Friday, February 25, 2005

Sickening or what?

Crime figures out today show that the rate of convictions in rape cases in the UK has fallen from 6% to 5.6% - the lowest rate EVER. Key issues mentioned are:

1) "sceptical" prosecutors and police often did not believe victims

"some evidence of poor investigation and understanding of the law"

Defendants were far more likely in rape case to claim the victim consented to the alleged attack.

An overestimation of the scale of false allegations among some officials led to victims losing confidence in the system.

So basically girls if you're raped this weekend, don't bother going to the police. They won't believe you and they won't do anything about it.


Amerikat said...

Since when do the police do anything about crime in the first place? There are yobs harassing people night and day in my neighbourhood and all the cops did was slap an asbo sign on the lamp posts. Lot of flipping good that did.

Cruella said...

True, although conviction rates for rape are a lot lower than for other crimes. Implying that there is a special kind of disbelief reserved specially for female victims of sex-related crime.

In general I think the police have a tough job and sugnificant lack of support in doing it. I think the situation needs to be addressed at government level. There is some interesting stuff about what it's like actually being in the police here:

Amerikat said...

I understand. I've actually read that blog and I'm not trying to blame the individual cops themselves, more the system that perpetuates apathy and laziness. It just gets so frustrating when you go to bed each night and wonder if your car's windscreen will be intact by sunrise.

Cruella said...

Where do you live Kat? I live in Hackney which everyone warned me against moving to but actually my leafy little corner has so far (1 year on) been problem-free.

Amerikat said...

Kingston. We knew it wasn't the best area when we moved here but we needed to be close to work. Now we run our own business and are kicking ourselves. Ah well.

Zendo Deb said...

At least in AmeriKa you are free to defend yourself. In the UK, if you vigorously defend yourself - and later that is deemed unreasonable use of force - you can be thrown in jail, and sued by your attacker. But since anything you might use to defend yourself is illegal in the UK, you are SOL from the word go. The Telegraph has some interesting things to say about the UK, check out this post

Zendo Deb said...

Also, the situation seems to be worse in Norway. In Oslo, 170 reports of rape resulted in 4 convictions.