Sydney Roberts, Chief Administrator
Sydney Roberts is the Chief Administrator for the Chicago, Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA). In this capacity she leads the City’s civilian police oversight body with full administrative investigative authority of all officer involved shootings, deaths in custody or a result of police action as well as all complaints of excessive force, illegal search and seizure, domestic violence, denial of counsel, coercion and sex and race based verbal abuse.
Chief Roberts has over 30 years of experience in community advocacy, law enforcement and public integrity. Immediately prior to joining COPA, Chief Roberts served as Director of the Illinois Secretary of State Department of Police. There she oversaw the operation all Secretary of State investigative districts as well as the security and protection of the Illinois State Capitol Complex. Chief Roberts, also served as Commander of the Maywood Police Department in Illinois and was a Lieutenant in the New Jersey, Essex County Prosecutor’s Officer. In both capacities, Chief Roberts spent most of her tenure investigating police misconduct and other public integrity breaches. In sum, Chief Roberts’ law enforcement career spans just over twenty (20) years.
In addition to her tenure in law enforcement, Chief Roberts spent more than ten (10) years leading administrative/compliance investigations involving fraud, waste, mismanagement and abuse by government employees, officials and vendors. Leadership positions included First Deputy Inspector General for the Illinois Office of Executive Inspector General and Inspector General for the Illinois Department of Human Services. Early in her professional career, Chief Roberts worked as an advocate, first on behalf of low risk offenders facing pre-trial detention and then for victims of crime.
Roberts is an Ethics Instructor, a former Polygraph Examiner and graduate of both the FBI National Academy and its Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar.
Roberts holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Delaware, a Master of Science in criminology from the University of Oxford, England and a Juris Doctor from Rutgers School of Law, Newark, NJ.