The Police "Service"

Mr Plod

Now what on earth can I say about our dear boys in blue? Before I start I think I should point out that I am a great supporter of the police as these brave 'PC George Dixon' types are all that stand between us and anarchy. The only problem is that now of course they bear so little resemblance to that stalwart figure that if Jack Warner was alive today he wouldn't recognise a modern bobby. And the 'PC' in their title doesn't stand for Police Constable anymore - it stands for.... well you know what it is. I really cant bring myself to write it!!!

Constrained by both the Police and Criminal Evidence Act (PACE) and having to get prosecutions approved by the CPS, most of their effectiveness has been removed by the PC brigade - the very ones who are least likely to have to live with the consequences of their actions. These acts were put through Parliament after a spate of miscarriages of justice were exposed. Very laudable aims but would anyone say that society has really benefited from them?

Who on earth would want to be a policeman anymore I wonder? Not many I fear which is why the entry standards have been relaxed so much that they seem to take virtually anyone! If they try to enforce the law as most of society would expect them to (catching burglars and muggers) then they will incur the wrath of PC brigade and if they don't enforce the law then they incur the wrath of the other 90% of society. Hence they take the easy and quiet way out and just incur the wrath of the 90%!

The main thrust of the job now seems to be public relations, mission statements and getting the ethnic minority quota up a bit. Getting the ethnic quota up is a good idea because if criminals get nicked by policemen from their own ethnic minority then they can't use the cry the PC brigade have given them - racism! But this should only be a secondary consideration and they shouldn't turn away good white recruits just to meet an arbitrary target set by the PC Brigade.

My own experiences of the police lead me to think standards have dropped too low - particularly in the IQ test. I was a witness to a fatal accident some years ago. A continental left hand drive lorry swung out and caught an overtaking car amidships, swung the car in front of it and bowled it into the ditch killing an elderly lady in the back seat. When the police had arrived and worked out from our statements what had happened, the PC wrung his hands and said there was nothing they could do to catch the lorry driver. I asked him that as it was a continental lorry where did he think it might be going? M1 - M25 - M2? Why didn't he call all other forces ahead and ask them to look for a continental lorry with damage to the front? It took a moment to register with him but eventually he got on the radio and did just that. The lorry was stopped on the M25 and the driver arrested.

More recently a friend of mine was taking money out of a cash machine but turned to say hello to a passer-by. When he looked back there was his card, a receipt but no cash and three youths walking off laughing. He naturally assumed they had taken his money but they denied it. He reported it to the police but there was no one available to come to his aid. A short while later a police car was passing leisurely through the town - perhaps it had it come to help him? No it hadn't! Eventually, some burly locals who knew him went off in search of the culprits. Luckily they didn't find them but it shows how lack of interest from the police can lead others to take the law into their own hands!

I was so disgusted by all this that when I got home I sent an email of complaint to the Chief Constable. I pointed out how their lack of interest caused people to take the law into their own hands. I asked why the police car passing leisurely through the town couldn't have stopped to help? I pointed out that the mission statement on their website (about making residents feel safer by being there when they needed them) wasn't worth the virtual paper it was printed on.

The next day, on checking with his bank my friend discovered that it was a malfunction of the machine that had caused no money to appear. Problem over I thought - until I got the reply to my email from the police public relations manager. You would have thought that it was all my fault - making false allegations that he had had money stolen! Making a complaint on behalf of someone else who didn't wish to make one! Apparently I should check things more carefully - it was a machine malfunction!

I wrote back to point out that as the malfunction only came to light the next day, how could he use it as an excuse for not attending (unless of course they routinely ran all 999 calls past a psychic). I also pointed out that he hadn't bothered to answer any of the points I had made in my email - he had just attacked me. I said that unless he could be bothered to address the points I was making then please don't waste my time by replying again. Needless to say nothing more was heard.

Why do the police need a public relations manager anyway - particularly one so unable to answer questions put to him. It is all the same old political correctness - where appearances are far more important than actually doing anything.

Frank Field, former welfare minister has had first hand experience of how pathetic, ineffectual and politically correct the police have become. For a year, his street had been terrorised by a gang of sometimes up to 50 youths who get up to all sorts of riotous behaviour and shout at the top of their voices for six or seven hours a night. Some families have moved out, knowing the chances of getting the police to do something about it are virtually nil. When he confronted one he was threatened and subjected to a torrent of verbal abuse.

He called the police who sent round two 'community support officers' who were only interested in taking a statement and didn't want to confront the hooligan. Only on Frank's insistence did they approach him and get his name. They said they might charge him with threatening behaviour - but this never happened. When Frank complained, the police sent officers round to see if he needed 'counseling' (the PC answer to everything) - they treated him like a half-wit (shouldn't that be intellectually challenged Frank?) and said they were worried about his 'welfare'. Days later, two more officers came round and repeated this performance. Eventually a beat Bobby called and he had the common sense to press the threatening behaviour charges.

The gang leader was charged but the Crown Prosecution Service decided to give him only a warning. Mr Field said: ‘Like many constituents, I have now decided there is no point in calling the police.’ The Birkenhead MP is drawing up his own anti-social behaviour Bill which he hopes will be adopted by the Home Office. One clause would invoke a 1361 Act, still on the statute book, which allows a community to bypass the police and appeal directly to the courts. Mr Field said: ‘Under my proposals, a street or a block of residents fed up to the back teeth would be able to collectively ask a magistrate to impose restraining orders. The offenders could then be hauled before the court to give their side of the story.’

Now the good news....

In Basildon, Essex there was a recent rooftop demonstration. The residents of an estate were making a stand about their local police constable. They also organised a petition to get him removed from his beat. What had he done I thought? Watching the BBC news later that day I found out. He had done his job! He was enforcing the law! (and no, not just against motorists) He explained that if he found someone breaking a minor law, he would warn them the first time then nick them the second time. If he found anti-social behaviour he would stop it - using an ASBO as a last resort if necessary. He was impartial but firm and fair ( the George Dixon way I think) and he didn't give up and wouldn't be intimidated. WHAT A HERO HE IS!

My fear is though that when his superiors find out about it he won't last much longer! I am sure that somewhere in the chain of command above him there will be at least one fast tracked university graduate who lives in a nice area, has no experience of life or policing and who will have both feet firmly in the PC camp!

For anyone who doubts how pathetic the modern police force is need only read the book called 'Wasting Police Time' written by a serving police officer under the pseudonym of PC David Copperfield. See 'further reading' at the bottom of this page. For a sample of the content, read his blog here.

The police force has ceased to operate as a police force and now operate like the fire brigade - they only leave the station when someone calls. A recent report noted that only about 1 in 50 police officers on duty were actually available to the public who rang in requiring assistance. PC David Copperfield recalls a similar incident in his book where he was the only officer available to patrol the streets in a town, yet he looked out into the car park and noted that it was full. So what were all these other officers actually doing? Read his excellent book to find out.

PC David Copperfield (real name PC Stuart Davidson from Burton-on-Trent) left the force in June 2007 and moved to Canada to become a real policeman. The Canadian police force behave as real policemen should and are not burdened with political correctness or paperwork. For those that will miss his blog, can I recommend PC Bloggs - a Twenty-first Century Police Officer. A WPC gives the lowdown on her days on the front line. She has also written a book called Diary of an On-Call Girl. See 'further reading' at the bottom of this page.

Before he left, he and other serving officers took part in the BBC's Panorama program to highlight the stupidity of New Labour's target driven culture and how policemen didn't act in the public interest but rather in their own interest to make sure they met their targets. The program also pointed out how Canada, Australia and New Zealand are actively recruiting our policemen. I don't expect that this would worry our Home Office too much though as they seem keener on recruiting the cheaper PCSO. Watch the program below.

The problem of policing on the cheap - the rise of Police Community Safety Officer. Support officers cost the taxpayer at least £ 10,000 a year less than full- time police and their training lasts just three weeks instead of six months. In a recent survey, most police forces said they intended increasing the number of PCSOs and reducing the number of PCs, despite figures which show in the past year the 2,454 community officers in the 12 police forces surveyed detected just 384 crimes. Many PCSOs are under 18 and have been dubbed 'Babies on the beat' rather than 'Bobbies on the beat'.


The standards of recruitment have been dropped to try to attract more applicants to do this thankless task. At the same time university graduates are fast tracked without any experience of life or policing. More emphasis is placed on a public face - websites with mission statements - rather than actual results. Morale is low.

If a policeman does his job properly then he is likely to attract PC pressure on his superiors. If he does his job badly he only attracts the wrath of 90% of society. Which would you rather have? And if he persists and arrests people, he then has to run the gauntlet of getting the case past the CPS (Criminal Protection Service?). If he succeeds there, he then has to go to a Magistrates Court where the magistrates will move heaven and earth to find a reason not to convict or to impose a derisory fine. The policeman feels let down. No wonder the morale of the police force is at an all time low and the average PC just thinks 'why should I bother?'

To show the extent of the PC rot in the police force, click here for an example which was published in the Daily Mail in February 1999 (which I have taken from Peter Hitchen's excellent book 'The Abolition of Liberty').

As I said at the beginning of this section, I am a great supporter of an effective and targeted police force. The problem is that we just don't have one anymore. I always take any opportunity to speak to the actual constables who are at the sharp end and I have yet to find a single one of them that doesn't agree that political correctness has ruined the police force that was once the envy of the world. They also all agree that if I were to speak to an officer who was an Inspector or any rank above then I would get an entirely different story!

So when someone is being burgled or mugged, they never seem to have anyone 'available'. Yet contrast this to the nearly two thousand officers who were 'available' to police a largely peaceful (although misguided) protest against airlines contribution to global warming at Heathrow. And when it comes to stopping knife crime (now running at an average of 170 knife crimes a day in 2007) or disorder on the streets then not many collars are felt. On the other hand it is fairly easy to prosecute a 12 year old boy for throwing a cocktail sausage at a pensioner.

Until we start directly electing our Chief Constables not much improvement is to be expected.

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