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'Unlawful' use of stop and search

More than a quarter of stop and search records examined did not include sufficient grounds to justify the lawful use of the power, police watchdog Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) found in its first inspection of the power.

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Majority of police 'do not understand stop and search'

The report says forces have not developed an understanding into how to use stop and search to prevent crime. Credit: Reuters

An inspection by the police watchdog into how forces in England and Wales use stop and search powers has found that the vast majority of them - 30 out of the 43 surveyed - had not developed an understanding of how to use the powers so that they are effective in preventing and detecting crime.

Only seven forces actually recorded whether or not the item searched was actually found, and half of forces did nothing to understand the impact the searches had on communities.

The report, produced by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), comes as the Home Secretary announced a review of the controversial powers.

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