Reporting revenge porn to the police

If someone has shared a private sexual photograph or video of you without your consent you can report this to the police. In an emergency you can contact the police for assistance by dialling 999.

The police may be able to attend the scene of the incident to protect you from further abuse and arrest your abuser.

In non-emergencies you can contact the police by dialling 101. 

See the legal guide Reporting an offence to the police: a guide to criminal investigations which provides more information on reporting an offence to the police, providing a statement, and the police investigation process.

Remember to take screen shots or print hard copies of the abusive posts or messages to show to the police.

Your abuser may later delete their messages or posts so your screen shots may be very important evidence.

Great source of information on the topic: https://rightsofwomen.org.uk/

Making off without payment or bilking

If someone stays at your hotel and deliberately leaves without paying this is a type of theft.

It is known as ‘making off without payment’ or 'bilking’.

Using West Midlands Police as an example, a helper guide online as to what actions can be taken depending on your circumstances: https://west-midlands.police.uk/your-options/leaving-hotel-without-paying

The output from one such test of the guide: Leaving a hotel without paying and there are witnesses … My situation is this has happened more than once … The person who did this I think I know who did this … Evidence wise - there is video footage or photos … My concerns are - this is affecting my mental or physical health.

If you are a witness or know someone who is then the Police need to know your / their details including name, address and telephone number. If this has happened more than once, please tell them when you report it to them. Please provide details of other times this has happened.

If you know the person or people who have done this, the Police will need you to tell them how you know them and why you think they are linked to the offence. If you have video or photographic evidence, make sure you download and save it, as this could be invaluable to the investigation.

If you choose to report this incident online (say, to the West Midlands Police) you can upload the evidence directly to them with your report. If there is enough evidence, officers may arrest and charge a suspect. The court will then decide whether the person is guilty, and if so, allocate a suitable sentence.  

A community resolution may also be considered.

Body-Worn Video 101

Common law provides the police with the authority to use Born-Worn Video (BWV) in the lawful execution of their duties, for the purpose of the prevention and detection of crime.

The operational use of body-worn video must be proportionate, legitimate and necessary.

Compliance with the Human Rights Act 1998 (HRA), Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) and Surveillance Camera Code of Practice ensures that the use of BWV is always proportionate, legitimate and necessary. Continuous, non-specific recording however is not permitted.

BWV devices may be used to gather digital video evidence across a wide range of operational policing situations. For example, BWV may help to support the CPS to achieve enhanced sentencing to prosecute hate crime or domestic abuse offenders.

Under normal circumstances, officers should not use BWV in private dwellings. However, if a user is present at an incident in a private dwelling and is there for a genuine policing purpose, they are entitled to make a BWV recording in the same way as they would record any other incident.

BWV may be used to capture the first account of victims and/or witnesses at an incident.

Users should seek the permission of a victim prior to recording serious crime victims and witnesses, or involving children or vulnerable adults, who may be eligible for special measures. BWV may be used to capture a first account, and witnesses may be permitted to review their account prior to making and signing any written statement.

The first account is principally about determining any action that is immediately necessary.

Officers should only ask such questions as necessary to:

  • establish if an offence has been committed

  • establish where it occurred and who was responsible

  • assess the current risk to the victim(s) and witness(es)

  • identify and prioritise areas of the investigation.

Such recordings do not replace the need for formal written statements from victims or witnesses, but they can be used as supporting evidence. When users are dealing with a vulnerable adult or a child (a person under 18) as a witness or victim, the initial contact/meeting should not be recorded on BWV without obtaining permission. At the start of any recording, the user should, where practicable, make a verbal announcement to indicate that the BWV equipment has been activated.

BWV may be used when dealing with priority victims (victims of most serious crime, persistently targeted victims and vulnerable or intimidated witnesses) with their consent. BWV material provides a reasonably complete record of what its user sees and hears at an incident.

Interesting read … extracts taken from the College of Policing guide on Body-Worn Video.