Sussex to have its first woman chief constable

Posted On 02 Jun 2020 at 1:16 pm

Sussex looks likely to have its first woman chief constable with the announcement of the serving deputy chief constable Jo Shiner as the preferred candidate to replace Giles York.

Sussex police and crime commissioner Katy Bourne said today that she had chosen Jo Shiner as her preferred candidate to head Sussex Police.

The position is subject to a confirmation hearing by the Sussex Police and Crime Panel on Friday 26 June.

Julia Chapman, currently an assistant chief constable, will become temporary deputy chief constable from Friday (5 June).

Mrs Bourne’s office said: “The announcement comes after a rigorous recruitment process, which began in March, following the retirement announcement from Chief Constable Giles York.

“Joining Katy Bourne on the interview panel were Lynne Owens, director-general of the National Crime Agency, Air Vice-Marshal Bob Judson, retired senior Royal Air Force Officer and Sussex resident, and Mrs Dianne Newton, an experienced associate assessor for the College of Policing, appointed by Mrs Bourne as an independent observer.

“Jo Shiner has been deputy chief constable for Sussex Police for the last 18 months. Previously, she was assistant chief constable for Kent Police.”

Mrs Bourne said: “Jo Shiner has a wealth of operational policing experience at all levels and has already demonstrated a passion for Sussex, its people and police force, in her role as deputy chief constable over the last 18 months.

“Throughout this time she has really impressed me with her commitment to making our county an even safer place in which to live and work.

“She believes in achieving this through proactive policing, tougher enforcement, successful community engagement and a greater policing presence in our towns and villages. These are all the things the public have told me they want.

“She has already demonstrated strong leadership within the force and a deep understanding of the complexities facing our communities, with a passion to protect the most vulnerable.

“I am confident that, going forwards, Jo will be an inspirational, hard-working and hands-on chief constable for Sussex Police.”

Jo Shiner

Jo Shiner said: “I feel very humbled and privileged to be given the opportunity to be the preferred candidate for the Chief Constable of Sussex.

“Sussex Police is a fantastic force and, subject to confirmation by the Police and Crime Panel, I am committed to ensuring that we continue to provide the very best possible service to the public, through protecting our communities and making Sussex a hostile environment to criminals.

“I look forward to continuing to work closely with the police and crime commissioner, colleagues and partners to provide the best policing to the community.”

Mrs Bourne’s office said: “As deputy chief constable, Jo Shiner engages closely with the police and crime commissioner and is a member of the chief officer team for Sussex Police.

“Jo, who is married to Andrew, started her policing career in Norfolk in 1993, serving up to the rank of chief superintendent.

“She then transferred on promotion to Kent as assistant chief constable in 2014, before joining Sussex Police as deputy chief constable at the end of 2018.

Katy Bourne

“Her career in the police spans almost 28 years, during which time she has undertaken a wide variety of roles.

“These have predominantly been operational, in uniform and within the Child and Adult Protection Unit, CID and as a firearms, public order and critical incident commander.

“As deputy chief constable, Jo is responsible for the smooth and effective running of Sussex Police and delivering the services that the communities deserve.

“As part of this she is passionate about supporting local groups and addressing issues that really matter to our communities.

“Jo has been pivotal in ensuring that the additional investment into the force has delivered visible results for our communities, including the Tactical Enforcement Units, rural crime teams, local resolution teams and additional domestic abuse and stalking investigators.

“Importantly she has also overseen the investment into additional PCSOs (police community support officers) and road policing officers.

“All of these mean that the force can do more to protect our communities, catch more criminals and deliver an outstanding service to victims, witnesses and the wider public.

Chief Constable Giles York

“Jo has also supported the recruitment and delivery of the additional officers through both the Op Uplift programme and the local precept investment.

“In addition, in January 2020 Jo took over the NPCC (National Police Chiefs Council) national lead for the policing of children and young people. She is also the NPCC national lead for police fitness.

“Outside of work, Jo proudly sits as a trustee for the charity Embrace (Child Victims of Crime) and has previously volunteered and raised money for the Prince’s Trust.

“She is an active member and keen supporter of a number of charities, including the Beachy Head Chaplains who save hundreds of lives every year.

“She is a keen sportswoman, regularly signing up for events to fund raise for various charities, and is the proud owner of a very exuberant, and much-loved rescued mountain dog, Rocky.

“Chief Constable Giles York’s last working day with Sussex Police will be on Thursday (4 June).”

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