2. Making a Complaint

Making a complaint against the police can be a difficult and frustrating process. The Independent Police Complaints Commission will pass complaints that they consider to be minor incidents back to the police to process, whose internal investigations often lead nowhere. That said, we will offer as much assistance as we can to support you through the process and it is important to remember that a significant number of complaints can help the political / media battle against police violence.

How to make a complaint

1. Gather evidence of what has happened. This will ideally include both a video of the incident and witness statements from independent bystanders. Also remember to record the badge number of the officer(s) involved.

» See ‘How do I write a witness statement’

2. Gather evidence of your injury, if applicable. This will ideally be something written down by a doctor. Take photos of your injury.

3. Get in touch with ACAB if your case is related to protest. We can help support you through this process, mainly by launching appeals for information relating to the incident(s). Please do not phone us if your claim does not arise from taking part in protest.

4. File your complaint via the Independent Office of Police Complaints (IOPC) website.

Key Messages

  • No Comment
  • You do not need to answer police questions, so don’t.

  • No Personal Details
  • You don't have to give details under ANY stop and search power.

  • No Duty Solicitor
  • Use a recommended solicitor with protest experience.

  • No Caution
  • They admit guilt for an alleged offence that might never get to court.

  • What Power?
  • Ask "What power?" to challenge a police officer to act lawfully.