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Devon and Cornwall Police

Devon and Cornwall Police provides policing services to the counties of Devon and Cornwall including the Isles of Scilly. The police force area covers 3,965 square miles with approximately 730 miles of coastline in the south west of England. Although there are some areas of deprivation, Devon and Cornwall is generally affluent. Around 1.7 million people live in a predominantly rural setting. The area has distinct, relatively small urban areas that include the cities of Exeter and Plymouth, as well as the towns of Torquay, Newquay and St Ives. The resident population is increased by university students and the very large numbers who visit, socialise in, or travel through the area each year. The transport infrastructure also includes major rail stations, air and sea ports.

Read more about this area

  • Her Majesty’s Inspector of Constabulary (HMI): Wendy Williams is HMI for Devon and Cornwall
  • HMIC region: The force is in HMIC’s Wales and Western region

Contact Wendy Williams

PEEL Assessment

This is HMIC’s second assessment of the effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy with which Devon and Cornwall Police keeps people safe and reduces crime. PEEL (police effectiveness, efficiency and legitimacy) gives you information about how your local police force is performing in several important areas. It does this in a way that is comparable both across England and Wales, and year-on-year.

The extent to which Devon and Cornwall Police is effective at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

The extent to which Devon and Cornwall Police is efficient at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

The extent to which Devon and Cornwall Police is legitimate at keeping people safe and reducing crime is good.

This year, for the first time, we have assessed leadership across the force. The assessment has led to a narrative rather than graded judgment, which is summarised below.

Read more about my assessment of Devon and Cornwall Police’s performance this year, including exceptional events and where I would like to see improvements next year.

Find out more about your force's annual assessment

HMIC’s role in inspecting this force

HMIC independently assesses police forces and policing across activity from neighbourhood teams to serious crime and the fight against terrorism – in the public interest.

In preparing our reports, we ask the questions which citizens would ask, and publish the answers in accessible form, using our expertise to interpret the evidence. We provide authoritative information to allow the public to compare the performance of their force against others, and our evidence is used to drive improvements in the service to the public.

Inspections in Devon and Cornwall

There are currently no announced inspections scheduled.


Key facts

Force Area

3,965 square miles


1.71m people 6% local 10 yr change


78% frontline 78% national level
3.0 per 1000 population 3.6 national level
16% change in local workforce since 2010 15% national change since 2010

Victim-based crimes

0.04 per person 0.05 national level
Local 5 year trend (no change) National 5 year trend (no change)


46p per person per day local 55p per person per day national

Police and crime plan priorities

  • Reducing anti-social behaviour
  • Reducing burglary and fear of burglary
  • Tackling domestic and sexual abuse
  • Putting victims at the heart of criminal justice
Read More

I am also committed to:-

  • tackling road safety and rural crime
  • improving public confidence
  • supporting young people
  • prevention and early intervention

Devon and Cornwall PCC


Alison Hernandez

Devon and Cornwall Police


Chief Constable Shaun Sawyer, appointed in February 2013

Crime in your area