Sgt.Mark Andrews

Just a quickie – a solicitor incident has made me too angry to write and has in any case diverted my attention.

I didn’t like what Mark Andrews did and can be seen doing on CCTV.  What really upsets me is the way  what was a minor incident became such a big problem and waste of money.  I worked with and through people like Andrews when I was a cop and we all “benefit” from hairy-arsed coppers.  Working with him and present at the time I would have stopped what he was doing whether below or above him in rank.  It was wrong and, in my view criminal.

With this view one might expect that I support his arrest and conviction.  I don’t.  That he was convicted and then this was quashed by “Judge Roy Bean” seems to me to demonstrate just how ridiculous and unfair our CJS has become.  The arrest and treatment of the woman concerned seems equally absurd.

It’s too easy in cases like this to get into arguments like ‘one rule for us, another for the police’.  The truth is we are getting all sorts of stuff out of proportion.  Gadget’s ‘argument’ that you have to know about dealing with drunks and so on doesn’t hold either, but is part of a valid, wider set of considerations.  What we need in situations like this is a discipline and supervisory system that works and what’s exposed here is that there isn’t one, even when police officers initiate a complaint.

Whilst I don’t condone Andrew’s behaviour I also know the dangers of working with officers who won’t get stuck in.  The current system is encouraging them not to.  It needs radical reform.  The answer, and only in part, is to have civil tribunals we can trust to bring such matters to light and deal with them through discipline under public scrutiny and in ‘real time’ (i.e. ‘quick’).

We should be looking for ways to stop police custody incidents through night courts and other measures to bring speedy resolution.  I’m fairly sure I would work with Andrews and would see his treatment as unfair if I did (unless this is his general form).  This doesn’t make me feel the woman’s treatment was remotely decent.  And how did Andrew’s come to feel he could get away with it in front of other officers?  And how did they come to believe they didn’t have a duty to stop him at the time (in my view a general duty of decency towards the woman and towards a colleague ‘off on one’)?  I believe what we might call “Gadget immorality” played a role in that.

Without enough detail I’d guess Andrews has been the scapegoat in a system that has lost all sense of proportion.



Sgt. Mark Andrews Was A Disgrace ON CCTV -what’s the truth?

It’s time we were dealing with police accountability in an open public forum with evidence made properly available.  Wiltshire (Ruralshire if we are to believe an old slip of blog) police arrested a woman asleep in her car for refusing a breath test.  She’s pretty clearly assaulted in their custody and there was enough evidence to convince magistrates.  CCTV from the custody suite shows her being manhandled by Andrews.  I’d want to see the real thing, but on the U-tube stuff he starts pulling her along, then seems to smack her in the face, she falls and he drags her along the floor, at some point getting back to her feet, before being pushed hard to the floor in the cell.  In a long video you can see the cell floor is clean before this and the woman not moving on the floor for a couple of minutes.  She gets up and their is blood where her face was lying and then she’s bleeding all over.  No charges are eventually brought against the woman.  She looks like what I would have called a fairly harmless drunk, who might have annoyed me, but whom I would have treated with respect as far as I could.

From what I’ve seen her treatment was appalling, and cops present should have tried harder than they did to stop what she got.  Presumably, magistrates saw and heard the evidence and convicted – cops and CPS clearly thought there was a case to answer.  The sentence was more or less the maximum magistrates can deliver.  I think they were probably right, but I’d want the evidence in full, and we should remember any number of bastards treat their women and kids worse than this and cops/CPS can’t even get them to court, and derisory sentences are handed out when they do.  Evidence against Andrews included police evidence.

Judge Bean overturned the conviction so Andrews is an innocent man in law.

This case and responses to it on Ghastly Gadget and the like should lead to new thinking on police accountability and wider issues in our legal system.  I doubt Gadget is a cop, though he or she must at least be close to the job.  I hardly meet anyone, including a few senior officers who now think basic policing is being done right, or that we have proper control of it.  Gadget has stated Andrews is due and apology – if he is a cop, I think this is enough for him to have to leave.  He must be passing such attitudes on to fellow officers, and this is intolerable, very much rotten orchard.  What goes on on his blog, apart from wrist bangle sales, won’t do.  It’s evidence, at least to start with, of serious attitude and culture problems.  The issues are much wider than this, not least where the IPCC have been and why they weren’t called to start an investigation with the woman bleeding, and officers with as little time as possible to collude or destroy evidence.

If Andrews is genuinely innocent, even bigger questions need to be asked – surely none of us are safe from wrongful conviction if this is the case, and magistrates can’t be trusted at all.

I’d like our cops to be tougher, better protected and have more power on the beat.  What they seem to be doing reeks of incompetence and lack of grace.  The case also reeks of the need to get legal help most of us can’t afford, if in trouble.  Andrews was banged-up before his lawyers came along, which only suggests scrote who plead not guilty and go to Crown Court aren’t as stupid as their low IQs suggest.

Andrews claimed the woman was the worst prisoner he’d come across.  Against my experience, he needs to get out more.  I dealt with much worse, and suspect this was typical of police CPS attacks on credibility, which begin to look like scrote ploys in making counter allegations against those they have just committed crimes against.  One wonders what use CCTV can ever be against criminals on the basis of what is publicly available so far in this case.

If Judge Bean thinks the public accept this sort of thing, he’s not with it.  He should be subject to scrutiny in public like others in this case.  It increasingly seems our laws and legal system only work marginally.