GETTYPolice officers are now letting SUSPECTS go
Since 2010, the number of custody suites in England is estimated to have fallen by as much as 50 per cent.
However, the number of arrests made has also dramatically fallen from 1.5 million to just under 780,000 since March 2008.
Steve White, chairman of the Police Federation, said: “There has been a change in the mindset of many officers not to arrest unless they absolutely have to.
Gloucestershire only has one suite to cover the whole of the county while Nottinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Northamptonshire and Wiltshire have just two each.
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“What is going through their mind is that ‘this person needs arresting, but there is no one left on the ground, is there going to be something else more pressing that I might have to deal with?”
“So what they are doing is letting someone off with a warning and hoping for the best.
"Hoping for the best that person does not go on to do something terrible.”
The former Labour home secretary, Lord David Blunkett, asked why Philip Hammond did not make more money available in his Budget to keep custody suites open or upgrade existing ones.Related articles
He said: “Scrapping custody suites cost more in the long-term because you have to transport people around while taking police off frontline duties.”
“Arrests are bound to