Stop and search: disproportionality, discretion and generalisations

Article


Ellis, D. 2010. Stop and search: disproportionality, discretion and generalisations. Police Journal. 83, pp. 1-18.
AuthorsEllis, D.
Abstract

It has long been recognised that discretion is vital to good
police work. However, in Britain (and many other countries),
practices of discretion in the stop and search context have
come under much scrutiny as it has widely been linked to
racist practices, i.e. a disproportionate amount of Black and
minority ethnic individuals are stopped and searched compared
to White people. In a bid to counteract the discretionary
practices that are seen to be linked to racist stops and searches,
police officers are required (in stops and searches under section
1 of the PACE code A) to have ‘reasonable grounds for
suspicion’. This article evaluates what has been claimed as the
tension between the required reasonable grounds for suspicion
and the need to draw on generalisations (police discretion) for
effective policing.

Keywordsdiscretion; intuition; suspicion; stop and search
JournalPolice Journal
Journal citation83, pp. 1-18
ISSN1740-5599
Year2010
Publisher's version
License
CC BY-ND
Web address (URL)http://hdl.handle.net/10552/1511
Publication dates
Print2010
Publication process dates
Deposited02 Apr 2012
Additional information

Citation:
Ellis, D. (2010) 'Stop and search: disproportionality, discretion and generalisations' Police Journal, 83, 1-18.

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