Police Scotland question protesters amid fears of Brexit chaos
Police Scotland are so desperately worried about Brexit that the force are now phoning up political activists to ask if they plan on causing any trouble when Britain leaves the EU. One of those contacted was campaigner Kirsty Haigh, who was involved in organising the Scotland Against Trump march that brought tens of thousands to the streets of Edinburgh during the summer. Haigh said she found the experience “unsettling”.
Force sees fall in officer numbers in last year
Officer numbers at Police Scotland increased by 27 in the last quarter of 2018 – although the overall number for the year was down 81. As of December 31, 2018, there were 17,175 full-time equivalent (FTE) police officers in the force, covering all 13 divisions – a rise of 941 officers (5.8 per cent) since March 31, 2007. The figures were revealed in the Police Officer Quarterly Strength Statistics Scotland published by the Scotland’s Chief Statistician on Tuesday (February 5). The decrease of 81 FTE officers in 2018 accounted for 0.5 per cent of the total officer numbers, while the increase of 27 officers in the last quarter of the year added 0.2 per cent to the total strength.
Police Scotland numbers lower despite Brexit concerns
The number of Police Scotland officers fell in the past year despite looming concerns over Brexit. Figures from the national force show there were 81 fewer officers (17,175) on 31 December when compared with 2017. Chief Constable Iain Livingstone recently postponed plans to reduce numbers by a further 300 amid uncertainty over Britain’s exit from the EU, and has brought forward the recruitment of around 100 new officers. Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf said the situation in Scotland compared favourably with England and Wales where there has been a 14 per cent fall in numbers since 2007.
Humza Yousaf demands that UK picks up Brexit police tab
Justice Secretary Humza Yousaf has demanded the UK Government pick up the tab in full for the cost of Brexit on Scotland’s police force. Chief constable Iain Livingstone, the country’s most senior police officer, has already warned leaving the European Union could result in staffing costs totalling £18 million. Livingstone last week said “reasonable worst-case scenario” planning for the UK’s European departure would mean 400 Scottish officers being deployed on Brexit duty.
A90 average speed cameras caught more than 9,600 drivers last year
New average speed camera data for the A90 Dundee-Stonehaven stretch shows around 26 offences a day were detected during 2018. The highest speed recorded on the 50-mile route was 132mph. Safety Cameras Scotland released the latest figures for October to December, but the statistics show for the whole of last year there were 9,643 offences, with 5,942 drivers receiving fixed-penalty notices.
Dundee street branded ‘war zone’ after three-fold rise in recorded crimes
A total of 35 offences were recorded by police on Leith Walk in Menzieshill last year – nearly three times as many as that in 2014, when 12 crimes were logged on the street. Analysis of the figures, provided to the Tele by Police Scotland following a freedom of information request, also show a significant rise in the number of drug offences recorded by officers in the same time period. Between one and three drug possession offences were recorded each year between 2014 and 2016 and none were recorded in 2017. In 2018, that rose sharply to 13, eight of which were successfully detected by police. Last year also saw offences related to the supply of drugs recorded for the first time in five years.