Policing in Eastwood, Kimberley and the rest of Nottinghamshire will benefit from £5million of Home Office funding to invest in new technology and pioneering crime investigation techniques to improve public safety.
Several bids were made to the Government’s Innovation Fund on behalf of the East Midlands Police Collaboration Programme (EMPCP), which comprises of Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Derbyshire and Northamptonshire.
The fund is designed to promote collaborative working between forces and support improved digital working to improve policing and increase efficiency.
Funding worth £2.9m has been awarded for a four force (Notts, Leics, Lincs and Northants) crime intelligence case and custody system to improve the sharing of information. This new platform will give forces the opportunity to track criminals and share intelligence allowing officers to build a comprehensive e-file system.
Almost £1.7m has been awarded for other projects including body worn video which will help officers collect evidence of criminality while on the frontline and can also act as a deterrent.
A further £400,000 has been awarded in support an integrated ‘virtual courts system’ to link police custody areas, victim suites and all courts across the East Midlands, reducing prisoner transfers, reduce bureaucracy and provide a better service for victims and witnesses.
A £90,000 funding bid to trial the use of RapidDNA technology was also successful, enabling DNA profiles to be returned in less than 90 minutes without requiring a skilled technician.
Chief Constable Chris Eyre said: “It is vitally important that we continue to modernise policing, and improve our service wherever we can. These successful bids for funding will reduce bureaucracy, support criminal investigations, and ensure the public gets the best service possible, which means we will be there whenever they need us.
“Working with other forces allows us to invest in innovative processes, which frees up valuable resources in other areas. We will continue to look for ways to do things differently and ensure that public money is spent wisely.”
Police and Crime Commissioner Paddy Tipping said: “This money will help to place forces within the East Midlands at the forefront of modern working practice, allowing us to work together to reduce any non-frontline policing costs in order to protect frontline roles.
“We will utilise the latest technology to advance our evidence-gathering work to bring more criminals to justice, which is good news for the public and the police. However, while we are pleased to have been successful in these bids, it should be recognised that the Innovation Fund is taken out of the existing overall budget for policing, it’s not a new or additional stream of revenue.”
The Home Office has also agreed to fund £164k of research in Nottinghamshire into the impact that mental health has on the police and wider Criminal Justice Service, and support two additional projects made up of £109K to support early interventions to children and families affected by child abuse, and £331K to support future integration of services.