Scottish Crime Recording Standard: Crime Recording and Counting Rules

Crime recording and counting rules for the Scottish Crime Recording Standard (SCRS). These are overseen, approved, maintained and developed by the Scottish Crime Recording Board (SCRB).

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Section K – Evidence Based Crime Recording

There can be various occasions where a crime or offence is committed notwithstanding the fact that the criminal act is not directed toward a specific intended victim.

Crimes/offences of this nature are frequently ‘self-generated’ by the police as they are identified through undertaking proactive policing measures but can also be brought to our attention by members of the public. In such circumstances the complainer is likely to be recorded as ‘Procurator Fiscal’.

Regardless of how the police are made aware of the crime the decision to record will be based on the evidence available; this will include any evidence of members of the public and police officers who have witnessed the criminal behaviour; as well as any physical or circumstantial evidence available.

Examples of crimes/offences which are considered to be evidence based are:-

  • Public Mischief
  • Drugs Offences
  • No Insurance
  • No Driving Licence
  • Driving while using a mobile phone
  • Seat Belt Offences
  • Speeding Offences

There will be circumstances where there is evidence to show that an offence has been committed ‘against the State’ although the identity of the offender(s) hasn’t been established. However, there will be cases where the offence is only complete if the criminal liability of the offender can be proven.



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