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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: UK Law
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Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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In the context of a spontaneous firearms incident what power

Customer Question

In the context of a spontaneous firearms incident what power do the police have to enter a premises to conduct a "deliberate search"? According to the APP on Armed Policing, a deliberate search must only be conducted in situations where the subject is not thought t be on the premises.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
What do you mean by a deliberate search ?
For what?
If the suspect was on the premises then I would have thought they would rely on the power to enter to arrest? Or safeguard?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
A deliberate search is a national firearms tactic, under the APP armed policing. It is used in situations where police have been containing a premises thought to contain an armed offender (arrestable for an indictable offence). If the police have been unable to effect communication with the occupant after some time the assumption is made that they are no longer on the premises. The police then force entry and conduct a "deliberate search" to confirm that the suspect is not there. The APP specifically states that a deliberate search must only be conducted if the suspect is NOT thought to be on the premises. Therefore section 17 PACE 1984 does not apply because there is not reasonable grounds to believe that the suspect is inside the premises. So what power of entry without warrant, if any, do the police have?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.
Whatever they are calling it they have to justify it in law.
They can always rely on S8 here
http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1984/60/section/8
where basically they have to show that material is likely to be found of substantial value etc.
If the person is not believed to be there then S18 and S32 do not apply.
Can I clarify anything for you?
Jo
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Section 8 would be for a ore obtained warrant, 18 and 32 are powers following arrest. I am wondering about any power to enter spontaneously to search for a person. I don't think that section 17 applies because the law states that the officers must reasonably believe that the person they intend to arrest for an indictable offence is inside. But in a firearms operation the police only ever enter buildings to search for people if they do not think anyone is inside (except in situations where there are threats to life and limb, damage to property etc but that is a separate situation). What I'm asking is what power if anti the police have to enter when they do not reasonably believe that anyone is inside?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Couple of spelling mistakes above sorry, ore should be PRE. Anti should be ANY