Labour’s Alan Charles has been elected as Derbyshire’s first Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) amid concerns about low voter turnout.
He beat Conservative candidate Simon Spencer, UKIP’s David Gale and independent Rod Hutton in an election which saw turnout of just 14.75 per cent.
Mr Charles, who achieved a total of 57,248 votes said he was “delighted” but admitted the poor turnout was “extremely worrying”.
He added: “I completely understand why people may say I don’t have a proper mandate. But we’ve been through a democratic process and I have won by a pretty significant margin.”
He blamed the low turnout on lack of Government information about the elections.
Mr Charles will take over responsibility for overseeing Derbyshire police, appointing and dismissing the chief constable and setting the force’s budget.
He pledged to oppose police cuts and privatisation, tackle domestic violence and help keep Derbyshire communities safe as part of his £75,000–a–year role.
Runner–up Mr Spencer, who clinched a total of 36,469 votes, congratulated Mr Charles and said: “I’m disappointed not just for me but for my team. I only hope Alan takes politics out of policing and delivers safer streets and more crime prevention.”
He added that “important lessons must be learned” in light of the poor turnout.
The Government has launched a review after less than 15 per cent voted nationally.