North Wales Police
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|North Wales Police
Heddlu Gogledd Cymru
|Legal personality||Governmental:Government agency|
|Map of North Wales Police’s jurisdiction.|
|Headquarters||Glan-y-Don, Colwyn Bay|
1,483 (of which 136 areSpecial Constables)
|Police and Crime Commissionerresponsible||Winston Roddick|
|Agency executive||Mark Polin, Chief Constable|
North Wales Police (Welsh: Heddlu Gogledd Cymru) is the territorial police force responsible for policing North Wales. The headquarters are in Colwyn Bay, with divisional headquarters in St Asaph, Caernarfon and Wrexham.
History[edit source | edit]
Gwynedd Constabulary was formed in 1967 by the amalgamation of the previous Denbighshire Constabulary, Flintshire Constabulary and Gwynedd Constabulary.
In 1974, the Local Government Act 1972 created an administrative county of Gwynedd covering the western part of the police area (equivalent to the original Gwynedd Constabulary area). As a result of this, the force was renamed North Wales Police on 1 April 1974.
Under proposals made by the Home Secretary on 6 February 2006, the force would merge with Dyfed-Powys Police, Gwent Police and South Wales Police to form a single strategic force for all of Wales.
North Wales Police Authority / Police and Crime Commissioner[edit source | edit]
The North Wales Police Authority consisted of 17 members, of whom 9 were councillors, 3 were magistrates and 5 were independent members. The councillors were appointed by a Joint Committee of the unitary authority councils of Anglesey,Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire, Gwynedd and Wrexham.
The Police Authority was replaced by the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner in November 2012.
Divisions[edit source | edit]
On 4 May 2011, North Wales Police completed a major restructure, moving from 3 territorial divisions to a single North Wales-wide Policing function.
Collaborations[edit source | edit]
North Wales Police is a partner in the following collaboration:
- North West Police Underwater Search & Marine Unit
- North Wales & Cheshire Armed Police Alliance
Controversy[edit source | edit]
In recent years North Wales Police has attracted a great deal of media attention above and beyond its size. Many have attributed this phenomenon to its former Chief ConstableRichard Brunstrom, who accepts he is obsessed with speeding motorists. He has often courted controversy and publicity through his vocal views on speeding motorists and the legalisation of drugs. The Sun newspaper dubbed him the “Mad Mullah of the Traffic Taleban.” Despite this negative publicity he has earned respect for learning the Welsh language, actively promoting the normalisation of its use within the force at all levels and conversing publicly through it on numerous occasions. He is also credited with modernising the organisation’s infrastructure in comparison with other areas of Britain.
In April 2007, Brunstrom came under fire for an incident in which he showed a photograph of the severed head of a biker in a press meeting without the family’s permission. He maintains that it was a “closed” meeting, a point made both on the invitation and verbally, and that no details of the picture should have been leaked. Many people feel that just because it was a closed meeting does not mean that normal moral boundaries can be overstepped without fear of retribution. It has also drawn criticism because the photo enabled the media to identify the deceased, since he was wearing a distinctive t-shirt with an anti-police message on it, which gained a lot of attention during the inquest.Motorcycle News magazine has handed in a 1,600 signature petition to the Independent Police Complaints Commission in London requesting Brunstrom be removed, The Independent Police Complaints Commission has confirmed it will carry out an independent review into the incident. Other people note that the motorcyclist who was killed, caused the accident that severely disabled the other car driver, so Brunstrom has a valid point that motoring is an important area to focus on.
North Wales Police has also attracted attention due to its investigation into allegations of “anti-Welsh” comments by TV personality Anne Robinson and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair. The force was believed to have carried out these investigations following complaints from members of the public. The 10-month investigation into the Prime Minister was dropped on 11 July 2006 due to a lack of evidence. It had cost £1,656, whereas the Anne Robinson investigation cost £3,800.
In 2006 the force attracted even more widespread publicity when a retired Detective Sergeant was prosecuted for alleged homophobic remarks made to a van full of officers in Wrexham.
As with all other territorial police force North Wales Police have Police Community Support Officer (PCSO)s. As of 31 March 2011 North Wales Police have 159 PCSOs. Unlike the majority of police forces in England and Wales North Wales Police is only one out of three forces that issue its PCSOs hand cuffs The only other forces that do this are Dyfed-Powys Police and British Transport Police (BTP).The issuing of handcuffs to PCSOs has been controversial.
North Wales Police implicated in collusion with the troll blog Thoughts of Oscar, a blog regularly contributed to by MP for Clwyd West and Freemason David Ian Jones.
North Wales Police arrest local blogger who has dedicated his time to revealing the collusion between the North Wales Police Force, the troll blog Thoughts of Oscar & David Jones MP for Clwyd West. The blogger A Richie Windmill was released without charge after five months on police bail.
On October 7th 2015, local blogger Richie Windmill is arrested again by North Wales Police for a section 4 harassment offence against MP for Clwyd West and his co-authors to the troll blog Thoughts of Oscar, he is detained, his home is raided, all his electrical items are removed including those belonging to his children along with an I Pad & Xbox One belonging to his disabled 8 year old son, the police also removed all personnel mail and the family passports, on the 25-11-2015, Mr Windmill was informed the CPS had advised North Wales Police to cease the action against him and his goods minus his passports were returned.