Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 11°C

min temp: 10°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Essex: Pilot scheme testing arrested suspects for Class A drugs to move county-wide after Home Office provides £718k funding

13:04 06 August 2014

Arrested suspects will be tested for Class A drugs and offered treatment if found to be positive

Arrested suspects will be tested for Class A drugs and offered treatment if found to be positive

Suspected criminals in Essex will be tested for Class A drugs upon arrest after nearly three-quarters of a million pounds of funding was secured by the county’s police force to extend a pilot scheme aimed at cutting re-offending rates.

The Home Office Police Innovation Fund will enable Essex Police to extend the Drug Testing on Arrest programme beyond Chelmsford, where it was first implemented, across the rest of the county.

Under the scheme, arrested suspects who test positive for drugs will be offered treatment for substance misuse aimed to steer them away from crime.

Nick Alison, Essex’s Police and Crime Commissioner, who provided £16,000 of funding for the pilot scheme, said Class A drug users commit a “significant proportion” of crimes such as burglaries, shoplifting and robberies.

“The evidence shows that successful treatment for drug misuse will significantly reduce reoffending and keep our communities safer,” he added.

“I’m delighted that we’ve received Home Office Police Innovation funding of £718,000 to expand this project over the next two years.”

The original pilot, which was also supported by the Essex Drug and Alcohol Action Team and Safer Essex, the Westminster Drug Project has so far referred 53 individuals for treatment, and 37 have successfully engaged with the programme.

The newly rolled out programme will also be evaluated for effectiveness by the University of Essex School of Health and Human Science.

Essex county councillor Ann Naylor, who is responsible for public health, said: “This funding is great news and enables us to develop a comprehensive pilot which we believe will result in safer communities.

“The aim of the Drug Testing On Arrest programme is to reduce reoffending by ensuring that adult offenders affected by drug misuse are offered and receive the appropriate support and interventions that benefit them, such as drug recovery and behavioural change programmes.

“They can also receive support from mental and general healthcare professionals where appropriate.”

According to National Treatment Agency research, a heroin or crack cocaine user costs society an average of £26,074 per year. Home Office research has found that the overall volume of offending of over 7,700 individuals nationally was 26% lower following identification through a positive drug test in police custody.

Around half of the individuals who tested positive for Class A drug use showed a significant decline in offending of almost 80% in the following six months.


Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Frankel welcomes guests to Newmarket National Heritage Centre

Her Majesty The Queen is to officially open the new £15million National Heritage Centre for Horseracing and Sporting Art in the Suffolk town of Newmarket, where many of her own horses are trained and stabled.

A driver has reported they may have seen missing airman Corrie McKeague walking towards Honington in the early hours of September 24

A driver who may have seen missing airman Corrie McKeague has come forward to police.

Abnormal loads will be making their way along the roads of Suffolk over the next two weeks

Motorists in Suffolk are being warned to watch out for traffic delays as three abnormal loads slowly make their way long the county’s roads over the next two weeks.

The 352d Special Operations Wing held a memorial on June 20 to say goodbye to SSgt Hunter Davis of the 352 SOMXS who lost his life in a tragic vehicle accident June 7.

Sending a text while driving most likely caused the death of a Suffolk airman, who lost control of his car moments after using his phone, an inquest has heard.

Tributes have been paid to 31-year-old Lee Pennycuick who died on Friday

The family of 31-year-old Lee Pennycuick from Colchester, who died suddenly on Friday, say they are “overwhelmed” by the support the family have received after more than £3,300 was raised to pay for Lee’s wake – in just one day.

Archant Suffolk have moved into their new
 offices at 120 Princes Street, Ipswich.

Archant’s new Suffolk headquarters opened for business this morning at the junction of Princes Street and Portman Road in Ipswich.

The cake was missing a few cherries and the squirrel has lost his nuts

My husband baked a cake. I was warned this could happen, writes Lynne Mortimer.

Most read

Great Days Out


Click here to view
the Great Days Out


Most commented


Show Job Lists


Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

MyDate24 MyPhotos24