Homicide and Serious Crime Command
Detective Chief Superintendent. Hamish Campbell QPM - Operational Command Unit (OCU) Commander
Key Responsibilities: The leadership, management, oversight and responsibility for over one thousand members of personnel within the command who undertake murder investigations and other serious crime investigations within the capital.
Key Units: The key units supporting this task include the 24 Murder Investigation Teams (MIT's), the Homicide Task Force, HOLMES support (Home Office Large Major Enquiry System), the Central Criminal Court Trials Unit, Coroner's Officer, Family Liaison Advisory Team, Disaster Victim Identification as well as significant police staff support across all areas.
Hamish Campbell is a Detective Chief Superintendent in the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS). He joined as a police cadet in 1974 and commenced service as a Constable in Camden Town. He was appointed a Detective Constable and joined the CID in 1979.
His career includes a broad spectrum of CID roles in north and west London. In addition he has worked within the Counter-Terrorism branch and Covert Surveillance. He has been an investigating officer and senior investigating officer in numerous homicide investigations in central and west London and was the SIO for the investigation of Jill Dando’s murder.
He has received Deputy Assistant and Commissioner’s commendations for his work on murders and anti terrorism work. He has lectured at the Crime Academy on murder investigations and supporting Senior Investigating officer training since 2000. As a Detective Superintendent he led the Race and Violent Crime Task Force and re-investigation of murders in 2002/3.
Promoted to Detective Chief Superintendent in 2003, he was appointed staff officer to Sir John Stevens. He has held commands with the Territorial Police Crime Directorate (2004/5), a secondment to Sierra Leone’s Anti Corruption Commission (2006/7) and previously OCU Commander for the MPS Directorate of Professional Standards,(2007/2009). He has held his current post, in charge of the Homicide command, since Jan 2009. He was awarded the Queen’s Police Medal for detective services in January 2011.
Rewarding Aspects of Your Role:
Irrespective of whichever duty or role I have had, the most rewarding aspect is observing the success which comes from police teams tackling the serious offenders which blight Londoner’s lives. Achieving significant results and making a difference is what is important. My desire is also to ensure that officers and staff under my leadership are led fairly and effectively by me and my senior staff. Developing sound leadership and entrusting individuals to undertake the tasks and duties for which they are trained and supporting them in their roles is equally important and rewarding.
Who we are
The Homicide and Serious Crime Command is responsible for the investigation of homicide and other serious crimes in London.
Murder Investigation Teams investigate:
- All murder, manslaughter and infanticide offences;
- Deaths within the workplace or mass disaster where culpability for the loss of life is likely to be an issue in criminal court
- Attempted murder where the evidence of intent is unambiguous or where a risk assessment identifies substantive risk to life
- High-risk missing persons where there is a substantive reason to suspect life has been taken or is under threat
- Linked series of two or more stranger rapes which are beyond the capability of SCD2 Sapphire Command or other 'critical incidents'
Additionally, the teams provide advice for the MPS and other police forces on 'High Risk' situations.
The Central Criminal Court Trials Unit
The Central Criminal Court Trials Unit supports London's Murder Investigation Teams in prosecuting the offenders of serious crime. The unit assists officers through a close working relationship with the Crown Prosecution Service in order to improve communication lines and the quality of cases that are presented at the London Crown Courts and in particular the Central Criminal Court at the Old Bailey. Direct intervention is made at an early stage to identify potential difficulties in order that the important trial phase can run efficiently and as smoothly as possible. The unit also advocates good practice and procedure through the Policy Unit, Forensic Science Services and the Detective Training Academy.
Community & Partnership
The Community and Partnership unit have responsibility for coordinating community engagement on behalf of the Homicide and Serious Crime Command. As part of their remit they are managing an education programme across schools and community projects within London, which is an innovative programme that raises young people's awareness of the effects of homicide. In particular, how people present at a murder may be culpable of the murder if they are deemed to be part of a 'joint enterprise'. The unit also provide advice and guidance to Major Investigation Teams in respect of building effective partnerships both with outside agencies and communities and acts as a single point of contact for all long term community engagement initiatives.
The primary role of the Coroner's Office is to ensure that deaths of a violent nature and those that are unnatural or sudden with an unknown cause are investigated within the legal constraints of coronial law. Coroner's Officers also act as a conduit between operational command units, the Coroner's Office and importantly, the families of victims. Key roles are the identification of the deceased, to support officers in the recovery of the body and subsequent enquiries into the possible causes of death.
Disaster Victim Identification (DVI)
The DVI team is a small unit based at New Scotland Yard. The team works closely with all other business groups in the MPS, particularly SO15 Counter Terrorist Command and with external partners, including hospitals and local authorities. Their responsibilities include development of standard operating procedures providing guidance to officers and staff on how to deal with a major incident which has resulted in large numbers of deaths. This will include training and awareness sessions (internally and externally), tactical advice on the various aspects of DVI and the integration with a major investigation.
Family Liaison Advisory Team (FLA)
One of the primary roles of the FLA Team is to provide specialist strategic and tactical advice. This is delivered to colleagues, partners and other agencies to support the work of Family Liaison Officers (FLO's) ensuring compliance of organisational and national policy. This is supported by conducting operational debriefs of FLO deployments across the MPS. The FLA Team ensure, in conjunction with the National Police Improvements Agency (NPIA), the production and maintenance of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and work with colleagues at the Crime Academy to provide Family Liaison training. The FLA team represents the MPS at the Family Liaison National Executive Board and also plays a key role within the Disaster Victim Identification (DVI) process. It has the capability of large scale FLO deployment and coordination under the direction of the Senior Identification Manager.
Homicide Task Force (HTF)
The Homicide Task Force (HTF) is a proactive resource of the Homicide and Serious Crime Command. The HTF supports the command with technical and tactical advice and implementation of operational tactics to assist murder investigation teams. A key role of the HTF is tracing and apprehending murder suspects, this involves the HTF supporting taskings from the murder investigation teams and assuming responsibility for locating and arresting suspects wanted for murders. The HTF also specialises in the support of armed operations on behalf of the command and is continually developing skills and tactics for use in all of the above functions.
The Specialist Casework Investigations Team (SCIT)
The Special Casework Investigations Team (SCIT) is based at NSY and is an additional resource for the OCU Commander. A significant proportion of the work undertaken by a small team of experienced detectives is to progress new lines of enquiry, identified through the Specialist Crime Review Group's review of unsolved cases. They are the first line of response for the many questions and enquiries coming into the command, from the public and our police colleagues, which require research, development or investigation.
The Homicide Command has a large number of professional police staff working to provide the organisational capability and support to support the Homicide and Serious Crime Command. They include: HOLMES (Home Office Large Major Enquiry System) Support, which is a national system used to administer enquiries, Business Support (including HR, Resources, Finance and Business Planning), research and analysis, and investigative support functions.