Two Welsh forces developing statement gathering app

Tablet with image of Gwent Police Funding for the Gwent and South Wales Police app is from a UK innovation fund

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Two Welsh police forces will develop an £837,000 app to send witness statements from remote locations.

The cash has come from a UK government innovation fund, which has seen Wales' four police forces awarded £1.2m.

The Gwent and South Wales Police app will allow officers to record and upload audio and visual statements from a crime scene to a shared system.

It will mean officers can be freed from having to return to base, and can spend more time on patrol.

The app will work on mobile phones and tablets and means statements can be uploaded directly to data systems.

It will allow the two forces to share information, give officers quick access to data and let the public monitor the progress of a criminal report and incidents of anti-social behaviour.

As well as funding for the statement app, the Home Office innovation fund has also awarded the Gwent force a further £234,500 for a Wales-wide project aimed at working with women who have been arrested.

Body cameras

The scheme will try to help rehabilitate female offenders, and divert them away from a life of crime. The pilot scheme will run until 2016.

Gwent Police and Crime Commissioner Ian Johnston said: "This funding is truly fantastic news and I would like to congratulate everyone who brought their new and innovative ideas to the table and who worked so hard on making these range of exciting bids a reality."

The innovation fund is offering police forces across Britain access to £50m in grants.

In the latest round, North Wales Police has been awarded £44,538, and the Dyfed-Powys force was given £95,500.

North Wales Police will spend the money on body-mounted video cameras for officers and the money given to Dyfed-Powys Police will be used for a system to exchange information with other organisations during ongoing incidents.

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