IPCC records spike in complaints against Beds Police

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Formal complaints made against Beds Police have risen by almost 15% in the last year, according to new figures.

Independent Police Complaints Commission statistics show that in 2014/15 the force received 401 complaints– an increase of 48 (14%) on the previous 12 months.

Of those cases 22% were investigated and 69% were dealt with through the force’s resolution process.

Beds Police took on average 104 days to resolve each complaint and the IPCC upheld 26% of appeals made about force’s case investigations.

IPCC chair Dame Anne Owens warned that nationally the police complaints procedure needs an overhaul.

She said: “The figures for England and Wales show a complaints system that is both over-complex and inconsistent, and is clearly failing to satisfy a significant number of complainants.

“Chief officers and police and crime commissioners should look closely at the figures for their own forces to satisfy themselves that complainants are being treated fairly and well.

“However, the underlying problem is the system itself.”

Dame Owens added that the current process “satisfies neither those who need it nor those who have to operate it.”

> This week the Home Office has said that it is unable to push the IPCC to speed up its investigation into the death of Luton father Leon Briggs.

Responding to a call for action from Luton South MP Gavin Shuker, Home Office under secretary Lord Ahmad said that the government cannot intervene in probes.

November 4 will mark two years since the death of Mr Briggs, who was detained by officers and taken to Luton Police Station under section 136 of the Mental Health Act.

Six officers remain under investigation.