Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Warning system saves court time

Collapse
X
Collapse
  •  

  • Warning system saves court time

    Click image for larger version

Name:	Court Backlog.jpg
Views:	1
Size:	10.8 KB
ID:	24896
    Crime rates have dropped to their lowest level for 24 years - but police are not solving any more of their cases. Instead, they say they are focusing on preventing major crimes, rather than resolving minor ones.
    The drop in crime figures across the board come at the same time as courts statistics show a 14 per cent fall in new cases entering the justice system's busiest jurisdiction - District Court cases dealt with by judges sitting alone. The drop is primarily a result of the police pre-charge warning scheme, which some lawyers have dubbed "tag and release".

    The warnings divert lower-end offences such as liquor-ban breaches and disorder away from the court system. Police arrest the offenders, and put a warning on their records, but they are not charged. Law Society criminal law committee chairman Jonathan Krebs said the result did not mean that crime had gone down, but simply that lower-end offenders were getting off in the interest of cutting costs. "I don't think it's a good thing," Mr Krebs said. "It's the opposite of a zero-tolerance policy."
    According to police statistics for 2012, recorded crime fell nationally by 7.4 per cent.

    But homicides, sexual assaults and drug offences were all up nationally, and half the 12 police districts recorded worse crime resolution rates in 2012 than they had 2011. Wellington District commander Superintendent Mike Rusbatch said the resolution rate needed to be kept within the context of the crime-prevention strategy. "One of the things we have been trying to do is to put more effort into prevention and more support around victims, as opposed to necessarily the resolution rates, per se.

    "So, yes, we are trying to resolve all crime that occurs, but what we're actually trying to do is, our first priority is to prevent the crime happening in the first place."There's crimes that we'll put enormous effort into: if we go back to our homicides, all our homicides we solved [last year], and a lot of effort goes there.

    "Some other lower-level crimes, clearly they're not such a high priority and we're choosing to take some of that effort and put it in place to prevent crime." The crime-prevention model has seen an increased visible presence of police as they patrol in greater numbers, which has contributed to the lower crime statistics, police say. Acting Commissioner Viv Rickard said there were 30,000 fewer victims last year because of crimes being prevented, which was a better result than resolving crimes once they had occurred.

    "Our strategy is very clear: we are about preventing crime. And we're also seeing, when people commit crime, our resolution rate is 47 per cent. Let me tell you, I've interacted with a lot of jurisdictions around the world, that's a world-class resolution rate. It's dropped about 0.3 per cent, and that's negligible. So I'm happy with that resolution rate, I'm more focused on having less victims."

    More than 45,000 people were arrested for minor offences such as drinking or fighting but given a warning rather than charged under a new system to cut the number of cases clogging courtrooms.
    New figures show that 12 per cent of all arrests in the 2011/12 year were not prosecuted, according to an evaluation report of pre-charge warnings obtained under the Official Information Act.
    The decision to issue a formal warning is at the discretion of senior police officers for anyone arrested for a crime with a penalty of no more than six months in prison, except in the case of family violence or methamphetamine.
    The programme was implemented in September 2010 on the back of several Law Commission reports and calls from the judiciary to develop other ways to hold people to account for less serious offending without having to bring them before the courts. Since then, 45,836 warnings have been issued.

    More than half of the warnings were for disorderly behaviour and breach of liquor bans, shoplifting, fighting and cannabis possession.Police say the warnings have reduced the "unsustainable" pressure on the log-jammed court system and freed officers for more frontline work, instead of spending time preparing prosecution files for low-level offences.

    Credit- NZ Herald

    • Sir Richard
      #1
      Sir Richard commented
      Editing a comment
      We all know about the Wairapa Police Official who was promoted after an exemplary solve rate, only to then find he had been concealing unsolved crime files behind the cabinets. The reality is crime figures are down in part because it is harder to report crime. Most Police precincts now close before 5 pm and victims of smaller crimes simply give up trying to report. If Police stopped answering the phones, crime would likely go down to zero.

    • yellowfattybeans
      #2
      yellowfattybeans commented
      Editing a comment
      Hmmm

      Originally posted by Sir Richard
      We all know about the Wairapa Police Official who was promoted after an exemplary solve rate, only to then find he had been concealing unsolved crime files behind the cabinets. The reality is crime figures are down in part because it is harder to report crime. Most Police precincts now close before 5 pm and victims of smaller crimes simply give up trying to report. If Police stopped answering the phones, crime would likely go down to zero.
      That is why they say REPORTED crime is down, they aren't actually claming that crime is down. Subtle but big difference. YOu are quite right - stop answering the phone and we now have no crime. I also am very suspicious about the reasons for the drop in reported crime. Next year will be interesting as there seem to be an awful lot of murders, and it is almost impossible to "cook the books" in relation to murder. IMO murder is the top of the pyramid, more murders must mean more crime (whether reported or not). The drop in proscutions will also mean more warnings by cops on the street, many of which will never be recorded formally. The whole situation is a worry really.
    Posting comments is disabled.

Latest Articles

Collapse

  • Judge Goddard refuses to answer MPs' questions
    by admin
    The former New Zealand judge who headed a UK inquiry into child sexual abuse has said she will not appear before British MPs to answer questions about her time in charge. Dame Lowell Goddard said for her to be summoned would compromise the inquiry's "independence and integrity". She also hit out at "malicious, defamatory attacks" by the British media and said she was disappointed the government had not defended her. British MPs have asked the former head of the child sex abuse inquiry to expl...
    11-11-2016, 11:47 AM
  • Judge Lowell Goddard's epic fail
    by admin
    Dame Lowell Goddard, the New Zealand judge who resigned last week as chair of the 100 million (N$183.5m) Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA), did not leave her post voluntarily but was effectively fired. Dame Lowell, appointed by then-Home Secretary Theresa May just over a year ago, had already lost the confidence of senior staff and members of the inquiry panel, according to two well-placed legal sources. The Home Office has denied she was sacked, according to reports. After she ...
    09-08-2016, 10:07 AM
  • Sir Ngatata Love's lawyer claims agreement had no impact on Trust
    by admin
    Sir Ngatata Love's lawyer Colin Carruthers QC says the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) theory against his client is wrong, with a key agreement placing no financial cost on the Wellington Tenths Trust. The former leading Treaty of Waitangi negotiator and academic is on trial in the High Court at Wellington, accused of obtaining funds by deception, or alternatively of obtaining a secret commission.The charges relate to allegations that Love showed favour to Auckland property developer Redwood, and ...
    05-08-2016, 01:44 PM
  • Transport boss pleads guilty to corruption charges
    by admin
    The Serious Fraud Office says the guilty plea yesterday by an Auckland Council manager to corruption charges shows the dangers in not questioning a culture of gratuities. Barrie Kenneth James George, 69, this morning at the High Court at Auckland pleaded guilty to two charges of accepting bribes as a public official when he took gifts worth $103,580 between 2005 and 2012. The gifts included cash, and lavish overseas holidays for George and his family. SFO Director, Julie Read welcomed the guilty plea...
    04-08-2016, 09:40 AM
  • Identities of corrupt JP's stay secret
    by admin
    The identities of Justices of the Peace disciplined for incompetence, making false allegations or misusing their title for personal gain are being kept secret by the Ministry of Justice.In the case of the above JP Denis Selwyn Callesen of Keri Keri, the Crown Law Office even halted a private prosecution against Mr Callessen after evidence emerged that Mr Callessen and his former secretary Robin Morris had perverted the course of justice.

    The Ministry believes the privacy of...
    23-07-2016, 11:35 AM
  • Government funded escape artist Philip Smith found guilty
    by admin
    The murderer who embarrassed New Zealand law and border authorities by flying to Brazil while on temporary release from prison has been convicted for the audacious escape. Charges of escaping lawful custody and making a false statement to renew a passport have been added to Phillip John Smith's lengthy criminal record, along with murder, child sex abuse, kidnapping, tax fraud and arson. In an unusual legal procedure, a jury was chosen at the Auckland District Court today and the judge immedia...
    22-07-2016, 01:05 PM
Working...
X