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Wiltshire Police

About this force

Area 1,346 square miles
Recording stop and account? No
Force website Visit website

About the PCC in this area

Police & Crime Commissioner Angus Macpherson (Conservative)
PCC website Visit website

How many searches do police do?

April 2019 – March 2020

The police conducted 1,552 stop and searches under PACE Section 1 across the area covered by Wiltshire Police.

This was an increase of 25% 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 2018 – March 2019

The police conducted 1,243 stop and searches under PACE Section 1 across the area covered by Wiltshire Police.

This was an increase of 20% 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 2017 – March 2018

The police conducted 1,020 stop and searches under PACE Section 1 across the area covered by Wiltshire Police.

This was a reduction of 36% 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 2016 – March 2017

The police conducted 1,600 stop and searches under PACE Section 1 across the area covered by Wiltshire Police.

This was a reduction of 37% 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

Wiltshire Police do not record stop and accounts.

What are searches targeted at?

Target Proportion of searches
Drugs73%
Offensive weapons10%
Stolen property7%
Going equipped5%
Other3%
Firearms1%
Criminal damage1%

How effective are police stop and searches?

Almost three quarters (73%) of all searches carried out by Wiltshire's police officers in 2019/20 were for drugs instead of more serious or violent crime. Research shows that these searches typically detect low-level possession of cannabis rather than suppliers or harder drugs.

April 2019 – March 2020

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

April 2018 – March 2019

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

April 2017 – March 2018

14% of stop and searches conducted under PACE Section 1 lead to an arrest.

April 2016 – March 2017

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

Who is getting searched?

In 2019/20:

  • Black people in Wiltshire were searched at almost ten times the rate of White people
  • People from Mixed backgrounds were searched at nearly five and a half times the rate of White people
  • Asians were searched at just over two and a half times the rate of Whites
  • Chinese or other ethnicities were searched at a much lower rate than Whites

There was no recorded use of section 60, a power that does not require officers to have reasonable suspicion that a person is carrying weapons in order to search them for those items.

PACE disproportionality ratios

Ethnic groups Ratio
White : Black 1 : 9.6
White : Asian 1 : 2.5
White : Mixed 1 : 5.4
White : Other 1 : 0.2