Police Dogs / Handlers (803A/21)
Is BWV currently used by dog handlers within your force?
When was it introduced and is it mandatory?
Please confirm the number of police dog bite incidents involving members of the public (including suspects and detainees) in the following periods: 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18, 2019-20, 2020-21.
Please confirm the number of complaints made by the public regarding a police dog bite incident in the following periods: 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18, 2019-20, 2020-21.
Please confirm the amount of money paid out in compensation to members of the public who have been bitten by a police dog in the following periods: 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16, 2016-17, 2017-18, 2019-20, 2020-21.
Our data are not organised in such a way as to allow us to provide this information within the appropriate (cost) limit within the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act (see ‘Reason for Decision’ below).
Although excess cost removes the force’s obligations under the Freedom of Information Act, as a gesture of goodwill I have supplied information, relative to your request, retrieved before it was realised that the fees limit would be exceeded (see attached). I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for the remainder of the request.
REASON FOR DECISION
Please note that researching each individual case would exceed the appropriate limit (FOIA, s.12). In relation to question 3 we are unable to provide data prior to 2018, locating this data would require a manual search and would exceed the FOI time limit. For question 5 unfortunately we are not able to provide this information. The way in which files have been held/recorded do not sub categorise the information in an easily retrievable format. We can only provide data on the number and value of public liability claims where we have made a payment of compensation and to find the requested information we would need to conduct a manual review and would exceed the FOI time limit.
The cost of compliance with the whole of your request is above the amount to which we are legally required to respond, i.e. the cost of locating and retrieving the information would exceed the appropriate costs limit under section 12(1) of the FOI Act 2000. For West Midlands Police, the appropriate limit is set at £450, as prescribed by the Freedom of Information and Data Protection (Appropriate Limit and Fees) Regulations 2004, S.I. 3244.