With more than 94,000 crimes reported every year in Sussex, our investigators are using an Investigations Framework to focus on crimes which cause the most harm.

Officers and staff are assessing each case individually and making decisions based upon a range of factors, with a focus on protecting the most vulnerable.

The framework acknowledges that we should not investigate everything. We have to make choices about where we direct our efforts - prioritising the crimes that cause the greatest harm to victims and the communities - without ruling out certain crime types.

The investigations framework provides a clear set of principles on which to make decisions about investigations, highlighting where the crime is unlikely to be solved and having open discussions about this with the victim of the crime.

We will focus our efforts on the victims’ wishes, and the most vulnerable.

It is vital that we make good, early decisions about what should be investigated. We will work together with victims of crime to understand their views and make sure their wishes are central to the decision making process.

Where it is proportionate and in the public interest, we will:

  • investigate all serious crimes that are reported to us
  • investigate all crimes where there is a genuine risk of death, or significant harm or loss

When crimes are less serious we will prioritise those crimes in which:

  • victims and witnesses are vulnerable
  • offenders are dangerous or prolific
  • the crime is part of a series or an identified local problem
  • there is a named or readily identifiable suspect

Our framework aims to:

  • improve the quality of decision making about what should and shouldn’t be investigated
  • make sure we are being efficient and using the right expertise when investigating crime
  • increase the proportion of investigations conducted where victims are vulnerable
  • give officers and staff the power to make victim focused decisions about what to investigate


The framework does not contain information about when we will attend incidents which are reported to us. It describes how we will respond to recorded crimes after we have been to an incident or taken a report on the phone.