That is the view of the Hampshire Police Federation which has reacted to new government statistics showing that less than 1% of public complaints against the police last year resulted in dismissal.
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Police misconduct statistics revealed that there were 14,393 public complaints in the year ending March 31, 2021. No action was taken in 92% of these cases and only 1% were sent to court.
The majority of layoffs followed internal reports, with 84% of layoffs last year reported by witnesses within the department.
Federation President Zoë Wakefield said the low number of complaints leading to dismissal showed that only a tiny percentage of officers were at fault, despite the image portrayed in the media.
She said: ‘I think it’s fair that the public have a mechanism to complain about the police if they need to. However, we spend a lot of time dealing with a segment of the public that doesn’t like the police very much, so they’ll be more likely to complain about us. And obviously, some of these complaints are malicious.
“Police should always be held accountable for their actions, but the media needs to take a much more balanced view. Yes, there are officers who do bad things and probably lose their jobs. But this is a very, very small proportion – 99% of police officers are extremely hardworking, honest and professional.