The next steps

Following police enquiries a decision will be made as to what happens next in relation to your crime and the investigator in charge of your case will explain this to you.

If your case is not going to progress to court (even if a suspect has been identified and interviewed) then the officer will explain the reasons for this. If you are unhappy with the explanation given, in certain circumstances you can ask for this to be reviewed.

There are a number of ways in which police can take action against an offender if a case does not go to court. They include:

  • Community resolution and Restorative Justice
  • Adult and youth cautions, either simple or with conditions
  • Penalty notices for disorder and crime

These options allow police to deal proportionately with certain types of crime when it is not deemed appropriate for the offender to be punished through the court system.

Such punishments are not suitable for more serious cases or where the person does not admit responsibility for the offence. Equally, these options would not be used for those who repeatedly commit crime.

If such an approach is thought suitable you will be asked for your views and these will be taken into account before any decision is made.

If you are called to give evidence in court we will ensure that you know what to expect, and you receive the support and advice you need.

Consider Restorative Justice

It could answer the question why and therefore be part of the healing and putting it behind you process.

Restorative Justice gives victims the chance to meet or communicate with offenders and to explain the real impact of crime. To find out more visit the restorative justice page.


Contact centre
Devon & Cornwall Police
Police Headquarters
Middlemoor, Exeter

Tel: 101
Textphone: 67101 sms/text number for the deaf/hard hearing/speech impaired
Tel: 18001 101 Minicom/Textphone

Non Emergency Directory (NED)

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