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Response to media query - Incident at Carmarthenshire County Council

Response to media query - Incident at Carmarthenshire County Council

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Two Police Constables were involved in the arrest of a female on the 8th June 2011 following an incident at a planning meeting in County Hall, Carmarthen.

Due to the nature of the incident the officers requested that the famale desist from recording the proceedings and to leave the premises.  She refused to do this and acted in a manner which led to the officers using common law powers of arrest to prevent any further breach of the peace.  (This is not defined as an arrestable offence – but carries a common law power of arrest).

In order to comply with the Police and Criminal Evidence Act of 1986 all detained people are taken to a designated custody suite, where the detention is governed by a Code of Practice under the jurisdiction of a Custody Officer who decides upon grounds for detention.

A key consideration for the Custody Officer concerns the release of the detained person and whether the behaviour will recommence immediately upon release.  An alternative to release from custody would be for the case to be heard at a Magistrates Court where a Binding Over Order could be made.

As part of this process officers sought assurance that she would not cause a breach of the peace upon her release.  She provided a written undertaking to this effect and she was released from police custody just before 2.30 pm that day.

There were no suggested charges following the incident.

The Police would consider the implications of the articles of the Human Rights Act when deciding on which course of action to take.

If the female is dissatisfied with her treatment by the Police she can contact our Professional Standards Department, who can advise her of her options.