Staffordshire Police ‘requires improvement’ when recording crime

HM Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) has today published an assessment on the accuracy of crime recording in Staffordshire Police.

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Staffordshire Police: Crime Data Integrity inspection 2016

Following an inspection which was completed in June this year, Staffordshire Police’s approach to crime recording is judged by HMIC as ‘requiring improvement’. HMIC previously inspected the accuracy of crime recording in Staffordshire Police in 2014.

HMIC found that the force records around 91 percent of crimes reported to it.

HMIC also found that the force has:

  • recorded every reported rape and introduced new processes to ensure that it records crimes reported by adults who are vulnerable; and
  • implemented all previous recommendations set out in the 2014 report.

However, HMIC judged that the force required improvement as:

  • the force is currently under-recording too many reports of crime, including reports of violent crimes, sexual offences and crimes of modern slavery;
  • there are too many failures to make the correct crime-recording decision at the first opportunity; and
  • there is limited supervision by the force of crime-recording decision-making and a lack of understanding by officers and staff of their responsibilities for crime-recording.

HM Inspector of Constabulary Wendy Williams said:

“Staffordshire has been graded as requiring improvement and we have made a number of recommendations to help the force achieve greater accuracy in recording crimes.

“The force has made some improvements following our 2014 inspection, implementing all of our previous recommendations. I was pleased to find that in every case involving rape that we looked at, the crime had been recorded properly. The force is still not recording a large number of crimes each year properly – approximately 6,700 crimes, including some serious crimes, such as violence and sexual offences. There is a lack of knowledge amongst officers and staff about their responsibilities to record crime.

“HMIC expects crimes to be recorded accurately and for victims to receive a good service from the police. If the crime is not recorded properly at the outset, then this may not happen. There is also a lack of capacity and inconsistent supervision which contributes to the failure to record crimes reported.

“I expect the force to make progress against the areas for improvement we identified in this report and I will monitor this progress.”

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Staffordshire Police: Crime Data Integrity inspection 2016

Notes to editors:

  • HMIC is an independent inspectorate, inspecting policing to promote improvements in policing that make everyone safer, and assesses and reports on the efficiency and effectiveness of police forces to tackle crime and terrorism, improve criminal justice and raise confidence. HMIC inspects all 43 police forces in England and Wales together with other major policing and law enforcement bodies.
  • HMIC are unable to make direct comparisons with the 2014 inspection due to a change in the methodology used. In particular, the 2014 inspection was a dip-sample of records in each force which contributed to a statistically robust rate for crime-recording accuracy for England and Wales, whereas this inspection is working to a statistically robust standard within each force.
  • Further information on how Staffordshire is performing can be found on HMIC’s online assessment tool, at www.justiceinspectorate.gov.uk/hmicfrs/peel-assessments
  • For further information, HMIC’s press office can be contacted during office hours from 8:30am – 5:00pm Monday – Friday on 0203 513 0600.
  • HMIC’s out-of-hours press office line for urgent media enquiries is 07836 217 729.
  • Follow HMIC on Twitter @HMICgov.