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HomePolicingLancashire Police cleared over sharing personal information of Nicola Bulley

Lancashire Police cleared over sharing personal information of Nicola Bulley

The Information Commissioner’s Office will not be taking any enforcement action against Lancashire Police over its disclosure of missing mother Nicola Bulley’s personal information, the force has said.

The force had been criticised for releasing personal information about Ms Bulley’s health, including her struggles with alcohol and perimenopause, into the public domain during the search for her.

Ms Bulley, a mother-of-two, went missing on January 27 and was found dead in the River Wyre, in Lancashire on February 19, more than three weeks after she was last seen.

In a statement, Assistant Chief Constable Sam Mackenzie said the data protection watchdog had informed it that it would not be taking enforcement action over the disclosures.

“We thank them for their careful consideration of this matter, and we welcome their decision,” he said.

Separately on Tuesday, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) also said its investigation into an officer’s contact with Ms Bulley prior to her disappearance identified two areas of learning.

The watchdog said its probe focused on “the actions and decisions of the police officer who attended Ms Bulley’s address as part of a multi-agency team” on January 10, prior to her disappearance.

Mr Mackenzie, of Lancashire Constabulary, said: “Whilst we do have some procedural learning it is important to note that our attendance was in support of an ambulance deployment and that the officer dealt with Nicola with compassion and empathy putting her care at the forefront of his decision making on that day.”

The College of Policing is reviewing how officers at the force handled the search, probing officers’ decision-making in the high-profile case. A full report is expected to be published in Autumn.

Lancashire Police and Crime Commissioner, Andrew Snowdon, said: “Whilst the police investigation has concluded, and the inquest will take place in due course, it is only right that we should examine Lancashire Police’s handling of this tragic case, which has been a cause for public concern, through an externally conducted independent review.

“This review will follow the facts and seek input from relevant operational and subject matter experts in reaching its findings.”

Ms Bulley was last seen walking her dog on the morning of Friday January 27, on a public footpath beside the river Wyre close to the village of St Michael’s on Wyre.

Her disappearance sparked intense levels of speculation online, with some amateur social media sleuths descending on the small village “playing their own private detectives”.

Officers with Lancashire Constabulary said at the time that the phenomenon had been a hindrance to the investigation.

(Source: Evening Standard)

(Image: Facebook)


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