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Police Powers - Stop & Search.

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Introduction

Police Powers Stop & Search Pace S1 - 7 The defendant and/or his vehicle may have been stopped and searched. The police may only do this: a) In a public place - this is widely defined. b) If PC has reasonable grounds to suspect that there is possession of stolen goods or certain other prohibited articles. c) The PC must give his name, station and indicate the purpose of the search, (in Osman v DPP, the search was unlawful as police failed to identify themselves.) d) Make a written record. A search in public is limited to removal of outer coat, jacket and gloves. Code A states that suspects may not be stopped because of their appearance or previous convictions. However, many suspects are stopped because of this. The suspect may also have been stopped & searched under other acts such as The Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 or the Prevention of Terrorism Act or the Criminal Justice & Public Order Act. There may also be a Voluntary search. S4 PACE allows RoadBlocks to be set up if authorised & there is a reasonable suspicion that the perpetrator of a serious arrestable offence is in that area. Search of Premises Without Warrant By S17, premises may be searched: * To find the suspect & to make an arrest with an arrest warrant, or without one is the offence is an arrestable offence. ...read more.

Middle

Police additionally can arrest anyone about to commit an AO or whom they reasonably suspect is about to commit such an offence or where they suspect an AO has been committed & they have reasonable grounds for arresting the suspect. S25 Pace Police can arrest anyone where the offence is a Non arrestable offence where the PC has reasonable grounds that the suspect has committed or is committing such an offence and the general arrest conditions are satisfied i.e.: * Correct name and address not given. * To protect vulnerable persons (suspect or others). * To protect property. * To prevent an offence against public decency. * The commission of an obstruction on the highway. There are other statutes permitting arrest without warrant e.g. Criminal Justice and Public Order Act allows PCs to arrest in cases of aggravated trespass. The Common Law also permits such arrests for breach of the peace. Reasonable force may be used when making a lawful arrest. Caution - Code D This must be given on arrest and suspect must be told the reason for his arrest - no particular form required. The caution was changed by the Criminal Justice and Public Order act. Now the "Right of Silence" is abolished, i.e. now the court/jury can draw adverse inferences from an accused's refusal to answer questions when interviewed & the new caution warns suspects of this. ...read more.

Conclusion

S78 The court would exclude evidence if in all the circumstances its admission would have such an adverse effect on the fairness of the proceedings that the court ought not to admit it. TAPE RECORDING of INTERVIEWS S60 All interviews must be tape-recorded. Criticism is that police obtain confessions etc. by wrongful means before recorded interview. There are pilot schemes i.e. video recordings. Personal Searches After Arrest S54 This allows for the suspect to be searched at the police station & for the police to seize anything found which might be evidence of an offence, obtained as a result of an offence, used to injure anyone or be used to escape. Must be carried out by person of the same sex & reasonable grounds. If in public removal of outer garments only is permitted. S55 Intimate searches may be carried out e.g. to find a weapon or class A drugs - this must be carried out by a nurse or doctor. Searches of the mouth are no longer regarded as "intimate". S62 Intimate samples may be taken, sometimes only with consent, if reasonable grounds, must be taken by a qualified person. S63 Non intimate samples e.g. hair or saliva may be taken without the suspects consent. S61 Fingerprints may be taken without consent. CPJO Act allows for speculative samples to be taken which can be checked against existing data, even if a suspect has been acquitted. ...read more.

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