Devon and CornwallPolice Federation

Policing News

Gloucestershire Police restructuring announced

Gloucestershire's Police and Crime Commissioner has announced the biggest re-organisation of policing in the county in 40 years. Martin Surl said the force would look smaller in the future with changes being brought in ahead of expected budget cuts. A single neighbourhood command is to replace six existing policing areas. PCSOs will start to be deployed beyond their own neighbourhood policing area if they are the nearest resource. Mr Surl, who unveiled the changes, said: "I have to say that when I took office some aspects of the constabulary were not in a great shape in Gloucestershire. "Now, the organisation is far more stable than it was. Even though the financial picture is tricky, we know where we are and our books balance. "I'm not worried about it unduly. So I think we have managed to consolidate some of the gains we've made and can look forward to the future". Chief Constable Suzette Davenport said: "We need to improve public satisfaction and confidence in our force and ensure we can deliver the quality service we aspire to provide. "A new way of working is a crucial means for us to deliver this aspiration." The first changes, which were announced following a two-year review of the force's operating methods, are expected to take place early in the new year.

Kent Police fracking debate meeting list request criticised

Kent Police has been criticised for asking a university to hand over a list of people due to attend a debate about fracking. Canterbury Christ Church University, which hosted the forum on 19 November, refused the request. Panellist and Green Party councillor Ian Driver said it was an "abuse of powers" and has demanded an apology. Kent Police said it needed to assess the "threat and risk" for significant events to maintain public safety. The "Free public debate on fracking in the UK" event was hosted by the university's School of Psychology, Politics and Sociology and attended by about 200 people.

Boy, 13, charged with Christopher John Barry's Edmonton murder

A 13-year-old boy has been charged with the murder of a man who was stabbed to death in north London. Christopher John Barry, 53, was killed on Sunday evening at his home in The Broadway, Edmonton. Post-mortem tests found he had been stabbed in the chest. The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, will appear at Highbury Corner Youth Court on Wednesday. Another boy aged 13, and three aged 14, have been bailed until January after their arrest on suspicion of murder. Mr Barry, who was known as Jack, is understood to have been returning home with a female friend, when he was involved in an altercation with a group as he tried to get into the building. Det Chief Insp Neale Baldock, of the Homicide and Major Crime Command, who is leading the investigation, said a "supervised party" had been taking place at another address in the block. Mr Barry suffered a stab wound to the chest which led to police and London's air ambulance being called. He was pronounced dead at the scene shortly after 20:30 GMT.

Etwall's John Port School sends letters over sex-related texts

A secondary school has sent thousands of letters to parents about investigations into "sexting" scams. John Port School in Derbyshire said an individual had threatened to publicise inappropriate pictures of girls, which he claimed to have obtained. Derbyshire Police said it has arrested a 16-year-old boy in connection with the incident. Pupils' mobile phones containing inappropriate pictures of girls have been handed to police, the school said. Sexting is a term used for sending explicit pictures via text message or over the internet. The school in Etwall said in a letter posted on its website that police were investigating four incidents involving indecent pictures of pupils.

Northampton brawl: Ex-MP questions lack of arrests over stabbings

A former MP has questioned why no arrests have been made four days after six people were stabbed in a 60-strong brawl in Northampton. Tony Clarke said "it is difficult to understand" how the situation was allowed to get so out of control. The fight on Friday morning took in Faces and NU Bar, on Bridge Street. Northamptonshire Police said sufficient officers had been on duty and had been at the scene in force, but has not commented on the lack of arrests. However Mr Clarke, who represented Northampton South from 1997 to 2005 and has worked as a special constable, disputed the force's claim saying policing on the night had "not been effective". He said: "It makes a mockery of the police and crime commissioner's (PCC) pledge to reduce violent crime.

Durham crowbar deer-death police face disciplinary hearing

Two police officers who allegedly beat an injured deer to death with a crowbar are to face a disciplinary hearing. The Durham Police firearms officers had been dispatched to destroy the animal, which was believed to have been hit by a vehicle at Tanfield Lea. But it is understood that, instead of using a firearm, the officers used a crowbar to kill it. Andrew Pittilla and Brian Clewlow will face a gross misconduct hearing but will not face any criminal charges. The incident happened in June and was reported to senior staff by other officers two weeks later. A police spokesman said: "We have been informed by the CPS of their decision that the two officers will not be charged with criminal offences but should instead be dealt with under police misconduct regulations. "It is expected a gross misconduct hearing will be held before the end of this calendar year." The spokesman said the force was confident the regulations would "ensure a considered and fully informed resolution". The police said it was not unusual for firearms officers to be deployed when a deer or other large animal was clearly suffering after being struck by a vehicle and the best action would be for it to be destroyed humanely. The two officers were moved to other duties after the allegation was made.