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Community Stop Search Scrutiny Panel - Minutes March 2018

Title of meeting: Bedfordshire Community Stop Search Scrutiny Panel
Date: Thursday 8 March 2018
Time: 6.30pm
Venue: University of Bedfordshire, Polhill Campus, Bedford

Chair: Montell Neufville (MN)
Personal Assistant: (digital dictation)
Attendees: Kimberley Lamb, Mistry Kishor, Aleks Kral, Tuba Abdulsabur, Shaidah Ali, Sam Dennis, Kirsty Bourne, Tony Boatswain, Patsy Ferguson, Shauna Maloney, Ibrahim Eid, Elaine Cruise, Clare Kelly, Fiorentin Konstantinos, Clare Copeston, Anita Powel, Dane Logan, Lloyd Hynes, Katie Nicolas, Scott Gamble, Lila Begum, Kufrie Ben Essien, Anthony Mansell, Kelly Sholagbade, Stephanie Worral, Ch Insp Hob Hoque, Sgt Steve Mosley and Sgt Carl Perri 

Welcome, Introduction and Apologies

Montell welcomes everyone to the meeting. The panel members introduce themselves.

Minutes and actions from the last meeting

The previous minutes were discussed.

Aims of the Panel

  • Sharing knowledge

  • Transparency

  • Provide feedback

Definitions; 1 Proportionate 2 Ethical 3 Reasonable suspicion 4 Necessary

The panel engage in a table top exercise; giving their definition of a word on their table. Discussions took place with the panel and the Chair around the words on their tables in relation to stop searches.

Disproportionality Report

Clare Kelly talks about supporting the meeting and performance data. Montell and Kimberley have given Clare the chance to analyse the performance data before distributing it to the panel. The OPCC will be more involved with Stop Search moving forward. If the panel find problems etc, Clare’s department will take up the issue, investigate and report back to the Chair.

Video one:

- Watch BWV incident, - Group Review and Feedback

Graded as Amber by the panel

Key points noted

  •  Handcuffs put on too early, the panel were appraised this could be for Officer personal safety.

  • Officers jacket covered some of the camera lens.

  • Go WISELY was used.

  • Body worn camera put on too late into the stop and search.

  • No copy of record given; it was explained that if subject is arrested a copy of the record can be given at a later date.

  • More appropriate dialogue could have been used.

  • Gender of officer searching subject.

Video two:

- Watch BWV incident, - Group Review and Feedback

Graded as Amber by the panel

Key points noted

  • The officer didn’t have reasonable grounds to stop search; a hotspot does not define legal grounds to conduct a stop and search.
  • Use of bad language by Officer, was not necessary.
  • Officer failed to control the situation and should have removed the car keys from the ignition.
  • Overall demeanour was good except the use of bad language.
  • The panel have an issue with the third subject being searched.
  • Officer should not have said that he is not going to make an arrest.
  • Montell and Hob will provide feedback to both Officers around the videos that have been viewed.

Stop & Search figures and data

Montell talks about the amount of stop searches in the last month in Bedfordshire and compares previous months’ figures and makes a comparison.

Montell explains the legislation for different grounds to stop and search.

A knife could fall into 2 categories Bladed article and offensive weapon – hopefully the electronic forms will address this problem in recording.

Carl talks about different disposals should items be found on a subject. An arrest does not have to be made. A positive outcome does not necessarily result in arrest. 1 in 3 searches is a positive outcome.

The layout of the figures is not clear. The panel are interested in the outcome rate. Bedfordshire police are above average nationally on the outcome rate.

Recording of positive outcome rates in other forces were discussed.

Officers have been reminded to turn on their body worn video (BWV) early enough to capture what’s going on.

Disproportionality rates discussed, if they get too high, the force lead will scrutinise further to ascertain why this is happening.

Operation Sceptre report back

Operation Sceptre is a knife crime campaign led by The Met police to tackle knife crime, all forces get involved with this initiative nationally.

Beds Police ‘days of action’ can involve knife amnesties, high visibility patrols in certain areas, knife sweeps in vulnerable areas ie parks, visiting schools to discuss knife crime and the consequences of carrying knifes.

Carl explains to the panel that this is a national knife crime initiative. Knife crime is rising nationally and in Bedfordshire. There is some suggestion that the rise may be due to less stop searches.

Bedfordshire Police have days of action, long term initiatives and projects to ensure the community feel safe and keep safe.

A panel member gives her views on a day with Officers on an ‘Op Sceptre day of action’. She felt the two officers she shadowed did have a lot of respect, but did feel that they got a hard time from the public.

Community issues / concerns re Stop & Search

No community concerns regarding the use of stop and search were raised or notified to panel members.

Any Section 60 or complaints

The panel can look at any complaints made against police in relation to a stop and search.

Police can increase stop searches in a certain area if they think it is necessary in a 12 hour period, under Sec 60 powers..

Section 60 authorisations need to be notified to the panel .No section 60 authoritsations have been made in the past year

The question was asked: How do we know that a complaint is regarding stop and search if it is dealt with as a local resolution?

Clare explains that the customer services would look into this. There are a few different ways for a compliant to be logged at different levels within Bedfordshire Police.

The Professional Standards Dept can also be involved and flag up complaints for the stop search Chair to have sight of; whereby an Officer will face disciplinary action.

Complaints relating to stop and search need to be advised to the panel. No complaints have been notified to the panel in the past year.

Complaints can be reported to Bedfordshire and passed onto the force the complaint relates to.

Promoting the Panels work – communications plan

All the panel are welcomed to go on a ‘ride along scheme’ with Beds Police officers. The ‘ride along’ may not involve a stop search if it is not necessary for one to be made. There is a waiting list, however Community Scrutiny panel members get priority.

Montell talks about feedback that he has received from people that have been on the ‘ride along scheme’ as a positive and informative exercise.

Checking receipt forms & TU Serve

Actions and Issues to feedback

There were no key action points to feedback to Bedfordshire police Force Executive.

Any other business

Closing comments from Chair and expenses, DONM

Expenses claim forms can be completed to reimburse travel, parking etc for attending this meeting.

The next meeting will be held on Thursday 7 June 2018, at Tokko in Luton


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