Parker v Chief Constable of the Hampshire Constabulary: CA 25 Jun 1999

The claimant sought damages after his arrest by armed police. The defendant appealed a substantial award of damages.
Held: The section required the officer to have reasonable grounds for suspecting the arrestees to be guilty of the offence. The constable must suspect both that an arrestable offence has been committed and that the citizen he is arresting is guilty, and in addition he is required to have reasonable grounds for these suspicions.
Held: The state of mind of the officer at the time of the arrest reflected a degree of uncertainty, or to use Lord Devlin’s words, a state of ‘conjecture or surmise’. This state of mind, suspicious but uncertain, was based on reasonable grounds, and the arrest was lawful.


Lord Justice Peter Gibson, Lord Justice Schiemann, Lord Justice Judge


[1999] EWCA Civ 1685




Police & Criminal Evidence Act 1984 24(6)


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedJarrett v Chief Constable of West Midlands Police CA 14-Feb-2003
The claimant sought damages for false imprisonment and assault after her wrongful arrest. She had waived her handbag at an officer investigating a disturbance and been arrested. The police said the arrest was lawful, she being suspected of common . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Police, Torts – Other

Updated: 21 January 2023; Ref: scu.146600