‘Police force has failed victims of crime’ investigation finds

Herts Chief Constable Andy BlissHerts Chief Constable Andy Bliss
Herts Chief Constable Andy Bliss
Hertfordshire Police chief commits to better recording of crime after an investigation found it neglected to report 51 crimes.

An audit by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary found police across England and Wales record only 81% of crimes –meaning 800,000 crimes go unreported.

In Hertfordshire, just 130 of 181 crimes that should have been reported were logged. This compares to just 10 unreported crimes in neighbouring Bedfordshire and 21 in Thames Valley. The inspection was carried out between December 2013 and August of this year, and is the most extensive of its kind into crime data integrity – posing the question of how far police information can be trusted.

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The report concludes: “Victims of crime are being let down. The police are failing to record a large proportion of the crimes reported to them.”

But Herts Police Chief Constable Andy Bliss explained more is already being done to prevent victims of crime being let down in the county in the same way again. He said: “I am absolutely committed that Hertfordshire Constabulary records crime with integrity and accuracy, as this is essential both for public confidence and ensuring that police resources are targeted in the most effective way. We have already undertaken significant training and seen significant improvement since the HMIC carried out their inspection.

“I am confident officers do not join the Constabulary intent on failing to record and investigate crime properly. If a crime is reported we will record it. If recorded crime goes up in the meantime, so be it. We need to understand it in order to tackle it.”