Talks Begin Over South Yorkshire Police Investigation

13 March 2015, 14:49 | Updated: 13 March 2015, 14:54

After claims of yet more child abuse being ignored by South Yorkshire Police, plans are being put in place for a full investigation of the force.

It follows the Rotherham child abuse scandal where at least 1400 victims were ignored by authorities and now claims by an ex officer that victims of child abuse and rape in Sheffield were also not protected. 

South Yorkshire's Crime Commissioner Dr Alan Billings has said he's now in talks with the Home Office to see how they could organise an investigation into the force. He's released the following statement… 

''Public confidence in South Yorkshire Police has been severely damaged by these most recent allegations that the Force failed to listen to hundreds of abused young people in Sheffield as we know they failed in Rotherham. 

If I am to do my job, I need to be sure that everything that can reasonably be known about the past is known. This is the first and crucial step if the Force is to get itself into a better place. 

However, in the light of what has now been revealed I cannot be certain that we are at that point. Reluctantly, therefore, I now believe that a full 'Casey-like' county-wide inspection of South Yorkshire Police is necessary to get to an accepted understanding about the past and whether things have changed - which is the first step to restoring public confidence. 

I believe the only authorities that can commission such an inspection are the Police and Crime Commissioner and the Home Secretary. I met with a group of Sheffield MPs, the Chief Constable and Sheffield City Council this morning and my office is having urgent discussions with the Home Office to agree on how this inspection should proceed. 

The inspection needs to be thorough but not drawn out, sufficiently resourced, and recognise the investigations currently being conducted by the Independent Police Complaints? Commission and National Crime Agency. The inspection needs to proceed alongside work the Force is already doing with partners to address recommendations in the Professor Jay and Louise Casey reports. It also needs to work alongside the group I have established to listen to the views of victims, survivors and their families which I am feeding into the Force in relation to reports of CSE now.''