Font Size:
Speech:
Date Responded 05 February 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 would like to know the incidents of death of police officers whilst under investigation for misconduct. Both natural and suicide.
  2. If this is not recorded I would like to know why?

After we sought a time period from you on the 13 January 2020, you responded on 24 January 2020 with the time period 1 January 2010 to 1 January 2020.

In Response:

Following receipt of your request, searches were conducted within Northumbria Police.  I can confirm that the information you have requested is held by Northumbria Police however will not be disclosed as the following exemption has been applied as relevant.

Section 38(1) Health and Safety

Section 38 requires the harm and public interest to be considered prior to any disclosure being made.

These are set out below

Harm Test - Section 38

The release of the information requested would serve no policing purpose, other than curiosity, and would affect the wellbeing and mental health of any family members and those involved in such instances. Information that may lead to the identification of an individual which may then impact on family and friends by endangering an individuals  health and safety or that of their friends, relatives and associates should be avoided. The individual can be anyone, and the harm may be real or perceived.

Public Interest Test - Section 38

Factors Favouring Disclosure

Disclosure would increase public awareness and debate. This could be seen as the force being open and transparent.

Factors Favouring Non-Disclosure

The disclosure of any details regarding such incidents would lead to further distress of all those involved and harm their mental health. The anguish suffered at the time would be brought back to mind unnecessarily. The release of such information would be of no benefit to the wider public, and, if disclosed, could be extremely harmful to family members, friends and colleagues.

Balance Test

There is no policing need for this information to be released into the public domain, nor do we feel it would benefit the wider public, and to release would not be appropriate for the reasons outlined above. We cannot justify the release of any information that would have an impact on the wellbeing of any individual/s.

As the information would have no policing purpose, and as we cannot see what benefit it would be to the wider public to publish such instances, taking all the above points into consideration, it is therefore our opinion that the balance lies in favour of non-disclosure of the information requested and Section 38 has been considered and applied as appropriate.

You should consider this as a refusal under Section 17 of the Act

Additionally I can advise that point 2 of your request is not is not valid under Section 8(1)(c) under the Act as you appear to be seeing opinion and not specific information which is held/recorded.

Additionally I can advise that point 2 of your request is not is not valid under Section 8(1)(c) under the Act as you appear to be seeing opinion and not specific information which is held/recorded.

back to top