Law enforcement in Guernsey

States of Guernsey Police Service
Agency overview
Formed 1915
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
Operations jurisdiction* Police area of Guernsey, Alderney, Sark, Herm, GBG
Map of States of Guernsey Police Service's jurisdiction.
Size 78 km²
Population Approx 67,500
General nature
  • Law enforcement
  • Civilian agency
Operational structure
Headquarters St Peter Port
Sworn members 177
Agency executive Patrick Rice, Chief Officer
Stations 1
* Police area agency: Prescribed geographic area in the country, over which the agency has usual operational jurisdiction.

The States of Guernsey Police Service, usually known simply as the Guernsey Police, is the local police force for the Crown dependency of Guernsey. In addition to providing police for the island of Guernsey itself, the Guernsey Police also provides detachments for the islands of Alderney, Herm, and Sark.


In common with many communities, a historical development of parish constables formed the system of law enforcement for many centuries. In the nineteenth century the people of Guernsey complained that this system was inadequate for a growing population, and a professional police force was demanded. The parish constables retained their historic role, but from 1853 uniformed 'Assistant Constables' were appointed. Initially there were four of them, with a uniform hat and belt worn over their civilian clothing. They provided full-time policing, under the authority of the elected parish constables.[1] The current police force was formed following approval by the States of Deliberation in March 1915, consisting of an inspector, two sergeants, two corporals and eleven constables. It is now considerably expanded, and as of 2008 it has 169 officers supported by 37 civilian staff.

Structure and ranks

The force is headed by a Chief Officer, with a Deputy Chief Officer as second in command, and a Superintendent as third in command. The current Chief Officer of the Guernsey Police force is Patrick Rice. His deputy is Ian Morellec. Four Chief Inspectors head the four divisions of the force - Uniform Operations, Crime Services, Corporate Services, and Specialist Services. Significant units within these four divisions include the Commercial Fraud Department, the Bomb Disposal Unit, and the Dog Section.

Special Constables

Guernsey Police has a system of special constables, with three distinct types of volunteer officer, known as "A', 'B', or 'C' division of the special constabulary. B division special constables are fully trained to support their full-time colleagues in all aspects of policing. C division special constables carry out the duties of a traffic warden, but have certain police powers in respect of traffic control. A division special constables are full-time employees of third party agencies who are granted limited police powers within their work place, to provide a first response whilst professional police officers are travelling to an incident; for example, a number of hospital porters are sworn as A division special constables to provide an enhanced level of hospital security.[2]


Template:UK crown dependency and overseas territory police forces

External links

  • Official website
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