Investigations - 705/10
Dated: 07 Jun 2011
Date of request: 08/11/2010
Date of response: 06/01/2011
Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')
Thank you for your email dated 9 November 2010 in which you made a request for access to certain information which may be held by Northumbria Police.
As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions.
I read an article in the Dailymail, which confirms the outrageous comment by an officer which you maintain responsibility.
The article states the deceased girl, killed by a Police vehicle being driven recklessly, was referred to as a Scotchie scumbag.
Can you please release information:
Relating to the internal investigation.
The officers name.
Length of service.
Previous disciplinary record.
I would also request the disciplinary sanctions taken against this serving officer.
We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention
1, 2, & 5. As the information you have requested is accessible by other means I have not provided you with a copy of the information and will rely on Section 21 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. You should therefore consider this a refusal for these parts of your request.
I have provided an explanation to this exemption below.
Section 21 (1) - Information accessible by other means
Information which is reasonably accessible to the applicant is exempt information.
This information is freely available and is already in the public domain, it can be viewed via the following link:
3 & 4. The information requested at these points is classed as exempt from disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 - Section 40 - Personal Information.
Section 40 - Personal Information
(2) Any information to which a request for information relates is also exempt information if -
(a) it constitutes personal data which do not fall within subsection (1),
(b) either the first or the second condition below is satisfied.
(3) The first condition is -
(a) in a case where the information falls within any of paragraphs (a) to (d) of the definition of "data" in section 1(1) of the [1998 c. 29.] Data Protection Act 1998, that the disclosure of the information to a member of the public otherwise than under this Act would ontravene -
(i) any of the data protection principles, or
(ii) section 10 of that Act (right to prevent processing likely to cause damage or distress), and
(b) in any other case, that the disclosure of the information to a member of the public otherwise than under this Act would contravene any of the data protection principles if the exemptions in section 33A(1) of the [1998 c. 29.] Data Protection Act 1998 (which relate to manual data held by public authorities) were disregarded.
Section 40 is a classed based, absolute exemption and therefore there is no need to explain the public interest considerations in this area.
However, in order to further aid and assist in this matter, PC Neve has been consulted regarding the release of personal information and she has waived her rights under the Data Protection Act and has agreed, in this instance, to disclose the information requested at these points. As PC Neve is happy for this information to be disclosed this counteracts any breach under the data protection principles. Therefore, whilst the exemption is still applicable by the Force, further information on this occasion can be disclosed outside the realm of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.
3. PC Neve has worked for the Force for over 10 years.
4. Prior to the date of this subject matter, there have been zero substantiated complaints against this Officer.
The information we have supplied to you is likely to contain intellectual property rights of Northumbria Police. Your use of the information must be strictly in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended) or such other applicable legislation. In particular, you must not re-use this information for any commercial purpose.
How to complain
If you are unhappy with our decision or do not consider that we have handled your request properly and we are unable to resolve this issue informally, you are entitled to make a formal complaint to us under our complaints procedure which can be found at: http://www.northumbria.police.uk/foi/disclosurelog/foicomprights.asp
If you are still unhappy after we have investigated your complaint and reported to you the outcome, you may complain directly to the Information Commissioner’s Office and request that they investigate to ascertain whether we have dealt with your request in accordance with the Act.
Data Protection and Disclosure Advisor
Direct Dial: 01661 868347