Responding to HM Crown Prosecution Inspectorate's rape inspection, the National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead for Adult Sexual Offences and Rape, Deputy Chief Constable Sarah Crew, said:
“Rape is one of the most complex crimes that police deal with. Everyone with a role in investigating and prosecuting this offence knows there is more to be done to increase the number of cases brought before the courts.
“Policing has been under huge strain in recent years with rising crime and more complex investigations mismatched against our resources. The shortage of detectives, the large increase in digital evidence and tackling disclosure challenges have all impacted on the number of cases referred to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and the time taken to investigate and prepare these. The recruitment of 20,000 officers over the next three years will help us to ease the pressure on investigators and improve outcomes for victims.
“The ongoing cross-Government review of the criminal justice system response to rape will be crucial in understanding the problems across the system, and we are committed to using that review to make real and lasting improvements. We are already working to address many of the issues raised in this report, drawing on the evidence that is already emerging from the review and are discussing a joint approach with the CPS to drive forward this work.”