R (on the application of W80) v Director General of the Independent Office of Police Conduct: Landmark ruling or business as usual?

Clare N Torrible*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

Abstract

On 5 July 2023 the Supreme Court handed down its judgment in R (on the application of W80) v Director General of the Independent Office for Police Conduct. The issue before the Court was which test should be applied in assessing whether officers’ use of force amounts to misconduct; the criminal law test for self-defence (as the Divisional court found), the test set out in the Police Conduct Regulations 2012 (ie that officers should only use force when it is ‘necessary, proportionate and reasonable in all the circumstances’) (as the Court of Appeal held) or the civil law test for self-defence which the Supreme Court ultimately decided was the correct approach. The Court’s affirmation that the criminal law test is inconsistent with the purposes of the police conduct system is to be welcomed. However, this case note argues that their Lordships’ reasoning in other regards was unconvincing and obscured deeper issues concerning police accountability which the recent Casey Review confirms need to be more openly addressed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1019-1030
Number of pages12
JournalModern Law Review
Volume87
Issue number4
Early online date21 Mar 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Mar 2024

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2024 The Authors. The Modern Law Review published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of Modern Law Review Limited.

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