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Officers & Staff Drink or Drug Driving - 027/20

Date Responded 31 January 2020

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.

You asked:

  1. I want to know how many a. police officers and b. police staff employed by your force were arrested on suspicion of drink and/or drug driving in each of the last three years [2019, 2018 and 2017]?
  2. Of this number I want to know how many were a. prosecuted and b. convicted in each of the last three years [2019, 2018 and 2017]?
  3. Of those convicted how many lost their jobs and who were they [full name, age, rank and responsibility]?

In Response:

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted with the Professional Standards Department of Northumbria Police.  I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police.

I am able to disclose the located information to you as follows.

Year

No of Officers

No of Staff

2017

2

0

2018

2

0

2019

0

0

 

As much of the information you have requested, at points 2 and 3 is accessible by other means I have not provided you with a copy of the information and will rely on Section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.  You should therefore consider this a refusal for those parts your request.

I have provided an explanation to this exemption below.

Section 21 (1) - Information accessible by other means

Information which is reasonably accessible to the applicant is exempt information.

The information requested is freely available in published press articles via a search of the internet.  In order to aid and assist you we have provided some of the relevant links below.  Please note that within the articles the age of the officers is listed and we can see no value or purpose is supplying dates of birth:

https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/police-officer-thrown-out-force-13759602

https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/cocaine-copper-sacked-northumbria-police-15219130

https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/drink-drive-rape-detective-sacked-13097419

https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/news/north-east-news/northumbria-police-drunk-hotel-manager-16966776

With regards to the information regarding the unnamed officer in 2018.  Northumbria Police will not be supplying any further information and will rely on the following exemption:

S40(5) Personal information         

Under the Freedom of Information Act, information that is disclosed is released to the public as a whole and not just to the individual applicant.  As such, Northumbria Police would not wish to confirm or deny to the public at large whether unsubstantiated information is held about any individual Police Officer or otherwise.  A disclosure in this instance, because it is so specific, would infringe the first Data Protection Principle, in that it would be both unlawful and unfair.

You should consider this to be a refusal under section 17 of the Act.

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