Firearms incidents involving legally held firearms

James Moore made this Freedom of Information request to Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

The request was refused by Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

From: James Moore

16 May 2013

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

In the Public Interest, the following questions require answering:

1. As far back as records recall, how many recorded incidents
involving fatalities year-on-year have involved the discharge of
legally held firearms?

2. Of the numbers given in (1), how many of those incidents
involved firearms held by serving police officers?

Yours faithfully,

James Moore

Link to this

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

20 May 2013

Dear Mr Moore

Freedom of Information Act Request Reference No: 2013050001683
I write in connection with your request for information which was received
by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 16/05/2013.  I note you seek
access to the following information:

1. As far back as records recall, how many recorded incidents involving
fatalities year-on-year have involved the discharge of legally held
firearms?        
2. Of the numbers given in (1), how many of those incidents involved
firearms held by serving police officers?

This is to inform you that I cannot identify any specific records /
documents that will satisfy your request based on the details you have
provided.  To enable the MPS to meet your request could you please provide
this office with further information.  I provide some guidance that may
assist you more clearly describe the information you require:

Please can you provide a timeframe for your request?

What do you mean by fatalities?  Are you referring to homicides?

Are you asking for data covering only the MPS?

After receiving your reply, your request will then be considered and you
will receive the information requested within the statutory timescale of
20 working days, subject to the information not being exempt or containing
a reference to a third party.

However, if the requested additional information has not been received by
18 June 2013 I will assume you no longer wish to proceed with this request
and will treat it as withdrawn.

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Your attention is drawn to the attached sheet which details your right of
complaint.

Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please email
or contact me on telephone number 020 7230 2003 quoting the reference
number above.

Yours sincerely,

Andrew Beaumont
SC&O Information Manager
COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome to discuss the
response with the case officer who dealt with your request.  

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Public Access Office
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.
The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk.
 Alternatively, phone or write to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  01625 545 700

Total Policing is the Met's commitment to be on the streets and in your
communities to catch offenders, prevent crime and support victims. We are
here for London, working with you to make our capital safer.

 

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: Facebook.com/metpoliceuk

Twitter: @metpoliceuk

Link to this

From: James Moore

20 May 2013

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

1. As far back as records recall, how many recorded incidents
involving fatalities year-on-year have involved the discharge of
legally held
firearms?
2. Of the numbers given in (1), how many of those incidents
involved firearms held by serving police officers?

This is to inform you that I cannot identify any specific records /
documents that will satisfy your request based on the details you
have provided. To enable the MPS to meet your request could you
please provide this office with further information. I provide some
guidance that may assist you more clearly describe the information
you require:

Please can you provide a timeframe for your request?

-> I will accept a report on records going back to 1990.

What do you mean by fatalities? Are you referring to homicides?

->I mean deaths by firearm discharge, whether homicide, suicide,
accidental discharge, or any other method known or unknown by which
a high speed projectile in free ballistic flight has directly
caused a fatality. I am not asking for the intent behind each
death, I am asking for annual figures.

Are you asking for data covering only the MPS?

->Yes.

Yours faithfully,

James Moore

Link to this

Metropolitan Police Service (MPS)

23 May 2013

Dear Mr Moore

Freedom of Information Request Reference No: 2013050001683

I respond in connection with your request for information which was
received by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) on 16/05/2013.  I note
you seek access to the following information:

1. As far back as records recall, how many recorded incidents involving
fatalities year-on-year have involved the discharge of legally held
firearms?  
2. Of the numbers given in (1), how many of those incidents involved
firearms held by serving police officers?

Redefined on 20 May 2013:

I will accept a report on records going back to 1990.

I mean deaths by firearm discharge, whether homicide, suicide,accidental
discharge, or any other method known or unknown by which a high speed
projectile in free ballistic flight has directly caused a fatality. I am
not asking for the intent behind each death, I am asking for annual
figures.

This email is to inform you that it will not be possible to respond to
your request within the cost threshold.  In order to collate the
information you have requested, each firearm offence would need to be
manually reviewed to assess if the firearm in question had been recovered.
 From any recovered firearm the serial number would need to be reviewed
and the registered firearm database would need to be interrogated.  If, as
would be the case in a significant number of incidents, the firearm was
not recovered it would not be feasible to discern whether the ballistic
evidence recovered was from a registered or unregistered firearm.

In order to identify what type of firearm was used in an offence we would
need to interrogate the National Ballistics Intelligence Service database
(NaBIS).  Once we have identified the reference number of each incident we
would then need to do further research to establish which of those
incidents were fatal and which fell into other offence catagories.  

With regard to question 2 referring to police officers this would need to
be reviewed manually as NaBIS has an 'Occupation' field but the option is
'police service'. This does not differentiate between police officers and
police staff. As such each record would need to be manually checked to see
if it mentioned whether it related to a police officer or a member of
police staff.

In addition to the above, not all ballistic evidence is of a high enough
quality to become what is known as an 'inferred' firearm, which in turn
makes it impossible to establish what type of firearm these were linked
to.

All records held by the MPS pre-1998 would not be held electronically but
rather in paper form.  In order to recover the data you have requested for
1992, it would require a manual search of every archive in the MPS to find
those offences which involved firearms.  This alone would take longer than
the time stipulated under Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act).

We estimate that the cost of complying with this request would exceed the
appropriate limit. The appropriate limit has been specified in regulations
and for agencies outside central Government; this is set at £450.00.  
This represents the estimated cost of one person spending 18 hours [at a
rate of £25 per hour] in determining whether the MPS holds the
information, and locating, retrieving and extracting the information.

In accordance with the Act, this email acts as a Refusal Notice.

Section 17(5) of the Act provides:

(5) A public authority which, in relation to any request for information,
is relying on a claim that section 12 or 14 applies must, within the time
for complying with section 1(1), give the applicant a notice stating that
fact.

Section 12(1) of the Act provides:

(1) Section 1 does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request
for information if the authority estimates that the cost of complying with
the request would exceed the appropriate limit.

Section 16 of the Act provides:

(1) It shall be the duty of a public authority to provide advice and
assistance, so far as it would be reasonable to expect the authority to do
so, to persons who propose to make, or have made, requests for information
to it.

(2) Any public authority which, in relation to the provision of advice or
assistance in any case, conforms with the code of practice under section
45 is to be taken to comply with the duty imposed by subsection (1) in
relation to that case.

I would like to provide you with advice as to how you may narrow your
request so that it does not exceed the appropriate limit.

Unfortunately due to the rationale noted above, I am unable to suggest any
practical way in which your request may be modified in order to bring it
within the 18 hours stipulated by the Regulations.
 
NB A public authority is not obliged to assist an applicant in redefining
a request to within the time/cost limit, if there is no probability of
achieving this.

This was confirmed in Decision Notice 50194062.

COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Your attention is drawn to the attached sheet which details your right of
complaint.

Should you have any further enquiries concerning this matter, please write
or contact Andrew Beaumont on telephone number 020 7230 2003 quoting the
reference number above.

Yours sincerely

Andrew Beaumont
SC&O Information Manager
COMPLAINT RIGHTS

Are you unhappy with how your request has been handled or do you think the
decision is incorrect?

You have the right to require the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) to
review their decision.

Prior to lodging a formal complaint you are welcome to discuss the
response with the case officer who dealt with your request.  

Complaint

If you are dissatisfied with the handling procedures or the decision of
the MPS made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the Act) regarding
access to information you can lodge a complaint with the MPS to have the
decision reviewed.

Complaints should be made in writing, within forty (40) working days from
the date of the refusal notice, and addressed to:

FOI Complaint
Public Access Office
PO Box 57192
London
SW6 1SF
[email address]

In all possible circumstances the MPS will aim to respond to your
complaint within 20 working days.
The Information Commissioner

After lodging a complaint with the MPS if you are still dissatisfied with
the decision you may make application to the Information Commissioner for
a decision on whether the request for information has been dealt with in
accordance with the requirements of the Act.

For information on how to make application to the Information Commissioner
please visit their website at www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk.
 Alternatively, phone or write to:

Information Commissioner's Office
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF
Phone:  01625 545 700

Total Policing is the Met's commitment to be on the streets and in your
communities to catch offenders, prevent crime and support victims. We are
here for London, working with you to make our capital safer.

 

Consider our environment - please do not print this email unless
absolutely necessary.

NOTICE - This email and any attachments may be confidential, subject to
copyright and/or legal privilege and are intended solely for the use of
the intended recipient. If you have received this email in error, please
notify the sender and delete it from your system.  To avoid incurring
legal liabilities, you must not distribute or copy the information in this
email without the permission of the sender. MPS communication systems are
monitored to the extent permitted by law.  Consequently, any email and/or
attachments may be read by monitoring staff. Only specified personnel are
authorised to conclude any binding agreement on behalf of the MPS by
email. The MPS accepts no responsibility for unauthorised agreements
reached with other employees or agents.  The security of this email and
any attachments cannot be guaranteed. Email messages are routinely scanned
but malicious software infection and corruption of content can still occur
during transmission over the Internet. Any views or opinions expressed in
this communication are solely those of the author and do not necessarily
represent those of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

 

Find us at:

Facebook: Facebook.com/metpoliceuk

Twitter: @metpoliceuk

Link to this

From: James Moore

24 May 2013

Dear Metropolitan Police Service (MPS),

Thank you, this response clarifies two things we already knew:

1. The number of fatalities following the discharge of legally held
firearms is a number greater than zero. Raoul Moat, Thomas Hamilton
and Derrick Bird all had firearms/shotgun tickets.

2. The number of fatalities following the discharge of firearms in
the hands of serving police officers is also a number greater than
zero, as recent media coverage demonstrates (by "recent" read
"2011")

I consider this line closed.

Yours faithfully,

James Moore

Link to this

Things to do with this request

Anyone:
Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) only:

Follow this request

There is 1 person following this request

Offensive? Unsuitable?

Requests for personal information and vexatious requests are not considered valid for FOI purposes (read more).

If you believe this request is not suitable, you can report it for attention by the site administrators

Report this request

Act on what you've learnt

Similar requests

RMP PPE

To Ministry of Defence by John Smyth 11 December 2010

More similar requests

Event history details

Are you the owner of any commercial copyright on this page?