Search

Shoplifters and vandals may dodge justice after police say probes ‘impractical’

PUBLISHED: 12:15 16 October 2017 | UPDATED: 13:53 16 October 2017

Police at the scene of a crime. Picture: Ken Mears

Police at the scene of a crime. Picture: Ken Mears

Archant

A senior police officer has said it is “not practical” for officers to investigate crimes such as shoplifting and criminal damage as his force bids to save £400 million.

The Metropolitan Police said new guidelines would mean officers could “determine very quickly if it is proportionate” to investigate “lower level, higher volume offences” further.

Deputy assistant commissioner Mark Simmons said the force had to work with fewer officers and less money, with the Crime Assessment Policy introduced to help prioritise resources.

He said: “Clearly this is not about letting criminals get away with crime, or not investigating the cases we are solving at the moment, if we thought it was, we simply would not do this.

“With the pressure on our resources it is not practical for our officers to spend a considerable amount of time looking into something where for example, the value of damage or the item stolen is under £50, or the victim is not willing to support a prosecution.

“We need our officers to be focused on serious crime and cases where there is a realistic chance that we will be able to solve it.”

Serious offences will continue to be investigated as before, Mr Simmons said.

He added: “Of course we are not talking about things like homicide, kidnap, sexual offences, hate crime or domestic violence, but the lower level, higher volume offences such as shoplifting, car crime and criminal damage.

“This is not to say these cases will not be investigated further, however by applying the assessment policy we will be able to determine very quickly if it is proportionate to do so.”

Under the new policy 150,000 fewer offences will be investigated every year, according to reports.

Ex-Met detective chief inspector Mick Neville told the Sun: “This is justice dreamed up by bean counters in shiny suit land.

“No consideration is being given to victims. The new principles will focus police attention on easy crimes where there is a known suspect.

“Few professional criminals target people who know them, so the worst villains will evade justice. Not investigating high volume crimes like shoplifting with a loss of under £50 will give junkies a green light to thieve.”

Latest Ilford Stories

17:28

Belgium and Tunisia have met on three previous occasions in all competitions, with a win apiece and a draw. The encounters have been tight affairs, with victories decided by one-goal margins, but today’s match didn’t follow the same trend.

13:15

A man who threatened a mum at knifepoint while she was dropping off her children at school in Seven Kings and pulled out a knife on a taxi driver in Ilford has been handed six years in prison.

Nottinghamshire required just an hour and three-quarters on the fourth morning of the Specsavers County Championship game at Chelmsford to remove the last six Essex wickets and claim victory.

12:57

Lakeside Hammers team boss Will Pottinger admits his side have “momentum” after a nail-biting away win at Scunthorpe on Friday night.

12:00

Gareth Southgate’s promising young England side look ready to make a mark on the world stage and help atone for the disappointments of recent tournaments.

14:12

A 21-year-old man has been injured after a brawl in Gants Hill.

Just over five years ago, the Ilford Recorder ran a front page article with the headline “Police swoop on the homeless taking sleeping bags and food parcels in co-ordinated raids in Redbridge”.

Yesterday, 19:15

Essex (206 & 88-4) trail Nottinghamshire (380 & 266) by 352 runs

PROMOTED CONTENT

An Ilford shoe retailer and podiatry practice is taking the next step with a move to a new shop just a few doors down.

Redbridge estate agents Sandra Davidson answer the common questions homeowners have when it comes to selling their home, and reveals how you can make sure the sale is stress-free

Redbridge Estate agents Sandra Davidson’s hassle-free service guarantees rental income for your property, whether it is occupied or not. Here they share details of the Guaranteed Rent Scheme and how it can help you avoid the regular stresses associated with managing a let.

Newsletter Sign Up

Ilford Recorder twice-weekly newsletter
Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Most read news

Show Job Lists

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Ilford Recorder
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now