In an attempt to highlight the vital work of stop and search, West Midlands Police invited some teenagers to accompany them as uniformed officers conducted some routine patrols in Erdington.
It comes at a time when forces up-and-down the country are increasing their use of a stop and search in an attempt to try and combat the rise in knife crime.
In particular, more forces are using ‘Section 60’ powers in order to try and halt the knife crime epidemic that many believe has come off of the back of the 22,000 police officers which were cut from the front line during so-called ‘austerity’.
A spokesperson for the Force said:
“We’ve said lots about Section 60 stop and search powers in recent days, but we wanted to hear what young people actually thought of them.
Section 60 Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 (s.60) gives police the right to search people in a defined area during a specific time period when they believe, with good reason, that: serious violence will take place and it is necessary to use this power to prevent such violence; or that a person is carrying a dangerous object or offensive weapon; or that an incident involving serious violence has taken place and a dangerous instrument or offensive weapon used in the incident is being carried in the locality.
Often, when a section 60 is implemented in a certain area, then there can be a big reduction in violent crime within the area concerned.
The attempt by West Midlands Police to clear up some of the confusion around stop and search – which is often perpetuated by organisations which, for their own reasons, do not agree with the power – has gone down well with social media users:
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