House of Lords
HELD: (1) There was no basis for sensibly imposing on the police any of the three legal duties asserted by B as those duties would cut across the freedom of action the police ought to have when investigating serious crime. The principle in Hill v Chief Constable of West Yorkshire (1988) 138 NLJ 126 had to be judged in the light of legal policy and the bill of rights, Hill applied. With hindsight not every principle in Hill could now be supported and a more sceptical approach to the carrying out of all public functions was necessary. However, the core principle of Hill had remained unchallenged in domestic jurisprudence and European jurisdiction for many years and it had to stand. (2) The three alleged duties of care were undoubtedly inextricably bound up with the police function of investigating crime, which was covered by the principle in Hill. Making full allowance for the fact that the instant proceedings were a strike out application, and that the law regarding the liability of the police in tort was not set in stone, the court was satisfied that the three duties of care put forward were conclusively ruled out by the principle in Hill, as restated, and had to be struck out.
 UKHL 24
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