BLACK people in Winchester are 5.3 times more likely to be stopped by police, recent figures revealed. 

This came as Winchester police released the stop and search figures for the last three months of 2023. 

Despite the shocking statistic, police said it had been reviewed by the scrutiny panel and that no issues were reported. 

The total number of stops decreased from 205 between July and September to 195 between October and December. 

The overwhelming majority of stops were due to drugs with 148 in total. The second highest was stolen goods with 24. The others were: offensive weapon - 11, going equipped - seven, criminal damage - four and firearms - one. 

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Winchester chief inspector Korine Bishop said: “There has been a slight decrease in the number of stops from the last quarter. However this amount is consistent with the same time last year. The largest proportion of searches are around drugs, which sits at 75.9 per cent and equating to 148 searches. Last quarter, there were 167 stops for drugs. The decrease in searches is likely to be down to Boomtown Festival over the summer period where in excess of 50,000 extra people come to Winchester for the festival. 

“One of the district priorities for Winchester is drug related harm, which is where officers are focusing most of their attention. 12.3 per cent of all stops are relating the theft offences, which the majority will be linked to those nominals who are persistently shoplifting. We have successfully implemented 10 Criminal Behaviour Orders over the last quarter as part of our work to tackle this. 

“The scrutiny panel have reviewed Winchester’s statistics around disproportionality as well. No issues were reported and the panel were happy with the results.”

The outcome of stops were: no further action – 132, community resolution – 36, arrest – 18, postal requisition/postal charge/summons – four, voluntary attendance – four and caution - one.