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City of London PEEL 2015

Effectiveness

How effective is the force at keeping people safe and reducing crime?

Last updated 18/02/2016
Good

HMIC judges that overall the City of London Police is good in the way it keeps people safe and reduces crime. The force works very well to prevent crime and anti-social behaviour and protects most victims well, but improvement is needed in the way vulnerable people are protected from harm. The force’s approach to investigating crime and managing offenders is good, and there are also good arrangements in place to tackle serious and organised crime. This is the first year HMIC has graded forces on their overall effectiveness so a year-on-year comparison is not possible.

The City of London Police is committed to preventing crime and anti-social behaviour and keeping people safe both within the city boundaries and nationally in terms of fraud. This is reflected in its force priorities and is generally well understood throughout the force. The City of London Police is good at keeping people safe and reducing crime.

It has appropriate systems and ways of working in place to identify emerging trends and works well with partner organisations. Clear crime allocation and minimum investigative standards lead to the effective investigation of non-complex crime. The force also has a dedicated specialist detective capability for dealing with serious or complex crime.

The force is able to identify its prolific and priority offenders. However, it continues to have difficulty in implementing effective diversionary strategies and managing offenders. It has yet to respond effectively to a recommendation from HMIC’s crime inspection in 2014.

In contrast, the force is effective at identifying and managing sexual and dangerous offenders, and works successfully with voluntary and statutory bodies to minimise risk and harm.

The force has a good understanding of the threat and risk presented by serious and organised crime. It has broadened the scope of threats that it considers. This ensures that the force is able to identify and track organised crime groups effectively. A lack of awareness in relation to serious and organised crime among response and community officers should be addressed by the force.

Working with partners is fixed in the force’s approach to tackling serious and organised crime. However, the force should replicate in the organised crime arena its local partnership arrangements, which are effective in the management of volume crime and anti-social behaviour.

 

Questions for Effectiveness

1

How effective is the force at preventing crime and anti-social behaviour, and keeping people safe?

The City of London Police is good at preventing crime and anti-social behaviour and keeping people safe. This mirrors the judgments made in HMIC’s crime inspection in 2014. This found the force to be good at reducing crime, preventing offending and tackling anti-social behaviour.

The force’s priorities reflect its commitment to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour and keep people safe, both within the City of London and nationally in terms of fraud. This is generally well understood throughout the force and the force has allocated appropriate resources to its community-based policing functions.

The City of London Police has appropriate systems and ways of working in place to identify emerging trends and works well with partner organisations. Although we found some concerns about the ability of co-located services to access partner agencies’ systems and the way that good practice might be shared within the force, the public can feel confident about the force’s ability to reduce crime and anti-social behaviour and keep people safe.

Good
2

How effective is the force at investigating crime and managing offenders?

The City of London Police is good in how it investigates crime and manages some offenders. In HMIC’s crime inspection in 2014, the force was judged to be good for the way in which it investigates crime. However, we are disappointed to find that the force has not made any meaningful progress in relation to a recommendation contained within the 2014 report relating to the management of prolific and repeat offenders.

We found clear crime allocation and minimum investigative standards, leading to the effective investigation of non-complex crime. The force has a dedicated specialist detective capability for dealing with serious or complex crime. While the force has the ability to obtain evidence from digital devices and prioritises what should be dealt with first, it has a backlog of devices requiring examination.

Although the force is able to identify prolific and priority offenders well, it continues to have difficulties in implementing effective diversionary strategies and in managing those offenders.

In contrast, the force has effective ways in place to identify and manage sexual and dangerous offenders. It works effectively with voluntary and statutory bodies to ensure a cohesive partnership approach to minimise risk and harm to the community.

Good

Areas for improvement

  • The force should develop a process for managing repeat offenders, and work with the Metropolitan Police Service to ensure that this is implemented consistently across London.
3

How effective is the force at protecting from harm those who are vulnerable, and supporting victims?

The chief officer team in the City of London Police has set out to the workforce a clear message that the protection of vulnerable people is a high priority.

The force is not yet adequately prepared to tackle child sexual exploitation; a comprehensive understanding of the impact and consequences of this type of abuse in the City is still in a formative stage. Considerably more progress has been made in the force’s service to domestic abuse victims; officers are better trained and more solid arrangements are in place with partner organisations to safeguard victims.

Some inconsistency exists in relation to a standardised process to identify vulnerability, notably in crime investigation. The force has adopted best practice from elsewhere in the country to serve the unique policing environment of the City of London.

Extending this approach to gain a deeper insight into child sexual exploitation and tightening some operational procedures to identify vulnerability at all points in the criminal justice cycle will give assurance that the all-round service provided is good; at present it is considered to require improvement.



Requires improvement

Areas for improvement

  • The force should improve the consistency and frequency of training delivered to ensure all staff have an awareness and understanding of identification of vulnerability of victims particularly at the initial point of contact.
  • The force should improve the identification of the vulnerability of victims during investigations, by ensuring staff complete the necessary processes on the crime reporting system.
  • The force should reassure itself that in relation to the use of victim personal statements it is fully compliant with its duties under the Code of Practice for Victims of Crime.
  • The force should improve the response to children at risk of sexual exploitation by ensuring its understanding of the scale and nature of the issue is developed which will better inform its preventative and investigative response; and frontline staff have an appropriate level of knowledge of the factors to identify cases and understand how to respond.
4

How effective is the force at tackling serious and organised crime, including its arrangement for fulfilling its national policing responsibilities?

The City of London Police is good at tackling serious and organised crime and is prepared to meet its national policing responsibilities. This is the first year HMIC has graded forces on their effectiveness at tackling serious and organised crime, including a force’s arrangements for ensuring that it can fulfil its national policing responsibilities, so no year-on-year comparison is possible.

The force has a good understanding of the threat and risk presented by serious and organised crime. This should be enhanced further as the force continues to broaden the scope of the issues that it considers. This is a welcome development and should ensure that the force is able to identify and track organised crime groups effectively. However, there is a lack of awareness among frontline officers and this should be addressed.

Partnership working is rooted in the force’s approach to tackling serious and organised crime but could be developed even more. The force should replicate in the organised crime arena its local partnership arrangements, which are effective in the management of volume crime and anti-social behaviour.

Good

Areas for improvement

  • The force should improve the awareness of organised crime groups among neighbourhood teams to ensure that they can reliably identify these groups, collect intelligence and disrupt their activity.