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Crime Of The Century - A Chilling Look At Crime Statistics In The UK


national mandate on how Forces should record these incidents and Forces have been relatively free to categorise non-crime incidents as they believed was most appropriate.


Whilst limited direction can be found in the HOCRs on the recording of non-crime incidents, this only states that all reported incidents must, in some way, be auditable.


The National Standard for Incident Recording (NSIR) aims to address this gap. NSIR is a framework for Forces that provides both a standard categorisation of non-crime incidents as well as outlining the specific information on incidents to be collected and returned by Forces. It will provide an unprecedented wealth of information on non-crime incidents and is now used as a fundamental tool in the sharing of data between CDRP partners.


During 2007/8 the Home Office and NPIA produced the Data Quality Audit Manual. This was introduced to provide guidance and a robust audit framework in light of the cessation of the previously conducted Audit Commission national reviews of data quality. The DQAM lays down the recommended minimum levels of data auditing for NSIR (as well as for NCRS).


The DQAM details the sample sizes, grading system and suggested methodologies that should be considered. Forces are reminded that the framework described in the DQAM is a minimum recommended position. In particular it is suggested that, where concerns are identified, specific targeted audits should also be considered.


The Incident Recording System Forces should seek to capture all incidents coming to the notice of the police so as to establish an accurate and timely picture of what is happening locally. This will usually be in the form of a command and control system incident, but will vary with force circumstances. It is envisaged that all future incident and crime recording systems should be fully integrated or at least linked to facilitate tracking and audit between the systems.


For audit purposes, where recorded incidents appear to be crime related, they should either result in a recorded crime being created or an account of the reasons for not completing a crime report sufficient to show that the National Crime Recording Standard has not been breached.


Key aspects: • Adequate distribution of input terminals to encourage full and accurate recording. • Adequate guidance and supervision in respect of the classification and closing of incidents. • Incident logs to be cross-referenced with the crime system and vice-versa. • Appropriate query tool mechanisms to be in place with the system being able to adequately respond to different user requirements. • Incidents that do not result in a recorded crime to include sufficient account to show that the force has complied with NCRS and NSIR.


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