Coventry & Warwickshire

Warwickshire Police complaints figures increase

Complaints against Warwickshire Police officers have increased by 13%, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has said.

A spokesman said Warwickshire Police recorded 256 complaints against officers from 2009-10, compared with 226 in the previous year.

The main allegations were about neglect or failure in duty, incivility and assault.

Warwickshire Police said it welcomed the work carried out by the IPCC.

It said the figures showed the force was committed to listening to concerns raised by the community and was keen to deal with complaints effectively.

But Chris White, MP for Warwick and Leamington, sad it was important the force find out why the number of complaints had gone up.

He said: "Warwickshire Police officers do an excellent job in often very difficult circumstances and I can't praise their professionalism enough.

"But as there has been this above-average increase in complaints I think it's important to find out why.

"I have arranged a meeting with the police to discuss that further and to see what lessons can be learned."

'Learning opportunities'

The IPCC has published its annual complaints statistics for all 43 police forces in England and Wales.

Nationally the figures show an 8% increase in complaints from last year.

A total of 33,854 people complained about the police in England and Wales.

The most common aspects of policing that people complained about remained the same as in previous years.

Nearly 50% of allegations were about officers neglecting their duties or being rude.

The total number of allegations contained within the complaints in Warwickshire was 608, up from 458 the previous year.

For incivility, the number of allegations rose from 92 to 101, while for neglect of duty the figure rose from 123 to 208.

For assault there were 79 allegations compared with 58 the previous year.

Deputy Chief Constable Andy Parker said: "Overall the figures clearly demonstrate that Warwickshire Police is committed to listening to concerns raised by members of our community and is keen to ensure complaints are dealt with effectively.

"We always want to increase public trust and confidence and recognise that complaints can provide valuable learning opportunities to improve our service, prevent future errors and protect more people from harm.

"We recognise that we don't always get things right, but our officers and staff are often doing their job under difficult circumstances and misconduct is only apparent in a small number of complaint cases."

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