Moat hunt cost police £1.4m

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EXTRA funding is being sought to help meet the costs of the hunt for gunman Raoul Moat who died in Rothbury.

Figures released this week show that Operation Bulwark, the hunt for Moat and ongoing legal proceedings, have cost Northumbria Police more than £1.4million.

The bill will be paid by the force but Northumbria Police Authority has asked for help towards the costs from the Home Office.

Moat shot and killed Christopher Brown and injured Samantha Stobbart in the early hours of Saturday, July 3, 2010. He then shot and seriously injured PC David Rathband early the next day.

A massive search was launched to find Moat involving hundreds of officers, both from Northumbria and other forces across the country, which ended on Friday, July 9, when he was discovered in Rothbury.

The total cost from July 3 to date is £1,411,354. This includes costs for mutual aid from other forces £460,062; Northumbria Police officer and staff overtime until July 11, £585,406; Northumbria Police officer and staff overtime from July 12 to date £93,110 and miscellaneous (which includes fuel, forensic science services, specialist equipment and non-pay costs) of £272,776.

Temporary Chief Constable Sue Sim Said: “This operation was unprecedented and posed significant challenges due to the terrain we had to search in and the fact that Moat was armed.

“Our primary objective was always to protect the public and prevent anyone else from being injured. I am extremely proud of my officers and staff for the way they dealt with such a challenging situation.

“We always endeavour to ensure that, even in such challenging circumstances, we are mindful of the costs involved and I am absolutely convinced that we did so very effectively throughout this operation.”

Police Authority chairman Coun Mick Henry said: ““The costs for this operation will be met from this year’s budget and will not have any impact on the council tax precept for next year, which is due to be agreed by members of the Authority this week.

“We have also applied to the Home Office for a special grant to recover some of the funding.”