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Community Stop Search Scrutiny Panel - Minutes September 2020

Title of meeting: Bedfordshire Community Stop Search Scrutiny Panel
Date: Tuesday 15 September 2020
Time: 6pm to 8.20pm
Venue: Via Skype

Attendees: Chair Montell Neufville,(MN) Vice Chair Andy Watts,(AW) Myrny Loy (ML) Phil Dickson Earl (PDE) Martin White (MW) Shaidah Ali (SA) Elaine Keen (EK) Francesca Keen (FK)

Also In attendance: PCC Office: Clare Kelly CEO,(CK) Zoe-Jade Fraser, (ZF) Beds Police: Chief Staff Officer. Rachael Glendenning (RG) Chief Insp. Ian Taylor, (IT) A/Sgt Vic Sanghera (VS)

Apologies: None

Welcome, Introductions, apologies

The Chair, Montell Neufville (MN) welcomed everyone and introduced himself to new members and apologies were made.

The panel then introduced themselves.

MN also mentioned the new Police members to the Stop and Search panel and invited them to introduce themselves.

Minutes of last meeting, matters arising and actions points

MN went through the minutes and the actions from the last meeting one by one.

(with regards to section 3 on last minutes) MN explained the issue they are having if a complaint about Stop and Search is being received outside of the Panel and is delivered to other areas of the force, the panel are not receiving this information. The Panel will now have to review this. This is still ongoing. MN to keep the panel updated.

Past Actions that are still ongoing:

  • IT to review the data provided and ensure the data provided is correct and where possible more in line with Police.Uk before the next Stop and Search meeting
  • The action to invite Detective Inspector Mark Pugh to the Panel is at the discretion of IT.
  • MN to speak to Ch Insp Hob HOQUE for another round of training for the Use of Force sub group and new members.
  • IT to reinforce to officers the policy of BWV and also for supervisors to complete BWV checks on their staff
  • CK and IT to go back to the Force to restart receiving this data for the panel (BWV use data)
  • CK will formally take this point concerning data quality back to the Force Strategic Board for them to provide reassurance on getting this correct – has been taken to the board, however, added to future agenda for more discussions to be had.
  • CK / IT -COVID-19 FPN -to drill down into the data received and understand in detail these figures for more accurate assessment.
  • IT to send out communications regarding this as way of reinforcement.

Minutes were agreed and signed off for last meeting.

Terms of reference (TOR)

MN explained the importance of going through the TOR

MN presented the TOR V8 on screen.

MN talked through the TOR one by one.

FK pointed out there needs to be more clarity on the TOR about how the Chair and Vice Chair are appointed. MN said the Chair is elected and the doc will be sent out for comment. Anyone who want to put their name forward to do anything is welcome to

MW explained that the Use of Force Panel should now be added to the section about ‘additional sub groups’.

Action: VS to attach the TOR to the Minutes when sending out to all members

CK pointed out (Section 2 – 2.2) the aim for number of attendees at each S&S SP meeting would be larger when meeting face to face and may need to be changed specifically for the numbers during COVID 19.

CK added that there may need to be a section about watching the videos from home / remotely but the force are still committed to doing that, just through another means.

Action: ALL – read through the Terms of Reference and report back with anysuggestions/ideas of what needs to be added or altered. Please send allsuggestions/notes to the Stop and Search email address within 1 month of thismeeting.

Action: C, VC, IT and CK will meet in one months’ time to discuss and take on comments and create an updated version of the TOR.

Report back from BWV sub group

MN explained what the BWV sub group is for and why they do it.

VS thanked those who are involved with the BWV sub group.

VS explained there has been a big backlog due to the Covid-19 issues that they faced. They

were behind but they are now on target.

VS went through the BWV statistics:

Total viewed = 17 videos

  • 10 = Green
  • 7 = Amber
  • 0 = Reds

Common issues =

  • Officers not turning their cameras on early enough
  • Too many officers standing around at Stop and Searches – (that can sometimes be intimidating to the public)
  • The encounter taking too long
  • Handcuffs being used too frequently
  • Officers writing things on forms that do not constitute for legal grounds

VC explained the RAG process and asked MN if this was going to be an ongoing process. MN explained that the RAG process has been narrowed down further into Green 1, Green 2, Green 3 and Amber 4, Amber 5 & 6 etc. this will allow the panel to go into a bit more detail.

MN said that the number of people getting stopped for being in a ‘hot spot’ has gone down since the start of the S&S SP process. .

Report back from Use of Force Sub Group

VS went through some general feedback from the UoF Sub group.

Last sub group occurred 25 May 2020

4 videos were selected, one of which was from custody. 2 – Green 2 – Amber The information has now been fed back to all the officers involved.

VS explained there would be at least 1 video from custody a week in the UoF SG.

CK requested Katie Beaumont (or a representative) is involved in all Use of Force Sub Groups due to her involvement with the ICV scheme.

Action: VS to invite KB to all future UoF SG meetings.

MN explained that the UoF SG may meet every month as there are so many to get through.

Feedback from Force Lead

IT said that data quality has been a challenge and is an issue that was raised at the last meeting. Part of the issue is the publicly accessible data on Police UK and the internal data. The main issue was around the ‘Location’ data. The gap between the internal data and the Police UK data has reduced considerably. This is thanks to the update of the recording platform.

IT explained that they held a community S&S focus group on Thursday with MN who invited around 30 people. They invited wider community members to share their knowledge, experience and concerns around Bedfordshire. He explained that the majority of the group felt that S&S in Bedfordshire was in a good place, and the majority of the negative experiences that people had or heard about had happened elsewhere, particularly in the MET. London area.

IT believes the Community S&S focus group should be held again as it gives the community a chance for their voices to be heard.

IT told the group that tomorrow would be the pilot for a Youth S&S engagement panel. That’s piloted with Luton YOS. They are getting a group of people they are engaged with to sit and talk about S&S and in week 2/3, VS will go along and ask them a series of questions about their experience with S&S.

Stop & Search Figures

IT then went through the S&S figures on a powerpoint display (attached to the bottom of the minutes).

Action: MN has requested that IT includes the Arrest Rates on the Summary Page.

VC asked why was there a spike in January? IT explained that he was not sure about the January spike but will take this away as an action to look into.

Action: IT to look into spike in S&S’s in January 2020

MN pointed out the spike in May. IT explained that the intelligence team said about March, April, May and June being the height of lockdown being a spike in Drug related S&S’s and it correlated to the drug related intelligence received.

MN explains the importance of arrest rates. The ultimate goal of specialist officers is to fight crime. If there are high NFA and event positive actions it indicates that there is low intelligence and nothing serious is found.

Action: IT – to have the arrest rate as a percentage on the Stop and Search outcomes page.

SA asked for more of an explanation on what ‘arrest not relating to the search’ was, and for examples. IT explains in more detail and gives examples.

(The reason for arrests not relating to the search being included was this is a recommendation from the Best Use of Stop and Search scheme where people complained that they were told one thing and arrested for something different like a public order offence)

MN said after the last meeting, he passed on the last two years data summary, including the headline figures, to Assistant Chief Constable Sharn Basra.

Action: MN to forward the data that was sent to Sharn Basra to IT and the rest of the panel.

MN mentioned that the disproportionality rates in Central Bedfordshire for people of a black background are higher than most. He believes this needs an investigation. MN explained he had spoke to IT yesterday about this number. A suggestion is that when the sub panel meet, they concentrate on Central Bedfordshire and they don’t look at Luton at this moment. He wants them to focus on why there is such a high rate of disproportionality in Central Beds and why there is such a high percentage of no further actions.

IT explained he is starting to look into setting up a working group to look into this matter and to understand the context of this.

MN explained why they use ‘officer defined’ over ‘self defined’ when analysing data. (

Officer defined could be based on bias)

AW suggested that the panel should look at the Bedford figures also. MN and IT agreed.

MN explained that the panel need to see evidence if a potential number of them are gang intelligence led S&S’s.

AW asked for data of the top 10 officers and their spread across the 3 local authority areas. IT doesn’t think that’s data they hold. The data he currently has is for the whole force area. He believes it can be added and he will take it back to the performance analysts.

Action: IT to see if they can get hold of the data of the top 10 officers divided by the 3 local authority areas.

MW asked if there is data showing the average amount of S&S’s across the force, per officer. MN doesn’t believe this data would be relevant due to the amount of officers in the force who do not use stop and search and the small amount of officers that are in proactive units which do S&S’s most often.

MN asked if the top 10 officers will be checked and sampled? IT explained that now he has this information, he has gone to each leadership team and explained that one of their officers is in the top 10. He wants to be reassured that they re applying appropriate scrutiny and quality assurance to those S&S’s, so what he wants to see is that they are appropriately dip sampling BWV and then for them to send a report back into VS.

CK asked MN if all 8 Profession Standards: Public Complaints have come through to the panel? MN said none have come through to the panel.

Action: The S&S panel should be made aware of ALL S&S complaints and so far have not been made aware of any.

Action: VC asked IT to send presentation to all. (They are attached to the minutes)

PDE asked if the panel can be involved in the dip sampling of the top 10 officers. IT agrees the panel should be involved.

Stop & Search Videos

VS played video 1 Feedback

  • GOWISELY was followed
  • All agreed on verdict – GREEN

VS played video 2 Feedback –

  • Handcuffs deployed immediately – no reason from what the panel saw that led to handcuffs being needed.
  • Apart from the automatic handcuffs, the officer dealt with the situation very well.
  • GOWISELY was followed
  • All agreed on verdict – need to look into handcuffing -GREEN

FK asked for a further explanation of the parameters in which handcuffs should be used.

IT explained when and why handcuffs are used.

FK made the point that the panel wouldn’t know if the call centre had told them of previous convictions etc.

MN explained that officers are told to explained why they are putting someone in handcuffs.

He then explained that officers could talk into the BWV to explain why they are doing certain things.

IT explains ‘compliant handcuffing’ and explains that the Use of Force panel may be better dealing with.

MN stated that the whole reason for the stop and search panel was to look at stop and searches, anything following on from a search was the remit of the panel including if force was used. For this reason all vetted members are on both the stop and search panel and Use of Force sub group.

Update on any Stop & Search issues in the Community

CK thanked RG for attending the S&S SP as it helps when going into Strategic Board and talking about this meeting.

MN said he spoke to Sharn Basra after the last meeting about getting Mark Pew to come to future meetings. SB explained that he already has IT coming to these meetings but he can get the information from Mark.

IT explained some more data that may help explain the spike in drug searches.

MN explained the different ways you can use data and how it can help look into different community issues.

AOB

Not applicable

Meeting closed:

CK thanked the panel for their attendance at the meeting and although difficult there is a real need to maintain this group and sub group during these times.

MN also thanked the group for their contribution.

Meeting closed 8.20pm

Date of next meeting December 3 2020 6pm to 8.30pm

Action list

  • VS to attach the TOR to the Minutes when sending out to all members
  • ALL – read through the Terms of Reference and report back with any suggestions/ideas of what needs to be added. Please send all suggestions/notes to the Stop and Search email address within 1 month of this meeting.
  • C, VC, IT and CK will meet in one months’ time to discuss and take on comments and create an updated version of the TOR.
  • VS to invite KB to all future UoF SG meetings.
  • MN has requested that IT includes the Arrest Rates on the Summary Page.
  • IT to look into spike in S&S’s in January 2020
  • IT – to have the arrest rate as a percentage on the Stop and Search outcomes page.
  • MN to forward the data that was sent to Sharn Basra to IT.
  • IT to see if they can get hold of the data of the top 10 officers spread amongst the 3 local authorities.
  • The S&S panel should be made aware of ALL S&S complaints and so far have not been made aware of any.
  • VC asked IT to send presentation to all.

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