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PCSO Powers

Question

1) Have your PCSOs been enabled with any of the following additional powers?:
a) Powers to detain
b) Powers to search
c) Powers to use reasonable force against an individual ‘making off’

2) Have any of your PCSOs been equipped with any of the following?:

a) baton
b) handcuffs
c) Taser
d) Body worn video
e) Incapacitant spray
f) Motor vehicles

3) Within an given 12 months between 2014 and 2016 that you have records for how many people have been a) arrested and b) prosecuted for ‘making off’ when stopped by a PCSO?

4) Within an given 12 months between 2014 and 2016 that you have records for how many people have been a) arrested and b) prosecuted for refusing to be searched by a PCSO?

Answer

1. This information is already published on our website and shows the powers of a PCSO for Avon and Somerset Constabulary. I have attached the following link for you:

https://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/media/20891295/pcso-powers-feb-16.pdf

2. PCSOs are issued with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), for example, Body armour vests but are not issued with incapacitant spray, handcuffs, tasers and batons. They may also use body worn video.

The overarching principle is that PCSOs are in uniform providing a visible presence in our neighbourhoods as foot patrol officers.

In urban areas, walking, cycling or public transport may be sufficient to allow PCSOs to patrol their areas effectively. Police pedal cycles are available for this purpose. In addition, access to police vehicles may be necessary in some rural areas. Police vehicles should only be used as a method of transport only. They are not to be used for routine patrol. PCSOs should always drive within the limitations of their driver authorities and training and should never respond to incidents using blue lights and sirens.

3. Between 01/01/2014 and 31/12/2015, one person was arrested for making off while detained by a PCSO. That person was prosecuted.

4. We have not identified any arrests.

FOI Ref: 528/16

Date of Request: 06.04.16