CRIME

TOO BUSY VIRTUE SIGNALLING? 10,000 crimes ‘not recorded’ according to Police watchdog

TEN Thousand crimes including sex offences, domestic violence, robbery and violence have gone unrecorded according to the official Police watchdog.

The watchdog found that nearly ‘one in five crimes’ reported to police were undocumented according to The Guardian. 

The issue was “of very great concern”, the inspector of Lincolnshire constabulary, Zoë Billingham, said.

“Although safeguarding measures were in place for many of the victims of crimes, there was little evidence of investigations being undertaken where the crime had not made it on to the books. This is particularly true for cases of domestic abuse.

“The importance of correctly recording crime cannot be overlooked, or simply passed off as a bureaucratic measure. If a force does not correctly record crime, it cannot properly understand the demand on its services, nor provide support to those who need it most.”

The watchdog examined records from the period 1 June to 30 November 2017 and estimated that about 9,400 reported crimes were not recorded per year – more than 18% of the total reported to Lincolnshire police.

The report said a “large proportion of common assaults and malicious communication offences and a small number of more serious crimes, including sexual offences, grievous bodily harm and rape”, were not recorded.

Of particular concern was violent crime, where only 72.7% of reported incidents were recorded, with some crimes of grievous bodily harm and wounding where victims were badly injured not being properly documented.

“This means that on too many occasions, the force is failing victims of crime,” the watchdog said.

Lincolnshire police’s deputy chief constable, Craig Naylor, said measures had been put in place to improve recording and insisted the force’s “service has not slipped”.

He said: “We are deeply disappointed by this report and absolutely committed to ensuring we resolve the problem quickly and effectively. We have made mistakes and we will not shirk from accepting and correcting them.”

Naylor added: “There are no ‘missed’ victims or offenders – what we have missed is the correct procedure for recording them.”

A force spokeswoman said many of the cases in question were ongoing inquiries where previous, historical incidents had not been correctly recorded – for example, if a victim of domestic violence reports crimes stretching back years.

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