How to report
If it’s an emergency, call 111 and ask for the police. When it’s not an emergency you can call or visit your local police station (external link)
You can take a support person or ask Victim Support to meet you (Victim Support 0800 842 846).
A report should be made as soon as possible after the crime occurs. This enables the police to investigate the crime before valuable evidence is lost or destroyed.
Who can report the crime?
Anyone who knows about a crime can report it to the police. This includes:
- the victim of the crime
- a person who has seen the crime (sometimes called an eyewitness)
- the person who has committed the crime
- a person who knows about the crime can make an unofficial report even if they have no personal knowledge of, or involvement in, the crime
- a friend or relative of the victim may escort the victim to a police station and assist them to report the crime.
Making a report
When you make a report, tell the police exactly what happened. The police officer will write down what you say.
After you have reported a crime, the police will:
- send you a letter or a complaint acknowledgement form with a file reference number
- explain the investigation process
- ask you if you want to stay informed about the progress of your case
- ask you how you would like to be contacted
- refer you to Victim Support or other support services if you need them.
Police reference number
After you have made your report (also called a ‘complaint’), the police will give you a Police NIA reference number or a Police File Number (PFN). You should refer to this number when you contact the police.