Dorset Police has made “good progress” in its crime recording practices, finds inspectorate
HMICFRS previously inspected the force’s crime recording arrangements in 2014. We issued the force with a list of recommendations for improvement.
HMICFRS re-inspected the force in 2019. We found that the force has implemented several processes to improve its crime recording arrangements. The force has also expanded and refined its training programme for officers and staff involved in crime recording decisions. As a result, the force now records over 93 percent of all crime reported to it.
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The 2019 inspection found the forces had:
- provided improved training to new officers and staff;
- strong governance arrangements to make sure it maintains the improvements it has made to its crime recording accuracy; and
- completed most of the national and Dorset-specific recommendations from our 2014 report.
The force still needs to improve:
- the knowledge of crime recording requirements of staff making crime recording decisions, particularly on offences such as stalking, harassment and malicious communications
- the training of designated decision makers to make sure crime cancellation and transfer decisions are correct; and
- its collection of equality information, to help it understand and respond to the effect of criminality on identifiable groups within its communities
HM Inspector of Constabulary Wendy Williams said:
“It is important that police forces get crime recording right. Doing so improves the effectiveness of investigations and makes it all the more likely that victims will receive justice.
“I was pleased to see Dorset Police has made improvements to how it records crime. We found that the force has put in place several measures – including implementing all but one of our 2014 recommendations – to improve its crime recording.
“While there are still some improvements to be made, victims of crime in Dorset can be much more confident that their crimes will be recorded in a proper manner.”
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- In March 2020 we suspended our inspection activity to enable forces and fire and rescue services to focus on dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. We deferred this report’s publication as part of this suspension. HM Chief Inspector of Constabulary Sir Thomas Winsor comments in detail on this as part of his annual assessment of policing, published on 2 July 2020. Our findings in this report are based upon evidence we collected before the pandemic was declared. Care should be taken if seeking to make links between our findings and police performance during the lockdown.
- For further information, HMICFRS’s press office can be contacted from 9:00am – 5:00pm Monday – Friday on 020 3513 0600.
- HMICFRS’s out-of-hours press office line for urgent media enquiries is 07836 217729.