|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what the detection rate was for (a) rape and (b) other sexual offences in each police force area in England and Wales in each year since 1997. 
Data are available for 1997 calendar year and from 1998-99 in financial years. This followed a revision to the counting rules for recorded crime and the expanded coverage which came into effect on 1 April 1998. The figures were also affected by the revised detections guidance issued in April 1999 which formalised detection procedures, placing a greater emphasis on the evidential basis on which detections can be claimed. They were also affected by the introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard in April 2002, which required the police to record a crime unless there was
no credible evidence to the contrary.
The Sexual Offences Act 2003 in May 2004 also altered the definition and coverage of sexual offences, in particular, indecent exposure is now classified as a
sexual offence. All these changes mean that detection rates are not comparable over this time period.
The existing statistical evidence suggests that both the changes to detections guidance and the introduction of NCRS had a marked impact in reducing detection rates for sexual offences since 1997. The Home Office is currently researching in detail recent changes in detection rates in rape cases in England and Wales, including variation between forces. This is expected to be published shortly.
New performance management arrangements have been introduced for the police and CPS on the investigation and prosecution of rape. The Home Office and Association of Chief Police Officers are also providing operational support to police forces on the implementation of recommendations from Without Consent, the rape inspection published in January 2007.
|Table 1: Detection rates( 1) for rape offences by police force area|
|Police force area||1997||1998-99||1999-2000( 3)||2000-01||2001-02||2002-03||2003-04||2004-05||2005-06|
|n/a = Not available.|
(1) Offences detected in current year may have been initially recorded in an earlier year, so some percentages may exceed 100.
(2) Expanded offence coverage and revised counting rules came into effect on 1 April 1998.
(3) Revised detections guidance was implemented on 1 April 1999.
(4) The data in this table take account of the introduction of the National Crime Recording Standard in April 2002. These figures are not directly comparable with those for earlier years.
(5) The Sexual Offences Act 2003, introduced in May 2004, altered the definition and coverage of sexual offences.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|