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South Wales Police

About this focus area

StopWatch is working with local youth groups and charities in Cardiff as part of an advocacy programme designed to empower young people to address their concerns on policing.

About this force

Chief constable Peter Vaughan
Area 800 square miles
Recording stop and account? No
Force website Visit website

About the PCC in this area

Police & Crime Commissioner Alun Michael (Labour)
Email address commissioner@south-wales.pnn.police.uk
PCC website Visit website

How many searches do police do?

April 2015 – March 2016

The police conducted 7,224 stop and searches under PACE Section 1 across the area covered by South Wales Police.

This was a reduction of 32% from the previous year.

There were 0 stop and searches under Section 60 Criminal Justice & Public Order Act, a power which doesn’t require individual reasonable suspicion.

April 2014 – March 2015

The police conducted 10,550 stop and searches under PACE Section 1 across the area covered by South Wales Police.

This was a reduction of 35% from the previous year.

There were 0 stop and searches under Section 60 Criminal Justice & Public Order Act, a power which doesn’t require individual reasonable suspicion.

Stop and account

South Wales Police do not record stop and accounts.

The last available data showed that black people were stopped at a rate of 2.4 that of white people Across South Wales (2008-09)

What are searches targeted at?

Target Proportion of searches
Drugs50%
Going equipped17%
Other16%
Stolen property10%
Offensive weapons5%
Criminal damage1%
Firearms0%

How effective are police stop and searches?

Half of all searches (50%) in 2015/16 were for drugs rather than serious or violent crime. These tend to target low-level possession of drugs rather than harder drugs and suppliers.

April 2015 – March 2016

10% of stop and searches conducted under PACE Section 1 lead to an arrest.

April 2014 – March 2015

11% of stop and searches conducted under PACE Section 1 lead to an arrest.

Who is getting searched?

In 2014/15, black people were stopped and searched at almost two and a half times the rate of white people whilst people from Asian and mixed ethnicities were searched at a marginally higher rate than white people. Those from Chinese or other minority backgrounds were searched at significantly lower rates to any other group and, alongside white people, were under-represented in searches. These figures are similar to 2014/15.

There were no recorded searches under section 60, a power that does not require officers to suspect a person of carrying weapons in order to search them for such items.

PACE disproportionality ratios

Ethnic groups Ratio
White : Black 1 : 2.4
White : Asian 1 : 1.1
White : Mixed 1 : 1.2
White : Other 1 : 0.3

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