Bedfordshire Police strive to provide the best service to victims of rape and other sexual offences and will look into crimes even if you do not wish to provide your personal details. The Emerald Centre can take information about a sexual offence anonymously and pass this onto police. This information can play a vital role within other police investigations and could prevent a further rape or sexual assault happening.
Bedfordshire Police have a dedicated team to investigate this type of crime and work with victims of rape and sexual assault. The Rape Investigation Unit (RIU) officers work closely alongside the Emerald Centre to ensure victim care remains a priority across Bedfordshire. Police will support you if you choose to report the incident and will investigate this further on your behalf.
Initial Contact Officer (ICO)
If you wish to report a rape or serious sexual offence to the police an officer will be sent to speak to you. This is usually an Initial Contact Officer (ICO) who is an officer specially trained in the initial investigation of serious sexual offences. It is their job to take an initial account from you, gather information to help guide the police investigation and determine if a medical examination is appropriate. They will accompany you to the Emerald Centre for if one is to take place.
Following the initial contact, the investigation will be handed over to the Rape Investigation Unit to progress. The team consists of specialist sexual offence investigators who will make contact with you to discuss your particular wishes and the next steps in the investigation. The officer in charge of your case will also work with the Emerald Centre and the ISVA allocated to your case to ensure you are fully supported.
If you were to contact the Emerald Centre and advise that you wish to make an anonymous report a member of staff would ask you questions like the ones outlined below. Although, you only have to give as much or as little information as you choose to:
• Are you in a safe place?
• Where did the offence take place? e.g. the local park in a named street
• When did it happen?
• Did you know the offender?
• Can you describe your attacker? E.g. what was he/she wearing?
• Can you describe what happened?
• Do you have any other relevant information you can think of to assist the police?
At no time will you be asked to provide your name or address, it is completely anonymous. The information will be passed on to Bedfordshire Police and may play a vital role in protecting people from further harm. Although you are under no obligation to do this and are not responsible for any further incidents should they occur. It is an option available to you if you do not want to be identified but wish to do something.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS)
The Crown Prosecution Service is committed to supporting victims of rape and sexual assault and delivering the highest quality service across Bedfordshire. They have a dedicated team who specialise in prosecuting sexual offences. They work with the police to decide whether there is sufficient evidence to proceed to court. Part of their role is to decide the charges to be made and prepare cases for court. If a case doesn’t reach that stage the details are retained on police records should further evidence come to light, such as a report by another victim.
Our ISVA (Independent Sexual Violence Advisor) service can support you through the criminal justice process. For more information regarding the role of the ISVA please click here .