Disclosure Details

Investigations - 1093/16

Dated: 06 Jan 2017

Provision of information held by Northumbria Police made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (the 'Act')

Thank you for your e mail dated 4 September  2016 in which you made a request for access to certain information which may be held by Northumbria Police. 

As you may be aware the purpose of the Act is to allow a general right of access to information held at the time of a request, by a Public Authority (including the Police), subject to certain limitations and exemptions. 

You asked:

1) How many civilian investigators were employed by the force in each of the years 2011/12; 2012/13; 2013/14; 2014/15; 2015/16? 

2) How many incidents of each of the types listed below were investigated by civilian case investigators in each of the years 2011/12; 2012/13; 2013/14; 2014/15; 2015/16?

Sexual assault





We have now had the opportunity to fully consider your request and I provide a response for your attention. 

Information Commissioners Office (ICO) guidelines state that:

A public authority must confirm or deny whether it holds the information requested unless the cost of this alone would exceed the appropriate limit.

I can neither confirm nor deny that the information you require is held by Northumbria Police as to actually determine if it is held would exceed the permitted 18 hours therefore Section 12(2) of the Freedom of Information Act would apply.  This section does not oblige a public authority to comply with a request for information if the authority estimated that the cost of complying with the request would exceed the appropriate limit of 18 hours, equating to £450.00 

You should consider this to be a refusal notice under Section 17 of the Act for that part of your request. 

I have set out the reasons for this below. 

Northumbria Police have various civilian 'investigator' roles within the force. To establish a response to your request would require each arrest for the crimes outlined above for all of the years specified to be reviewed to establish if a civilian investigator had been recorded as being involved at any point in the lines of enquiries of those investigations.  During April 2016 alone there were 672 burglary crimes reported.  To establish if any recorded information was held regarding your request at this point alone would far exceed the permitted time constraints. 

Although excess cost removes Northumbria Police's obligations under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, as a gesture of goodwill I have supplied information below, relative to your request, retrieved or available before it was realised that the fees limit would be exceeded.  This is based on civillian roles that have the word "investigator" in their title. I trust this is helpful, but it does not affect our legal right to rely on the fees regulations for the remainder of your request. 

Year    Total Investigators  (Headcount)

2011/12 21

2012/13 20

2013/14 19

2014/15 23

2015/16 23 

Due to the different methods of recording information across 43 forces, a specific response from one constabulary should not be seen as an indication of what information could be supplied (within cost) by another.  Systems used for recording these figures are not generic, nor are the procedures used locally in capturing the data.  For this reason responses between forces may differ, and should not be used for comparative purposes. 

The information we have supplied to you is likely to contain intellectual property rights of Northumbria Police.  Your use of the information must be strictly in accordance with the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 (as amended) or such other applicable legislation.  In particular, you must not re-use this information for any commercial purpose.