Sussex Police they the force is committed to keeping people safe when they report stalking.
Detective Superintendent Jason Tingley said, "We have improved our understanding of what stalking and harassment is and what our response should be. This is being reinforced force wide through sharing of guidance, training and reviewing stalking cases. We are absolutely aware of the consequences if our response is not the correct one, so we need to ensure that victims have confidence in how both police and the CPS will support them.
"We were one of the six forces who gave the HMIC full access to our work and although it contains no specific recommendations for Sussex Police alone, we will use it to further review and refine our systems and training, including the way in which we work with the CPS.
"HMIC are also carrying out a detailed inspection of our response to stalking and harassment later this year. We welcome this and will be giving the fullest co-operation.
“This is a very important issue and a comprehensive policy for supporting victims is in place, updated recently following consultation with Veritas Justice and the Suzy Lamplugh Trust, both of which gave us invaluable feedback on our policy.
“The force has also been carrying out additional work with Paladin, a national organisation which supports high risk victims of stalking with their specialist Independent Stalking Advocacy Caseworkers (ISAC). They have trained a selected number of officers across Sussex who will have an extra level of specialism in this area of work. They are able to advise and support our other investigators whenever needed.”
It is against the law to stalk or harass someone. Harassment refers to any behaviour which causes a person alarm or distress or puts them in fear of violence. To meet the definition of harassment a course of conduct must be demonstrated - showing a pattern of linked incidents.
Stalking relates to persistent and unwanted attention. It may appear as a series of trivial incidents when looked at individually, however when put together show a pattern of obsessive behaviour. If you are being stalked or harassed it is important that you report it. Getting help early will assist to protect you and stop the stalking and harassment.
You can report stalking or harassment in the following ways:
Always call 999 if you are in danger;
By calling 101 if the incident happened some time ago;
In person at your local police station;
For more information/to find out more information about stalking and harassment means or advice on how to get in touch if you or anyone else is being affected by this crime, go to the Sussex Police advice site.