Radical change needed in handling of rape cases, says England and Wales police lead

NPCC lead for rape says specialist capability was damaged during austerity years

Crack teams of specialist police officers are needed to bring rapists to justice and prevent a wholesale collapse of public confidence in the criminal justice system, according to the police lead for rape in England and Wales.

Rape prosecutions have fallen to a record low, following a historic collapse in the number of police referrals, charges and convictions in rape cases, which critics argue amounts to the “decriminalisation” of rape. The situation is so dire that a radical reassessment of how sexual assault crimes are dealt with is needed, according to DCI Sara Crew.

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