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One per cent of complaints about officers led to misconduct action

The Home Office has released statistics on complaints over officers for the year ending March 31 2021.

The statistics showed that of the 14,393 official complaints made to forces across the year, only 1 per cent resulted in misconduct proceedings – with investigators deciding that for the majority, 69 per cent, there was “no case to answer”.

Meanwhile, no action was taken against 92 per cent of cases.

An additional 1,675 complaints were deemed “conduct matters” and 940 more were “recordable conduct matters” – involving serious allegations against officers such as action which led to death, injury and claims involving sexual harassment.

The Home Office data covers only the complaints and conduct matters that were considered “serious enough to require investigation and were also finalised in the year ending 31 March 2021”.

The total number of all complaints received is higher. In November last year, the IOPC reported that forces and local policing bodies logged 67,732 complaint cases across the financial year, with forces taking on average six working days to log a complaint.

Among the most commonly logged allegation categories were police powers, policies and procedures and discriminatory behaviour.

The IOPC received 969 applications to review complaints dealt with by police forces and 491 applications to review complaints not investigated by police forces.

The number of reviews received following complaints that had been investigated was 478.

The most common age group to complain were those aged 30-39, while 67 per cent of officers complained about were male, 81 per cent white, where known.

Today’s Home Office data showed disparities between forces; 2,624 grievances were made about police in London – 2,560 against Met officers and 64 against those in the City of London force.

In contrast the four Welsh forces recorded 744 complaints

Changes to the complaints system has meant that all the statistics cited are classified as “experimental” meaning the stats are in “the testing phase and not fully developed”.

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