It’s important that as a victim you have expectations. This means you can appropriately challenge if you feel you have not received a service or you feel that something is missing. The following guidance are Operation Hampshire standards and they complement the more specific Victims' Code of Practice, revised and relaunched in April 2021 which also apply to you fully as a victim of crime.
I have been the victim of an assault, what can I expect to happen?
Ideally, if Operation Hampshire is in place in your force you should expect the following to happen.
- A local supervisor should be made aware that you have been assaulted. There is no time limit to this as it will depend on the circumstances. However, if it isn’t obvious that someone knows what has happened, you or a colleague should let someone know as soon as possible.
- A supervisor should contact you to find out how you are? What sort of injuries do you have? Do you need medical care? What were the circumstances? Has the suspect been arrested? This information will be recorded and your wellbeing in the early stages will be taken care of.
- A supervisor should ascertain whether you need any ongoing support or whether any of your other responsibilities need to be handed over so that you have time to recover.
- Ideally you should not write your own statement but this will vary depending on the assault and the availability of colleagues. If able you should complete any necessary original notes as they will be important evidentially but they might only need to be relatively brief. The statement should be more detailed and a colleague should take the time to capture the detail including the impact it has had on you – the victim.
- You should be offered the opportunity to submit a victim personal statement. This explains how the assault has affected you as an individual and there is specific guidance available to assist with this.
- Your assault needs to be accurately recorded. It’s best that you don’t do this yourself. It is part of the initial investigation and it can cause issues later on. Someone should record it for you.
- You must not investigate your own assault nor should you interview the suspect who assaulted you. Someone should be assigned to do this and those arrangements will be made by a supervisor. You should know who the investigating officer is and they should keep you informed of the progress of the investigation.
- An officer (supervisor or colleague) can be provided if you need additional support longer term. If you go sick as a result someone should keep in contact with you.
- You should be informed of what happens to the suspect. If no further action is taken, the investigating officer should contact you to discuss this. Similarly, if the case is discontinued, as a victim you are entitled to request a victim’s right to review (VRR) to challenge the decision. This should also be discussed.
- All assault cases should be reviewed by your local senior managers to ensure the process is being followed and more importantly that you are receiving the support and contact you deserve.