West Mercia

Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements Annual Report 2002-3

By Paul Goggins, Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Community and Custodial provision in the Home Office As the recently appointed Minister with responsibility for the MAPPA, I am pleased to introduce this, the second, annual MAPPA report. It is clear that in the last year (2002/3) the multi-agency public protection arrangements (the MAPPA) continued to play an important role in what remains one of this government’s highest priorities – the protection of the public from dangerous offenders. As someone with many years experience of working in the field of child protection, I am particularly impressed with the important contribution the MAPPA are making to strengthen collaboration between agencies at a local level where the focus is on the dangerous offender. These improvements must, however, impact on the protection of children. As the tragic death of Victoria Climbie showed, an effective multi-agency partnership is crucial and the MAPPA are an important element. To ensure greater consistency in the MAPPA across the 42 areas of England and Wales, and to prepare for the implementation of measures contained in the Criminal Justice Bill, we published the MAPPA guidance in April. Building on good practice, that Guidance clarified the structure of the operational arrangements as well as the importance of formal review and monitoring – of which this annual report is a vital part. The Criminal Justice Bill will strengthen the MAPPA in two ways. First, it will make the involvement of other agencies part of the statutory framework. Second, it will introduce the involvement of lay people – those unconnected with day-to-day operation of the MAPPA – in reviewing and monitoring the MAPPA. Annual reports and this new lay involvement show the Government’s commitment to explaining how the often

sensitive and complex work of public protection is undertaken. The Government is also strengthening the protection of the public with other measures in the Criminal Justice Bill. They include new sentences for dangerous offenders to prevent their release if they continue to be dangerous. Additionally, the Sexual Offences Bill will tighten up sex offender registration, introduce a new offence of “grooming”, and enable sex offender orders to be imposed on violent offenders who pose a risk of causing serious sexual harm – thereby extending sex offender registration to them. I commend this report to you and congratulate all the agencies and individuals who have contributed to the achievement of the MAPPA locally in your local area.

The National Picture
This section of the report draws attention to the wider context of the operation and development of the MultiAgency Public Protection Arrangements (the MAPPA). The most important work undertaken within the MAPPA is done locally, led by the police and probation – who act jointly as the “Responsible Authority” in your area – and in each of the 42 Areas of England and Wales. The experience and good practice upon which this work is based began in the 1990s – most significantly as a result of the closer working relationship required by the Sex Offender Act (1997). The Criminal Justice and Court Services Act (2000) formalised that relationship and built on the existing experience by requiring the police and probation services to establish arrangements (the MAPPA) for assessing and manageng the risks posed by sexual and violent offenders. The Act also required the Responsible Authority to publish an annual report on the operation of those arrangements. This report, covering April 2002 to March 2003, is the second annual report. The importance of partnership Key to the development of the MAPPA in the past year has been the closer involvement of other agencies, such as housing, health and social services, working alongside police and probation. The truly multi-agency nature of the MAPPA and the collaboration which underpins it is to be strengthened further by the Criminal Justice Bill. The Bill will place a “duty to cooperate” on a wide range of organisations including local health authorities and trusts; housing authorities and registered social landlords; social services departments; Jobcentres; Youth Offending teams; and local education authorities. In addition, the Prison

Service will join the police and probation services and become part of the MAPPA “Responsible Authority”. Supporting and co-ordinating the development of the MAPPA throughout the 42 areas of England and Wales, is the National Probation Directorate’s Public Protection Unit (PPU). Ths Unit acts as a central point for advice and, increasingly, involvement in the management of difficult cases. These include, for example, UK citizens who have committed serious offences abroad and return to this country without anywhere to live. The Unit is able to provide financial support when the risk management plans make exceptional demands upon local resources. Involving the public MAPPA developments in the next 18 months will also include the appointment by the Home Secretary of two “lay advisors” to each Area. The eight Areas of England and Wales which have been piloting these arrangements since January (Cumbria, Greater Manchester, Durham, South Wales, Dorset, Hampshire, Surrey and West Midlands) report that they add real value. Lay advisors will contribute to the review and monitoring of the MAPPA which is undertaken by each Area’s Strategic Management Board – the work of which you can read more in this report. The purpose of appointing “lay advisors” is to ensure that communities understand more of what is done to protect them and that those involved professionally with the MAPPA are aware of the views of the community. The lay advisors will not “represent” the community in the way, for example, that local councillors do, nor will they be involved in operational decision-making. And, given the sensitivity of much of what MAPPA does,

especially with the few offenders who pose a very high risk of serious harm to the public, it is not practicable for the general public to be involved. Lay advisors will, however, ensure an appropriate and a practical level of community involvement. MAPPA offenders This year the annual report provides a more detailed breakdown of the number of sexual and violent offenders who are covered by the MAPPA in your area. As last year, the figures include the number of registered sex offenders. Because sex offender registration is for a minimum of 5 years (and generally for much longer) the figures are cumulative. This is why they have increased – by 16 per cent in England and Wales. Only a very small proportion (about 6 per cent throughout England and Wales) are considered to pose such a high risk or management difficulty that they are referred to the highest level of the MAPPA – the Multi-Agency Public Protection Panels (the MAPPP). Figures alone do not, of course, tell the whole story. The anonymised case studies illustrate the practical work of the MAPPA, and demonstrate the preventive action which can be taken. Prior to the MAPPA, action of this kind was mainly taken by one agency alone, with the effect that on occasion offenders’ behaviour which might have triggered preventative action went unnoticed. The multi-agency approach of the MAPPA helps ensure that if an offender does breach the condition of the licence under which they were released from prison or a court order prohibiting certain activities, then action to enforce the condition or order and protect the public can be taken more swiftly.

If you are interested in reading the reports of other Areas, they will be published on the National Probation Service’s website www.probation.homeoffice.gov.uk (under the public protection section) with all of them being available once the last Area has published its annual report in September.

1. Area Summary
This is the second annual report provided by the Responsible Authority for West Mercia region, which incorporates Herefordshire, Worcestershire, and Shropshire. The management group has changed its title to help achieve consistency nationally, as advised, and is now known as the West Mercia Multi-Agency Public Protection Steering Group. Use of the previous management title (West Mercia Potentially Dangerous Offender and Mentally Disordered Offender Steering Group) has been discontinued. This document is prepared in accordance with the requirement placed upon the Police and Probation Services by the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000 to report annually on the arrangements made locally for the management of dangerous offenders, including registered sex offenders. It follows the guidance issued by the Home Office. Local arrangements for the joint assessment of highrisk offenders were first developed within West Mercia during 1998. We have built on these arrangements in the past years in response to the introduction of specific legislation, and now have multi-agency protocols established including the police, probation, social services, prisons, and youth offending teams. The arrangements are overseen by the Steering Group, consisting of 18 representatives of the agencies mentioned above, plus health and specialist mental health services, housing, education, and more recently the National Care Standards Commission. There are very real challenges in assessing and managing the most dangerous offenders, and the Steering Group and the MAPPPs are mindful of the need to balance the clear first priority, which is to protect the public, with human rights/civil liberties issues.

It is the responsibility of the agencies that comprise the MAPPP to decide, for the most dangerous offenders, the correct balance of “treatment” – where this is deemed possible, - and control. These two aspects of risk management are sometimes referred to as “internal” and “external” controls. There are offender treatment programmes that are proven to reduce reoffending, and it is in everyone’s interest that maximum use is made of these. It must also be recognised, however, that in some circumstances it will not be possible to make offenders exercise control over their own behaviour. In these cases, and within legal constraints, it is necessary to impose additional and effective controls by those charged with this responsibility in our area. We are confident that West Mercia is moving towards a system of effective management of the target population of offenders. It is not possible to remove risk completely. It is a fact that of offenders convicted of murder and serious sexual offences in recent years, 32% and 36% (respectively) had no previous convictions. (Police Research Series Paper 144, 2002). However, as more consistency is achieved, and a wider range of contributing agencies is secured, we are dealing with cases in the best way possible. It is tragic that in the last year we have had to read of failings in communication and cooperation evident from Lord Laming’s report into the death of Victoria Climbie. It reinforces the lessons that we must all learn when working with the highest risk cases. Agencies have to cooperate, share, and act on key information if they are to maintain an efficient and effective approach to the management of potentially dangerous individuals residing in the community.

2. Roles and Responsibilities
There is appropriate representation of relevant agencies at the strategic level in this area of work. All “Level One” agencies (Police, Probation, Prisons, Social Services and Youth Offending Services) are fully involved. There is also now representation from “Level Two” agencies as listed above (Education, Health and Specialist Mental Health, Housing). Together, these manage the MAPPA for West Mercia through the West Mercia Multi-Agency Public Protection Steering Group, with chairing of the group on a revolving two-year basis. Each agency is responsible for assessing, in the first instance, the risk that its own clients represent, but is charged with the responsibility to invoke a multi-agency approach, and use the MAPPA, when the defining criteria for risk of serious harmare met. The definitions used in this process are those required by OASys (Offender Assessment System) devised and introduced by the National Probation Directorate (although the systems used to measure risk differ between agencies). OASys defines serious harm as “Any harm which is lifethreatening and/or traumatic and from which recovery, whether physical or psychological, can be expected to be difficult or impossible”. Those individuals who represent a high or very high risk of causing serious harm should be considered by the agency dealing with them for inclusion under MAPPA arrangements. Specifically, high risk offenders meet the following crieteria: - “there are identifiable indicators of risk of serious harm. The potential event could happen at any time and the impact would be serious”. Very high risk cases meet the following: “there is an imminent risk of serious harm. The potential event is more likely than not to happen imminently and the impact would be serious”. Where a case is listed for consideration by a MAPPP, or a MARC (Multi- Agency Risk Conference) an appropriate officer from the referring agency is responsible for presenting the case. Whilst over time the assessment of risk in a case may change, the arrangements target (in the first instance) very high risk cases for MAPPPs, and high risk cases for MARCs. Meetings of MAPPPs have been chaired and administered by probation or police. In future more consistency will be achieved with the chairing of all MAPPPs by the MAPP Co-ordinator. MARCs are administered and chaired by local arrangements, although they follow the MAPPPs in having a standard notes structure. The extent to which senior management may alone have the authority to make resourcing or flexible decisions may determine the level at which a cases is managed. In MAPPPs and MARCs the police typically provide intelligence and evidence, probation and youth offending staff provide information about supervision of offenders. Social Services staff provide a link with statutory child protection measures. Other agencies provide their own specialist input. There are often variations to these typical inputs, where, for instance, social services may have unique family or background information giving links that would otherwise be unknown to participants. It is often the process of sharing information that may be routine to one organisation, for example call-outs for Domestic Violence Units, that suggests valuable links for assessing and managing risk in the multi-agency setting.

The fixed membership of MAPPPs are Police, Probation, Social Services, and Youth Offending Team Manager. Occasional members include Prisons, Health/Mental Health, Education, and Leisure services. The membership of the MARC is on a case by case basis, but includes practitioner expertise from the agencies required in the case. Within each agency there is a designated Liaison Officer for MAPPP. Any practitioner or manager within the organisation can consult the Liaison Officer for guidance about which multi-agency forum would be appropriate for the case. The MAPP Co-ordinator is to provide a central back up point for consultation if the Liaison Officer is unable to help in any particular case, or if there is disagreement about the appropriate level of consultation.

Some agenies, e.g. housing authorities, have unique control over key resources: before the MAPPA were in place, they would often not know the potential significance of some of their decisions, e.g. placement of an applicant near a school, - where the applicant is a child sex offender. In truth, nobody wants to have to make difficult decisions. But decision-making needs to be informed, - and it is because public protection is such a high priority that each agency has to be fully involved, fully informed, and fully supported by other agencies working to minimise the risks. The decision-making is done with the best possible information, and with public protection the main priority of the process. The Steering group recognises that in some cases a wide variety of organisations may have key contributions to make, and encourages their involvement on a case-by-case basis.

West Mercia Police are recruiting an additional 6 police staff as assistant to the PDO (Potentially Dangerous Offender) Officer in each Division. The role will enhance the monitoring of registered sex offenders and other

dangerous offenders by liaising between those agencies involved in this work, allowing the PDO Officer to have a more dynamic approach to the management of individuals.


3. The Operation of MAPPA
a) Regular MAPPP meetings take place monthly in each police division in West Mercia. Where necessary a MAPPP can be convened at very short notice, enabling senior managers to consider imminent and sudden threats to public safety. Cases are sometimes reviewed at subsequent MAPPPs, although the extent to which this occurs is changing; a number of cases are moved away from MAPPP management because they have action plans that are adequate and approporiate. It is always important to plan for review of cases, but this may be conducted at a MARC, or perhaps within the supervising agency. The MAPPP agenda must be kept for the most risky cases to ensure that proper consideration is given to their assessment and management. Most cases can be effectively managed by those agencies dealing with their workloads in a professional way, and this includes multi-agency work, such as MARCs. Serious attention must be given to the extent to which offender programmes can make a difference to behaviour; proven and documented interventions can help offenders to control their behaviour, usually combined with a package of appropriate supervision and support. In some cases, equally careful attention must be given where there is evidence that external controls are required; - this can sometimes involve enforcement action, such as parole licence recall, or, for instance, a decision to apply for a Sex Offender Order. b) The multi-agency public protection arrangements (MAPPA) covers the full range of cases, from the highest to the lowest risk cases. It is important that patterns and trends are identified in the behaviour of offenders, most especially where they can be used to predict future behaviour. Some examples are given below of the local operation of MAPPA: c) A male registered sex offender was residing in the West Mercia area. The convicting court, on passing sentence, ordered that the offender was not allowed to own or possess a mobile phone or any other phone with the capability of accessing the internet. Information was later received that the offender had obtained two mobile phones, one of which had the facility to access the internet. Further information was received that this facility was being used daily for considerable periods of time. A local MARC was convened, and developed an action plan which was able to retrieve evidence confirming this behaviour. It demonstrated excessive use of the internet facility incorporating chat-room access. The MARC process then agreed that the correct action would be to return the offender to court, which was done. At the time of writing the offender was awaiting sentence for breaching the order of the court. The full cooperation of the agencies involved had combined to assess the situation, devise a way of testing the facts, then based action to protect vulnerable children from the offender’s known offending behaviour pattern. d) A man of 21 was convicted of sex offences, sentenced, and subject to sex offender registration requirements. He had indecently assaulted and had unlawful sexual intercourse with girls under the age of 14. It was believed that he was not supplying an accurate home address (as required under sex offender registration requirements) in order to deflect attention from where he was spending most of his time. He was also seen in a public place, in the company of a young woman with a baby. This, together with the other information, led to serious concerns about the contacts he was developing, given his previous offending pattern. Police and probation convened a MARC, and with other key agencies in the case, jointly assessed the risks that this information suggested. The offender was relocated, with his full cooperation, and has subsequently complied with requirements for registration. Whilst it is not possible to eliminate risk completely, his cooperation and the safeguards applied to ensure compliance by the MAPPA are thought to have significantly reduced the risk of further serious sexual offending.

e) A man with previous convictions for indecent assault was noted by a police officer to be in a car parked beside a school playground. Enquiries led to other agencies exchanging information, with the result that the man’s relationship with a 15 year od girl was discovered. Further multi-agency work was then formally undertaken, and it was established that the offender was in breach of his post-release licence conditions. He was recalled to prison, and at time of writing, an application is being pursued to obtain a Sex Offender Order; if successful, this order will give further powers to help monitor and control the offender.


4. The Strategic Management of MAPPA
The West Mercia Multi-Agency Public Protection Steering Group has met on a regular basis over the year, managing the operation of MAPPP meetings, organising a review of the arrangements, and deciding on future development in the light of the review findings. The review started in July ’02 and reported in draft to the Steering group in Jan ’03. It found that agencies attend meetings well, and all display a commitment to multiagency working. In general, agencies were able to bring the cases that caused concern to the appropriate meeting, and active multi-agency management of highrisk cases was effectively undertaken across the area. There was encouraging progress in increasing the representation of agencies previously not included, both in the management process, and in the MAPPP meetings. Some of the areas noted for improvement concerned achieving consistency of structures, referral mechanisms, terminology, level of representation, and the administration (documentation and recording) of MAPPPs and MARCs across the area. Other areas for improvement concerned the lack of an effective mechanism for cases to be moved off the MAPPP list. In some cases this would mean moving the case to the MARC level, in others to the agency-managed level. Additionally, more consistent monitoring of the work of the MAPPPs and MARCs was identified as a possible improvement. Lastly, concerns were raised about the lack of a clear mechanism for linking the management of high-risk mental health cases leaving special hospitals or transferring into the area to the local MAPPA. The review concluded that 5 main points are to be addressed in forward planning: • • Create consitency of practice for MAPPPs and MARCs Provide for individual agencies to continue to operate their own risk management systems and deployment of their own risk assessment tools Provide a referral point into the MAPPP/MARC for all agencies Put in place an effective plan for the oversight and management of the MAPPA, in order to secure compliance with the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000, and to facilitate the provision of the Annual Report There must be better consultation and liaiason between the four Area Child Protection Committees and the MAPPA There was a separate but related development near the end of the reporting period when the key agencies agreed joint funding, and appointed a MAPP Co-ordinator. The key objective of this post is “To contribute towards the development, implementation, monitoring and review of effective systems for the management of high-risk offenders in the community” . The roles and responsibilities of the Co-ordiantor are as follows: • To ensure the implementation of agreed policy and precedures for the functioning of MAPPPs across West Mercia To contribute to the development of appropriate policies and procedures To collate required information on a West Mercia wide basis To produce half-yearly reports on the running and effectiveness of MAPPPs to the Steering group To produce the Annual Report on MAPPA, on behalf of the Steering Group

• •

• •

To undertake a review of MAPPPs on a regular basis as required (at least 3-yearly) by the Steering Group, and to report back on suggested improvements and developments To attend meetings and conferences as required To undertake personal development and training as required To liaise directly with local MAPPPs To deliver training and briefings to staff within all the associated agencies as required To chair MAPPPs as required

• •

• •

Another decision following the review related to disseminating information about the MAPPA. Three multi-agency briefings were organised across the area on the new structures and procedures after the review findings. Practitioners and managers were, in this way, given the opportunity to get to know how the system meets their needs, and how it assists them to work with confidence within their own, and with other agencies in managing some of the most difficult situations they encounter.

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5. Victim Work
In West Mercia the Probation Service complies with the requirement under Section 69 of the Criminal Justice and Court Services Act 2000 to provide a service to the victims of serious crime, and information is routinely fed into both MAPPPs and MARCs concerning the rights of victims. Specifically, this includes the victim’s views on licence conditions for released prisoners, and on their wishes to be kept informed about developments around the time of release of prisoners. Because the information about victims is used very carefully in assessing the risk of serious harm an offender represents, - often the risk is to one individual in particular, potential victims are better protected when accurate and up-to-date information is used. The regularity of MAPPPs and MARCs, and the fact that they can be called quickly where necessary, ensures that there is every chance that the information used is accurate and current. Police and Victim Support also contribute information about victims into the process. Sometimes the victims choose which support service they want, sometimes they continue to use the service that contacted them immediately after the offence was reported.


6. Statistical Information
i. The number of registered sex offenders on 31 March 2003

No. of Offenders

ii. The number of sex offenders having a registration requirement who were either cautioned or convicted for breaches of the requirement, between 1 April 2002 and 31 March 2003


iii. The number of Sex Offenders Orders applied for and gained between 1 April 2002 and 31 March 2003

(a) The total number of Sex Offenders Orders applied for


(b) The total number pending


(c) The total number not granted


iv. The number of Restraining Orders issued by the courts between 1 April 2002 and 31 March 2003 for offenders currently managed within MAPPA


v. The number of violent and other sexual offenders considered under MAPPA during the year 1 April 2002 and 31 March 2003 (as defined by section 68 [3], [4] and [5])


vi. The number of "other offenders" dealt with under MAPPA during the year 1 April 2002 and 31 March 2003 as being assessed by the Responsible Authority as posing a risk of serious harm to the public (but who did not fall within either of the other two categories, as defined by s.67 [2b])


vii. For each of the three categories of offenders covered by the MAPPA ("registered sex offenders", "violent and other sex offenders" and "other offenders"), identify the number of offenders that are or have been dealt with by:

a) MAPPP - registered sex offenders


b) MAPPP - violent and other sex offenders


c) MAPPP - other offenders


viii. Of the cases managed by the MAPPP during the reporting year what was the number of offenders:

a) who were returned to custody for breach of licence


b) who were returned to custody for breach of a Restraining Order or Sex Offender Order


c) charged with a serious sexual or violent offence


West Mercia Probation Area Julie Masters Assistant Chief Office julie.masters@west-mercia.probation.gsx.gov.uk Address Stourbank House 90, Mill St Kidderminster DY11 6XA Phone 01562 748375

West Mercia Police DI Shane Lewis shane.lewis@westmercia.police.uk



West Mercia Constabulary Headquarters 01905 331635 Hindlip Hall PO Box 55 Worcester WR3 8SP West Mercia Police HQ CID Unit Hindlip Hall PO Box 55 Worcester WR3 8SP 01905 331633

Peter Clark MAPP Co-ordinator peter.clark@westmercia.pnn.police.uk

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