INDEPENDENT candidate Sue Mountstevens has won the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) race in Avon and Somerset.

On Friday evening the mother-of-three became the region's first PCC at the "snubbed" election which saw just 19.59 per cent of voters submitting ballots at mostly deserted polling station across the area.

This was, however, the highest turnout in all 41 police forces in the UK.

Following her victory, Sue Mountstevens who was a member of the force’s Police Authority, which is being replaced by a single commissioner, said: "Only I have the experience, the commitment and the freedom to deliver the right policing for the residents of Avon and Somerset.

"As your Independent Commissioner I will protect residents and police from political interference. I will reduce crime so you can be safe and feel safe in your community. "I will be your voice. I will work with the police for better policing. I will make police officers and PCSO’s more visible in your neighbourhoods."

She added: "I will be a fierce advocate on behalf of victims and I will ensure that offenders are dealt with robustly through the criminal justice system and I never forget that it is your money.

"I will ensure that every pound is spent efficiently, effectively and wisely."

Her three main priorities will be tackling anti-social behavior, violent crime, particularly against women and girls, and listening "especially to the quiet people."

Four candidates battled it out for the post at the first count, in which Ms Mountstevens won 83,985 votes and her Conservative rival Ken Maddock received 57,094. She was the favourite in South Gloucestershire, Sedgemoor, Mendip, Bath and North East Somerset, Taunton and North Somerset.

In the second round, where electors’ second preference votes were counted, she went head to head with Mr Maddock.

She received 41,719 votes, compared to 10,748 for the former councillor, winning the election with 125,704 votes overall.

The other two candidates John Savage, for Labour and the Liberal Democrat, Pete Levy, earned 49,989 and 43,446 votes respectively.

Ms Mountstevens is married with three children and lives in North Somerset.

She served on Avon and Somerset Police Authority between 2010 and 2012 and was a magistrate for 15 years.

Between 2003 and 2012 she was owner of Mountstevens Coaching Associates and was director of Mountstevens Bakeries for 20 years until 1998.

She will take her oath on Wednesday at a special swearing-in ceremony.