IPCC Publish Report Into SYP Response To Rape/Assault Allegations
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has found South Yorkshire Police’s response to a woman’s reports of assault and rape ‘did not reach the standard a reasonable person would expect’.
In November 2014, the woman told the IPCC that the force had not properly investigated after she reported being repeatedly harassed, assaulted and raped, by an ex-boyfriend, during the mid-1990s.
She also told the investigation that police had dissuaded her from making a criminal complaint against her abuser following an incident where she sustained a fractured skull.
The independent investigation looked at her contact with South Yorkshire Police between 1995 and 1996. It found a lack of police investigative material relating to her reports, notably:
- No crime record or record of any investigation following the report of rape and assault has been found, and;
- Independent witnesses corroborated her claims that police had visited her on a number of occasions, following her complaints, but there was no police record of these visits.
Although there is evidence to suggest there was a lack of investigative work, the absence of records means individual officers involved in dealing with the woman could not be formally identified. Therefore there can be no case to answer for misconduct for any officer or staff member.
On receiving the IPCC’s report, South Yorkshire Police have upheld the victim’s complaint regarding neglect of duty and apologised to her.
Associate IPCC Commissioner, Tom Milsom, said:
“This woman reported very serious offences to South Yorkshire Police. Her complaints should have been recorded as reported crimes by the force – there is no evidence they were. They should have been investigated thoroughly – again there is no evidence they were.”
“The lack of records means we have no individual officers to investigate, but it is evident the service provided by South Yorkshire Police did not meet the standard a reasonable person would expect. She was let down badly and I welcome the apology from South Yorkshire Police.”