Victims asked to investigate crime says report

editorial image

A damning report into the police has found that victims of are being asked to investigate offences themselves.

Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) said criminal damage and car crime were “on the verge of being decriminalised” by police forces because they have given up investigating them,

And in some forces victims were asked to turn detectives and check for CCTV or fingerprints.

Inspector of Constabulary Roger Baker, who led the inspection, said: “It’s more a mindset, that we no longer deal with these things. And effectively what’s happened is a number of crimes are on the verge of being decriminalised.”

“So it’s not the fault of the individual staff, it’s a mindset thing that’s crept in to policing to say ‘we’ve almost given up’.”

The inspection also found that police forces were responding to crimes differently depending on where people live.

Mr Baker added: “This sort of postcode lottery has to stop and a consistent approach applied across England and Wales.”

The inspectorate wrote to each police force detailing their individual findings.

It stated West Yorkshire Police force demonstrated a strong preventive approach to areas of priority crime such as burglary and those that present the highest risk to the community.

West Yorkshire Police, Assistant Chief Constable, Andy Battle, said: “West Yorkshire Police was inspected in January 2014 and was one of the first forces to be visited as part of this national work.

“During this Inspection HMIC acknowledged that West Yorkshire Police already has in place many of the procedures and processes they were looking for.

“The Inspection makes a number of recommendations to the Police Service which reflects the national good practice that HMIC identified during this inspection.

“We welcome the opportunity to learn from this national inspection and improve further the service we provide to the communities of West Yorkshire.”