Complaints against police officers has tripled in a year

Complaints against police officers have more than tripled in a year after scandals involving abusers such as David Carrick and Wayne Couzens.

Some 48,979 incidents generated 115,235 individual complaints – an average of 2.4 per case or 315 a day.

The latest Home Office figures for the year ending March 2022 compare with just 14,393 incidents in the previous 12 months.

Six in 10 complainants accepted the response from their force. Only 158 officers faced disciplinary action, with 151 cases resulting in misconduct proceedings and just six a gross misconduct hearing.

Nine officers were sacked and a further 13 would have been if they had still been serving.

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The Met Police, the largest force, received the most complaints with 20,356. The figures cover a period beginning in April 2021, the month after Couzens killed Sarah Everard. Carrick, a serial rapist in the Met whose crimes were reported to police for years, was finally arrested in October 2021 after publicity around Couzens.

Essex Police recorded the highest number of complaints per officer last year, with an average of 1.5 for each of its 3,700 officers. Hampshire and Kent recorded 1.4.

Most complaints – 35,114 – related to delivery of duties, some 26,817 over use of powers and 13,812 over officer behaviour.

Discriminatory behaviour led to 3,854 complaints. Property or premises attracted 2,714. A further 1,803 related to access or ­disclosure of information.

Some 1,393 were over alleged abuse of position or corruption. And some 537 related to vehicles and 214 about sexual conduct.

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