Investigating rape: Human rights and police accountability

Joanne A F Conaghan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
609 Downloads (Pure)


This article explores the implications of D v Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis [2016] QB 161, a recent decision of the Court of Appeal in which two victims of a serial rapist successfully sued the Metropolitan police for investigative failures relying on Article 3 of the European Convention of Human Rights and the Human Rights Act 1998. The article reflects upon the extent to which English Courts are willing to recognise a duty to investigate within the wider context of civil claims against the police, particularly with regard to failures arising from the investigation of crimes of sexual and domestic violence. The comparative scope of tort and human rights claims is also considered along with the evolving jurisprudential trend towards drawing a firm line between the two kinds of claim.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)54–77
Number of pages24
JournalLegal Studies
Issue number1
Early online date16 Oct 2016
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2017


  • human rights
  • tort
  • rape
  • police
  • duty to investigate


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