Derek Penman to retire as HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary in Scotland

Written by Jenni Davidson on 15 November 2017 in News

Penman has been head of the Scottish policing watchdog for four years

Derek Penman - Image credit: Scottish Parliament TV

HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary in Scotland Derek Penman has announced that he intends to retire at the end of March next year.

Penman has spent 33 years in policing, the last four heading up the police inspectorate.

He was appointed to the post on 31 January 2014 and reappointed for a second term last December.

During this time Penman has published critical reports on stop and search, undercover policing, call handling, and openness and transparency in the Scottish Police Authority.


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He said: “I am proud to have led HMICS for almost four years, during which time I have consistently sought to improve policing across Scotland, addressing significant issues and making recommendations for change through the publication of over 30 inspection reports.

“Having re-established HMICS as a key scrutiny body in the new policing landscape, the time is now right for me to move on to new professional challenges.

“I have given the Scottish Government early notice of my intention to allow them sufficient time to recruit and appoint my successor.

“During my remaining time in post, I am keen to focus on supporting the new chair and chief executive of the Scottish Police Authority and the executive team of Police Scotland in addressing current priorities.”

Justice Secretary Michael Matheson praised Penman for his service to policing and police oversight.

He said: “I am very grateful to Derek for his unstinting service to the public over 33 years in policing, including nearly four years as HM Chief Inspector for Scotland.

“In his inspectorate role he has provided significant, independent oversight and challenge to the service and the Scottish Police Authority, at a key time for policing.

“His scrutiny work, including key reviews and reports have resulted in, and continue to underpin, important improvements to how Scotland’s unified national police service safeguards the public and keeps communities safe.

“As Derek observed in his most recent independent annual report, policing performance in Scotland remains strong, with officers and staff strongly committed to providing a good service for all of Scotland’s communities.

“He can be proud of the contribution which the inspectorate under his leadership has made to the on-going improvements in policing in Scotland.

“I am sure that in his remaining months in post he will continue to make a significant contribution.  

“I wish well for his retirement when it comes.”

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