Hickman & Rose respond to Government’s review of investigations after police of use force
21 Nov 2023
Hickman & Rose has provided a robust and critical response to the Government’s review of investigatory arrangements following police use of force and police driving related incidents.
Echoing many of the points made by the Police Action Law Group, and INQUEST and Inquest Lawyers Group in their more detailed responses, Hickman & Rose observe that what the Government has in mind “appears to amount to a wholesale review of the framework for regulating, investigating and prosecuting cases arising out of police use of force, police driving and other cases where contact with police officers has resulted in death or serious injury.”
The Government review was announced by then Home Secretary Suella Braverman in September 2023, shortly after dozens of MPS specialist firearms officers stepped back from duty in response to an officer being charged with murder over a shooting.
Hickman & Rose describe this as “remarkable“, arguing “it is truly shocking that these officers’ refusal to be held to account has been indulged to the extent that it has led to a review of the entire framework for police accountability for use of force.“
The firm goes on: “although the framework for police accountability in the UK is by no means perfect, the vast majority of the questions posed by the Review are entirely redundant, the legal frameworks governing use of force by police, the standard of proof for unlawful killing in inquests and inquiries, and the disciplinary and criminal investigations into police officers’ conduct requiring no clarification – having in many cases been recently confirmed by the Courts.
“Any changes to this framework, as implied by the origins and formulation of this Review, could only work to undermine public confidence in policing and fundamental constitutional protections.”
Hickman & Rose’s full response is below. The Police Action Law Group’s response is here. The INQUEST and Inquest Lawyers Group response is here.