Local Policing+ Inspection of the Approach to Missing Person Investigations in Aberdeen City Division

Monday, 22 June, 2015

The aim of this inspection was to assess the state, effectiveness and efficiency of the investigative arrangements for adults, children and young people reported missing in Police Scotland Aberdeen City Division. Whilst we have inspected the approach to investigation through the lens of local policing in Aberdeen, we have also had regard to the wider national arrangements by examination of broader strategic arrangements within Police Scotland. This includes a detailed assessment of national approaches to all aspects of the missing person investigations from initial reporting and recording, assessment of risk and investigation, through to management of the return and working with other agencies around harm reduction strategies.

This inspection comprised the + element of a wider inspection of local policing arrangements in Aberdeen conducted early in 2015 under the HMICS Local Policing +  Programme. This inspection, which forms part of our published scrutiny plan, is the third in our local policing inspection programme. Our findings from the local policing inspection in Aberdeen City Division are subject of a separate report which is available on the HMICS website.

HMICS wishes to thank a number of organisations and agencies who assisted us in our missing person inspection work in Aberdeen and with our wider national assessment activity. This includes Children in Scotland, the Scottish Institute of Policing Research (SIPR) and the Care Inspectorate who worked directly with us on service user aspects of the Aberdeen element of this inspection. The collaborative work and new approach to inspection was adopted to enable us to access service users and meets our statutory duty of user involvement under Section 112 of the Public Services Reform (Scotland) Act 2010 by enabling us to secure continuous improvement in user focus in the exercise of our scrutiny function.

We also wish to thank missingpeople.org.uk and the UK Centre for the Study of Missing Persons at Portsmouth University for supporting our work through the provision of access to various research materials. Further background information on each of these organisations and agencies is included as Appendix ‘B’ to this report.

To support our main inspection some additional research was conducted with service users in Aberdeen. This work was conducted by Miranda Alcock (Children in Scotland), Amy Humphrey (Scottish Institute of Policing Research) and Callum Finlay (Care Inspectorate Young Inspector) and this supporting work is published in full on the HMICS website: Link



Publication type: 
Local Authority: 
Aberdeen City