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Mental Capacity Act (Northern Ireland) 2016

Section 139 - Power of police to remove person from public place to place of safety

This section provides constables with a power to remove persons from a public place to a place of safety. In order to do so, the person must appear to the constable to be in immediate need of care or control, and the constable must reasonably believe that a series of other conditions are satisfied.

The constable must reasonably believe that failing to remove the person could cause serious physical or psychological harm to that person or serious physical harm to other people. The constable must also reasonably believe that removing the individual is a proportionate measure in light of the seriousness and likelihood of that harm, and that the person is unable to decide for themselves if they should be removed to a place of safety due to an impairment in the functioning of their mind or brain. The decision to remove the person must also be in that person’s best interests.

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