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Police: Rape 'unique to how it affects each victim'

Martin Hewitt began a week long rape awareness campaign in the hopes more victims will come forward. Credit: DaybreakITV

Rape and sex crimes are "unique" in the "way that it affects the victim" and their individual needs, a senior police officer told Daybreak.

Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt spoke about how forces up and down the country needed to be more proactive in their approach to policing rape.

There were some measures already in place, he explained: "We put training in place to make sure that everyone who potentially comes into contact with that person has the knowledge to put them to the specialist."

Reporting of sex crimes up by 9%

More victims of sex crimes are coming forward to report them to the police, a group of police chiefs have said.

The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) said the increase was the largest rise since the current system of recording standards in policing was introduced.

According to ACPO:

  • In 2012/13, 3,692 rape prosecutions were brought with 63.2% of these cases resulting in convictions.
  • This was a 5.5% increase from 2008/9.
  • The public debate about sex offences, particularly non recent child abuse, may have been responsible for this increase.

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Police chief urges forces to do more to prevent rape

Police forces in England and Wales should do more to prevent rape rather than just react to reports of sex crimes, a senior police officer has said.

A more proactive approach is needed to tackle rape, a senior police officer has said. Credit: PA

Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Martin Hewitt said forces have been too "reactive" and more should be done to prevent the crimes.

He also encouraged police be more "honest" with victims about the difficulties of securing a conviction.

His comments come at the start of a week-long campaign to encourage rape victims to come forward.

Victims of rape urged to report incidents to police

The actress, who herself was the victim of rape 19 years ago, says much more support and help is now available and is urging people to come forward.

Campaign for more female advisers for rape victims

Reveal Magazine and charity Rape Crisis are calling on the government to devote more funding for independent female advisers to help rape victims through the legal process.

In their survey, 86 percent of respondents said they believed this would help more victims come forwards,

Currently, Independent Sexual Violence Advisers (ISVA) fulfil this role, but campaigners believe there need to be more of them.

A quarter of victims 'doubt rapist will ever be convicted'

A survey of 1,000 adult women in the UK found that 16 percent of respondents said they have had sex against their will. Of these:

  • Only 78% did not report it to police
  • 26% did not think there was a strong chance of prosecution
  • 18% did not think there was enough support from the legal system to help them through the process

The latest national figures from the Office for National Statistics estimate that only 16% of the 95,000 rapes that occur in the UK annually are reported, and that only 1% of these end in a conviction.

You can get help and confidential advice from the National Rape Crisis Helpline: 0808 802 9999

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Survey: Only one in five rape victims report to police

As few as one in five rape victims ever report it to the police, according to a new survey.

In a poll of 1,000 adult women in the UK, 16 percent of respondents said they have had sex against their will, either with someone they know or a stranger.

Of these, 78 percent said they did not report it, either because they were scared by what people would think of them, or because they thought there was not enough evidence.

The study was conducted by Reveal Magazine and supported by Rape Crisis, who are campaigning for more independent female advisors to support rape victims through the legal process.

You can get help and confidential advice from the National Rape Crisis Helpline: 0808 802 9999

Police search for man who raped 12-year-old girl

Police are searching for a man who raped a 12-year-old girl after pulling her to a woodland area near a play park in Milton Keynes.

The incident was reported to police on Saturday and a scene watch is currently in place to allow a forensic examination, a force spokeswoman said.

The girl was attacked around March 23 at about 3pm at the end of the play area in Harrowden, Bradville, in Milton Keynes.

The victim is described as a white girl, aged 12, 5ft, of slim build, with long shoulder length mid-brown hair. She was wearing glasses.

Police said the offender is described as a white man, aged around 45 and of skinny build.

He had very short grey/black hair. He spoke with a Scottish accent and was wearing a black leather jacket, blue jeans and black Dr Martens boots.

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Man convicted of raping boy

Gavin Randall Credit: Cambridgeshire Police

A man from Cambridge has been jailed for three years after being convicted of raping a young boy when he was a teenager. 29-year-old Gavin Randall of Kingsway, Cambridge, abused the boy at an address in the city at some point between 1998 and 2001.

The boy, who was about 10 at the time of the offence, went to police in September 2011 to report the assault.

Met police action over rape claims 'catastrophic' for women

The Women's Resource Centre, a charity which supports women's organisations has condemned Metropolitan Police after an IPCC report found officers had pressurised women to drop rape claims:

Yet another catastrophic outcome for women and children as a result of serious and endemic institutionalised failings within the police, and even more worryingly within a specific unit of the police set up to deal with rape and sexual violence.

They are obviously not fit for purpose! When will the institutionalised sexism obviously rife across the country be properly and satisfactorily addressed? Furthermore, in the wake of £3billion worth of cuts to the women’s sector under this coalition government, when will the life-saving work of women's charitable organisations be fully resourced to ensure appropriate support is available to women who have experienced such heinous crimes?

– Vivienne Hayes, CEO, Women’s Resource Centre
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