MARCH 2003

The Northern Echo:

Sean Price, pictured left with Mayor Ray Mallon, takes over the role of chief constable from Barry Shaw in the wake of the Operation Lancet inquiry. He promises a fresh start for the force after five years of bitter internal wrangling during the inquiry.

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AUGUST 2003: He launches his vision for a new community policing initiative ‘Putting People First’. The cornerstone of the scheme will be delivering neighbourhood policing with more officers on the beat.

JANUARY 2004: Mr Price defends his decision to impose a 28.9 per cent budget increase to pay for 200 new officers.

MARCH 2004: Mr Price and Cleveland Police Authority are embroiled in a financial black hole when a £7.3m cash deficit is discovered in the force’s budget, forcing a U-turn over the budget rise.

FEBRUARY 2005: The force agrees a deal to secure £6.3m from the Home Office. Mr Price promises that the money will be used to continue funding frontline officers and services.

JUNE 2005

The Northern Echo:

Mr Price is awarded the Queen’s Police Medal in recognition of his distinguished service.

AUGUST 2005: The chief constable and the then-chairman of Cleveland Police, Dave McLuckie, vow to fight plans to merge the force with any other in the region following a report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary calling for the biggest policing shake-up for more than 30 years.

APRIL 2007: Neighbourhood Policing launched as Mr Price continues his promise of Putting People First.

FEBRUARY 2009: Mr Price signs an extension to his contract. The force also takes the controversial decision to go it alone and operate its own air support unit, which will cost £1.78m to run for a year.


Mr Price, pictured below left, uses the country’s tallest police horse, Clyde, right, to help reduce problems in Middlesbrough town centre over the Christmas period.

The Northern Echo:

JUNE 2010

Mr Price explains why about 500 police civilian jobs are being transferred to private company Steria, pictured above, in a move that will shave £50m off costs over the next ten years.

The Northern Echo:

APRIL 2011: Cleveland Police named as Police Force of the Year, as well as scoring top marks in public confidence in the British Crime Survey.

AUGUST 2011: Mr Price arrested as part of Operation Sacristy, the criminal investigation into a number of people with current or past associations with the police authority. He is suspended from duty on full pay.


The Northern Echo:

Instantly dismissed after being found guilty of two charges of gross misconduct following an independent disciplinary hearing.

MAY 2013

The Northern Echo:

Detective Chief Inspector Heather Eastwood, above, quits the force ahead of the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) hearing into an allegation that she failed to inform her superiors when she was arrested for being drunk and disorderly in 2011.

MARCH 2014: Told he will be facing no criminal charges as a result of Operation Sacristy.