COUNCILLORS will consider Thames Valley Police chief constable John Campbell’s suggestion that legalising cannabis could free-up his officers’ time.

Mr Campbell was asked by MPs on the Home Affairs select committee last week what impact decriminalising cannabis might have on ‘the day job’.

The chief constable did not express a position on whether the class B drug should be legalised, but told the committee: “In simple terms, any decriminalisation of a crime basically allows me to put resources elsewhere.”

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Mr Campbell, who was giving evidence alongside senior police officers from the Merseyside and South Wales forces, added: “For many years it has been a recurring problem, so you might argue that there has to be an alternative consideration of trying something else.

“But that comes with a great deal of risk attached to it and whole aspects of public perception about whether there is a political aspect of that.”

A news story reporting his comments features on the agenda item for the Thames Valley Police and Crime Panel later today.

The panel – made up of Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Berkshire councillors – is responsible for scrutinising decisions made by the chief constable and police and crime commissioner.

Also on the agenda for today’s meeting at Buckinghamshire County Council’s Aylesbury offices will be the commissioner’s annual report for the 2021/22 financial year and a review of the panel’s own work last year.

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This story was written by Tom Seaward. He joined the team in 2021 as Oxfordshire's court and crime reporter.  

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