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Stop and search

Authorised Professional Practice

This page is from APP, the official source of professional practice for policing.

Stop and search

A draft version of the authorised professional practice (APP) on stop and search was subject to full public consultation from 31 March-15 May 2016. All of the feedback was considered and has been incorporated into the final content. As a result of the feedback, it was decided to add two brief explanatory notes.

Explanatory note on the status of this guidance

This APP is based largely on the provisions of Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) Code A, alongside the Best Use of Stop and Search Scheme (BUSSS) and recommendations from reviews of stop and search carried out in recent years by His Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary, the Equality and Human Rights Commission and the All Party Parliamentary Group for Children. Mandatory (‘must’) content in the APP that is based on Code A is legally binding. Where mandatory content in the APP is not based on Code A, the source of the obligation is expressly stated.

Explanatory note on presentation

Although written primarily for the police, the APP also serves a public information function for a wider audience which requires it to be comprehensive. The frontline tools have been revised and restructured in response to feedback, to make them easier to find from the main menu and the content of the tools easier to navigate.

As with other APP, external hyperlinks are used so that a reader who is not familiar with a piece of legislation, policy document or other material can choose to find out more about it. Internal hyperlinks are used to avoid duplication by cross-referencing to material that is already explained elsewhere. The APP can be read without following any hyperlinks, especially if the reader is familiar with the material. Following a hyperlink is the reader’s personal choice.

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