Improving Investigative Performance Through the Murder Review Process: An Analysis

Catherine Nicol, Home Office Crime & Policing Group
Martin Innes, University of Surrey
David Gee, Home Office Crime & Policing Group

This research forms part of the Serious Crime Research Programme undertaken by the Crime and Policing Group at the Centre for Policing Excellence, Bramshill.

One of the ways in which the police service in England and Wales has tried to address issues of investigative performance in major crime enquiries is by conducting reviews. Reviews aim to identify and develop investigative opportunities that will progress an investigation, to act as a form of quality assurance in relation to both the content and process of an investigation, and to identify, develop and disseminate good investigative practice.

The main aim of this research were to identify recurrent themes within reviews of unsolved murder investigations, and to assess the role of the murder review in improving investigative performance. Qualitative research techniques were used to examine in depth the findings of 34 28-day progress review documents for murder investigations which had undergone review since 1999. The results of this research and recommendations for practice are discussed.

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Updated 05/20/2006