What Happens if You do Not Report a Crime?
It is important to report a crime because if you do not, the police will not be aware of the crime and will not be able to take any action.
There are many reasons why you may not want to report a crime. It could be one or more of the following:
- It is too petty -
It may be a minor crime, but it can still be very upsetting to you. The police understand this and will take your report seriously.
- It is too embarrassing -
Sometimes people feel embarrassed about reporting crimes if they are of a sexual nature. The police will treat you with kindness and respect and will not judge you. Being a victim of any crime is traumatic.
- The police will not care -
If the police are very busy, they may not be able to get to you as quickly as they would like. Their job is to protect you and they do care about doing that. They may not catch the people responsible but they always try.
- You do not care about what has happened -
If you are not concerned or upset by what has happened, that is fine. Some people can take these things in stride, and continue as if nothing has happened, even if it has been a serious crime. If you do not report it, the police will not have a chance to catch the person responsible, and they might do it again.
- You are worried about what will happen -
People worry about going to the police and perhaps having to go to court and testify. There are many organizations that can support you through the many stages of the prosecution and court process. This website gives contact details. It is important for you to talk about what has happened to you and to get the help you need.
If you do not report the crime, you can still get help from your local Victim Service Program. You may find it helpful to talk to someone about what has happened and how you feel about it. An advocate can explain what options you have and the court process.