Police Classified 30% of Rape Allegations as ‘No Crime’
March 7, 2012
NEARLY a third of rape allegations in Kent were dismissed as if no crime took place last year, more than anywhere else in the country.
Investigations were dropped in nearly 12 per cent of reported rapes nationally, while in Kent the figure was 30 per cent, according to a study by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC) and the Crime Prosecution Service (CPS).
By comparison, only three percent of reported GBH with intent offences were ‘no crimed’ nationally.
Kent Police said it records all allegations as a crime the moment they are made, whereas other forces carry out initial investigations before deciding to log it as a crime or not, which it said goes some way to explaining the high number.
The HMIC report said: “If crimes of rape are incorrectly removed from crime figures, services to victims are reduced and offenders left at liberty to commit further offences.”
It added that because the ‘no crimes’ are not investigated information that could link to other offences could go undetected.
The HMIC said it will visit forces this spring ‘to establish whether there are underlying perceptions about rape that generate these inconsistencies’.
According to an earlier HMIC report, Kent Police was correct logging a report as a crime 97 per cent of the time, while 82 per cent of its decisions to log ‘no crimes’ were correct in 2010 to 2011.
A Kent Police spokesman said specially trained officers attend the initial visit to a complainant, adding that Kent Police works closely with the CPS and other groups to ensure it is investigating allegations properly.
Assistant Chief Constable Andy Adams said: “Our message is clear: victims of sexual assault are treated with dignity and respect, and will always be taken seriously. We fully investigate all reports made to us and work with the CPS to put offenders before the court.”
When does a rape become a ‘no crime’?
If the allegation turns out to be false If officers find enough evidence to disprove the allegation.
If a rape occurred outside the county or in the armed forces, Kent Police logs it as ‘no crime’ and forwards it to the relevant force.