The force has a commitment to becoming more open and transparent. Part of this is being better at sharing and engaging on some of the powers that our police officers use to keep people safe, and that includes Stop and Search.
We believe that greater scrutiny will further ensure that our use of these is right and proper.
What are we searching for?
The community continue to highlight to us that drugs are a real concern locally, and this is absolutely a priority for us in the local area. Our officers are using Stop and Search as one of many tactics to seek to address this, and our other priorities. Almost 77 per cent of all our searches were conducted under drug legislation, with 29 per cent of those resulting in a positive outcome.
Drugs can blight a community, and we will continue to use the powers available to us, as well as working with our partners, to tackle this. We know this is having a positive impact. Gosport is also impacted by the effects of County Lines drug gangs, but we are focused on disruption, prosecution, and, importantly, safeguarding vulnerable people.
We are intelligence led and have seen a 31.5% increase in positive outcomes for all searches over the last 3 months. This demonstrates a consistent level of legitimacy when using stop & search.
Is our use of Stop and Search in Gosport proportionate?
The latest data tells us a black person is 3.5 times more likely to be stopped in Gosport compared to a white person.
We know that some families who have lost loved ones to violence and drug related harm advocate police searches but we also know many people have concerns about whether policing powers are used fairly. As a force we know that it helps us to keep people safe and spend considerable time scrutinising how it is used. But, we also recognise that our view alone is not enough.
We need views from others so we are doing far more engagement than we did previously. Scrutiny involving our Independent Advisory Groups (made up of members of the public) is therefore part of our approach, and we would encourage people all of our communities to get involved in these groups. We also want to hear more views on Stop and Search. Follow us on Facebook if you’d like to take part in discussions about policing in your local area.
Where can I find more information about Stop & Search in Gosport?
You can see more about the numbers by looking at the infographic, below. We have also provided the same data in a different format if that is easier for you.