Stop and search, and its impact on crime and communities is one of the most contentious aspects of policing activity worldwide. In 2015, following a major review, the Scottish Parliament passed legislation to regulate the use of stop and search in Scotland, and introduce a new Code of Practice. In practice, the reform ended the widespread use of non-statutory stop and search and put the tactic on an exclusively statutory basis. While aimed at improving proportionality and fairness, the shift to a legalistic model also prompted concerns that falling rates of stop and search would result in a rise in crime, especially violence. This paper examines the consequences of shifting from a deterrent model to a more legalistic model of stop and search. It does so by examining the effectiveness of stop and search as a measure to prevent crime and the degree to which it is used equally across communities with different levels of crime and deprivation.
Types of inequalities
Communities, crime, justice, policing