Gracie Spinks: Derbyshire’s Police and Crime Commission comments after disciplinary notices served on officers
Derbyshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) has said she is scrutinising Derbyshire Constabulary and having regular briefings from the Chief Constable as investigations continue after the death of Chesterfield’s Gracie Spinks.
The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) – which is investigating Derbyshire Constabulary in the wake of the tragedy – last week revealed five officers had been served with disciplinary notices.
Retired Derbyshire police detective Roger Bowler has called for Chief Constable Rachel Swann to be ‘brought to book’ and ‘go now’.
Gracie’s parents have said Derbyshire Constabulary’s handling of their daughter’s case was a ‘total failure of basic policing’.
PCCs have the power to dismiss Chief Constables and the Derbyshire Times asked Derbyshire’s PCC Angelique Foster if she fully backs Ms Swann.
Ms Foster said: “I have been very clear that I expect, and more importantly the public expects, the police to keep people safe and protect them from harm.
“I am scrutinising the force’s progress against its improvement plans and that includes regular briefings from the Chief Constable who has already stated that she wants to see improvements in the way the force protects those most at risk.
“However, operational decisions lie with her and her senior officers.
“There is an ongoing inquiry underway and it is inappropriate to speculate on the outcomes of that other than to say that I will take them very seriously indeed.
“I will require the force to implement any recommendations swiftly and will continue to push for a service that keeps people safe and makes them feel safe.”
A Derbyshire Constabulary spokesperson said: “We continue to support and fully co-operate with the IOPC investigation into the circumstances leading up to the tragic death of Gracie.
“We are keeping the IOPC up-to-date with a number of improvements we have implemented in recent months and we would encourage all victims of stalking and harassment to report incidents to us for investigation.”
IOPC regional director Derrick Campbell said: “We have made good progress, but our investigation is ongoing and there is more work still to do.
“"We are keeping Gracie's family informed and we note the work they have undertaken with others to campaign for Gracie's Law to help better protect victims of stalking.”