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Group set up to scrutinise work of town police force

By Burton Mail  |  Posted: March 17, 2014

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A NEW independent group will be casting its eye over the way crimes are recorded and reported in Burton

The ethics, transparency and audit committee, made up of people from the town, will scrutinise crime recording by the force by looking at crime reports, as well as putting decisions by Staffordshire Police under the spotlight.

Police and crime commissioner Matthew Ellis, who launched the scheme as part of his bid to make the force the most open and transparent in the country, spoke to the Mail about the project.

Mr Ellis said: “Honest and independent scrutiny by the public is crucial as we strive to set the bar higher and create a new dawn of transparency in policing.

“I was delighted to give the new committee much more rigour and a bigger remit than the panel it replaced.

“This added rigour will help scrutinise crime recording to make sure decisions made by the police are correct and in the victims’ best interests.

“The committee is holding Staffordshire Police – and myself – to account and ensuring actions taken and decisions made are open, honest and transparent.

“It’s about making sure things change where change is needed, so that public confidence is increased.”

Chief Constable Mike Cunningham said: “We rely on the trust and confidence of our communities for our delivery of effective policing, and our openness and accountability enhances the trust that public have in us.

“The work of the committee is a critical element of holding the force to account and is therefore absolutely welcomed by myself and colleagues.”

More details about the committee are available online at www.staffordshire-pcc.gov.uk/eta

It comes after new figures showed both Staffordshire and Derbyshire were among the top 25 forces in the country in terms of the number of people being fined for being drunk and disorderly.

The statistics show Staffordshire was placed 15th out of 44 forces, with a total of 116 incidents in 2012.

Derbyshire ranked at number 20, with 86 fines dished out across the county during 12 months.

The figures were obtained following a Freedom of Information request.

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