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Dorset’s DC Jacqui Gravenor has one word to describe detective policing today: “exhausting”.
She explains: “A new era has dawned for the detective. The days of going into the community to investigate serious and complex crimes are long gone. Today’s detectives are chained to their computers, completing ever increasing case files.
“Our goal is to get those all-important charges that might give our victims justice, however the detective’s ability to achieve this is encumbered by the sheer weight of administrative tasks.”
The change Jacqui thinks is most needed is staffing. The loss of civilians who used to assist in preparing paperwork for court cases now means that detectives must shoulder the whole burden.
“The admin side is huge and so are the demands and expectations of the Crown Prosecution Service – the way they want the documents, the size of them, how they want them presented in court. These are all time-consuming things.”
Jacqui adds: “The Bail Act has changed the way we deal with prisoners and how much time we have to conduct an investigation, rather than just focusing on what the crime is, how to investigate and how to bring offenders to justice.
“As the officer in the case we’re expected to prepare these files ourselves and sometimes the admin side of just making sure that files are presented correctly, that can take a long time and that doesn’t even include the investigative side of things.”
DC Jacqui Gravenor
Remember, your workplace reps are there for you should you need support and guidance.
You can find out more about the Police Federation National Detectives’ Forum here.