Preserving a Crime Scene

DO NOT BE AFRAID TO REPORT THINGS TO THE POLICE if you are concerned.   Even if they do turn out to be ‘innocent’ it is better than not reporting at all, and later find out it is genuine! The police will not mind they are there to help you!



Scenes of Crime Officers (SOCO) are often called to the site of an incident to gather forensic evidence. The Police officers attending initially (uniform or CID) will make the request for SOCO to attend – some incidents require their attendance regardless.

The following is some advice relating to the preservation of a scene of crime and its surrounding evidence should you have the misfortune to be a victim.


·        Preserve the scene of the crime as you found it. DO NOT     disturb anything. Note the time of discovery CONTACT         THE POLICE IMMEDIATELY!  DO NOT let any other person     near/touch anything until you have been cleared to do so     by the Police.


·       If your animal has been injured or abused in any way – call your Veterinary Surgeon if immediate attention is required. Any subsequent veterinary examination is overseen by a SOCO for forensic purposes. Look for signs of abuse if suspected, but DO NOT ATTEMPT TO CLEAN UP until you have been advised to do so.


·       Provide as much detail as possible for the police attending. Making a list of such details is often a welcome diversion at this anxious time.


Such things will include:


·         What time did you discover the 'incident' ?


·         When did you last see everything safe and sound ?


·         A list of property missing/damaged.


·   Descriptions, ie horse/vehicle passport/photographs, etc. 



If the worst happens....

  • If you feel a situation demands it, i.e. "a crime in action" then dial 999.


  • If your call is not urgent…then be aware of your local Police Office number and  Horsewatch Scotland.


  • Phone the police immediately. However, if you live in a rural area be aware not every person will know the area, So……always know your location, road name, noticeable/notable landmarks and if possible the postcode of your yard/home…..all this will help police get to you.


  • When the police arrive, give them your horse’s description and recent photos, list of tack stolen, trailer description, etc. Also any information you have on anything suspicious you have seen recently, ie strangers in the yard, cars parked nearby.


  • Don’t put yourself in danger by unnecessary confrontation. Remember it is always best to observe, remember what you see and record it. Far better to do hat and report it than put yourself in danger.


  • Ensure that you are given a Crime or Incident Number.


  • Notify HorseWatch Scotland and we will circulate for you.  Please note; Horsewatch Scotland cannot circulate crimes which do not have a Crime/Incident Number attached.


  • If your horse is Freezemarked, phone the company, which will circulate slaughterhouses, sales, etc. with details of your horse.


  • Phone your insurance company. They need to know and may provide you with recovery expenses.


  • Make sure you register your Stolen Horse with the Stolen Horse Register. and on NED