Members of the public in Dorset are now able to report alleged corruption and abuse from police officers through a new independent service.

Dorset Police and the Police and Crime Commissioner’s office have joined all other UK police forces in launching the Police Anti-Corruption and Abuse Reporting Service.

This new service will be run by the independent charity Crimestoppers and will allow people to anonymously report concerns about criminal behaviour by individuals working in policing.

Dorset Police says it will bolster its capability to take action against those who are not fit to serve.

Detective Superintendent Ricky Dhanda, head of professional standards for Dorset Police, said: “We know that there are so many good people in Dorset Police who display exemplary standards of behaviour and do their best to keep people safe, catching criminals, protecting people and supporting victims and witnesses.

"Unfortunately, it is the actions of the minority that let us and our communities down and we must continue to do all we can to root out individuals who display unethical, unprofessional or criminal behaviour.

“The public should quite rightly have confidence that police officers and staff strive to attain the highest standards of ethical behaviour, and that when these standards fall below expectations, swift and robust action is taken.

“We are determined to do all we can to ensure our workforce is fit to serve and I would encourage anyone with concerns about a police officer, member of staff or volunteer to come forward so we can investigate.”

The service will cover information relating to officers, support staff and volunteers who provide information or influence in return for money or favours, use their position for personal advantage, cross professional boundaries or abuse their position for sexual purposes, abuse or control their partners, or those they have a relationship with, or engage in any form of discriminatory behaviour on or off duty.

Crimestoppers will take the reports from the public which can be submitted online or via a free phone call.

Those who contact the service can choose to remain anonymous or they can opt to leave their details if they are willing for an investigation team to contact them directly.

These teams will be made up from the force’s Counter Corruption Unit who will asses the information passed to them by Crimestoppers, before passing it on to specialist detectives and take steps to safeguard anyone who may be at risk or in danger.

Dorset Police and Crime Commissioner, David Sidwick, said: ““I know reporting these behaviours can often be difficult and daunting for victims. That’s why this new service from independent charity Crimestoppers is so important, as people can pass on their concerns confidentially, and won’t have to contact the force directly. I hope this will ensure victims feel more comfortable in coming forward.

“I want the people of Dorset to know that alongside the force leadership, I remain resolutely committed to Dorset Police investigating any unethical or unacceptable behaviour within their ranks.

"The force must be held up to the light of public scrutiny; it is the only way we can possibly seek to improve public confidence. Making it easier for people to report potential corrupt or abusive behaviour is just one important step in rooting out those who are not fit to serve.”

To use the new service call 0800 085 0000 or visit Crimestoppers' website to provide information you have about a serving police officer, staff member or volunteer in the UK.