The R Word
Here is a quick guide as to what you can expect when you phone in your complaint that the cop who arrested you last night was RACIST:
- An inspector round to your house to take a written complaint.
- A Detective Inspector allocated to the investigation.
- The DI will dig around and produce an assortment of police officers of varying ranks to be included in the investigation, whether or not they were the subject of your complaint. If possible, this selection will include a non-white officer, because they can be RACIST too.
- Formal notices will go out to each officer concerned to let them know they are under investigation. Until this is resolved, they won't be able to transfer forces, so they can't escape retribution that way.
- Evidence will be gathered to show that the officers are RACIST, preferably including records of previous cases where someone involved was not white.
- Each officer will be interviewed formally and accused of RACISM. They will also be accused of UNWITTING RACISM.
- Each officer will deny RACISM or UNWITTING RACISM.
- The DI will personally update you of the results of the investigation. This will usually be that they have uncovered some mistakes and incompetence, but cannot prove any RACISM whatsoever. But they have a big pack of paper to prove that they took RACISM very seriously.
- You will go away none-the-wiser, but feeling greatly encouraged that you have certainly upset a lot of people.
- Several people notice that a particular sergeant/inspector or above is particularly incompetent.
- Their mistakes are discussed at great length.
- A lot of people moan and bicker about them.
- The sergeant/inspector is promoted.
- Finally the sergeant/inspector does something so unbelievably stupid that somebody dies.
- Another sergeant/inspector who had nothing to do with the incident resigns.
I know that there are racist coppers. I haven't met any, or known I was meeting them. There are also numerous incompetent and lazy coppers. They don't hide it as well.
Either way, I can guarantee you that nothing taught to us in training, handed down to us by supervisors, or demonstrated to us in disciplinary proceedings, has any noticeable effect on any of it.
'Diary of an On-Call Girl' is available in all good bookstores and online.