WEST Yorkshire Police’s crime recording arrangements have been graded “outstanding” at the force’s first inspection by the Inspectorate.

In a report released by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) it sates West Yorkshire Police had put in place comprehensive crime recording practices which ensured that over 94 per cent of all crimes reported to it were recorded.

The Inspectorate noted that ‘victims are at the forefront of the force’s crime-recording arrangements” and commended officers and staff for their “hard work and commitment to crime recording’.

HM Inspector of Constabulary Phil Gormley said: “West Yorkshire Police should be congratulated on its approach to crime recording, which we have rated ‘outstanding’ in our most recent inspection. It is one of only two forces to receive this grade in this rolling programme.

“We previously inspected the force’s crime recording arrangements in 2014 and were concerned to find an inconsistent and uneven approach to recording. We therefore provided the force with an extensive list of recommendations for improvement.

“Given these previous issues, it is very encouraging to see just how much the force has improved. Not only has it implemented the recommendations contained in our 2014 report, but it has also enacted its own initiatives designed to promote improvement.

“These initiatives have helped to ensure that the force now records almost all crime reported to it, in a quick and timely manner.

“I was also very impressed with the attitude to crime recording displayed by officers and staff throughout the force. The force displays an emphasis on and commitment to improved crime recording at all levels, with training programmes and the work of an accredited force crime registrar and his team being just two of the measures responsible for this cultural shift.”

The force was rated ‘good’ at recording reported crime (94.6 per cent), reported violent crimes recorded (93.8 per cent), reported sex offences recorded (98.8 per cent), and audited 78 of 87 rape reports. The force was also rated ‘good’ in how efficiently its systems and processes support accurate crime recording.

In demonstrating the leadership and culture necessary to meet the national standards for crime reporting the force was graded ‘outstanding’.

An overall judgement of ‘outstanding’ was rated.

The Inspectorate identified the following specific improvements:

• Establishing a ‘gold group’, led by a Chief Officer, to sanction and oversee crime recording;

• Early identification of victims who may be vulnerable or at particular risk;

• Providing relevant personal development objectives for individual officers and staff; and

• Promoting good crime recording practices through the work of the force crime registrar team.

HMICFRS will continue to inspect crime recording practices in West Yorkshire Police at regular intervals.