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Chief HMIC receives honorary degree


The man who oversees independent scrutiny into police forces has been awarded an honorary degree by the University of Wolverhampton.

Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Constabulary’s Sir Denis O’Connor received an Honorary Degree of Doctor Sir Denis O'Connor of Laws.

The award was made by the University’s School of Law, Social Sciences and Communications in recognition of his significant contribution to effective policing.

Sir Denis said: “I was delighted to have been awarded an Honorary Degree from the University of Wolverhampton School of Law, Social Sciences and Communications.

“I have worked with the University over the years, and I value their focus on the practical application of knowledge. Their support has enabled HM Inspectorate of Constabulary to provide high quality professional advice to ensure the UK police force remains one of the best in the world.”

Sir Denis began his career with the Metropolitan Police, eventually becoming Assistant Chief Constable in Surrey in 1991. He was later appointed Deputy Chief of Kent and then Assistant Commissioner in London, where he led the Metropolitan Police Service development strategy following the Stephen Lawrence Enquiry. Before joining the Inspectorate, he was Chief Constable of Surrey between 2000 and 2004.

In 1996, Sir Denis was awarded the Queen's Police Medal and later received a CBE in 2002 for his service to policing. He received a knighthood in 2010 in the Queen's Birthday Honours.

Prior to becoming Vice President of the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) in 2003, he chaired the ACPO Performance Management Business Area and led the piloting of the National Reassurance Policing Programme; the pre-cursor to Neighbourhood Policing.

Significant analysis, commentary and reviews overseen by Sir Denis include: the 2005 report ‘Closing the Gap’ which reviewed the fitness of the current police force structure; issues arising from the death of Baby P; lessons learned from Stockwell; policing of public protests in the context of G20; value for money in the police service; and anti-social behaviour. Recent reviews have also covered undercover policing; police integrity; the policing of the August 2011 disorders and policing in austerity.

He received the honorary award at a graduation ceremony at the Wolverhampton Grand Theatre on Thursday 13 September 2012.


For more information please contact James Allen in the Media Relations Office on 01902 322003

For more information please contact the Media Relations Office on 01902 32 2736 or 01902 518647.

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