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offenders

potentially dangerous
violent and other
posed by sexual,
Managing the risk
Communities -
Building Safer
WEST MIDLANDS
Multi Agency Public Protection Panel
Annual Report of the Chief Constable of West Midlands Police and
Chief Officer of Probation West Midlands 2002
Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
CONTENTS

Page

Foreword 3

Introduction 5

Summary of roles and responsibilities 6


Education Services 6
Health Services 6
Housing Authorities and Accommodation Providers 7
Probation West Midlands 8
Prison Service 9
Social Services 10
West Midlands Police 10
Youth Offending Service 12

Managing risk – Outline of arrangements made 14

Monitoring progress – Strategic management


arrangements 18

Protecting the vulnerable – Disclosure and raising


public awareness 20

Responsibilities to victims 23

Statistical information 25

Glossary 26

Further Information 28

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FOREWORD

We are pleased to present the first annual report on the work of the
Multi Agency Public Protection Panels (MAPPPs) in the West Midlands.

MAPPPs are forums consisting of representatives from police,


probation and other key agencies, focusing on the assessment and
management of high risk sexual and violent offenders. Agencies share
available information in order to agree and implement risk management
plans designed to protect the public and help offenders to reintegrate
back into society

The publication of this report is of great significance. It is a symbol of


accountability and openness regarding the management of violent,
sexual and dangerous offenders, a group that understandably causes
the public great concern. This document explains how we work
together to protect the public. It also describes the contribution of
each agency involved in the MAPPP process, particularly the key role
of the police and probation in managing the risk posed by these
offenders in order to protect the most vulnerable members of society.

Detailed risk assessments and the close and careful management of


violent and sexual offenders are vital if these individuals are to live in
the community. This can only be achieved by the close collaboration of
those responsible for housing, monitoring and treating these offenders
and protecting the public from serious harm.

Since the creation of the first MAPPPs in this area in 1997, we have
gained greater understanding and insight into the work we do and the
responsibilities we share. Police and probation officers, and health,
housing, education and social work professionals now work together
more closely than ever before.

With the establishment of the MAPPPs network, decisions taken by


agencies working with violent and sexual offenders are shared, not
made in isolation. Local police and probation officers have effective
lines of communication with each other and colleagues in other
agencies in a true example of joint working.

In this report you will find a summary of the roles and responsibilities
held by relevant agencies and a description of how they are
discharged. At present, MAPPP meetings are not open to the general
public, although plans for some community representation in the public
protection process are currently under discussion.

The issue of disclosure is a contentious one. MAPPPs are required to


decide what, if any, information is provided to individuals or local
communities about particular offenders. The powers we have regarding
disclosure, and the factors we take into consideration, are set out in
this report. We also provide some case examples where we have used
our powers of disclosure to enhance community safety.

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FOREWORD

We are pleased to present the first annual report on the work of the
Multi Agency Public Protection Panels (MAPPPs) in the West Midlands.

MAPPPs are forums consisting of representatives from police,


probation and other key agencies, focusing on the assessment and
management of high risk sexual and violent offenders. Agencies share
available information in order to agree and implement risk management
plans designed to protect the public and help offenders to reintegrate
back into society

The publication of this report is of great significance. It is a symbol of


accountability and openness regarding the management of violent,
sexual and dangerous offenders, a group that understandably causes
the public great concern. This document explains how we work
together to protect the public. It also describes the contribution of
each agency involved in the MAPPP process, particularly the key role
of the police and probation in managing the risk posed by these
offenders in order to protect the most vulnerable members of society.

Detailed risk assessments and the close and careful management of


violent and sexual offenders are vital if these individuals are to live in
the community. This can only be achieved by the close collaboration of
those responsible for housing, monitoring and treating these offenders
and protecting the public from serious harm.

Since the creation of the first MAPPPs in this area in 1997, we have
gained greater understanding and insight into the work we do and the
responsibilities we share. Police and probation officers, and health,
housing, education and social work professionals now work together
more closely than ever before.

With the establishment of the MAPPPs network, decisions taken by


agencies working with violent and sexual offenders are shared, not
made in isolation. Local police and probation officers have effective
lines of communication with each other and colleagues in other
agencies in a true example of joint working.

In this report you will find a summary of the roles and responsibilities
held by relevant agencies and a description of how they are
discharged. At present, MAPPP meetings are not open to the general
public, although plans for some community representation in the public
protection process are currently under discussion.

The issue of disclosure is a contentious one. MAPPPs are required to


decide what, if any, information is provided to individuals or local
communities about particular offenders. The powers we have regarding
disclosure, and the factors we take into consideration, are set out in
this report. We also provide some case examples where we have used
our powers of disclosure to enhance community safety.

3
INTRODUCTION

The Criminal Justice and Court Service Act 2000 introduced a


statutory duty on the police and probation to make joint arrangements
for the assessment and management of the risk posed by sexual,
violent and other potentially dangerous offenders who may cause
serious harm to the public. This is the first annual report detailing the
Multi Agency Public Protection Panel (MAPPP) arrangements within the
West Midlands.

Protecting the public is of paramount importance and all agencies


have been working together for a number of years within the West
Midlands to manage the risk posed by violent and sexual offenders.
The Sex Offenders Act 1997 became a milestone in inter-agency
working, with the police and probation taking responsibility for the
assessment and management of registered sex offenders. Building on
those arrangements over the intervening years has led to the
development of multi agency protocols agreed by police, probation,
health, education, housing, social services, local authorities, prison
service and fire service for the assessment and management of sexual,
violent and other dangerous offenders.

This document will provide further details of the arrangements in the


West Midlands and give contact points for any additional enquiries,
including agencies other than the police and probation.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
SUMMARY OF ROLES AND
RESPONSIBILITIES

Introduction
An awareness and appreciation of the roles of others is essential for
effective collaboration. This section outlines the main roles and
responsibilities of the key statutory agencies involved in the MAPPP
process in the West Midlands.

Education Services
Schools and colleges create and maintain a safe environment for
children and young people. Through their day-to-day contact with
pupils and direct work with families, education staff have a crucial role
to play in noticing indicators of possible abuse or neglect and in
referring concerns to the appropriate agency, normally the social
services department. The curriculum can also play a preventative role
in developing awareness and resilience and in preparing children and
young people for their future responsibilities as adults, parents and
citizens.

Throughout the West Midlands, education services are actively


involved in protecting children through their work with Area Child
Protection Committees (ACPC) and MAPPPs. Each local education
authority (LEA) has designated officers who are responsible for child
protection issues. The officers attend MAPPPs providing vital
information about juvenile offenders’ behaviour and the impact of
treatment and intervention on the child’s care. They assist in the
development of the ‘Risk Management Plan’, focused on protecting
children and addressing offending behaviour.

In support of local MAPPPs there is also the West Midlands strategic


MAPPP which has representatives from all of the key statutory
agencies involved in combating child abuse and managing the risk
posed by sexual, violent and dangerous offenders. Education is
represented at both regional and local authority level.

Health Services
The National Health Service (NHS) has a strong history of working
within the ACPC structure to provide appropriate care and support to
children and families. More recently, the NHS has developed working
practices with strategic MAPPPs within the West Midlands, where it
plays a key role in supporting the care and treatment of mentally
disordered offenders and others with similar needs.

Due to the universal nature of health services (from primary care to


very specialist care) many professionals can be involved in the
treatment and support of child, adolescent and adult offenders. Their
contribution to the effective monitoring and risk assessment process is
through:

● Recognising the signs and symptoms of abuse and taking


appropriate action.
● Contributing to MAPPP processes by sharing information as part of
the risk management process.

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● Participating in child protection conferences providing support for
individuals at risk of harm and self-harm.
● Providing assessment and treatment services to individuals
displaying inappropriate sexual behaviour and support for parents,
partners and carers of abusers.
● Providing care and treatment in a range of secure accommodation
for people requiring low, medium and high security psychiatric care.
● Working with prison service colleagues to provide high quality health
care to prisoners.

The NHS West Midlands takes the overall strategic lead for health on
interagency working to manage the risk posed by sexual and violent
offenders who also have a serious mental health problem. The NHS is
represented at the strategic MAPPP, ensuring appropriate health
service involvement in the work of the local MAPPPs. They ensure the
strategic forum receives appropriate advice on primary, secondary and
mental health issues.

Housing Authorities and Accommodation Providers


Local authority housing departments have an important part to play in
the management of the risk posed by dangerous offenders. The seven
authorities in the West Midlands are represented on each of the 21
MAPPPs in the area. By virtue of their involvement in MAPPPs,
housing managers are able to advise on the provision of appropriate
accommodation for sexual and violent offenders, taking into account
such factors as the location of past victims, the whereabouts of known
associates of the offender and any relevant patterns in his/her
offending. When offenders are placed in local authority housing, the
housing managers are often able to provide vital information to
MAPPPs on any concerns that may arise, for example in relation to an
offender’s lifestyle, contacts or behaviour. The seven local authority
housing departments are in the process of signing up to a protocol,
negotiated jointly with West Midlands Police and Probation West
Midlands, on the accommodation of sex offenders. The protocol
explicitly recognises the importance of accommodation as a key
element in protecting the public from the risks posed by sex offenders
and provides a framework for an informed, consistent approach to the
safe resettlement of sex offenders in suitable accommodation.

There is an increasingly important role for voluntary sector


accommodation providers in the public protection system. Twelve local
housing associations are part-funded by probation to provide
structured, supported accommodation for ex-offenders and those at
risk of committing crime. This sometimes involves finding suitable
accommodation for sexual and violent offenders, often as a second
stage move after release from prison and a period of time in a
probation hostel. A number of these providers have used probation
grants to appoint public protection officers whose task is to monitor
and assist the rehabilitation of offenders placed in supported
accommodation. The work of the public protection officers is overseen
by MAPPPs and the officers regularly report to MAPPPs on the
progress of offenders with whom they are in contact.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
SUMMARY OF ROLES AND
RESPONSIBILITIES

Probation West Midlands


Within Probation West Midlands offenders are managed according to
the risk they present to the community. The most serious offenders are
supervised by specialist public protection teams (PPTs). Each PPT is
managed by a senior probation officer and staffed by officers
possessing particular skills in the assessment and management of
offenders who pose a significant risk to the public. Workloads within
PPTs are carefully controlled to ensure officers
have the time and space to supervise effectively
the most worrying offenders.

For offenders sent to prison, PPT officers play a


key role in planning and preparation toward their
eventual discharge back into the community.
This includes making contributions to prison
service sentence planning processes and
recommendations about an offender’s suitability
for early release on home detention curfew or
parole licence. Preparations for release involve
ensuring that the offender’s accommodation
plans are appropriate, liaising with other key agencies and giving
consideration to the needs and concerns of known victims.

For offenders in the community, either on court orders or following


discharge from prison, contact levels are high, frequently exceeding
the national standards requirements. As well as individual contact with
PPT probation officers, many high-risk offenders are required to attend
specialised group programmes designed to reduce the risk of further
offending. These programmes are long, intense and very demanding
for those taking part. Probation West Midlands currently delivers
specialist programmes for sex offenders and domestic violence
perpetrators. The West Midlands Sex Offender Programme has
received national recognition for its proven track record in reducing
offending. The Domestic Violence Programme is currently subject of a
rigorous research project being conducted at Birmingham University.

Offenders who fail to co-operate with any aspect of their supervision


are subject to nationally prescribed enforcement procedures. Those
who breach the terms of their community orders will be returned to
court for re-sentencing. Those on licence from prison will be liable to
immediate recall. PPT officers liaise closely with the police, local
courts, prison service and the Home Office Sentence Enforcement Unit
to ensure high risk offenders who breach the conditions of their
supervision are dealt with promptly and firmly.

Decisions about which offenders should be supervised by PPTs are


made using standardised assessment tools. These tools gauge both
the likelihood of re-offending and the risk of harm the offender poses
to the public. Offenders assessed as high or very high risk of harm will
automatically be referred to PPTs, as will some assessed as medium

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risk. Probation West Midlands is in the process of implementing a new
accredited national assessment tool known as OASys (Offender
Assessment System). This should strengthen even further the reliability
and consistency of the assessment process. Following the initial
assessment, more specialised assessments are undertaken using tools
specific to certain offender groups. For example, Risk Matrix 2000 is
used for sex offenders and the Spousal Assault Risk Assessment tool
(SARA) for domestic violence perpetrators. These more specialised
assessments help to define what type of treatment and management is
most likely to be effective in reducing the risks posed by individual
offenders.

Probation West Midlands is represented on the strategic MAPPP by an


assistant chief officer and each of the 21 local MAPPPs by one of the
PPT senior probation officers. This officer is responsible for bringing
relevant information to the MAPPP, participating in discussions and
decisions about individual cases and providing feedback to supervising
officers. Probation also holds responsibility for ensuring that the views
and concerns of victims are considered by MAPPPs. Where probation
has concerns about a particularly dangerous offender, the PPT senior
officer will convene a special meeting of the MAPPP to review the
case. The MAPPP may decide to place the offender on the potentially
dangerous offender (PDO) register. PDOs are subject to the most
stringent oversight and monitoring of any group of offenders.

Prison Service
The prison service works closely with other agencies to identify any
prisoner who may represent a risk to the public on release. Regular
risk assessments take account of progress made during the sentence
and inform decisions on sentence planning for individual prisoners,
including sex offender treatment programmes. The assessment
process will be greatly enhanced when ultimately the prison service
adopts OASys, the new national assessment tool.

The prison service is required to notify social services departments and


probation of plans to release prisoners convicted of sexual and violent
offences, and offences against children and young people so that
appropriate action can be taken by agencies in the community to
minimise any risk. At Her Majesty’s Prison Birmingham there is a close
working relationship between the police, probation and social services
in the planning, risk assessment and preparation for the release of
offenders into the community.

The prison service is engaged in the MAPPP process, through its close
liaison with the Joint Public Protection Unit. This police and probation
joint unit co-ordinates multi-agency intervention in managing the risk
posed by potentially dangerous offenders who indicate an
unwillingness to co-operate with statutory agencies on their release
from prison.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
SUMMARY OF ROLES AND
RESPONSIBILITIES

The prison service has recently been invited to become a member of


the strategic MAPPP and a governor represents it from HMP
Birmingham.

Social Services
A key objective for social services departments is to ensure that
children and vulnerable adults are protected from significant harm.
Social services are the lead agency and have a legal responsibility
under the Children’s Act 1989 for the protection of children. Social
services have a vast experience of working together within the ACPC
structure. The purpose of MAPPPs is to effectively manage and
monitor the risk posed by dangerous offenders and they are
inextricably linked to the work of ACPCs.

To reinforce the strategic link between the MAPPP and ACPC


structures a number of senior managers from social services and other
agencies are key members of both ACPC and the strategic MAPPP. At
a local level each of the 21 MAPPPs has a designated representative
from social services as a core member. Social services contribute to
the effective monitoring and risk assessment process by:
● Undertaking child protection investigations where they have reason
to suspect that a child in their area is suffering, or likely to suffer,
significant harm.
● Sharing vital information about offenders’ behaviour and potential
victims within the MAPPP structure.
● Managing the child protection register and conferences focused on
providing support for children at risk of significant harm.
● Providing assessment, treatment and therapeutic help to children
displaying inappropriate sexual behaviour, as well as support for
parents of abusers.
● Undertaking an assessment of need and formulating a development
plan for juvenile perpetrators to meet their needs and manage the
risk they pose.
● Ensuring specialist child protection and care officers report any
change of circumstances where there is an increased likelihood of
re-offending.

West Midlands Police


West Midlands Police are committed to building safer communities by
working in partnership with key stakeholders to reduce crime and anti-
social behaviour. Police and probation have joint responsibility for the
management of sexual, violent and other dangerous offenders.

In the West Midlands there has been a long history of inter-agency


working and close co-operation between statutory organisations
involved in supervision, monitoring, treatment and rehabilitation of
offenders. In developing these arrangements a truly multi-agency
approach has been implemented with all key agencies committed to
the MAPPP structure. The MAPPP framework enables all agencies to
contribute in the effective management of high risk offenders in our
community.

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The West Midlands Police force area is divided into 21 geographic
areas called operational command units (OCUs), each headed by a
chief superintendent responsible directly to the chief constable for
achieving performance targets set down in the local policing plan and
delivering policing services locally focused on tackling issues of
community concern. Community based policing is delivered through
a sector model comprising teams of uniform police constables who
take personal responsibility for local areas called ‘microbeats’. This
enables officers to become custodians of the community, devoting
time to tackle issues of local concern. Micro beat officers are able to
gather evidence and intelligence on the activities of sexual, violent and
dangerous offenders living within the community. These officers play a
crucial role in the monitoring process, ensuring those convicted of
sexual crimes comply with the sex offender registration requirements in
notifying the police of any change in their personal details, place of
residence or travel arrangements outside the United Kingdom.

At OCU level the management of sexual and violent offenders is co-


ordinated via the community safety bureau, a local centre of excellence
on a wide range of specialist policing issues. The team of experts is
tasked with building strong local partnerships to tackle crime and anti-
social behaviour. A significant proportion of their activity is focused on
public protection and the management of high-risk offenders. In this
area of operation dedicated offender management officers have a
specific responsibility for targeting specialist resources and activity at
reducing the risk posed by sexual and high-risk offenders. The
offender management officers work with offenders, monitoring their
behaviour and enforcing the law, but providing support to enable
offenders an opportunity to reintegrate back into society without fear of
a vigilante attack.

Each OCU has a dedicated MAPPP concentrating on local offenders


within that community. The crime manager, an officer of the rank of
detective chief inspector, chairs the local panel, with representatives
from probation and other key agencies contributing to the
development of a risk management plan for each offender based on
the risk they present. The crime manager is able to commit specialist
resources either overtly in a monitoring role, or, in high-risk cases when
it is necessary and proportionate, to conduct covert operations and
surveillance. In cases where there is a serious risk of harm to the
public, the police actively seek to utilise Sex Offender Orders and third
party disclosure to protect the public.

The police and probation have established the JPPU, staffed by a


team of police and probation personnel to act as custodian of the
register for sex offenders and potentially dangerous offenders. The
joint team has become a centre of excellence for the initial risk
assessment of offenders and provides expert support and guidance to
all agencies on the impact of treatment programmes, media strategy
and accommodating the highest risk offenders. The JPPU has
facilitated multi-agency training seminars throughout the year on the

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
SUMMARY OF ROLES AND
RESPONSIBILITIES

effective management of sexual and violent offenders within the


community. The unit provides a link to the Home Office Dangerous
Offender Unit, which can provide advice and support on the
management of the highest risk offenders. The JPPU is one of the first
of its kind in the country and is being recognised nationally as best
practice.

West Midlands Police also has a specialist team of detectives from the
Crime Support Department who support OCUs; their terms of
reference are to target covert operations on the minority of very high-
risk predatory paedophiles in the West Midlands. This team of
detectives regularly conduct joint operations with the National Crime
Squad and other law enforcement agencies throughout the country.
They are supported by the force’s specialist Hi-Tech Crime Unit which
is able to undertake covert investigations into child abuse and
paedophile activity on the Internet. The police also provide crime
prevention advice for internet users, particularly parents and young
children, on the West Midlands Police website.

West Midlands Police take a holistic approach to the management of


sex offenders, adopting a fully-integrated partnership approach in this
challenging and emotive area of policing.

Youth Offending Service


The Youth Offending Service is responsible for the direct delivery of
services to young offenders, their families and victims. This includes
undertaking risk assessments of all young people who offend. The
youth offending workers’ assessment identifies:
● The general risk to the public
● What further work is required to prevent further offending
● The impact of interventions on re-offending.

The Youth Offending Service prepares all Pre-Sentence Reports (PSRs)


on young people appearing before the courts. The PSR has an
important role in providing courts with information and advice on the
risk to the public and on possible sentencing options to reduce that
risk. The service also supervises all community sentences and post-
custodial licences. The new intensive supervision and surveillance
programmes for persistent young offenders enable young people to be
targeted more effectively and information to be shared locally between
the Youth Offending Service and the police.

Some areas of the West Midlands have a dedicated specialist service


for young people who sexually abuse others. In these areas the young
person receives an input from this service and the youth offending
team. In areas where there is not a specialist service, the youth
offending team has a contract with a specialist consultant to oversee
any offending behaviour work.

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Where a young person has been charged with, or warned for, any
offence of a sexual or violent nature against a child, young person or
vulnerable adult where there are ongoing serious concerns about the
safety of others, a referral is made to the local social services children
and families team.

The Youth Offending Service is represented at the strategic and local


MAPPPs sharing information on those young people who are
registered as Schedule 1 Offenders (persons convicted of offences
against children or young people) and helping the development of
policy aimed at preventing violent and sexual crime occurring in the
first instance.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
MANAGING RISK – OUTLINE OF
ARRANGEMENTS MADE

In addition to the day-to-day work of individual organisations outlined


earlier in this report, the West Midlands has developed multi-agency
arrangements for the management of sexual, violent and other
dangerous offenders. Best practice has been adopted within the
national framework of MAPPPs.

The MAPPP structure enables all agencies to work together sharing


vital information, planning and implementing effective intervention to
protect the public, yet providing an opportunity for offenders to
reintegrate back into society without fear of retribution or reprisal. The
multi-agency approach recognises the positive impact that treatment
programmes, proactive law enforcement, monitoring and working with
offenders can have on reducing crime rates.

All offenders managed under these arrangements are subject to regular


ongoing risk assessment and monitoring by law enforcement agencies.
In the West Midlands a two-tiered approach enables the best use of
multi-agency resources by differentiating between the vast majority of
lower risk offenders and those perpetrators who pose the highest risk
to society.

The 21 police OCUs across the force area all have a dedicated MAPPP
concentrating on local offenders within that community. A police chief
inspector chairs the local panels, with representatives from probation
and other key agencies. Information shared within the meetings is
confidential to the agencies represented and should only be used for
the protection of the public. The MAPPP meetings held each month
enable agencies to review progress on the agreed management plans.

Across the region there have been over 150 MAPPP meetings already
this year. By focusing on the highest risk offenders, resources and
action can be targeted at preventing crime and ultimately protecting
the vulnerable. The categories of cases that are reviewed at MAPPPs
are detailed below:
● Sex offenders assessed as high or very high risk.
● Potentially dangerous offenders.
● Dangerous persons suffering from a severe personality disorder.
● Unusual resource allocation or the involvement of other agencies not
usually involved in the MAPPP process.
● Serious community concern or media implications.
● De-registration of Schedule 1 offenders under the Children and
Young Persons Act.

Those offenders considered lower risk are also subject of regular


review, monitoring and risk assessment. The police liaise with key
agencies within the MAPPP structure who share information about
changes in offenders’ behaviour or circumstances that may indicate an
increased risk of reoffending. Where any agency expresses concern,
or there is an identified increase in risk, the case is referred to the
MAPPP.

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The role of MAPPP
● Share information and decide upon the level of risk posed by the
offender.
● Recommend the action necessary, including contingencies as part of
a risk management plan.
● Monitor and ensure implementation of the agreed risk management
plan.
● Review the level of risk and the risk management plan in light of
changes in circumstances or behaviour.
● Deploy and manage necessary multi-agency resources.
● Consider the need for notifying the community through the third
party disclosure process.
● Allay community fear by developing of a media strategy where
appropriate.
● Consider de-registration of potentially dangerous offenders when
there is no longer a continuing risk of serious harm.
● Consider the appropriateness of prohibitions within a Sex Offender
Order to minimise risk in cases of serious harm.

Representation on MAPPP

The following is a list of core representatives who form MAPPPs.

Police -
Detective chief inspector (chair), child protection officer,
offender management officer from the community safety bureau,
secretarial support and minute taker

Probation -
Senior probation officers from the public protection team or case
manager where appropriate.

Social Services -
Child protection co-ordinator, principle officer, child protection case
worker, team manager where appropriate

Housing Dept/ Housing Housing Associations -


Local housing manager

Health -
Case manager from the Mental Health Service where appropriate

There may be occasions when, at the discretion of the chairperson, a


specific professional from an agency will be invited to contribute their
knowledge of a particular offender, e.g education, prison service, youth
offending team caseworker.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
MANAGING RISK – OUTLINE OF
ARRANGEMENTS MADE

Sexual and violent crime in context


During the year, West Midlands Police recorded 372,257 crimes.
Sexually-related crime accounts for 0.8 per cent of overall crime.
There were 3,082 sexual offences recorded during 2001/2002. The
detection rate was 50 per cent for this category of crime.

During 2001/2002 there were 11,399 cases of wounding recorded and


70.1 per cent were detected.

Most child victims are not abused by strangers but by someone they
know, often a member of the family, a friend or a neighbour. Many
children are abused by older children or adolescents; some of these
young people have themselves been abused.

Risk assessment
The effective management of offenders within the community requires
a robust system of information sharing and risk assessment. Within the
West Midlands the police, probation and prison service utilise the Risk
Matrix 2000 assessment tool to accurately and consistently assess the
danger posed by an offender. The Risk Matrix 2000 assessment tool
identifies those male adult offenders most likely to re-offend,
categorising the risk as very high, high, medium or low. This initial
assessment provides a baseline for practitioners and managers to
work together in the monitoring and risk assessment process. The Risk
Matrix 2000 model takes into account an offender’s criminal lifestyle
and sexually deviant behaviour in assessing long-term risk. Nationally
work is being undertaken to develop a model for assessing the risk
posed by juvenile and female offenders.

The following charts show numbers of registered sex offenders within


the West Midlands, by age, gender and risk, as at 31 March 2002.
Three hundred and ninety one (24 per cent) are currently serving a
custodial sentence. One hundred and six juveniles (seven per cent) are
on the sex offenders register. Only 12 (one per cent) of the registered
sex offenders are female.

The majority of sex offenders are male, 75 per cent are either low or
medium risk. The 21 local MAPPPs target specialist resources on
those offenders who pose the highest risk to society. Sixty three (six
per cent) are considered to pose a very high risk. Every offender is
subject to a detailed risk management plan aimed at protecting the
public and preventing re-offending.

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MANAGING RISK – OUTLINE OF
ARRANGEMENTS MADE

WEST MIDLANDS REGISTERED SEX OFFENDERS

The total number of resgistered sex offenders is 1,583


Pie chart to show sex offenders by age group and gender

Serving custodial sentence - 24% Male - 68%


Juveniles - 7% Female - 1%
Serving custodial sentence (391)

Female (12) Male (1,074)

Juvenile (106)

Bar chart to show male sex offenders by risk

Low 35%, Medium 40%, High 19%, Very High 6%

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
M O N I T O R I N G P R O G R E S S – S T R AT E G I C
MANAGEMENT ARRANGEMENTS

Two years ago the West Midlands strategic MAPPP was established to
develop, support and evaluate the effectiveness of the joint
arrangements for the assessment and management of the risk posed
by sexual, violent and dangerous offenders in the West Midlands. A
detective superintendent from West Midlands Police chairs the
strategic forum and the vice chair is an assistant chief officer from
Probation West Midlands. Senior managers from education, local
authority housing, social services, police, health, probation, youth
offending service and sex offender treatment programme providers are
represented at this strategic forum. The members have concentrated
on the development of the multi-agency policy and procedures aimed
at continuously improving the MAPPP structure.

The strategic MAPPP members meet bi-monthly, ensuring there is


effective communication between all agencies within the MAPPP
structure. The strategic committee promotes best practice and
receives feedback on areas for policy development from the local
MAPPPs.

The strategic committee has recently established three sub


committees:

1) Quality assurance, audit and serious case review


This committee is responsible for undertaking formal reviews of serious
cases, identifying where improvements are required within individual
agencies or multi-agency working. The committee is responsible for
ensuring standards are set, best practice is carried out and processes
within the MAPPP structure are audited to ensure all agencies work
effectively in managing the risk posed by sexual and violent offenders.

2) Policy and procedure


This committee is responsible for the development, implementation
and monitoring of multi-agency policy and procedures.

3) Training, development and marketing


This committee is responsible for the provision of a training and
marketing strategy. The committee is tasked with delivering regular
high quality multi-agency training to managers and practitioners
involved in the management, risk assessment, treatment and
accommodation of sexual and violent offenders.

The strategic MAPPP will commission, receive and approve annual


reports from each of the sub-committees. The strategic MAPPP will
produce and monitor performance against an annual business plan.

A survey has been commissioned by the strategic MAPPP of all


MAPPP members to identify areas for further development in the multi-
agency arrangements. The survey findings identified a number of
areas for improvement in the management of the meetings and the
communication process. These issues have been addressed and a
further survey will be conducted in due course to further improve the
MAPPP system.

18
M O N I T O R I N G P R O G R E S S – S T R AT E G I C
MANAGEMENT ARRANGEMENTS

Multi-agency training programme


A multi-agency training programme has been in place for a number of
years. The main focus has been on raising awareness and
understanding of each agency’s contribution in the public protection
process. Regular training seminars are held during the year with
delegates from all agencies involved in the MAPPP process. Some of
the topics covered at the training events are detailed below:

● Information sharing and third party disclosure


● Applying for a Sex Offender Order
● Assessing the risk of re-offending (Risk Matrix 2000 assessment
model)
● Impact of sex offender treatment programmes
● Accommodating high risk offenders
● Role of the Home Office Dangerous Offenders Unit

Each of the training events and workshops is subject to evaluation.


Delegates’ feedback helps to shape and influence future training
events.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
DISCLOSURE AND COMMUNITY
N O T I F I C AT I O N

Information shared within the MAPPP meetings is confidential to the


agencies represented and should only be used as agreed for the
protection of the public. In law there is a general assumption that
information about an individual should not be disclosed. This
recognises the detrimental impact disclosure may have on a convicted
person trying to lead a normal life. Protecting the public is of
paramount importance and the police have a common law duty to
prevent and detect crime and a corresponding power to disclose the
information where necessary to protect the public.

In the West Midlands the circumstances of each case are considered


carefully and an assessment is undertaken to identify the risk posed by
the individual, the vulnerability of those who may be at risk and the
impact of disclosure on the offender. Although the decision to disclose
is the responsibility of the police and decisions are sanctioned at
assistant chief constable level, a consultation process takes place with
all key relevant agencies.

Throughout the year West Midlands Police regularly exercised its duty
to disclose information about convicted sex offenders in order to
protect the public from serious harm. Detailed below are a number of
examples where it was appropriate, proportionate and necessary to
disclose relevant information.

Case Study One


A sex offender who targeted children was prohibited by the courts
from visiting public swimming baths. Leisure centre managers were
provided with a photograph and details of the offender, together with
an action plan should the offender attempt to gain access to the
premises.

Case Study Two


Through working with offenders the police are able to identify when
an offender is replicating their previous offending behaviour or
creating opportunities and situations that provides them access to
potential victims. On a number of occasions the police have
dentified child sex offenders who have sought inappropriate
employment or charity work, which would bring them into
unsupervised contact with young children. Where offenders have
sought inappropriate employment that would bring them into
unsupervised contact with children they are challenged by the police
about their behaviour and the consequences of their inappropriate
conduct.

In the vast majority of cases offenders co-operate, negating the


need to disclose. However, on a number of occasions it has been
necessary to notify senior managers of commercial, public and
voluntary organisations. On one such occasion an offender sought
employment as a driver for a company who provided a taxi service
for children with learning difficulties. It was clear from the offender’s
previous convictions that these children would be potentially at risk.

20
DISCLOSURE AND COMMUNITY
N O T I F I C AT I O N

The company acted on the information to ensure that the offender


was prevented from any future involvement in this area of their
business.

Case Study Three


A paedophile was responsible for a catalogue of offences against
children to whom he gained access through his involvement with
religious groups. On release from prison he began to make contact
with religious groups, paying particular attention to children. West
Midlands Police successfully obtained a Sex Offender Order to
prohibit inappropriate contact with children. The offender travelled
extensively throughout the Midlands and the sheer number and
diversity of religious groups across the Midlands made it an
impossible task to directly notify all spiritual leaders of the risks that
he posed to children. A decision was made to hold a press
conference releasing details of the case to the media, to raise public
awareness and enable religious communities, parents and children
to take appropriate action and notify the police of any inappropriate
contact made by the offender. This was an exceptional case
requiring a detailed contingency plan to relocate the offender and
provide them with appropriate support and protection from vigilante
attack.

West Midlands Police are conscious of human rights legislation, but


are prepared to utilise the power to disclose information to individuals,
groups or the wider community when we believe it is necessary to
prevent a crime and to protect the vulnerable.

The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC)


conducted a review of the impact of community notification in the
United States of America, commonly known as Megan’s Law. The
research found no evidence to indicate that blanket community
notification reduces offending against children. The police recognise
the argument for public notification; however, experience has shown
that some sex offenders who have been effectively managed in the
community would disappear, fearing retribution and reprisals if their
details were made public. Driving offenders underground makes it
more difficult to monitor them and reduces public protection.

The police understand parents’ concerns and are actively involved in


programmes designed to raise public awareness of how sex offenders
operate and the signs and symptoms of sexual abuse. West Midlands
Police are actively involved in the Stop It Now! initiative, which
promotes greater public understanding and responsibility on everyone
to take action. It challenges abusers or those thinking about abusing a
child to seek help now. Stop It Now! is supported by an alliance
involving all the key children’s charities and representatives from the
government and statutory agencies.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
DISCLOSURE AND COMMUNITY
N O T I F I C AT I O N

A local project is being developed in four local authority areas in the


Black Country, involving partnerships with all agencies involved in the
protection of children, including the police, probation, social services,
health and housing. The project complements the work of MAPPPs
and will focus on a media campaign to raise awareness of child sexual
abuse and how communities and families can protect children.

22
RESPONSIBILITIES TO VICTIMS

Section 69 of the Criminal Justice and Court Service Act 2000 places a
statutory duty on the probation service to contact victims and ask if they wish
to be consulted about the release arrangements for violent and sexual
offenders sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment or more.

Within Probation West Midlands, work with victims is co-ordinated and


delivered by a dedicated Victim Liaison Unit (VLU). With offices located in
Birmingham, Coventry and Wolverhampton, the unit is managed by a full time
senior probation officer and staffed by 10 victim liaison officers. The unit has
been in operation since 1999, although the service has been engaged in
supporting victims at a local level since the early 1980s and has developed
high levels of skill and expertise in working with victims of crime. By virtue of
its contacts with victims the unit plays a significant role in the work of
probation officers responsible for supervising sex and violent offenders. Unit
officers contribute regularly to key decisions about release from prison and
arrangements for supervision in the community.

When an offender receives a prison sentence of 12 months or more for sexual


or violent offences, a unit officer will seek to make contact with the victim(s).
This will be offered on an entirely voluntary basis as it is for the victim to
decide if he or she wishes to have contact with the probation service. If
contact is established, the VLO will offer to keep the victims informed of
relevant developments during the offender’s sentence. Victims will be offered
the opportunity to comment on any special conditions that should apply to an
offender’s release (for example, to stay away from certain areas or not to
contact the victim or his/her family). Once release plans have been finalised,
the victim will be informed of the approximate date of release and of any
special conditions that will be included in the offender’s licence. The case
remains open until the end of the licence period, during which time the victim
will be kept informed of any significant developments. At present the VLU
deals with about 2,000 referrals each year.

The unit has well-developed links with other key agencies, including Victim
Support, the police, social services departments and other local organisations
working with victims. A protocol has been agreed to ensure that victim’s
concerns are properly represented and considered within the MAPPP system.
The protocol provides VLU officers with direct access to local MAPPP
meetings, so they can inform those meetings of the views of the victims of
those offenders being reviewed by the MAPPP. Involvement in MAPPPs also
enables the VLO to keep victims properly informed about key decisions in the
management and supervision of offenders.

The VLU is currently developing a Restorative Justice Programme for


implementation later this year. This nine-stage programme will provide the
opportunity for communication between victims and offenders, under very
controlled conditions, provided the victim wishes to participate. The aim of the
programme is for offenders to make amends to the victim in some way
appropriate to the victim’s needs and wishes. For example, an apology can
sometimes ease at least some of the emotional impact suffered by victims of
serious crime. The programme will be very carefully managed. Offenders must
show they are genuinely motivated by a desire to ease the pain of their victims.

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Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
RESPONSIBILITIES TO VICTIMS

At all times the nature and extent of any contact between victim and
offender will be subject to the wishes and needs of the victim.

Victim Support is the national charity for people affected by crime. It is


an independent organisation, offering a free and confidential service,
whether or not a crime has been reported. Trained staff and volunteers
at local branches offer information and support to victims, witnesses,
their families and friends. Victim Support also provides a witness
service, based in every criminal court in England and Wales, to offer
assistance before, during and after a trial. The Victim Support help line
– 0845 30 30 900 – offers information, support and details of local
services and other relevant organisations.

24
S TAT I S T I C A L I N F O R M AT I O N

Table 1 shows offenders that fall within


MAPPP arrangements Number of
Offenders

i) The number of Registered Sex Offenders 1192


(RSOs) in the community on 31/03/02 (s68 (2)
Criminal Jusctice & Criminal Services Act 2000)
The number of RSOs per 100,000 population 44

ii) The number of sex offenders cautioned/convicted


for breaches of registration requirenment
01/04/01 - 31/03/02 33

iii) The number of Sex Offender Orders


01/04/01 - 31/03/02
a) total applied for 10
b) granted 7
c) not granted 1
d) applications still in progress 2

iv) The total number of violent offenders and other sex 3414
offenders
01/04/01 - 31/03/02 (s68 (3)(4) & (5) CJ&CS
Act 2000)

The number of other offenders 01/04/01 - 31/03/02 101


(s67 (2) (b) CJ&CS Act 2000)

The table below provides information on the new costs as a result of the
implementation of the Criminal Justice and Court Service Act 2000.

Probation Police Total


£’000 £’000

Staff costs £63,000 £95,000 £58,000


Other costs £4,000 £4,000
Total £63,000 £99,000 £162,000

Notes:
1. Costs are those addional costs which have arisen as a result of the Criminal Justice and
Court Services Act 2000, sections 67 and 68. They should not include any costs which were
already being met by the relevant authorities.
2. Costs should be produced on the same accounting basis as appropriate authorities annual
accounts (but not for consistency, staff who do not have a contract of employment should be
included under other).
3. This table is not subject to audit.
4. Overheads should be included where they are an additional cost, rather that a transferred
cost.
The above costs do not take into account each agencies contribution in staff time and
resources in support of the existing strategic and 21 local MAPPPs fora. Inter-agency
arrangements for the management of sex offenders and potentially dangerous offenders have
been across the West Midlands for a number of years.

25
Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
GLOSSARY

Area Child Protection Committee (ACPC)


A multi-agency forum that develops policies and procedures in respect
of child protection, provides advice on the conduct of cases and
oversees inter-agency training. There is an ACPC in each local authority
area.

Community Rehabilitation Order (formerly Probation Order)


A court order which places offenders under the supervision of the
probation service for a period of time between six months and three
years. The order may contain one or more additional requirements,
including residence at a specified address, participation in a group
programme or treatment for a particular problem. The purposes of the
order are to protect the public, to reduce the likelihood of offending and
to rehabilitate the offender.

Community Sex Offender Groupwork Programme


A group programme for convicted male sex offenders assessed as
posing a high risk of harm to the public. The programme was developed
by Probation West Midlands and has been delivered locally for the last
10 years. Following a successful evaluation which demonstrated the
programme’s success in reducing offending, it has been accredited for
national use. The full version of the programme involves offenders in 280
hours of group work, supported by individual
supervision with their probation officers.

Dangerous Offenders Unit (DOU)


A dedicated unit within the National Probation Directorate. The DOU has
oversight of the MAPPP system at a national level, as well as a number
of other responsibilities connected to the management of high risk and
dangerous offenders.

Dangerous People with Severe Personality Disorder (DPSPD)


People who exhibit recognised clinical symptoms which, coupled with
other problems such as substance abuse, mental illness or social
difficulties, can mean they pose a significant risk of serious harm to
others.

Home Office
A government department responsible for internal affairs in England and
Wales, including the work of the police, probation and prison services.

Joint Public Protection Unit (JPPU)


A unit where police and probation work together, providing a centre of
excellence in the assessment of high risk offenders. Personnel have an
in-depth knowledge and expertise and are able to offer advice, support
and guidance to MAPPPs on the management of violent and sexual
offenders.

Microbeat
A ‘microbeat’ is a small area within a police beat or sector which can be
a street, a number of streets, a particular building, such as a temple, a
block of flats or a shopping area for which a named officer has
responsibility

26
GLOSSARY

Multi Agency Public Protection Panel (MAPPP)


A forum consisting of representatives from police, probation and other
key agencies, focusing on the assessment and management of high
risk sexual, violent and other potentially dangerous offenders.
Agencies share available information in order to agree and implement
risk management plans designed to protect the public and help
offenders to reintegrate back into society.

Operational Command Unit (OCU)


A unit of West Midlands Police responsible for a particular geographic
area, ensuring policing services are delivered locally. West Midlands
Police is divided into 21 OCUs, each with a local dedicated MAPPP.

Potentially Dangerous Offender (PDO)


An offender identified and assessed by a MAPPP as posing an active
threat of serious physical or psychological harm to the public.

Registered Sex Offender


A person who, as defined under Schedule 1 of the Sex Offender Act
1997, is required to register with the police for a specified period of
time, depending on the nature of the offence(s) and the sentence
imposed by the court.

Restraining Order
An order which can be imposed by a crown court or youth court when
sentencing a sex offender to 12 months or more in custody. The effect
of the order is to place certain restrictions on the offender’s behaviour
and activities during sentence and following release from prison, in
order to protect named individuals or the public at large from serious
harm.

Risk Matrix 2000


A risk assessment tool used by police and probation to determine the
level of risk posed by adult male violent and sexual offenders.

Sex Offender Order


An order that courts can impose, on application by the police, to
restrict the behaviour and activities of sex offenders with the intention
of reducing the risk of further offending. Recommendations for Sex
Offender Orders are often made by MAPPP. Offenders made subject to
such an order are placed on the Sex Offenders Register for a minimum
of five years.

Schedule 1 Offender
A person convicted of offences against children or young people.

Victim Liaison Unit (VLU)


A dedicated unit within Probation West Midlands responsible for
contact and communication with victims of violent and sexual crime.

27
Multi Agency Public Partnership Panel Annual Report 2002
F U R T H E R I N F O R M AT I O N

This report has been produced by West Midlands Police and


Probation West Midlands in conjunction with members of the
West Midlands Multi Agency Public Protection panel.

Joint Public Protection Unit


West Midlands Police
Lloyd House
Colmore Circus Queensway
Birmingham
B4 6NQ

0121 609 6954

West Midlands Police


Chief Constable
Po Box 52
Lloyd House
Colmore Circus Queensway
Birmingham
B4 6NQ

0845 113 5000


mailmaster@west-midlands.police.uk

www.west-midlands.police.uk

Probation West Midlands


Chief Officer
Probation West Midlands
1 Victoria Square
Birmingham
B1 1BD

0121 626 5000


www.westmidlands-probation.gov.uk

Victim Support Help Line

0845 303 0900

8547 28