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Sussex Police under fire over treatment of 11-year-old girl

An eleven year old girl was restrained by Sussex Police, using handcuffs, leg straps and a mesh hood and held in custody for 60 hours alone.

The force is tonight under fire for their treatment of the child after a damning report by the Independent Police Commission.

The mother of the girl who has a disability and is being called child H for legal reasons has described the ordeal as a nightmare. 11 officers have been investigated for misconduct.

Charlotte Wilkins reports.

The IPCC has made a number of recommendations to Sussex Police including -

Improved training on the use of force on children and adults with mental illness.

Additional training on detaining vulnerable people and the presence of an appropriate adult. And to ensure officers are accountable for their use of force.

But will that be enough to ensure a case like this doesn't happen again?

Derek Johnson has been speaking to Deputy Chief Constable Robin Smith.

Police complaints up across the South and South East

The IPCC has revealed that police complaints have gone up by a national average of 15% Credit: PA

The Independent Police Complaints Commission has released its latest figures for complaints and allegations against police forces across England and Wales.

There has been a national increase of 15% in the number of complaints from the year 2012/2013 to the year 2013/2014. Thirty-eight of the forty-three forces covered in the survey had an increase in complaints in that time frame. There were a total of 34,863 complaints about forces in England and Wales in 2013/14.

The chairwoman of the IPCC, Dame Anne Owers, said the system needs 'radical reforms', because it needs to be "fair, accessible and transparent".

The figures for the forces in the Meridian region are below:




  • KENT POLICE 25% RISE TO 1,200





"The rising number of complaints makes it all the more important that the system is, and is seen to be, fair, accessible and transparent.

"Better public confidence in policing crucially depends on confidence that, where things may have gone wrong, appropriate action will be taken as soon as possible.

"It is clear from these statistics that forces still struggle to get it right first time, and there are now serious questions about whether they get it right the second time either.

"We will continue to work with them to improve complaints handling. But that is not enough. We urgently need radical reforms to the system as a whole, to make it more accessible and straightforward, and to strengthen independent oversight.

– Dame Anne Owers, IPCC Chairwoman


  1. National

Police complaints up by 52% since 2005

The number of recorded complaints against police has increased by more than half over nine years, new figures show.

The total of 34,863 complaints about forces in England and Wales in 2013/15 represented a 52% increase since 2004/05.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission said part of recent increases could be explained by a broadening of the definition of a complaint to include issues relating to "direction and control" of a police force.

It added, however, that the data "also suggests people are less satisfied about their contact with the police than in previous years or they are more willing to complain, or both".

The IPCC said this finding was supported by other research commissioned about the public's confidence in the police complaints system.

Woman still fighting for justice two years after her brother's death

A woman from Brighton says she's still fighting for justice two years after the death of her brother, who'd been restrained while in police custody.

A special belt had been fastened round Thomas Orchard's face after he'd been arrested in Exeter. The 32 year old, a schizophrenic, suffered asphyxia and died a week later.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission is still investigating.

ITV Meridian spoke to his sister Jo Orchard.

Police Commissioner defends himself

In an exclusive interview with ITV the recently elected Police and Crime Commissioner for Hampshire has denied any wrong doing over his election last November. Claims have been made that Simon Hayes committed electoral fraud because he lied about living in Hampshire when he was elected last year.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission has confirmed it is in the early stages of investigating the Hampshire PCC . Under regulations candidates must live within the force border on polling day. Mr Hayes, speaking to ITV said he welcomes the investigation but that he does live in the county.

'My wife works as a vicar in Northamptonshire and the accusation is that I also live there. But I have lived in Hampshire for several months before, during and after the election. I'm content that the IPCC are investigating and that the nomination form was filled out correctly. I hope they investigate as quickly as they can.'

– Simon Hayes Police and Crime Commissioner for Hampshire


Hampshire PCC accused electoral fraud

The recently elected Police and Crime Commissioners for Hampshire is being scrutinised bythe police watchdog after allegedly lying about where he lives, it has beenreported. The Independent Police Complaints Commission confirmed it is in the earlystages of investigating Hampshire PCC Simon Hayes.

He is being investigated over electoral fraud, after allegedly living outside the police force area on the day he was elected. Under regulations, candidates must live within the force border on polling day. Mr Hayes won his 100,000 pound a year role in elections in November.