Matrix 2000 (4879_14)

Request

1. How many officers within the west midlands police force who are trained to use the matrix 2000 risk assement and the rank of each officer who is trained.

2. How many police offers who are trained to use the matrix 2000 at bournville lane police station and also each trained officers rank

3. What questions are asked in the matrix 2000 risk assement each individual question

4.How many registered female sex offenders are subject to the notification requirements within West midlands and how many of those females have been risk assessed using the matrix 2000 and the risks of each woman

5. When police officers are trained to use the matrix 2000 what is the course objective

6. How many male offenders have applied to be removed from the sex offender register and how many were succesful and how many declined and how many have lodge appeals to magistrates court

7. How many males under the age of 18 who are subject to notification requirements has the matrix 2000 been used on to do risk assessment

Response

1. How many officers within the west midlands police force who are trained to use the matrix 2000 risk assessment and the rank of each officer who is trained.

There are 50 staff currently in post who practitioners of RM2K and 3 designated trainers.

Inspector = 1

Sergeant = 6

Police officers = 42

Police Staff = 2

2. How many police offers who are trained to use the matrix 2000 at Bournville lane police station and also each trained officers rank

There are no sex offender managers based at Bourneville Lane, however the station is covered by 2 Sgts and 20 PC’s from Birmingham Local Policing Units all of which are trained in RM2K

3. What questions are asked in the matrix 2000 risk assessment each individual question

This information is exempt by virtue of the following exemptions

Section 31 (1) (a) (b) (c) (Law enforcement)

These exemptions and explanatory notes are shown here:

http://www.west-midlands.police.uk/docs/advice-centre/foi/exemptions.pdf

In line with the above, I am required to complete a Prejudice Test/Public Interest Test (PIT) on disclosure.

Harm

The effect of placing the information requested into the public domain would undermine the risk assessment, as those who are subject to the assessment may try to avoid being flagged as high risk by preparing responses to answers in order to ensure a lower score and ultimately less stricter sanctions, this would affect how the Police appropriately monitor a sexual offenders behaviour when integrated back into the community.

Considerations Favouring Disclosure

Police Forces need to be properly equipped in order to meet the demands placed upon them. This information could go some way towards reassuring the public that the West Midlands Police Force is adequately prepared in all areas.

Considerations Favouring Non-Disclosure

The release of information disclosing the exact capabilities of West Midlands Police would furnish individuals or groups with the opportunity to fully understand the police capacity and therefore be more effective in carrying out criminal activities. It is the duty of the police to protect the public from all criminal attacks. There is evidence that registered sex offenders use information to change tactics and method of attack. Therefore the safety of the public could be compromised and inappropriate release could cause damage to the service and the community.

The public interest will favour non-disclosure when the current or future law enforcement role of the force may be compromised by the release of information.  Providing the matrix 2000 risk assessment questions could result in individuals purposely engineering specific factors to avoid being classed as ‘high risk’.

Conclusion

For a public interest test, issues that favour release need to be measured against issues that favour non-disclosure. The public interest is not what interests the public, or a particular individual, but what will be the greater good, if released, to the community as a whole.

We recognise that the public interest in being open and transparent is of great importance to all and release of information may assist in the public being more aware of the work that the police are carrying out. However, while the public interest considerations favouring disclosure are noted, this must be balanced with the impact any release would have on the operational capability of the police.

Because the Freedom of Information Act is ‘applicant blind’, any information released under the Act is available to everyone. It is well documented that criminals will use every advantage they can gain to successfully carry out their criminality.

Therefore it is my view that the perceived public safety derived from non-disclosure is of greater importance than the perceived public confidence derived from disclosure. In this case, at this time, it would not be in the public interest to release this information. West Midlands Police will not disclose information that could harm the public or that could compromise the safety and operational effectiveness of its officers.

4.How many registered female sex offenders are subject to the notification requirements within West midlands and how many of those females have been risk assessed using the matrix 2000 and the risks of each woman

Risk Matrix 2000 is not a tool to assess the sexual recidivism of females therefore there is no recorded information held

5. When police officers are trained to use the matrix 2000 what is the course objective

Students should be able to complete RM2000 assessment on sex offenders to determine the likelihood of reconviction using the static risk factors. It is a pass or fail course.

6. How many male offenders have applied to be removed from the sex offender register and how many were successful and how many declined and how many have lodge appeals to magistrates court:

21 appeals resulting in 2 removals and 4 appeals to Court

7. How many males under the age of 18 who are subject to notification requirements has the matrix 2000 been used on to do risk assessment

Risk Matrix 2000 is not a tool to assess the sexual recidivism of offenders who are currently under 18yrs old. Therefore there is no recorded information held.

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