David Spencer

Head of Crime & Justice


David Spencer joined Policy Exchange as the Head of Crime & Justice in April 2022. David was previously a police officer with the Metropolitan Police Service, joining in 2003. After serving in a series of uniformed and detective roles he was posted to Waltham Forest in 2010 as the Detective Inspector responsible for combatting robbery and burglary. After many years of increasing robbery and burglary rates Waltham Forest was, under David’s leadership, the only London borough to deliver three consecutive years of reductions in both robbery and burglary. During this time he also led the investigative response to the aftermath of the 2011 riots. Appointed to a Detective Chief Inspector role in 2013 David took responsibility for tackling gang crime, drug supply and violent street crime. As an experienced detective, he regularly led the immediate response to the most serious offences and critical incidents. This included being the senior detective on-call for North London leading the initial investigative response to murders, kidnaps, high risk missing persons, arsons, armed robberies and active threats to life. After first proposing the idea for Police Now in 2013 while still undertaking his operational role, David was the driving force for the creation of this multi-award winning national organisation. In 2016 he led the spin-out of Police Now from the Metropolitan Police Service to become an independent social enterprise. During his tenure Police Now established itself as one of the UK’s Top 100 graduate recruiters and consistently delivered the most diverse cohort of officers joining the police service. Police Now’s two leadership programmes have, since 2015, brought nearly 2,500 highly qualified graduates into policing over half of whom would not otherwise have applied for a policing career. His formal qualifications include an under-graduate business degree, a Masters degree in US politics, and a research Masters degree in British politics. He has also undertaken executive education programmes at London Business School and the University of Oxford Business School.

Related Posts & Publications

‘Policing Can Win’

‘Policing Can Win’

Related Content The Next Met Commissioner’s First 100 Days As a new Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police is appointed, Policy Exchange has published our report, “‘Policing Can Win’: The New Commissioner’s First 100 Days” by David Spencer, Policy Exchange’s Head of...