor will maintain control over the inventoried item(s) and ensure that access to that area is limited and secured/locked.
        • 2.The designated supervisor will ensure that, prior to bonding any arrestee charged with an offense where no case report is generated (e.g., disorderly conduct, mob action, gang / narcotics loitering, and warrants) and whose arrest report indicates that property was inventoried, the CB number assigned to that arrestee has been entered into the eTrack "Incident No." field for that inventory.
      • b.Reassigning an Inventory
        • 1.The designated supervisor can reassign an inventory which remains in preliminary status (i.e., never submitted or submitted and returned to the originator).
        • 2.If the originator is unable to complete the inventory, the inventory will be reassigned by the designated supervisor to another appropriate member to complete. The designated supervisor will:
          • (a)select "Inventory Entry Reassignment";
          • (b)when the desired inventory is found, select "Reassign";
          • (c)insert the star number or name of the officer who will be assigned responsibility for the inventory;
          • (d)select the "Reassign" button to complete the assignment; and
          • (e)ensure that the original inventorying officer is notified that the inventory has been reassigned.
      • c.Updating the Incident Number
        For all arrest reports which indicate a charge where no case report is generated, the arrestee has inventoried property, and the incident number needs to be updated, the designated supervisor will:
        • (1)select "Search / Edit Inventory";
        • (2)enter the inventory number and select "Search";
        • (3)open the inventory by selecting "View", then the "Update Incident No." button, and enter the CB number of the arrestee in the field provided;
        • (4)selecting the "Update" button;
        • (5)log out of the eTrack System.
      • d.Voiding an Inventory
        When duplicate inventories have been created and a void is needed, the designated supervisor will:
        • (1)verify that the inventories are duplicates;
        • (2)ensure that the inventorying officer prepares a To-From-Subject report as described in Item IV-D-1-k-(2)-(a) of this directive;
        • (3)sign the prepared To-From-Subject report; and
        • (4)ensure that the To-From-Subject report is both:
          • (a)immediately faxed to the Commander, ERPS, and
          • (b)the original is submitted to the unit commander.
  • E.Relocating and Transporting Inventoried Property
    • 1.Manifest Procedures for Property Moved from Unit of Inventory to ERPS or the Forensics Services Division
      • a.Only inventories which are approved, have validated incident numbers, and are properly packaged can be put on a manifest. Only manifested inventories can be moved from the unit of inventory.
      • b.The action of placing an inventory on a manifest will change the status of that inventory to "In Transit."
      • c.Couriers are responsible for creating the manifest for transport. Couriers will:
        • 1.generate the manifest by scanning the barcode appearing on the inventory page attached to the property.
        • 2.bring to the attention of the designated supervisor or other appropriate person any inventory which cannot be manifested.
          NOTE:
          The designated supervisor will ensure that property that cannot be manifested has any deficiencies corrected and is re-entered on a manifest.
        • 3.once all appropriate inventories are scanned onto a manifest, submit the manifest to the designated supervisor for approval.
      • d.The designated supervisor will:
        • 1.review the manifest for accuracy and completeness.
        • 2.approve the manifest if it accurately and completely reflects the inventory packages that the courier has presented for transport.
        • 3.ensure that property that cannot be manifested has any deficiencies corrected and is re-entered on a manifest.
        • 4.not delay approval of a manifest and/or a couriers pickup to allow for an inventory currently being entered into the eTrack system to be completed.
    • 2.Manifest Procedures for Property Moved from Unit of Inventory to Another Unit
      • a.A manifest must be created to physically relocate the inventoried property to the different unit (e.g. from a district to an area detective unit or unit located at Homan Square).
      • b.A manifest to move the property can only be created after the inventory is approved by a supervisor in the initial unit of inventory.
      • c.Once approved, the inventorying officer will log back into eTrack to create a manifest to document the movement of the package to a different location and submit the manifest to his or her supervisor for approval.
      • d.Once the manifest is approved, the inventorying officer will present the inventory package to the designated supervisor in the unit where the package will be stored.
      • e.When presented with an approved inventory package from an outside unit for storage, the receiving supervisor will ensure that the package was properly manifested and packaged, then accept the package for secure storage by logging into eTrack to receive the package.
        NOTE:
        Unit personnel will not accept any inventoried package which indicates a different unit of inventory unless there is an approved eTrack manifest for it.
    • 3.Hand Carry Procedures
      The decision to hand-carry the inventory must be made prior to the supervisor approving the inventory.
      NOTE:
      Only inventories with validated incident numbers can be hand-carried.
      • a.The inventorying officer will:
        • a.when entering inventory information into eTrack, select "Recovering / Inventorying Unit" for the transport mode on the Classification screen and submit the inventory for approval.
          NOTE:
          Completing the inventory with this procedure will cause the eTrack system to automatically generate a manifest with the name of the inventorying officer as the courier.
        • b.upon supervisory approval, deliver the property and its accompanying manifest to its destination.
      • b.The designated supervisor in the unit of inventory will:
        • a.review all inventories which indicate a transport mode of "Recovering Unit Personnel" to determine the appropriateness of a hand-carry transport.
        • b.if approved, ensure that the "Generate Hand Carry Manifest" box on the Print screen is checked.
        • c.present the inventorying officer with the manifest that was printed along with the Copy 1 - Inventory Copy and instruct that person to present it upon arrival at ERPS or the Forensic Services Division.
      • c.Members may hand-carry inventories to ERPS Monday through Friday, between 0600 and 2200 hours. For procedures during off times, members will contact CPIC for directions.
      • d.Members may hand-carry inventories to the Forensic Services Division 24 hours a day.
  • F.Checking Out Property for Court or Investigation
    • 1.Members checking out property for court will bring to ERPS a copy of their court notification or subpoena indicating the need for the property in court.
    • 2.ERPS personnel will print and give Copy 2 - Check-out Copy of the inventory from the eTrack system to the member checking out the property. This copy will be used by the member to document turning over property to the court or State's Attorney's Office.
    • 3.Members will log into eTrack while at ERPS to electronically confirm receipt of the property they are checking out.
    • 4.For all property subsequently turned over to the State's Attorney's Office, members will return the signed Copy 2 - Check-out Copy of the inventory to ERPS within 2 business days of tendering the property.
      NOTE:
      Without the return of a signed Copy 2 - Check-out Copy, property checked out by members remains within their custody in the eTrack system.
    • 5.If property checked out from ERPS for court is not turned over to the State's Attorney's Office, it must be returned to ERPS on the same day by the officer who removed it from ERPS.
    • 6.If property checked out from ERPS cannot be returned to ERPS on the same day it was removed, the officer who checked out the property is responsible for securing the property.
      NOTE:
      Officers may contact CPIC for guidance on the securing of property that cannot be returned to ERPS on the same day.
V.Property Dispositions
  • A.Supervisors will ensure that the following kinds of property are returned to the owner without undue delay:
    • a.Prisoner property.
    • b.Non-evidence.
    • c.Evidence which the court releases or orders returned.
    • d.Seized property not subject to forfeiture.
  • B.The following kinds of property will not be returned to the owner:
    • a.Contraband.
    • b.Evidence.
    • c.Property to be confiscated, held, or destroyed by order of the court.
    • d.Property seized for forfeiture proceedings.
  • C.Inventorying and investigating officers must release all holds on property when the property is no longer needed as evidence or for investigation.
  • D.When court directed disposition of property is required, the appearing officer will request the court to order disposition of the property. If so ordered, the officer will follow the procedures described in Item V-G of this directive.
  • E.Property Tracking and Disposition
    • 1.The Commander of ERPS will be responsible for creating systems, methods and procedures for tracking and disposing of inventoried property; storage of property taken into custody; and for auditing the integrity and efficiency of inventory processing system.
    • 2.Inventorying and investigating officers must comply with information requests and procedural directives issued by ERPS regarding, inventory status, criminal case status and disposition inquiries, and eTrack processing actions required by the member.
    • 3.Designated supervisors will ensure unit members comply with the Department directives regarding processing property under department control and the directives and requests issued by ERPS regarding inventoried property and inventory procedures.
    • 4.When an officer to whom an ERPS request is addressed is separated from the Department, on a leave of absence over thirty days, or is on extended medical leave and not expected to return within thirty days, and no other member can provide a response or effect the requested action, the executive or commanding officer of the unit the recovering officer was assigned to at the time of recovery will respond directly or contact EPRS for instructions on the proper actions.
  • F.Returning Property to Owners/Claimants
    • 1.Hold Release Procedures:
      • a.Recovering and investigating officers are required to release investigative holds as soon as feasible after the inventoried property is no longer needed for investigation, civil forfeiture, or prosecution.
      • b.Hold releases must be entered by the recovering or investigating officer and then approved by a supervisor.
      • c.Recovering and investigating officers will release investigative holds by:
        • (1)selecting the "Release Hold" link under the eTrack Hold menu.
        • (2)entering the subject inventory number in the "Inventory No." field or the information requested in one or more of the other parameter fields and selecting the search button.
        • (3)selecting the "Release" link to access the Release screen.
        • (4)selecting either "Court Order" or "Officer Release" from the Release Type drop down menu and checking the "Release" box for each inventory item that will have the hold released. Comments regarding the hold release can be added to the "Comments" box if necessary.
        • (5)selecting the "Release Hold" button to complete the release hold action. The hold release is now available for approval by a supervisor.
      • d.Supervisors can approve the Hold Release by:
        • (1)selecting the "Approve Hold Release" link under the eTrack Hold menu.
        • (2)entering the subject inventory number in the "Inventory No." field or the information requested in one or more of the other parameter fields and selecting the search button.
        • (3)selecting the "Approve" link to access the Approve Hold Release screen.
        • (4)checking either the "Approve Release" or "Decline Release" box for each inventory item. Comments regarding the approval or declination can be added to the "Comments" box if necessary.
        • (5)selecting the "Approve Hold Release" button to complete approval of the hold release action.
        • (6)selecting the "Confirm" button.
        NOTE:
        The station supervisor, designated unit supervisor, or designee are NOT authorized to complete the "Approve Hold Release" action for investigative holds placed by the Asset Forfeiture Unit and ERPS personnel.
    • 2.Field Turnovers: Releasing Property at Location of Inventory
      • a.The Field Turnover function will be used by units to return property still located at the inventorying unit.
      • b.Field turnovers have three steps: Create, Approve, and Complete. Each step of the field turnover process must be completed to effect a field turnover.
        NOTE:
        A supervisor will ensure that all three steps have been completed prior to the physical return of property to the owner/claimant.
      • c.Any member can create a field turnover within the eTrack system and submit the turnover for a supervisor's approval. Each inventory item line must be accounted for in the turnover. Items turned over to an owner must be marked as such when creating the field turnover.
      • d.Only a supervisor can approve the field turnover and will verify in the eTrack system that all investigative holds have been released prior to approving the field turnover.
        NOTE:
        A supervisor will not rely on the "Citizen Copy" of the "Property Inventory" to approve the field turnover because investigative holds may be placed by the Asset Forfeiture Unit and ERPS personnel after an inventory has been submitted and approved.
      • e.A field turnover must be completed after approval is obtained. Once the field turnover has been approved, any member can complete the turnover process using the "Complete Turnover" procedure.
        NOTE:
        Failure to utilize "Complete Turnover" in the eTrack system will result the inventory remaining listed as present in the inventorying unit in "Approved" status.
      • f.Create Field Turnover: Department members will create a field turnover by:
        • (1)selecting the "Create Field Turnover" link under the eTrack Turnover menu,
        • (2)entering the requested information in the four "Create Field Turnover" screens, and
        • (3)submitting the field turnover for approval by a supervisor.
      • g.Approve Turnover: Supervisors will approve a field turnover by:
        • (1)reviewing the reason for the turnover and determining if the field turnover is appropriate for the circumstances of the case,
          NOTE:
          If the field turnover is not appropriate, the supervisor will select the "Approve Turnover" link under the eTrack Turnover menu and select the "Return to Originator" button.
        • (2)selecting the "Approve Turnover" link under the eTrack turnover menu,
        • (3)reviewing the field turnover for accuracy, and
        • (4)approving the field turnover.
      • h.Complete Turnover: Department members, prior to physically returning inventoried property to owners after the field turnover is approved, will:
        • (1)select the "Complete Turnover" link,
        • (2)select the turnover number corresponding to the property to be tendered or search for the turnover by entering the inventory number, selecting the search button, and then selecting the turnover number corresponding to the property to be tendered,
        • (3)select the "View" button corresponding to the turnover to access the Turnover Information screen,
        • (4)check the "Turnover" box for each and every item from the inventory that will be turned over to the property owner. Enter the actions taken in the comments section for each item. Comments must be entered for each item.
          NOTE:
          The "Return" check box in the Turnover Information screen is to be used by ERPS personnel only.
        • (5)select the "Turnover" button to access the next screen,
        • (6)obtain the signature of the property recipient on the electronic signature pad connected to the unit computer,
        • (7)select the "Confirm Turnover" button to complete the turnover, and
        • (8)physically return inventoried property to owner(s).
    • 3.Releasing Property at ERPS through the eTrack Property Release (ePR)
      • a.ERPS personnel will use the eTrack On-Site Turnover function to return property located at ERPS to owners/claimants listed on the inventory who produce the Owner's Copy of the inventory and proper proof of identity and proof of authority if a third party claimant. When appropriate and necessary, ERPS personnel may waive presenting a copy of the inventory.
      • b.No subsequent authorization by the inventorying officer, including an ePR, is needed for the return of any inventoried arrestee's personal property or property belonging to an identified owner which carries the processing action of "Pickup Pursuant to Notice of Return Policy."
      • c.Property inventoried by Department members and not inventoried with the processing action of "Pickup Pursuant to Notice of Return Policy" requires the inventorying or investigating member to release any holds placed on the inventory and complete the ePR procedure to authorize ERPS to turnover property to an owner or claimant.
      • d.Inventorying or investigating members will create an ePR by:
        • (1)logging into eTrack through CLEAR system and selecting the "Create eTrack Property Release" link under the eTrack Turnover menu,
        • (2)entering the requested information in the four turnover screens, and
        • (3)obtaining the signature of the property recipient on the electronic signature pad connected to the unit computer and selecting the "Confirm Submit" button to submit the ePR.
  • G.Disposition of Property by Court Order
    If property can be disposed of by court order, the officer appearing in court will:
    • 1.obtain the judge's written disposal order or signature on the printed Property Inventory (front side of Copy 1 - Inventory Copy or reverse side of Copy 2 - Check-out Copy).
    • 2.send the judge's written disposal order or original signed Property Inventory copy, containing the delivery and/or disposal information to the ERPS by Department mail.
  • H.Disposal of Property by ERPS
    Evidence and Recovered Property Section personnel will:
    • 1.dispose of property when authorized by the recovering officer, investigating officer, Asset Forfeiture Unit supervisor, judge, or otherwise by statute according to the procedure established by ERPS.
    • 2.only release property to owners/claimants listed on the inventory who produce the Owner’s Copy of the inventory and proper proof of identity and proof of authority if a third party claimant who have:
      • a.a completed ePR, or
      • b.court order, or
      • c.a letter from the Asset Forfeiture Unit, or
      • d.the recovering or investigating officer present with him.
  • I.Disposal of property by the Bomb Squad
    Whenever a member of the Bomb Squad seizes or takes possession of any bomb, explosives, or dangerous substance, and in his professional judgement determines it to be of such a nature as to make it dangerous or inadvisable to retain possession thereof, the substance will be disposed of in a reasonable manner. A photocopy of the explosive technician's report concerning the recovery and disposal of the property and a photocopy of the inventory will be forwarded by Department mail to the Commander, Evidence and Recovered Property Section. Reference: 2-84-170 MCC.
  • J.Disposal of Perishable Goods
    • 1.Whenever perishable goods are disposed of pursuant to Item IV-C-3-g of this directive the approving supervisor will:
      • a.enter in the eTrack "Comments" section of the inventory information about how and when the items on the inventory were destroyed,
      • b.print Copy 1 - Inventory Copy and fax it to ERPS with a unit fax cover sheet, notifying ERPS that the items listed on the inventory have been disposed, and
      • c.send the printed Copy 1 - Inventory Copy and the original fax coversheet to ERPS through Police Mail.
    • 2.When notified by fax and Police Mail that perishable items in an inventory in "Approved" status have been disposed of, ERPS will review the inventory for completeness and process the inventory with a disposition of "Destroyed."
VI.Unit Audit and Accountability
  • A.Shift Audit
    • 1.The designated supervisor is responsible for all inventory packages in the unit secured-storage area until either the inventoried packages are manifested and removed or until the Shift Change Audit performed by the following shift confirms accuracy of the packages in inventory.
    • 2.At each change of shift, the in-coming designated supervisor will perform an audit of inventoried packages of money and jewelry which remain in the secured-storage area. This audit will be done in the presence of the out-going designated supervisor.
      • a.If the inventories match those listed on the Shift Change Audit report, the in-coming supervisor will record the eTrack shift audit as accurate on the Watch Incident Log (CPD-21.916).
      • b.If discrepancies between the Shift Change Audit report and the inventories in the storage area (i.e., inventories appear on the report but are not in the storage area) are found and cannot be reconciled, the in-coming supervisor will record the discrepancy on the Watch Incident Log (CPD-21.916) and notify the unit executive officer or commanding officer who will investigate the discrepancy.
    • 3.At the beginning of the second watch shift, the designated supervisor will query the eTrack system by generating the Inventory List Report for any inventories from that unit which are:
      • a.in preliminary status for over twenty-four hours.
        • (1)If the preliminary status inventory has not yet been submitted, the supervisor will ensure that the appropriate member is notified to complete and submit the inventory for approval by the end of the next tour of duty.
        • (2)If another inventory was subsequently generated and approved in its place, the supervisor will take the appropriate action to delete the preliminary status inventory.
      • b.in an approved status for seven days or more. The supervisor will investigate where the inventory package is located and why the inventory package has not been picked up by the appropriate courier (i.e., improper packaging, invalid incident number). The supervisor will take the necessary action to ensure that the property is made ready for transport or that the eTrack system is appropriately updated.
  • B.Inspections: Semi-Annual, change of command, annual, and unannounced
    • 1.The Commanding Officer of ERPS, or his/her designee, will conduct an inspection of the facility on a semi-annual basis. The inspection will ensure policies and procedures are being followed properly in order to maintain the integrity of the property under the control of ERPS. The Commanding Officer shall inspect property rooms for cleanliness and that the property is safe from any damage or deterioration. The inspection will be documented and any inadequacies will be addressed.
    • 2.In the event there is a change in command, there will be a joint audit of ERPS, which will include the exiting Commanding Officer, the newly designated commanding officer and a designee from the Office of the Superintendent. The audit will consist of a sampling of high risk items under ERPS control (such as firearms, narcotics, money, jewelry). The sampling will be sufficient to ensure property and records are accurately accounted for and reasonably believed to be correct.
    • 3.An annual audit will be performed by a designed supervisory member of the Office of Superintendent not directly involved with the control of evidence and property. The audit will consist of a significant sample size of high risk (i.e. firearms, narcotics, money, jewelry) evidence and property items to ensure the continuity of custody. The annual audit will be documented in a report to the Superintendent.
    • 4.At least once a year, unannounced inspections of ERPS will be conducted by a designee of the Office of the Superintendent. The inspection will be routine and concentrate on an overall cleanliness and order of the facility. A quick review for comparison of records with physical evidence and/or property to assure items are in the proper place, accounted for and secured appropriately. The unannounced inspection will be documented in a report to the Superintendent.
VII.District Animal Inventory
  • A.The purpose of inventorying animals is to create a record of the Department's actions involving accepting and/or releasing animals.
  • B.Animals which are arrestee's property, all biter animals, and stray animals kept at district stations, whether brought in by a citizen or a police officer, will be inventoried on the Cook County Animal Inventory form (ACC-3230-3).
    • 1.The original (white) copy will be given to the Animal Control Center representative removing the animal. If the animal is disposed of other than to an Animal Control Center representative, the original will be sent by Police Mail to:
      Chicago Animal Care and Control
      2741 S. Western Avenue
      Chicago, Illinois 60608
    • 2.The first copy (yellow) will be given as a receipt to a citizen who turns in an animal or to the animal owner.
    • 3.The second copy (pink) will be retained as a district record.
    • 4.The third copy (buff) will be given to the animal control representative removing the animal. If the animal is disposed of in any other manner, this copy will be retained with the second copy (pink).
  • C.Signatures are required in the "Disposition of Animal" box as follows:
    • 1.If an animal is released to a representative of the Animal Control Center or a private humane organization, the representative will sign his name in the space provided.
    • 2.When an animal is returned to its owner at the district, the owner's signature is required in the space provided.
    • 3.The Department member releasing the animal will sign his name, star number, date, and time and beat number in the appropriate boxes on the form.
  • D.Members completing a district Animal Inventory form will notify the station supervisor or designated unit supervisor of such inventory.
VIII.Training
  • A.eTrack inventory system training will be provided upon written request on-site at the affected units by a Information Services Division (ISD) training team. Additional assistance will be available via the Help Desk or the online eTrack Help manual.
  • B.The Education and Training Division will be responsible for ensuring that recruit curriculum includes training on this directive, directives directly associated with this directive, and on the function of the eTrack system.
IX.Conflicts Provision
In the event that a procedure in this directive conflicts with the provisions of any other Department directive, this directive will take precedence.
Authenticated by: KC
Garry F. McCarthy
Superintendent of Police
15-135 KMS
PHONE BOOK:
1.
Evidence & Recovered Property Section - Service Counter
PAX 4289
24 Hours
2.
Evidence & Recovered Property Section - Service Counter
PAX 4289
24 Hours
GLOSSARY TERMS:
ADDENDA:
1.S07-01-01 - Inventorying Arrestees' Personal Property
2.S07-01-02 - Inventorying Money
3.S07-01-03 - Inventorying Jewelry
4.S07-01-04 - Firearms Taken Into Custody or Turned In
5.S07-01-05 - Recovered/Seized Computer Equipment
6.S07-01-06 - Procedures in the Event of System Outage or Requirement for On-Scene Inventory
7.S07-01-07 - Administrative Disposal of Property
8.S07-01-08 - Requests for Confiscated Property