|Police Service of Scotland
Seirbheis Phoilis na h-Alba
|Common name||Police Scotland|
|Logo of the Police Service of Scotland.|
|Motto||Latin: Semper Vigilo
|Formed||1 April 2013|
|Preceding agency||Central Scotland Police
Dumfries and Galloway Constabulary
|Annual budget||£1.2 Billion GBP (2013-14)|
|Legal personality||Governmental: Government agency|
|Map of police area|
|Primary governing body||Scottish Government|
|Secondary governing body||Scottish Police Authority|
|Constituting instrument||Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act 2012|
|Overviewed by||Scottish Police Authority|
|Sworn members||17400 police officers (not including 1400 special constables)|
|Unsworn members||5600 civilian police staff|
|Minister responsible||Kenny MacAskill, Cabinet Secretary for Justice|
|Agency executive||Stephen House, Chief Constable|
|Helicopters||1 ('Spare' from the NPAS after own helicopter destroyed in crash on 29th November 2013)|
Police Scotland is the national police force responsible for law enforcement in Scotland. Police Scotland was formed on 1 April 2013 through the merger of eight territorial police forces and the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency. The full legal name of the organisation, as described in the Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act 2012, is the Police Service of Scotland (PSoS) or, in Scottish Gaelic, Seirbheis Phoilis na h-Alba.
- 1 History
- 2 Executive Team
- 3 Ranks
- 4 Local policing areas and commanders
- 5 Specialist Crime Division
- 6 Operational support
- 7 Headquarters
- 8 Impact
- 9 Controversy
- 10 See also
- 11 References
- 12 External links
The Police Service of Scotland was founded in 2013, under the Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act 2012 and, at that time, merged with the following law enforcement agencies:
- Central Scotland Police
- Dumfries and Galloway Constabulary
- Fife Constabulary
- Grampian Police
- Lothian and Borders Police
- Northern Constabulary
- Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency
- Strathclyde Police
- Tayside Police
After a consultation, the Scottish Government confirmed on 8 September 2011 that a single police service would be created in Scotland,. Further consultations resulted on a single Scottish police force, the Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Bill was published in January 2012. After scrutiny and debate by the Scottish Parliament, the legislation was approved on 27 June 2012. The Bill duly received Royal Assent as the Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act 2012. The Scottish Government stated "reform will safeguard frontline policing in communities by creating designated local senior officers for every council area with a statutory duty to work with councils to shape local services. Establishing a single service aims to ensure more equal access to national and specialist services and expertise such as major investigation teams and firearms teams, whenever and wherever they are needed."
Key provisions of the legislation include:
- Formal opportunities for the Scottish Parliament to scrutinise the service;
- New roles for councils to shape and scrutinise local delivery of policing;
- A designated local policing commander and local senior fire officer for each local authority area; and
- Clear responsibilities for the Chief Constable and, to ensure continued separation from Ministers, a new Scottish Police Authority with 11 to 15 members and a clear and strong remit to effectively hold the Chief Constable to account.
In September 2012, Chief Constable Stephen House of Strathclyde Police was announced as the future first Chief Constable of Police Scotland. He was sworn into the post on 1 October 2012. Members of the Scottish Police Authority were to be appointed in October 2012. Its first chair, Vic Emery, was appointed in August 2012.
- Chief Constable
- Sir Stephen House
- Deputy Chief Constable (Designated Deputy)
- Neil Richardson
- Deputy Chief Constable (Territorial Policing)
- Rose Fitzpatrick
- Deputy Chief Constable (Crime and Operational Support)
- Iain Livingstone
- Deputy Chief Constable (Commonwealth Games and Major Events)
- Steve Allen
- Assistant Chief Constable (Local Policing - East)
- Mike McCormick
- Assistant Chief Constable (Local Policing - West)
- Wayne Mawson
- Assistant Chief Constable (Local Policing - North)
- Derek Penman
- Assistant Chief Constable (Serious Crime and Public Protection)
- Malcolm Graham
- Assistant Chief Constable (Crime, Serious Organised Crime, and Counter Terrorism)
- Ruaraidh Nicolson
- Assistant Chief Constable (Operational Support)
- Bernie Higgins
The Assistant Chief Constables' earnings will depend on their previous experience and will fall between £90,726 and £105,849 a year.
- Chief Constable
- Deputy Chief Constable
- Assistant Chief Constable
- Chief Superintendent
- Chief Inspector
The ranks of Constable to Inspector can be prefixed with the term "Police", which leads to the abbreviations of PC, PS/Sgt, PI/Insp respectively. Normally, however, the "Police" is omitted as it is unnecessary, except for the abbreviations - especially PC. A Police Constable is, therefore, properly titled and addressed "Constable (Full name or surname)".
Detective officers of the ranks Constable to Chief Superintendent have their ranks prefixed with the term "Detective", e.g. Detective Constable.
Local policing areas and commanders
An individual policing plan has been drawn up for each of Scotland's 353 local council wards. In addition, each of the fourteen divisional commanders are "people who came up through the ranks in that part of the country". The divisional commanders are as follows:
- East Command
- Edinburgh (E Division): Chief Superintendent Mark Williams
- Fife (P Division): Chief Superintendent Garry McEwan
- Forth Valley (C Division): Chief Superintendent David Flynn
- Lothians & Scottish Borders (J Division): Chief Superintendent Jeanette McDiarmid
- West Command
- Argyll & West Dunbartonshire (L Division): Chief Superintendent Barry McEwan
- Ayrshire (U Division): Chief Superintendent John Thomson
- Dumfries & Galloway (V Division): Chief Superintendent Kate Thomson
- Greater Glasgow (G Division): Chief Superintendent Andy Bates
- Lanarkshire (Q Division): Chief Superintendent Nelson Telfer
- Renfrewshire & Inverclyde (K Division): Chief Superintendent Alan Spiers
- North Command
- Aberdeen City (A Division): Chief Superintendent Adrian Watson
- Aberdeenshire & Moray (B Division): Chief Superintendent Mark McLaren
- Highland & Islands (N Division): Chief Superintendent Julian Innes
- Tayside (D Division): Chief Superintendent Hamish Macpherson
Specialist Crime Division
The Specialist Crime Division (SCD) provides access to national investigative and intelligence resources for matters relating to major crime, organised crime, counter terrorism, intelligence, covert policing and public protection. SCD comprises more than 2000 officers and targets individuals that pose the most significant threat to communities.
Border Policing Command
Major investigation teams
Major investigation teams (MITs) are located throughout Scotland and are responsible for leading the investigation of all murder inquiries and large-scale and complex criminal investigations. Although each MIT will be responsible for investigating cases within its own area, where required they will be able to be deployed anywhere in the country to respond to need and demand.
National Counter Corruption Unit
The National Counter Corruption Unit is the first of its kind in UK policing and works in partnership with the public sector to prevent corruption in publicly funded organisations. The unit also offers a specialist investigative capability. The unit is split into two teams, one focused internally within Police Scotland whilst a second team focuses on other publicly funded organisations.
National Human Trafficking Unit
The existing Scottish Intelligence Coordination Unit and Strathclyde Police Vice and Trafficking Unit combined on 1 April 2013 to form the new National Human Trafficking Unit (NHTU).
National Rape Taskforce
The investigation of rape and other sexual offences is a key priority for Police Scotland. National Rape Taskforce units are located in Glasgow and Aberdeen and work alongside Divisional Rape Investigation Units. They provide a national investigative capacity and a case review function.
Prison Intelligence Unit
The Prison Intelligence Unit (PIU) provides an interface for the exchange of information and intelligence between Police Scotland and the Scottish Prison Service. The unit also develops and supports policy, procedure, planning, research, technology development, advice and communication between Police Scotland and the Scottish Prison Service.
Policing of Scotland's roads network is shared between 14 Divisional Road Policing Units (DRPUs) aligned with their respective Local Police Division which have the aim of achieving casualty reduction and wider operational objectives and a dedicated Trunk Road Patrol Group (TRPG) patrols the motorway and trunk road network. The TRPG operates from bases in Dalkeith and Stirling in the east, Glasgow, Irvine, Lockerbie and Motherwell in the west and Fort William, Inverness, Perth and Stonehaven in the north.
Operational support unit
Six operational support units (OSUs) have been established to provide specially skilled officers trained in over ground search, public order and chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear (CBRN) response. When not utilised in their specialist roles OSU officers are deployed in local communities focussing on issues as directed by demand. OSUs are based in Aberdeen, Inverness and Dundee (North), Edinburgh and Alloa (East) and Glasgow (West). Across the force area the OSU comprises a total of 6 Inspectors, 18 Sergeants and 172 Constables.
Prior to the creation of Police Scotland, only urban areas benefited from full-time dedicated firearms officers. This has been extended to all 14 local policing divisions in Scotland, each of which have their own dedicated armed response vehicle (ARV) teams. Throughout Police Scotland, up to 400 officers are trained in firearms.
Air Support Unit
Police Scotland have an Air Support Unit based at Glasgow City Heliport, which consists of one helicopter. The helicopter is owned and operated by Bond Air Services under contract for Police Scotland, with the three crew comprising one civilian pilot and two police officer observers.
The most recent helicopter operated was the Eurocopter EC135 T2+ helicopter which crashed into The Clutha Vaults pub on 29 November 2013. There is currently a loan helicopter from the National Police Air Service at Prestwick Airport (Eurocopter EC135 T2 G-CPSH, formerly of the Chiltern Air Support Unit), it is unclear when this will be stationed at the Glasgow Heliport.
The Air Support Unit was originally part of Strathclyde Police, one of the forces which amalgamated to form Police Scotland and they originally operated the helicopter involved in the 2013 Glasgow helicopter crash. Strathclyde Police were the only force to have an air component when Police Scotland was formed in April 2013.
The Police Scotland and Strathclyde Police Air Support Units have suffered a total of three hull-loss accidents involving their aircraft, two of which resulted in fatalities.
- On 24 January 1990, a Bell 206 JetRanger G-EYEI, normally used by Radio Clyde and covering for unavailability of the police MBB Bo 105 helicopter crashed in Giffnock, Glasgow after suffering engine failure during a sudden, severe snow storm. The aircraft wasn't fitted with the necessary "Snow Deflector Kit" and suffered from choking of the engine air intake, resulting in the engine failing. The aircraft hit a five story building whilst attempting to land and crashed to the ground, causing the death of 32 year old police observer Sergeant Malcolm Herd. The remaining three crew (two police officers and one pilot) survived the accident.
- On 19 February 2002, a Eurocopter EC135 T1 G-SPAU crashed in a field near Muirkirk in East Ayrshire whilst conducting a search for a possible missing child. The crew, comprising two police officer observers and one pilot escaped serious injury, but the aircraft was damaged beyond repair and scrapped. Accident investigators were unable to confirm a definitive cause for the accident, but issued two recommendations to improve safety.
- On 29 November 2013, a Eurocopter EC135 T2+ G-SPAO crashed onto The Clutha Vaults pub near to the River Clyde in the city centre of Glasgow. The three crew aboard the helicopter (comprising one pilot and two police officer observers) were killed along with six people on the ground.
Marine and Underwater Unit
Two full-time units skilled in both underwater search and marine capability are based in Greenock in the west (1 Sergeant and 11 Constables) and Aberdeen in the north (dive supervisor and four Constables). A number of non-dedicated divers are retained across the country to provide additional resources within this specialism.
The mounted police branches of Strathclyde Police and Lothian and Borders Police were merged prior to the formation of Police Scotland. The combined branch now provides mounted support throughout Scotland. The mounted branch is based in Stewarton, East Ayrshire and has a strength of 22 horses.
Police Scotland operate four mountain rescue teams.
The Police Scotland HQ is located at Tulliallan Castle. The modern-day Tulliallan Castle is about a half mile to the southeast of the old castle, built in 1818-1820 for Viscount Keith. The building was acquired by the Mitchell family in 1924. During World War II, it was the headquarters of the Polish Armed Forces in the West. Prior to the Second World War there was no central training for police officers in Scotland, but immediately thereafter it was decided that probationer Constables from all forces should be trained centrally and that some training for more senior officers should also be provided. The result was Tulliallan, purchased in 1950 by the then Scottish Home Department for £9,100. The building was modernised and renovated and the first courses for inspectors and sergeants began in 1954. Tulliallan Castle has since been the home of the Scottish Police College. It is now also the headquarters of Police Scotland upon its creation in 2013.
As well as superseding the eight former regional forces and the SCDEA, Police Scotland also incorporated the Scottish Police Services Authority - which included the Scottish Police College. The Police Service of Scotland is held to account by the new Scottish Police Authority.
The Police Service of Scotland does not include the British Transport Police, the Civil Nuclear Constabulary or the Ministry of Defence Police, which operate on a UK wide basis and come under the oversight of the UK government.
A national non-emergency phone number (101) was launched on 21 February 2013. When a caller dials 101, the system determines the caller’s location and connects them to a call handler in the police service centre for their area. The 101 non-emergency phone is intended for situations when an emergency response is not required, in order to reduce pressure on the 999 system.
Even before coming into force, it was widely reported that the new Chief Constable, Stephen House, and the Scottish Police Authority were in disagreement over the control of backroom staff.
Force logo and the Court of the Lord Lyon
In February 2013 it came to light that the previously announced logo for Police Scotland could not be used as the Force had failed to seek approval from the Court of the Lord Lyon. This new symbol, a stylised thistle upon a Scottish saltire shield, failed to meet the longstanding heraldic rules of the Lyon Court and was thus discarded.
A permanent logo was not approved in time for the 1 April 2013 creation of Police Scotland, but the pre-2013 crowned thistle emblem was finally (re)introduced in July 2013. This emblem was originally designed for the former Dumfries Constabulary by Robert Dickie Cairns (1866-1944), an art teacher at Dumfries Academy. With minor artistic variations, it was also used by all the regional Scottish police forces before 1 April 2013.
Initial logo proposed for Police Scotland, but never used following objections from the Lord Lyon King of Arms.
Public counter and control room closures
In October 2013 Police Scotland announced proposals to close 65 out of 215 public counters within police stations throughout the country and reduce opening hours at others. Police Scotland cited a drop in the number of people visiting public counters and the development of new ways for the public to contact the police, including the 101 telephone number and contact points which connect callers at police stations directly to officers, as reasons for the proposed closures. The plans were condemned by some opposition MSPs.
It was also announced in October 2013 that the number of police control rooms in Scotland was under review, with the possibility of 7 out of 10 control rooms closing. Controls rooms considered for closure include Aberdeen, Inverness and Dumfries.
- Law enforcement in Scotland
- Law in Scotland
- Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary for Scotland
- Scottish Ambulance Service
- Scottish Fire and Rescue Service
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- Police Scotland
- Logo and visual corporate identity of Police Scotland, as approved by the Scottish Police Authority
- Photograph of the original proposed Police Scotland logo (since discarded)
- Consultation document: Keeping Scotland Safe and Strong: A Consultation on Reforming Police and Fire and Rescue Services in Scotland
- Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Bill
- Association of Chief Police Officers Scotland