25th April 2019

Perth Police HQ - by Ninian Reid via Flickr

25th April 2019

Scottish Police Deploy Operational Drones in Aberdeen and Inverness

With the aim of enhancing their search capabilities for vulnerable people, particularly over wide and challenging terrain Police Scotland will be using drones in searches for missing people. While stating that the two RPAS, which will be operational from 1 May, Police Scotland added this would allow for faster searches of large areas. The “state-of-the-art” remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) will be based with officers in Aberdeen and Inverness.


Police watchdog rules that use of Taser on Bannockburn man was ‘not reasonable or necessary’

It was “not reasonable or necessary” for a police officer to discharge a Taser on a 28-year-old man in Bannockburn last year, the Police Investigation and Review Commissioner (PIRC) has found. The watchdog has published its report on an incident which took place outside a pub in Quakerfield, Bannockburn on 16 September 2018. The report recommends that the Specially Trained Officer (STO) who discharged the Taser should undergo refresher training and reassessment in the use of the Taser. Five hundred STOs have been trained by Police Scotland in the use of Taser devices and were deployed from June 2018 onwards. In light of the deployment of these officers, the PIRC investigated the initial incidents involving STOs and their use of Tasers.


England: Police to offer free sanitary products to female detainees

Police forces in England and Wales will be required to offer free sanitary products to female detainees under new plans announced by the Home Office today. The changes will also require police forces to make arrangements for all detainees to speak in private to a member of custody staff of the same sex about personal needs relating to their health, hygiene and welfare. The Home Office completed a public consultation, which saw overwhelming support from the public and the police for the proposals. Nick Hurd, minister of policing and the fire service, said: “I have been clear that everyone who enters custody should be treated with dignity and have their personal needs met.


Government welcomes record low level of firearms offences in Scotland

The Scottish government has welcomed new figures revealing that the number of firearms offences in Scotland hit an all-time low last year. Police recorded 348 offences in 2017-18 in which a firearm was alleged to have been involved, a decrease of one per cent from 2016-17 (350 offences) and 13 per cent from 2015-16 (402 offences). The latest figure is the lowest on record since current data collection began in 1980. Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said: “These figures show we are continuing to make progress in tackling firearms misuse with offences now at their lowest level for any single year since 1980. “While firearms offences are rare, we know that just one such incident can have a devastating impact on victims and the wider community, so we are determined to continue working with our partners to reduce these numbers.


Drones to deploy in search for missing people in north-east

Specially-trained officers are to be given drones that will be deployed in the search for missing people across the north-east. One will be based in Aberdeen and the other in Inverness and they will take to the skies from next Wednesday. At present, police needing an aerial view of a search area which is hard to access depend on Police Scotland’s Air Unit helicopter, which is expensive to run – more than £1,500 an hour. In most cases, the chopper has to fly from its base at Clyde Heliport in Glasgow and there can be a delay in its arrival – or it might be unavailable due to high demand or poor weather. However, the drones will be cheaper, easier and faster to deploy.


New stats show number of incidents involving firearms in north-east

Firearms were involved in 33 offences in the north-east in just one year, according to new statistics. In the figures from the Scottish Government, Aberdeen saw 18 such offences during 2017-18, with police in Aberdeenshire dealing with 15. The figure for the Granite City is the second highest in Scotland for firearms, when air rifles are discounted, behind Glasgow with 20 offences.


Fall in Scottish gun crime masks rise in serious offences

Recorded crimes and offences involving firearms fell to 348 in 2017/18 – the lowest since records began in 1980. However, this represents only a one per cent reduction on the figure for the previous year and the decrease is chiefly due to a steep fall in less serious offences, including gun-related vandalism and reckless conduct. While offences fell overall, attempted murders have more than doubled – from four to ten in the three-year period – and there were nearly twice as many incidents of possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life, commit crime and cause fear of violence, up from 35 to 64. Incidents of armed robbery rose from 26 to 34 in 2017/18, and serious assault with a firearm rose from five to eight. There were two gun–related murders in 2017/18 compared with just one in each of the previous two years.


Dumbarton’s MSP wants more funding for the police

Dumbarton’s MSP has called for increased funding for Police Scotland. Jackie Baillie’s comments come as analysis from Scottish Labour reveals that, of the 42 forces in the United Kingdom, Police Scotland is fifth from the bottom for capital investment. Figures provided by the House of Commons library reveal that Police Scotland receives £1,526 of capital investment per employee, compared to £10,857 for the Metropolitan police. This is despite it being the second largest force in the UK behind the London Metropolitan Police.



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