Police officers will spend less time in the station processing suspects as a new electronically joined up justice system is introduced across the country by 2005. The IT systems are part of the Government’s National Criminal Justice System IT programme to put modern IT infrastructure and systems in place to support improved performance across the Criminal Justice System in England and Wales.The Custody programme manages the processes for handling people who are arrested and taken into custody. When processing arrestees at police stations it captures the essential data that is needed for processing them and provides a clear lead for custody sergeants to take them through the procedures and legal requirements. The programme gets rid of paperwork.
A further benefit is a link to the Case Preparation programme which helps manage the processes for building case. Linking the two programmes together removes the need for re-keying custody data and, in time, will permit the electronic transfer of files, including all relevant victim and witness statements to the Crown Prosecution Service as well as to the Courts.
The first electronic ‘interface’ between custody and case preparation programmes has gone live in a paper free custody suite at Rugby Police Station in Warwickshire.