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LPC - Criminal Litigation > Police Powers > Flashcards

Flashcards in Police Powers Deck (21)
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Police Hierarchy

Preceded by "Police" or "Detective" depending on dept.
- Constable
- Sergeant
- Inspector
- Chief Inspector
- Superintendent
- Chief Superintendent


Powers (for the purposes of the module)

1. Stop and search
2. Arrest
3. Detention without charge
4. Taking intimate samples
5. Taking non-intimate samples


Stop and Search

Authority: Section 1 PACE permits a constable to search any person or vehicle for stolen or prohibited articles in a public place. - S.23 Misues of drugs act for drugs search.

Police require reasonable grounds for suspecting...


S&S - Reasonable grounds

COP A 2.2 - Reasonable grounds is a legal test in two parts:
1. Office must have genuine suspicion
2. There must be an objective basis for suspicion.
Can never be based on personal factors
Can arise from: behaviour, intelligence (COP A 2)


S&S execution - information

s.2 PACE & COP A 3.8-3.11.
Officer must tell the individual:
- they are being detained for purpose of search
- officer's name (save for COP A 3.8(b)
- legal search power being exercised (e.g. PACE/MDA)
- purpose of the search and the reasonable grounds
- that he is entitled to a copy of the search report.


S&S execution - How and Where

- can only be in public place, unless trespassing on public dwelling (PACE 1(4&5))
- must be carried out with courtesy, consideration and respect (COP A 3.1)
- Cooperation must be sought, reasonable force only as a last resort (COP A 3.2)
- must be carried out near where person or vehicle was detained (COP A 3.4)
- No power to require a person to remove clothing other than an outer coat, jacket or gloves (COP A 3.5). Where a more thorough search is required must be conducted out of public view (police van or station) (COP A 3.6)


S&S - recording the search

Records required to be kept and results subsequently checked to ensure that there has been no unfairness towards individuals. Rules on recording contained in s.3 PACE and COP A 4.1-4.20


Arrest - authority

Power of arrest without a warrant contained in s.24 PACE


Arrest - Criteria

1. Reasonable grounds to believe that an offence has been / is being / will be committed. (PACE 24(1))
2. Reasonable grounds to believe the arrest is necessary. (24(4))


Arrest - test of necessity

s.24(5) PACE - Grounds most widely used in practice are:
- to allow prompt an effective investigation of the offence or of the conduct of the person in question
- to prevent the prosecution for the offence from being hindered by the disappearance of the person

Check COP G 2.4-2.9 for full list.


Arrest - execution

s.28 + COP G 3.1-3.7 - arrest not lawful unless person informed that they are under arrest and the grounds for the arrest - even when obvious.

Caution must also be given (COP C 10.4&5):

"You do not have to say anything. But it may harm your defence if you do not mention when questioned something which you later rely on in court. Anything you do say may be given in evidence."


If an arrest is unlawful due to procedural irregularities...

It may subsequently be rendered lawful by correction of the defective part of the arrest procedure (Lewis v Chief Constable of South Wales [1991])


At the police station - delay to the right to have someone informed when arrested.

Authority: Section 56(1) PACE - can be delayed for up to 36 hours
Criteria: Inspector must have reasonable grounds to believe that telling the named person of the arrest will lead to one of the consequences in s.56(5) or 56(5A)
Exercise: delay should be proportionate and no longer than necessary. Suspect must be informed of delay and authorisation must be in writing.


At the police station - delay to the right to legal advice

s.58(1) - right to consult a solicitor privately

Right can be delayed for up to 36 hours if authorised by a superintendent and is permitted

COP C Annex B paragraph 3 - authority to delay should only be given if reasonable grounds to believe solicitor will pass on a message (inadvertently or otherwise) from the detainee or act in some way that will lead to the consequences in s.58(8).

Cannot be delayed on the grounds of "no comment" advice. (COP C Annex B para 4).


Intimate Samples - definition

s.65 PACE:
- blood, urine, tissue fluid, pubic hair
- a dental impression
- a swab taken from any part of a person's genitals (including pubic hair) or from a person's body orifice other than the mouth.


Intimate samples - criteria

s. 62 PACE:
- suspect must consent
- officer of at least the rank of inspector must authorise
- authority must be in writing (confirmed in writing)
- inspector must have reasonable grounds for suspecting the involvement of the person in a recordable offence and believing the sample will tend to confirm or disprove his involvement.
- suspect must be warned that failure to consent can be given as evidence in court.


Intimate sample - execution

Suspect must be informed of:
- the reason for the sample
- the authorisation an legal authority
- refusal without good cause may harm their defence
- sample might be subject to a speculative search

s. 62 PACE Also requires that:
- grounds, authorisation and consent must be noted in custody records
- only a medical practitioner, health care professional or dentist may take the sample.


Non-intimate samples - definition

s.65 PACE:
- sample of hair other than pubic hair
- sample from a nail or under a nail
- swab taken from any part of a person's body other than a part from which a swab taken would be an intimate sample.
- saliva
- skin impression


Non-intimate samples - criteria

s.63 PACE
(ss.63(2A)-(2C)) - Police able to take without consent if:
- suspect detained for a recordable offence; and
- no such sample has yet been taken, or any which have, were not good enough for the purpose for which they were taken.

No requirement for the suspect to be charged or cautioned.


Non-intimate samples - execution

S.117 PACE allows use of reasonable force if necessary.

COP D 6.8 - before any non-intimate sample is taken without the suspect's consent, he must be informed:
- reason for the sample
- power and authority
- sample and info derived from it may be subject to a speculative search
- sample and info derived from it may be retained.


Fingerprints and other samples

s.61 PACE
can be taken without consent where:
- arrested or charged for a recordable offence and prints not already taken.

- must be informed of reason, power and authority, spec search, info retained