Date lodged: 7 March 2017
To ask the Scottish Government what its response is to figures that suggest that there was a 40% increase in the number of unsolved sex crimes between 2013 and 2016.
Answered by: Michael Matheson 21 March 2017
The Scottish Government note that there has been an increase in the number of unsolved sexual crimes between 2013 and 2016. This increase is, in part, a consequence of the increased number of sexual crimes reported to Police Scotland over this period.
Police Scotland note that there can be multiple reasons why crimes remain unsolved, including evidential shortfalls occasioned by factors beyond the control of the police which prevent the crime recording detection test being met. They note that this especially true of historical crimes where there can be investigatory challenges around the lack of forensic evidence and witnesses.