"Complaints against officers take 233 working days to resolve"
Complaints filed against officers are taking an average of 233 working days to be resolved by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) new figures reveal.
The Police Federation of England and Wales says the delays – with just 31 per cent of misconduct investigations being completed within six months – can ruin officers ‘careers and lives.’
It would like to see the IOPC operate under time constraints to ensure investigations are carried out efficiently.
PFEW Misconduct Lead Phil Matthews told Police Oracle; “Time limits would appear to be the best way of ensuring that investigations are prioritised and dealt with in a swift and efficient way.
“After all, these are employment matters, not necessarily criminal issues.
“Under the new misconduct regulations for ex-officers there is a 12-month window for bringing misconduct proceedings, so why should the IOPC be allowed to continue ad infinitum for serving officers?
“When these cases drag on they ruin careers and lives,” he added.
The figures released by the IOPC show they failed to reach their own target of finishing 80% per cent of investigations within 12 months.
However, the watchdog did speed up investigations over the last financial year, recording a three-week improvement on 2016/17.
The report admitted that the 80% of cases finished within 12 months target had been a ‘challenging one’.
It added that 2% more cases were handled within a year than in 2016/17.
The figures also revealed that the IOPC closed more investigations than it opened, the first time that has happened since 2011/12.
Overall the IOPC opened 705 investigations into serious misconduct complaints over the past year and considered 3,677 appeals from the public and 3,823 referrals from forces.
It also received 476 complaints against its staff, with 31 grievances upheld.
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