What Happens Next If you have been the victim of a crime, it is important that you understand the steps that come next and how to receive the support you need. If you have reported a crime to the police, they will take information about the offence and the crime will be recorded. You will be given a crime reference number, and you may be asked to provide a statement. We understand that experiencing a crime might have been a distressing experience, and that you might feel angry or frustrated.. The decision to contact the police can be stressful, and you might be worried or concerned about its implications. If you would like advice or support, there are many people who can help. What happens now? What the police will do When you have reported a crime, the police will let you know what happens next. • They will inform you whether or not the crime is being investigated further. If the investigation is closed, they will give you the reasons why. • If your case is investigated further, the police will give you information about its progress. You have a right to be kept informed about your case, so do ask your police contact for updates. If your case goes to court If someone is arrested and charged, the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) will decide whether to prosecute and take your case to court. If your case goes to court, you will be contacted before the trial by the Witness Care Unit [insert hyperlink]. They will be your single point of contact from then on, and will inform and support you at court. Some witnesses who feel intimidated or vulnerable, because they are young or disabled for example, may need help giving evidence. In these cases, witnesses may be entitled to ‘special measures’. This could involve placing a screen between the witness box and the defendant or giving evidence with the help of a specialist. The Criminal Justice System is responsible for prosecuting criminal cases that have been investigated by the police. The Witness Care Unit takes care of victims and witnesses from the point when someone is charged with the crime to the end of the case. They inform witnesses about the progress of their case, make any arrangements for witnesses going to court, and offer support. An ‘Information for Victims of Crime’ leaflet produced by the Ministry of Justice sets out what you can expect from the criminal justice system. It also contains information about organisations that you can contact for free advice, practical information or emotional support

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