Complaints about police soar to 1k

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Complaints against West Yorkshire Police rose to 1,000 in 2013/14.

New Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC)stats show the 24 per cent surge compares to the 15 per cent rise in England and Wales for this period.

In the previous year, complaints recorded by the force had fallen two per cent.

Overall, 1,707 allegations were made against West Yorkshire Police. Per 1,000 employees, the force recorded 185 allegations compared to 251 in England and Wales.

Det Chief Supt Clive Wain, of West Yorkshire Police’s professional standards department, said West Yorkshire Police treat all complaints “extremely seriously” and work hard to ensure each matter is investigated professionally and in good time.

He added that much of the increase is due to new recording measures meaning complaints can be made against operational policing decisions as well as the officer conduct.

“It is pertinent to note that we have the lowest rate of complaints per 1,000 officers of any of the larger police forces across the country,” he said.

“This demonstrates the professionalism of officers and that our ongoing work around the national Code of Ethics is continuing to improve standards to a point where we stand out nationally.”

Through the IPCC, people can appeal about the way in which a force has handled their initial complaint.

Fifty-one per cent of appeals from the public against West Yorkshire Police were upheld by the IPCC – 26 percent were upheld by the force itself. The overall uphold rate by forces in England and Wales is 20 per cent, compared with 46 per cent by the IPCC.

The IPCC upheld 23 of 35 (66 per cent) appeals where people were unhappy that West Yorkshire Police had not recorded their complaint, and nearly half (46 per cent)of 102 appeals from people displeased with the force’s investigation into their complaint.