If we arrest a suspect, we’ll interview them and collect evidence. The police will pass all evidence to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS). We’ll detail the circumstances surrounding the offence.
A specially trained lawyer at the CPS will review all of the evidence. Together with a second 'reviewing lawyer', they’ll decide whether there is enough evidence to proceed to a trial.
The CPS will then notify the police of the decision whether to charge the suspect.
They'll look at the evidence and decide whether they think there's a realistic chance of the suspect being found guilty. If there isn't, then the CPS will close the case.
The CPS might also close a case if they decide a prosecution can't go ahead for some other reason, for example if the suspect is too old or sick to stand trial.
If the CPS decides to charge the suspect, then the case will move on to the next stage.
Closing the case
If there's not enough evidence to continue with a prosecution, we won't refer the case to the CPS. We’ll close the investigation. We'll tell you why we've made this decision.
If we decide to close the investigation, that doesn't mean we don't believe you. Or that you've wasted your time reporting it to us. We can't always bring people to justice via the criminal justice system. But every report can help us prevent crimes in future.
If you don't agree with a decision to close your case
You are not the person under investigation, and you shouldn't be made to feel that way. Our investigation should focus on the suspect and not on you.
But we may ask you to tell us about any alcohol, illegal or prescribed drugs you may have taken willingly when someone spiked you. We’ll only ask you this if it helps us identify which other alcohol or drugs someone may have used to spike you.
If you did use illegal drugs, you won’t be in trouble for it unless you were driving. It won’t affect how we treat your spiking report.