Evaluating and Revising Police Stop and Search Practices in Scotland

Megan O’neill, Elizabeth Aston

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


    Compared to other areas in the United Kingdom, stop and search in Scotland was on a disproportionately large scale prior to 2015 and overwhelmingly targeted children and young people. Scottish police officers conducted more non-statutory searches than statutory, putting into question the legitimacy of this tactic. In response to external pressures, a revised approach to stop and search was developed in the Fife Division of Police Scotland and was piloted from June 2014 to January 2015. An evaluation of this pilot program found that while some elements were an improvement on current practice, the use of non-statutory searches and disproportionate searches of children continued. Since that evaluation, practice in stop and search in Scotland has undergone dramatic change. This chapter will discuss the stop and search journey in Scotland and developments to this aspect of service delivery from within a procedural justice framework, which will be of benefit to practitioners and policymakers internationally.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationEnhancing Police Service Delivery
    Subtitle of host publicationGlobal Perspectives and Contemporary Policy Implications
    EditorsJames F. Albrecht, Garth den Heyer
    PublisherSpringer International Publishing
    ISBN (Electronic)9783030614522
    ISBN (Print)9783030612931
    Publication statusPublished - 17 Feb 2021


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