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Manchester police chief quits following scathing report

Manchester police chief quits following scathing report

LONDON (AP) — The chief of police in the British city of Manchester stood down on Friday in the wake of a scathing report that said his force failed to “record" more than one in five of crimes reported by the public.

Chief Constable Ian Hopkins said that Greater Manchester Police has a long-term plan to tackle the issues raised in the Dec. 10 report by a government inspectorate, “and I believe this plan should be led by a Chief Constable who can oversee it from start to finish.”

Hopkins' departure from the force was with immediate effect. He led the police force in Manchester at the time of the 2017 terror attack on an Ariana Grande concert in the city that killed 22 people and injured hundreds. He was due to retire in the fall of 2021.

The report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services said that police in Manchester did not “record" some 80,100 crimes reported to them in the year to June 30.

“This amounts to approximately 220 crimes a day where victims may be denied the opportunity to get the justice they deserve,” the inspectorate said.

“Victims of crime are too often being let down by Greater Manchester Police. The service provided to victims, particularly those who are most vulnerable, is a serious cause of concern," Inspector of Constabulary Zoe Billingham said when the report was published.

The inspectorate on Thursday said it had put the force under a heightened level of monitoring.

With a population of 2.8 million, Greater Manchester includes the city itself and nearby towns and villages in northwestern England.

Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham said that the region's police force suffered from an “overly defensive culture” that has to change.

“Improvements are now overdue," Burnham said. "So both I and the deputy mayor, whilst paying tribute today to Ian’s 12 years of service to Greater Manchester Police have concluded that now is the time for new leadership, and a new era in our police force.”