Suella Braverman tells police to investigate theft crimes

New guidance was released on the 28th August 2023, informing the public about what they should expect when reporting a crime.

This is during a time when the government, including Rishi Sunak and Suella Braverman, are on a press drive to tell the British public that they’re doing more to tackle crime.

Braverman has specifically highlighted that theft cases need proper police investigation. This involves examining evidence like CCTV footage and GPS data.

In early May 2023, we discussed the declining rates of bicycle theft charges and summonses. The latest Home Office yearly data (year ending March 2023) continues to paint a deteriorating picture, with just 1.51% of 76,860 bicycle thefts resulting in charges/summonses. Again, far worse for the Metropolitan Police showing only 0.69% of bicycle thefts.

Chief Constable Andy Marsh, CEO at the College of Policing, said, “It is critically important the public know police will consider all reasonable lines of enquiry.”

He added that in practice this includes:

  • “Where there is clear recorded CCTV (or other) footage, police will recover that and seek to present it as evidence.
  • When there is clear eyewitness evidence, that person will be interviewed.
  • Where there is strong evidence and forensic opportunities, police will seek to present these.
  • Where property is stolen with unique features, i.e., serial number, etc., police will seek to recover it and obtain evidence.”

National Police Chiefs’ Council Lead for Investigations Chief Constable Scott Chilton mentioned that: “It is important to remember that each and every case is different and has different complexities, however, officers will use these new technologies when appropriate to gather evidence to build a case for prosecution. There are opportunities to identify offenders that we never had before, and that is something to be very positive about.”

In a video shared on Twitter (X), Home Secretary Suella Braverman has stressed the need for “common sense policing”.

During the video, Braverman specifically cited progress in addressing crimes such as burglary and car theft, which are “down significantly over 10 years“. Mentioning that “the police are now attending every home burglary”. At Stolen Ride, we would argue that these specific crime types have had a far longer term declining trend line than 10 years, even when zooming out to 20 years of data. But with a slight recent uptick in the last yearly crime data release.

At Stolen Ride, we welcome any improvement and increased focus on theft crimes, such as stolen bikes.

You can read the new conducting effective investigations guidelines here.