What Do Senior Cops Do?

“During the course of these incidents and our investigation Nottinghamshire Police
has been subject to an intense period of change and scrutiny. We have been reassured
by the force that lessons will be learned on this occasion and I hope, for
the sake of those who need the police’s help, this truly is the case this time.”

The above is flannel from someone paid a lot of money to be an IPCC commissioner.  It’s schoolgirl stuff, typical of a game of doctors and nurses rather than the tough action of a world with real consequences.

The report it’s from contains no references to any Nottinghamshire senior officers.  One wonders what these officers get paid for.  The absence from the report is such that I would consider sacking them all.  In the absence of any report to the Home Secretary asking for more power to deal with such ‘invisible man’ corruption, the IPCC Commissioner should go to, instead iof making such vapid statements as above.

Across the board we see senior figures taking gazumped salaries, bonuses and having no clue when things go wrong on their watch.  In this case I can’t even find mention of anyone above the rank of sergeant.  Police inspectors are paid more than university lecturers these days – what for?  We know the IPCC is a shambles that couldn’t investigate its way out of a paper bag and can’t see how pathetic and biased it is, but what on earth has it done here?  Sure the Plods have behaved just as any victim still living would expect – like a bunch on incompetents – but this went on and on and on with no supervision stepping in to sort it out.  There is no investigation into what matters, only some puny attempt to find scapegoats at the bottom.

These domestic violence come “neighbour dispute” cases are often more difficult than murder enquiries yet the most inexperienced cops are dispatched to deal with them.  I had not only no training to deal with them but operated in a cynical culture concerning them.  As far as I can find now, this situation pertains, though high-level rhetoric has changed, paralleling political correctness.  Untrained, inexperienced cops are being sent into situations with little power to resolve them and every encouragement to write them off so they can get to the next job.  A case of no real change in 30 years and perhaps even a worsening despite new rhetoric.

This case should have gone down the route of ‘Williams is a dangerous bastard Boss, I need help to sort it out’.  The IPCC never get to the question of why this didn’t happen. Underlying this is the widespread understanding in police ranks that victims like the woman concerned don’t matter.  The cops on the ground blundered – but frankly almost anyone would.  Some of them lied or were totally incompetent on vital evidence too – but don’t con yourself that you wouldn’t have – they were acting as expected.

So where were the senior officers who trashed the useless domestic violence policy and didn’t replace it for 18 months and where were those who should have picked up on this long-running case?  What does a senior cop do?  The only obvious answer is that they stay away from any flying shit that might stick to them and they cloak themselves in invisibility and take high salaries for little evident work or accountability.  In this case the accountability appears to be to another highly paid IPCC slacker whose rap on the knuckles is to “hope” they learn the lessons they didn’t learn, as promised,last time.  This is like the hope of the mother of a teenage recidivist.

We need to stop seeing matters like this a police problems needing external review through feeble bodies like the IPCC – this route of what is really self-regulation (for many reasons the “independent” is a con) is failing everywhere from banking to government.  The IPCC has merely found what a decent sergeant or inspector should have been on top of in routine supervision.  This is key – if the supervision didn’t find this case in time how many more are going bad under their watch?  This one only came to light because of a death – dead victims have more ‘rights’ than living ones.

Decent senior cops doing what they are paid for would be finding these cases before the deaths and where there aren’t such final consequences.  They should also be pressing for such matters to be out of police hands at an early stage for resolution.  Instead they let victims live in fear and blame it all on the evil poor like Gadget.  Gadget is right on much of what goes on, but hapless on solution.  This is for the worst of reasons and amounts to giving up to the current situation in which many have to live with the consequences of “policing failure” – a failure which is much more generally systemic and buries the real problem.  That the IPCC has replaced what should be routine supervision suggests our senior cops are obtaining a pecuniary advantage by deception just by turning up at work, and that IPCC management is puny.

We have seen recently that half of the complaints made against teachers are malicious or groundless.  I would have expected a higher figure and would in complaints against police. Standards in both organisations have been dropping for years and this is the case across our society.  Nurses chat idly as patients need care, doctors strike patients off for having the effrontery to complain.  I suspect a widespread collapse in responsible supervision.  As an academic I could once advise good students to get to an appropriate university.  Now this advice would probably be a discipline breach if it was to advise on a different university than the one I teach in, despite the advice being in the interests of the individual.  The relation to the public we serve has gone.

I believe senior cops are:

1.no longer cops

2. overpaid

3. self-serving mortgage serfs

4. bureaucrats charged to cover-up serious failings

5. take no responsibility that matters

6. need the cost-saving knife.

I would welcome an explanation of what they do.  I can find none in any IPCC report and plenty of evidence they preside over a system that fails us more than it helps.

 

Casey Brittle Case And Hapless Policing

The IPCC has produced a mildly critical report on the death of Casey Brittle at the hands of her dangerous ex-boyfriend.  The guy was clearly a total shit and not fit to be on our streets.  One wonders how many more like him there are and why our CJS can’t deal with them.  I am not aware of any case studies of successful police and legal action in dealing with this kind of scum.  One would expect such material to be collated and in use in training.

The IPCC report is tiresome and lacks any self-criticism, or criticism of the system-level. The cops put up for minor disciplinaries are all constables or sergeants – this despite the Nottinghamshire force having form for such failure and having no domestic violence policy in force for more than a year.  In defence of the IPCC, one can say there remit is woefully inadequate, but they’ve been around long enough to protest this and get it changed and have, instead, been led by inadequates drawing massive salaries who couldn’t say boo to a goose.

The report gives us no idea how rife (or otherwise) the problem is.  My own experience indicates the problems are extensive and policing of them hapless.  The issues are not merely policing ones – our CJS (indeed wider legal system) is not fit for purpose. Resources are committed to clown libel cases or interest only to the rich and the feeble-minded who gawp at such stuff through the ‘mejar’ (a far more appropriate term than media, suggesting narcissistic voyeurism).

The systemic failures are not correctly pinned on Response officers, dud as these often are in effect.  My guess (fairly reasonably informed) is that this case is the tip on an iceberg.  I believe the actual problem is that we don’t equip our cops with the tools to do the job and actually skill the incompetence they and other agencies demonstrate,  The IPCC make several references to forms not being submitted to a domestic violence unit working 9 to 5 (well almost).  Piss-poor bureaucratic solutions will only lead to clown form-filling that will only help in cover-up.

What’s needed is a system that drags these bastards in front of a court straight away, much as the night courts rustled up to deal with the recent rioters.  Police officers are being asked to deal with questions they can’t answer and which it would be wrong to give them personal power to deal with.  Sure there were officers who ‘dealt’ with these incidents on “area search no trace” form – but this is the ‘record’ of most Response policing (including mine 30years ago).  No solution that doesn’t recognise the mostly young, inexperienced and wet-behind-the-ears Response cops (some remaining this way for 20 years) aren’t Solomons will work.  They need somewhere to ‘bag-off’ these problems and this place should be ‘judicial’ and the bastards (and some innocent parties) need to be taken there, and directions given for proper investigation under which all parties are made aware of consequences, and resources allocated.

There are glaring faults in the policing in this case, yet we keep coming back to the same old story, most of which is cover-up with each case dealt with as though it is separate from the actual and much wider problem.  This problem is that our justice system is run by the rich for the rich and is too slow to have much deterrent effect amongst the repeat offending scum whose presence dominates the CJS and policing.

Much policing actually works on the basis of keeping people out of court because this costs so much money.  I think it’s time to reverse this and get more of these problems into a courtroom as they arise, with courts issuing injunctions with powers of arrest as soon as possible with the effect of a binding over and directed police and other agency investigation.  This would bring about ‘partnership working’ far more directly than current pontification about it.

We should be looking to improve police work, but as with 50% of our kids who can’t benefit from education designed for the intelligent, we can’t keep on pretending we can make cops just out of training school into Solomons capable of solutions none of us could manage and they are expected to deal with because white collar people and all kinds of stuffed shirts want their weekends free for ‘golf’ or fear they would turn to dust if forced to venture into the 24/7/365.

In terms of resources, I think we could design out the CPS, the need for the judicial element to consist of expensive lawyers, use this element instead of elected police commissioners and remove many senior police ranks, the IPCC and look to further savings by a less adversarial CJS and reliance on dated concepts in evidence such as ‘credibility’ and in some cases ‘proof’ through a more discursive yet binding approach.

One thing clear in the IPCC report is the absence of senior officers (amazing given the lack of a domestic violence policy for 18 months) giving advice or being available to give any.  Several should be sacked and the disciplinary record of the poor sods trying to actually do the job, however badly, expunged.

I believe our cops are much worse than our general public image of them – they are much more unpopular amongst people with recent experience of problems needing police support.  That a statement like this is so often received as criticism of all officers is also a statement of the paranoid-schizoid position cops take too easily.  Police always make out their job is very difficult, but rather than using this as an excuse, we should be looking for the reasons why the job is so difficult and solutions to it.

Even in proposing immediate referral of many street issues to an investigative court, I’m aware that the worst court in Britain is the Family Court and this is stacked out with professional advice.  This court is so bad it keeps its proceedings secret.  We need something quick with follow-through, using mediation with enforceable arbitration.