Police Scotland

Police assaulted 265 times during first month of lockdown

Police on patrol
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Police Scotland officers or staff were assaulted 265 times during the first month of lockdown.

Figures obtained by the Scottish Conservatives under freedom of information also revealed almost 89 of these crimes were Covid-19 related.

The figures were published under freedom of information and covered the period between 24 March and 30 April.

There can be no reason or excuse for attacking these officers who deserve nothing but our gratitude. The fact that 90 of these offences were Covid-related is particularly abhorrent. Those who have perpetrated these assaults must feel the force of the law.

Liam KerrScottish Conservatives justice spokesman

Councils urged to reduce protests during pandemic

Police at a protest in George Square
BBC

A senior police officer has urged local authorities to help reduce the number of protests and counter-protests held across Scotland.

In a strongly-worded letter, Deputy Chief Constable Will Kerr said such events pose policing challenges and public safety risks during the pandemic.

However, he accepted many protests were "entirely legitimate".

In recent weeks, police have handled clashes between anti-racism protesters and opposing groups at demonstrations.

On one occasion, violent scenes escalated after a far-right group gathered in Glasgow's George Square to "protect the Cenotaph".

Read more here.

QC praises police use of emergency powers

Reevel Alderson

BBC Scotland Home Affairs correspondent

Police on patrol
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The QC who has been monitoring the way Police Scotland has operated during the coronavirus pandemic has said the force has been doing a good job.

Speaking to a virtual meeting of the Scottish Police Authority (SPA), John Scott said the force had resisted demands for greater enforcement of emergency regulations.

A report presented to the SPA board said that from 27 March until 17 June there were more than 53,000 interventions using emergency powers - an average of 640 a day.

Data showed 92.8% of these were the dispersal of people, with only 6.6% of incidents involving enforcement action.

It also revealed the issue of fixed penalty notices or arrests was higher in the early stage of lockdown.

Prof Susan McVie of Edinburgh University, who has carried out research for the review, told the SPA board: "I think this demonstrates a high level of discretion in terms of the police having been given quite draconian powers."