Sussex Police issues advice on interacting with officers if you are concerned

Following the whole life sentence being given to ex-police officer Wayne Couzens for the murder of Sarah Everard, Sussex Police has issued advice to members of the public who may be concerned.

Saturday, 2nd October 2021, 10:19 am
Sussex Police

A spokesperson for Sussex Police said, “We fully understand that some members of the public may be concerned and require more reassurance.

“Our frontline officers and staff want to do all they can to rebuild that trust and will be understanding to an increased level of challenge and scrutiny in their interactions.”
Police said it is ‘extremely unusual for an officer in plain clothes to be working alone when responding to an emergency’ and if they are, then they should be calling for assistance of other officers. Sussex Police said this is ‘standard practice’.
According to police, detectives and investigators will ordinarily be operating in plain clothes but will always carry police identification.
The spokesperson said, “If you find yourself interacting with a sole police officer and you are alone it’s entirely reasonable to seek further reassurance of that officer’s identity and intentions.”

Police said you should ask: 
- For their identification, which they will always carry
- Where are their colleagues?
- Where they are from?
- Exactly why they are stopping and talking to you?
Sussex Police said if you need further reassurance ask them to provide independent verification. Ask to speak through the radio to the operator to verify they are genuine and acting legitimately, ask a passer-by to observe, call 101 or direct message us on Facebook and Twitter which is monitored 24/7 by our control room.
The police confirmed off-duty officers are committed to taking action if they see a crime taking place or someone in danger. These officers will usually be in plain clothes but will always carry their police identification and will call for additional police resources.
The spokesperson said, “If you genuinely feel threatened or in danger, shout out for help or use 999 to contact police.”