Police going about business with minimal force - The Leamington Observer

Police going about business with minimal force

Editorial Correspondent 5th Sep, 2017 Updated: 5th Sep, 2017   0

WARWICKSHIRE POLICE say 99 per cent of incidents are resolved without any form of conflict.

The statistics, published today, reveal 31,908 incidents were reported between April and June this year, and 374 uses of force were recorded.

The figures include tactics employed such as handcuffing, taking hold of someone’s arm, deploying a police dog, and using a baton, irritant spray, taser or firearm.

The most common type of force used was ‘unarmed skill’ – taking physical hold of someone or holding them on the ground – of which 305 incidents were recorded, followed by 251 handcuffings.

Tasers were drawn 26 times, but used only three times. Firearms were aimed twice, but never discharged. Police dogs were employed 15 times but no one was bitten.

Irritant spray was employed 27 times, batons were used 11 times, and officers had to use spit guards nine times.

In 71 of the recorded incidents officers were assaulted, and there were 18 complaints made against police.

Ch Supt Steve Cullen said: “We have a duty to protect people from harm and these techniques are in place to resolve dangerous situations whilst protecting the public at the scene, the individual under arrest and the officers in attendance.

“Police officers are confronted with difficult situations every day. They walk towards danger when others walk away. They must think and act quickly and we ensure they are given the tools and training they need to help them make dynamic decisions on the actions needed to keep people safe. This data gives the public an insight into these challenges.

“The Code of Ethics underpins all that we do and helps guide us when making difficult decisions, ensuring that our actions are right and fair. To ensure appropriate scrutiny of our actions we also work with Independent Advisory Groups (IAGs) and scrutiny forums to make sure our workforce are acting in the correct, lawful and non-discriminatory way.

“This increased transparency will better enable individual uses of force to be placed in context, and provide greater reassurance amongst the public that force, when used, is proportionate, lawful, accountable and necessary in the circumstances”.

The data has been released following the new Home Office Annual Data Review (ADR) requirement, which rules figures must be made public quarterly.

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