Views requested on police stop and search procedures

POLICE are running a consultation on a draft version of an updated stop and search policy for Wiltshire.

The updated policy is part of a review of procedures which came about as the result of an inspection of the force last year.

Temporary Superintendent Andrew Carr of Wiltshire Police said: “The review into our use of stop and search highlighted a few changes we should make to further improve this process.

“When the consultation is complete, Wiltshire Police will be collating the responses and making any necessary adjustments to the policy. We are keen to hear the views of our local communities in Wiltshire and we welcome your feedback.

“Stop and search is a valuable tool in helping to prevent crime and protect the public.”

Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon Angus Macpherson said: “The correct use, and recording, of stop and search powers by the constabulary is something I regularly monitor with a meeting with the lead officer.

“I’m pleased this consultation is being carried out and encourage the public to respond, especially those who have been subject to the use of the power.”

The updated policy gives more detail to how officers complete a stop and search, what training they receive and how the information is collected, along with ways to improve public confidence in the use of stop and search.

The aim of the policy is to ensure that officers exercise their powers to stop and search members of the public fairly, responsibly, without unlawful discrimination and with respect for the dignity of anyone being searched.

Over the last year there have been 6,376 stop and searches carried out with only five complaints from members of the public.

Stop and search is a power that a police officer or special constable can use based on reasonable grounds for suspicion, to eliminate unnecessary arrests.

To read the policy visit wiltshire.police.uk, where there is also a link to the consultation survey.

The consultation opened on Friday and runs until Thursday, May 22.

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