Kevin Hurley slams crackdown on Stop and Search

Following his interview on LBC this morning on Stop and Search, Kevin Hurley, Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey said:

“Stopping and searching someone is a difficult choice and it takes motivation and belief to do it. There is simply no upside for a police officer to carry out a stop, especially when they are equipped with only a metal baton and a tin of pepper spray with which to defend themself. It is a step into the unexpected that might end up in confrontation, maybe even put them in hospital. I certainly have the physical scars from my time in the job to prove that point. Now, it is increasingly likely that they might also end up facing disciplinary action for doing their job.

“Today we see yet more grandstanding from a Home Secretary who is aiming not to back and support the police to do a better job for the public, but to bring them to heel. In the face of this endless scorn, Police officers are giving up. Why face the grief of stopping and searching someone you think is suspicious when your job is on the line as well as your safety?

“Stop and search works. It gets weapons and drugs off the streets and it puts would-be criminals on notice that the police will not make it easy for them to go about their offending. Scale it back and it becomes less risky to carry a weapon, less risky to go equipped for a burglary, less risky to carry and deal drugs. The criminals are laughing.

“There is certainly room for improvement in how stop and search is done in some cases. Positive leadership and investment in training is how you achieve that. Not chastising the police to the point where they just look the other way instead.”

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