• STV
  • MySTV

Public can be confident in Police Scotland, says minister

The force has been rocked after two of its senior officers were suspended.

Police Scotland: The justice secretary said the force is a match for the world's best.
Police Scotland: The justice secretary said the force is a match for the world's best. PA Wire

The public can remain confident in Police Scotland, according to the justice secretary.

Michael Matheson defended the national force after it emerged assistant chief constable Bernard Higgins and three other officers were suspended after "a number of criminal and misconduct allegations" were made.

Police Scotland's chief constable, Phil Gormley, has been on special leave since September following allegations of gross misconduct.

Both Mr Gormley and Mr Higgins deny any wrongdoing.

Matheson faced questions at Holyrood after delivering a statement on the state of the nation's police force.

https://stv.tv/news/scotland/1403034-senior-police-officer-suspended-over-criminal-allegations/ | default

The minister said the force gives "excellent local service to communities that I believe is the match of policing anywhere in the world".

He told MSPs: "I have stated in recent days this is a challenging set of circumstances for the executive team at Police Scotland.

"No one would wish to be in this particular situation with an officer suspended and a chief constable who is presently on extended leave.

"But there is now an investigation into these incidents and we now have to wait for that process to be completed."

https://stv.tv/news/scotland/1398685-police-investigators-probe-third-complaint-against-gormley/ | default

Mathson added: "Some commentators have sought to use the recent events to question Police Scotland's performance.

"However, the evidence on this is clear. The latest national statistics show that recorded crime is at a 43-year low and public confidence in the police remains strong.

He stated later: "Operational policing continues and the public can have confidence in the police service."

His words did not temper the criticism from opposition MSPs over his handling of the situation.

Conservative shadow justice secretary Liam Kerr said: "Despite the tireless work of officers and staff on the frontline which I applaud, the public fear the police service is in a critical state and the Cabinet secretary is refusing to admit it."

Labour's Claire Baker also hit out, saying: "Given the past few days this statement looks complacent. The Cabinet secretary must take responsibility for what happens on his watch and there are legitimate concerns."

https://stv.tv/news/scotland/1401928-police-scotland-call-centre-cuts-not-to-blame-for-errors/ | default

Download: The STV News app is Scotland's favourite and is available for iPhone from the App store and for Android from Google Play. Download it today and continue to enjoy STV News wherever you are.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check. That e-mail's already in our system. Please try again.
ShowHide
Forgot password?
This field is required. At least 6 characters please. Did you enter your details correctly?
If you've forgotten your details then use the 'Forgot password?' link.
Need to reset your password?

We'll send a link to reset your password to

We've sent you details on how to reset your password

Please check your email and follow the instructions.

Forgotten your email address?

Have you forgotten the email address that you previously joined with? Don't worry, by emailing enquiries@stv.tv we can help.

One account. All of STV.

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
At least 6 characters please
ShowHide
This field is required. At least 6 characters please.
You have to be 16 or over to join
This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date
Type your full postcode and select your address This field is required. It doesn't look like you've entered a valid postcode. Can't find your address? Confirm the details you've given us are correct by clicking here

By continuing you agree to our Terms of Use, including our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy. Any issues contact us.

Upload Profile Picture

Please make sure your image is under 2mb in size and a valid JPG, PNG or GIF.

Are you sure?

Unfortunately, you'll be unable to access our premium content. We’ll be sorry to see you go, but if you change your mind you can rejoin us at any time.

Please verify your STV account

Please verify your STV account using the email we sent you. If you have lost the email, we can send you another one, just click the button below.

Thanks

We've sent you a new verification email.
Please check your email and follow the instructions to verify your account.

Welcome to STV
Thanks for joining us.

Oops!

Sorry, you must be at least 12 years old to place a vote for your Real Hero.

Please review our Voting Terms of Use for more information.

Oops!

Sorry! It seems that you are using a browser that is incompatible with our voting service.

To register your vote please copy the below URL in to your regular mobile browser. We recommend Google Chrome, or Safari.

http://shows.stv.tv/real-heroes/voting

Oops!

Sorry, you seem to have already voted in this category.

Thanks for voting

Now share your vote with friends on your social network

Share on twitter Share on facebook

Cast your vote

Please register or sign in to continue.

Cast your vote

This field is required. This doesn't appear to be a valid date

Cast your vote

Please fill out this form to cast your vote. As you are under 16 years old you will not create an STV account. Why do we need these details?

This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. Please enter at least 2 characters
This field is required. That doesn't look like a valid e-mail format, please check.
Location This field is required.
Parental Consent This field is required.

That's you. All that's left is to click the 'Submit Vote' button below. By doing so, you confirm that you and your parent or guardian have read and accept our Voting Terms of Use, Privacy Policy and Cookie policy, and that the details you have entered are correct. We'll look after them as carefully as if they were our own.