Consultation on the use of Police Bail

Image from the BBC

Image from the BBC


We looked last year at the question of whether the police abuse bail when cases drag on for many months and sometimes, (as in the case of Freddy Starr) for years. This is of concern to many people.

Well, topically, the College of Policing is currently running a consultation : “On the use of pre-charge bail“.



They summarise the ’10 Key Principles’ of Bail that has been set out by ACPO, as well as giving a very quick overview of how and why police bail is used ,before inviting feedback.

This is not a question of proposing new legislation that governs the use of police bail (which is something that we would prefer), but the aim is to provide guidance for police forces on the use of bail to ensure that it is “used in an effective and transparent manner“.

Whilst this consultation is not promising the earth, it is feeding into a wider process and is certainly worth responding to. The whole consultation paper is refreshingly short (12 pages in total) and is easy to respond to.


Consultation questions

  1. What concerns, if any, do you have about the use of pre-charge bail?
  2. To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

“There needs to be a more formal structure to manage the use of pre-charge police bail.”

  • Strongly agree
  • Agree
  • Neither agree nor disagree
  • Disagree
  • Strongly disagree
  • Don’t know

If you responded strongly agree or agree, please state how you think the current structure should
be changed.

3. Bail principles provide a managerial framework for the use of bail. What amendments, additions or alternative methods would you wish to see included in the bail principles?

4. What other views do you have on the use of police bail.

The deadline is 19th June 2014, so get your pencils sharpened and get replying. I will be doing a short response and will post it for anyone to steal use as inspiration.

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