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.
1. i) How many sexual misconduct claims have been made against members of your police force over the last four years (2018, 2019, 2020, 2021 so far), with a breakdown for each year. By sexual misconduct, I mean: Rape, Sexual assault, Sexual harassment or Sexual misconduct.
ii) Please also break this down by claims made against a) police officers and b) police staff
iii) Please say whether the complaint was made by a) member of the public b) police officer/ member of staff
iv) I would also be grateful if you could indicate the seniority of the staff member. For example if a police officer, are they a sergeant/ chief inspector/ superintendent
2. i) Of the complaints per year, how many were made against a) men and how many against b) women.
ii) Please break this down by year
iii) and also by claims made against a) police officers and b) police staff
3. i) What outcome/decisions were taken as a result of each these complaints/claims.
ii) Please break this down by year
iii) and by outcome for a) police officer and b) police staff
After we sought clarity on your submission you replied ‘I can confirm that the use of the words ‘complaint’ and ‘claim’ in my information request can be construed as “allegations“.
We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention.
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 in part by Northumbria Police.
I am able to disclose the located information to you with the following caveats noted as follows:
• Data has been checked for allegations of sexual misconduct which have been recorded on a live system and as such may be subject to change after the initial extraction of data used for the purposes of this report.
• Results may contain historical allegations which have been reported and recorded during the time frame of this request, not necessarily the time of the incident, all alleged reports have been counted regardless of the outcome of any investigation and include cases that have been subsequently withdrawn by the complainant or where the disapplication process has been applied.
• Please note that the data has been presented in such a manner (grouped and uncorrelated) as to avoid the application of exemptions relevant under the Act (Section 40 – Personal Information) to withhold, and these will not be broken down further.
• The total final outcomes provided in response to point 3 will not match the number of allegations, as some cases are ongoing and as such the final outcomes are unknown.
• With all the above noted we respond as attached
Every effort is made to ensure that the figures presented are accurate and complete. However, it is important to note that these data have been extracted from a number of data sources used by forces for police purposes. The detail collected to respond specifically to your request is subject to the inaccuracies inherent in any large scale recording system. As a consequence, care should be taken to ensure data collection processes and their inevitable limitations are taken into account when interpreting those data.
The figures provided therefore are our best interpretation of relevance of data to your request, but you should be aware that the collation of figures for ad hoc requests may have limitations and this should be taken into account when those data are used.
If you decide to write an article / use the enclosed data we would ask you to take into consideration the factors highlighted in this document so as to not mislead members of the public or official bodies, or misrepresent the relevance of the whole or any part of this disclosed material.