Police Powers

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police powers

PACE ( Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984)- MAIN STATUE

use to check suspicions without an arrest

Section 1- 

can stop and search a person and vehicle in a public place if:

  • suspected possession of prohibited articles/stolen goods or weapons- used for criminal damage

Code of Practice A:

  • guidlines alongside PACE
  • not subjected to random/discriminatory S+S
  • objective basis
  • information recieved or unusal behaviour from suspect
  • 'REASONABLE SUSPICION'- not based on stereotypes/known to have previous convicitions

cant S+S on basis of apperance e.g. a gang is known to carry weapons and clothing is distinct.

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tomlinson v DPP

POLICE WERE NOT ALLOWED TO STOP AND SEARCH A PERSON WHO WAS WALKING AIMLESSLY IN SOHO- WHICH IS KNOWN FOR DRUGS

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Police powers- section 2 and 3

SAFEGUARDS:

  • officer- give name and station
  • not in uniform- must show warrant card
  • explain why the S+S
  • keep a written record of the S+S
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michaels vs. highbury corner magistrates court

D was charged with obstructing the police- he swallowed drugs when told not to- police didnt identify names or station so the S+S was unlawful

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Police powers

reasonable force can be used

can ask to remove outer coats/jackets/gloves

cant ask to remove headgear- protects religious groups 

stolen/prohibited articles can be taken off them

anything else removed must be done out the public eye

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stop and search powers from other acts of parliame

MISUSE OF DRUGS ACT 1971- REASONABLE SUSPCION OF UNLAWFUL POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED DRUG

SPORTING EVENTS ACT 1985- PRIOR TO ENTRY OF CERTAIN SPORTING EVENTS

TERRORISM ACT 2006- FOOTWEAR AND HEADWEAR REMOVED- REASONABLE SUSPCION THAT THE SUSPECT IS INVOLVED IN TERRORISM IN PUBLIC.

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evaluating stop and search

strengths:

  • allow police to check suspicions without arrest 
  • powers are matched by safeguards to protect public

weaknesses:

  • 1986-1998- stop and search increased to 1 MILLION
  • black people- 6 times more likely to be S+S
  • 2010/11- only 9% of S+S got arrested 
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powers of detention and questioning

PACE- gives time limints and procedures for keeping and interviewing a suspect

time to question is balanced with suspects right to liberty and fair treatment

CUSTODY OFFICER ( at least a sergant):

  • ensure suspects are detained and treated according to rules
  • must be independent to the investigation and arresting officer
  • keeps custody record- important evidence
  • notes down who has had the access to suspect
  • time and duration and reviews
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powers of detention and questioning

search upon detention

S54 PACE- custody officer- written record of suspects possessions

anything dangerous/used to escape can be seized- reasons must be given

can be searched agaisnt will

detention clock

  • 0 hours - arrives at station
  • 6 hours- review of detention trasnfered to designated station
  • 15 hours- furthger reviews every 9 hours
  • 24 hours- offence is serious- superintendent can authorise detention up to 36 hours
  • 36 hours- taken before magistrates court
  • 42 hours- court wasnt sitting-detained for 8 more hours
  • 72 hours- obtain a warrant for further detainment
  • 96 hours- charged or released 
  • non terrorism- max 96 hours
  • terrorism- max 14 (sometimes 28) days

very few are kept longer than 24 hours (1%)

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powers of detention and questioning

rights of a detained person

right to inform someone of arrest (section 56 PACE)

  • can inform someone of arrest (friend or relative)
  • right can be denied up to 36 hours by a senior police officer 
  • reasonable grounds that the suspect may inform another suspect about the arrest or evidence may be tampered with

CODE C:

  • should be allowed to speak on the phone for a reasonable time

right to legal advice section 58 PACE

  • can use own solicitor or dutt solicitior
  • custody office- asks if detainnee wants legal advice- written notice is given to suspect
  • access can be denied up to 36 hours by a senior police officer same reason as above
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cases for powers of detention and questioning

r v grant 2005

murder conviction- got rid of- communication between laywer and suspect had been interfered with

r v samuel 1988

spestic concern to deny acces to advice isnt a general worry

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powers of detention and questioning

right to consult code of practice

  • code c- cells heated and clean/lit
  • suspects fed and given drinks 
  • continuous 8 hours rest any 24 hour detention
  • under 17/mentally ill- appropriate adult present
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Questioning

Section 60 PACE

  • interviews are tape recorded- reliable and accurate evidence in court.
  • 2 copies are kept, master copy is sealed. working copy can be seen by lawyer+suspect
  • written record is made after the interview

baldwin 1992+Evans 1993

  • written records are not a fair record

The caution ( Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994)

  • must be given prior to questioning 
  • suspect has right to slience may be reffered to in court
  • inferences drawn about why they said nothing 
  • judge- suspect was innocent they would have said 
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Searches, Finger prints and Body samples

Sections of pace

  • strip searches (54)- removeall more than outer clothing- same sex member- find items of which a detained person isnt allowed
  • intimate searches (55) - authorisation from superintendent- believes the suspect has class A drugs or an item that can cause physical injury or is a drug related offence.
  • finger prints and body samples (61/62) - fingerprints hair and saliva (without consent). reasonable force can be used. intimate sample (blood semen urine, pubic hair) must be done by a nurse/doctor.
  • custody officer- records+ removes all property from detainee + can perform non intimate searches (removal of outer clothing)
  • finger prints- can be taken prior to arrest away from station. national automated finger print identification system- checks in mins. can also be taken at the station.
  • intimate sample- only by a doctor/nurse with reasonable grounds.
  • retention of samples- 2001 finger prints + samples- kept if guilty of offence

Criminal Justice And Police Act 2001-kept until they have served a fulfilling purpose- taken and put on a national database- kept for 3 years max- Protection Of Freedom Act 2012

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Powers Of Arrest

necessity test

  • S24 (PACE) (1-3) only excercised if reasonable grounds in believed any reason in S24(5) necessary to arret person in question.

grounds of necessity in S24(5)

  • S24(5)(a)- find ou the persons name if not known or is believed to be false
  • (b)-find out the persons address
  • (c) to prevent the person:
  • (i)- causing physical injury to themselves or another
  • (ii)- suffering physical injury
  • (iii)-causing loss/damage to property
  • (iv) committing an offence against public decency
  • (v) causing unlawful obstruction of the highway
  • (d)- protect a child/vulnerable person
  • (e)- allow prompt investigation of the offence/conduct of the person
  • (f)- prevent any prosecution for the offence- being hindered by the dissaperance of the suspect.
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Arrest- Code G

Code G

says a lawful arrest requires

  • person/suspect to be attempting to be involved in a crime
  • reasonable grounds to believe the arrest is necessary
  • officers must inform a person they have been arrested 
  • decision to arrrest is - operational decision (officers discretion to decide)
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Serious Organised Crime And Police Act 2005

Serious Organised Crime And Police Act 2005

  • original powers under S24/25 were ammended by (SOCPA)
  • changed - had to be an arrestable offence- now can be any offence

Magistrates Court Act 1980- Section 1

  • police apply to magistrates for an arrest warrant- issued following evidence that suspect is suspected of committing a crime
  • Manner Arrest- at time police have to tell suspect why they are being arrested 

Taylor v cheif constable of Thames Valley police (2004)-D was throwing stones during an anti-vivisection demonstration- at a new protest the police arrested him for the throwing of stones at the last demonstration. court appeal- this was understandable so arrest was lawful

Bibbly v cheif constable of essex police (2000)-court of appeal summariesed the conditions that must apply for this common law power of arrest to be used:

  • sufficiently real and present threat to peace-threat must come from the person to be arrested-conduct of person- cearly interfere with rights of others and natural consequences-conduct of person-  must be unreasonable
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