Crime

Low Rate of Charges for Rape Cases in Dorset: Only One in 28

Only one in 28 rape cases reported in Dorset leads to charges.

Of all the 114 rape cases reported to Dorset Police between April and June, only 4 resulted in a court appearance or the suspect being charged. That is 3.5 percent. A huge 40 percent of rape crimes were closed due to lack of evidence.

A suspect was charged in 6 percent of 271 sexual offenses and 12 percent of crimes of violence.

In England and Wales, 4 percent of rape cases and 8 percent of sexual crimes resulted in charges.

Katie Rusell, a spokeswoman for Rape Crisis England and Wales, said the criminal justice system is not helping rape victims as they should, and needs to be overhauled and funded for sexual violence services.

She said, “These figures are extremely concerning, but reflect what we already know: that the criminal justice system is currently failing victims and survivors of rape, sexual abuse and all forms of sexual violence.

“Despite record numbers of people who’ve experienced these serious offences coming forward to report to the police, criminal justice outcomes are lagging far behind those for other violent crimes.”

The National Police Chiefs’ Council lead for adult sex offences and rape, Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt came to the defence of the Force.

He said, “Significant improvements in the specialist training of officers, greater access to sexual assault referral centres, and improved crime recording practices are all aimed at supporting those who take the brave step in coming forward and improving the service they receive.”

 

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