Recent Book: Home Office: Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, Twentieth Report 1983/84

Date01 October 1985
AuthorKen Russell
Published date01 October 1985
Subject MatterRecent Book
HOME OFFICE: Criminal Injuries Compensation Board, Twentieth Report
London: HMSO. £4.50.
Nearly 300,000 applicationsfor compensation have been made to the Criminal
Injuries Compensation Board since it was established.
In the year under review compensation paid to victims of crimes totalled
£32,820,722, the highest amount paid out in
year since the Scheme started.
The total paid in compensation in 1983/84 represents an increase of I1.5% over
1982/83. Of the total compensation paid, £5,659,413 went to victims in Scotland,
compared with £4,828,645 in the previous year.
The highest award of the year (£123,250, after deductions of DHSS benefits) was
paid to a man who was attacked in July, 1977, in a working men's club where he
was celebrating his 50th birthday. He sustained a fractured jaw and serious bruising
to his head, chest, abdomen and legs. His condition gradually deteriorated to such
an extent that both legs were amputated above the knee during 1980and
is now very seriously disabled and restricted and is being looked after by his wife
who had to give up her employment.
The report, which givessome examples of cases involving crimes of violence,
states that the Board is regrettably familiar with incidents in which drink isa
substantial factor in causing or triggering violence which often leads to serious
injury. Increasingly, applications are also received where glue sniffing is a
significant factor.
During the year 226cases involvingfamily violence were completed. The
applications were from 50 men,
women and 15 children: of these, 104attracted
awards totalling £243,446, two cases were withdrawn or abandoned and 120cases
were rejected. In 102cases completed during the year there was a history of
violence within the family: in another 93 cases excessive consumption of alcohol
played a significant part, and in 50 of these cases both factors were involved.
During the year the number of awards to police officers injured on duty was
1,017(3.4% of resolved cases) compared with 1,494(5.7%) in 1982/83. As a direct
result of the miners' dispute, the number of applications from injured police
officers will probably increase again in 1984/85. Since the dispute commenced,
over 1,200 police officers have been injured in dealing with events arising from the
miners' dispute.
is estimated that ifall submit applications to the Board the
estimated cost in compensation could be in excess of £ 1.5m. KEN RUSSELL
The Association of Police Surgeons published this book as a result of being
conscious of an educational need for doctors, many of whom are not members of
the Association, setting out the duty of the examining doctor when confronted with
a case of rape.
It acknowledges that the Association clearly disapproves of the practice of using
the untrained and inexperienced doctor to give opinions in dealing with such cases
and consequently highlights some of the problems that can occur.
Containing a concise series of illustrated articles prepared by police surgeons
from Merseyside, Manchester, Norfolk and Suffolk, they each deal with the many
aspects of sexual assaults. They discuss not only the various techniques used in the
examination of the examinee but, amongst many other items, the examination
room, procedure in obtaining the required samples, evidential value of injuries, the
after-care, or lack of after-care, of the victim, whilst the editor himself, a police
surgeon from Strathclyde, deals with the concept of rape. Reference is also made to
certain case histories, together with a look at the sexual examination kit.
This is a book which contains a considerable amount of factual information
which can only be considered as being a valuable asset to any senior detective.
However, due to the very explicit nature of certain photographs, the book is
obtainable only on application to the Association.
October 1985 359

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