All police forces - including Sussex - need to improve their solved rates to provide justice for victims and improve community confidence. Increasing the number of specialist trained investigators will do much to achieve this, as the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner Katy Bourne OBE explains:

This is why I’m pleased that Sussex and Surrey Police have invested in a new fast-track detective development programme that opened for applications this week. 

Members of the public with degrees will now have the opportunity to undertake an intensive two-year programme, within the Force, to specialise in investigations and work towards their detective accreditation.

Successful recruits will be employed as a police officer from day one, gaining valuable experience of the role whilst studying towards their accreditation as a detective.

Between both Forces, almost 200 applications were received in the first 24 hours. This is encouraging and I hope that the campaign will reach out to even more diverse and brilliant individuals who want to help contribute to this vital area of policing. Apply here today.

This week Sussex Police also launched a pilot early intervention scheme which will operate across East Sussex for 16 months, with the aim of reducing reoffending.

Checkpoint is about taking an offender who has admitted their involvement in a crime and placing them on a structured four-month programme of diversion activity. It is designed to address the root causes of their criminal behaviour and prevent further crime.

This approach has been trialled successfully in other areas of the UK and has led to a more meaningful outcome for victims in circumstances where their case may not get as far as court or where the penalty has been a fine.

It is considered a breach if an individual does not complete the programme and the offender would be charged and potentially face court as a consequence.

Each case is managed by a Checkpoint Caseworker who keeps the victim updated throughout and provides an insight into the reasons behind the perpetrator’s behaviour. The victim will also be given the opportunity to explain how the crime has impacted them.

I look forward to hearing how this pilot progresses and the positive impact that it has on our communities. To find out more click here.