Police powers of stop and search are detailed under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 s.1
http://police.homeoffice.gov.uk/operati ... ode-intro/
There are many extras related to terrorism, misuse of drugs and other areas but the core statute is.
A constable may detain and search any person or vehicle or anything which is in or on a vehicle for prohibited articles, bladed articles or fireworks.In this case lock picks could fall under articles made or adapted for use or intended to be used in the course of any burglary theft or cheat.
An officer must have reasonable grounds to use this power. These are determined based on each individual situation. The detaining officer must suspect he'll find a prohibited article during the search.
The officerÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s suspicion must be specific and has to be justified with good reason.
Code A 2.2 to 2.6 provides suspicion can be based on how a person behaves relevant to their location.Walking around at night obviously trying to conceal an item in an area where burglaries take place frequently is an example.
Suspicion cannot be based on race, religion age, appearance or even on previous criminal convictions.
The case of Samuels v Commissioner of the Police for the metropolis CCRTF 98/0410/2, March 3 1999, CA was concerned with the nature of reasonable suspicion.
A very interesting case I'll find a link
http://22.214.171.124/search/cache?ei=UTF ... 1&.intl=uk
Under section 1 and 2 an officer is only allowed to do a search of outer garments and gloves if in public view. More detailed searches have to be conducted elsewhere by an officer of the same sex.
An officer can detain you for the minimum amount of time necessary to conduct a search.
An officer will seek to gain co-operation but doesn't need it to conduct the search. They can use reasonable force to detain and search a person if it has been established that they are unwilling to co-operate or are trying to resist.
If a person is aware the search powers being used on them are unlawful and outside the grounds of the law they may use reasonable force to resist the search.
I DO NOT ADVICE THIS
A decision on whether a search is reasonable or not is made in court so it isn't wise to make a judgement like this during a search.
If you believe you have been searched improperly then seek professional legal advice.