Thames Valley Police

Thames Valley crime rises 2% more than national average

Thames Valley Police headquarters in Kidlington, Oxfordshire
Thames Valley Police
Thames Valley Police has its headquarters in Kidlington, Oxfordshire

Recorded crime in the Thames Valley rose by 9.7% in the financial year that ended in March - 2% more than in England and Wales overall - according to the Office for National Statistics.

Det Chf Con Jason Hogg said: "We continue to see rises in some crime categories as victims are having more confidence to report previously hidden crime such as domestic abuse, sexual crime as well as stalking and harassment.

"The reasons for crime recording fluctuations are quite complex and are not necessarily just as a result of an actual increase in crime.

"The increase in overall crime numbers in the Thames Valley is linked to changes in our crime recording processes with our officers and staff now recording crimes at point of contact."

'Perfect storm' of cuts is behind rising mental health issues for police

Craig O'Leary

A "perfect storm" of austerity and cuts to police resources is behind rising levels of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and stress among police officers, a force federation has said.

More than 10,500 officers across the UK had to take time off with stress, depression, anxiety or PTSD symptoms in the past year, a rise of 69% since 2012/13.

400 Thames Valley Police (TVP) officers took time off work for stress, depression, anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder in the past year.

TVP federation chairman Craig O’Leary said: "If you keep exposing police officers to that much pressure, coupled with the traumatic things they deal with on a day-to-day basis in their jobs, it doesn’t take a scientist to work out that we’re going to suffer disproportionately to most other occupations in terms of PTSD, workplace stress, depression and anxiety.

"“[These figures] show it’s not a good story. Now we need to make sure that we are there, that people step up to the plate, organisations support officers that are going through these tough times," he added.

Suspect swallowed drugs after officers were 'distracted'

Leroy Medford
Leroy Junior Medford was arrested in April 2017 on suspicion of assault and taken to Loddon Valley police station in Reading

A police force has said it was "relatively uncommon" for officers to encounter suspects who concealed drugs on them in custody after a man died when he swallowed heroin.

An inquest found a "failure" by Thames Valley Police officers to carry out "constant observations" on Leroy Junior Medford was the "main contributory factor" to the 43-year-old's death.

The force admitted two officers "became distracted", allowing Mr Medford to swallow the drugs he had hidden in between his buttocks.

The father-of-eight died 15 hours later from a heroin overdose, the inquest found.

Deputy Chief Constable Jason Hogg told the BBC the force would "seek to make organisational change and learn" from the death.