Common Questions - Witness to a Crime

Left AlignWhat should I do if I witness a crime?

If you see a crime or offence being committed report it or ask someone else to report it while you continue to watch what happens.

Dial 999 if:
• there is a danger to life
• there is a risk of serious injury
• a crime is in progress or about to happen
• an offender is still at the scene or has just left

In other circumstances, phone 028 7963 3701 and an operator will connect you to someone who can help.

If the incident involves violence, you should not intervene unless you are confident you can do so safely - instead, call the police immediately by dialling 999.

Information can be given anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

If you are a witness to an incident you may need to describe those involved or explain in detail what actually happened. Pay attention to people's height, build, hair colour and length and, in particular, their clothes. Write down what you saw or describe the people involved.

What will the police want to know?

The police will normally want to know the following information:

• Your name and address
• The telephone number you are calling from
• A main contact number (mobile or home number)
• The exact location of the incident you are reporting
• The nature of the incident
• Descriptions of the people involved
• Whether you are a witness to the incident or reporting it on behalf of someone else

If you are still watching the incident, you may be asked to stay on the line. If you are reporting a road accident you may also be asked:

• The number and type of any vehicles involved
• The number and extent of injuries
• Whether the road is blocked
• Whether there is debris in the road.