This is the official blog of ex-Sgt Ellie Bloggs. I was a real live police constable then sergeant for twelve years, on the real live front line of England. I'm now a real live non-police person. All the facts I recount are true, and are not secrets. If they don't want me blogging about it, they shouldn't do it. PS If you don't pay tax, you don't (or didn't) pay my salary.

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Thursday, April 07, 2016

It's still the police's fault

Even though the IPCC concluded that Lee Birch was hell-bent on killing ex-wife Anne-Marie, the papers still report this as if it was the police's fault.  No officers had to answer for misconduct and there were "learning points" only, which is effectively when the IPCC tell you to assume every future call will be a potential murder.
Domestic murders are particularly grim, and no police officer wants to think they had a chance to intervene in one.  But the papers (and public) repeatedly fail to grasp key facts about this type of crime:
  • It is not news that domestic incidents had been reported to the police before.  Very few people wake up one day and become psychotic murderers with no previous pattern of violent behaviour.
  • If there was insufficient evidence to prove previous reports, then no charges could have been brought.
  • Non-molestation/Prevention against harassment orders are only as good as the sentences given for breaching them. 
  • The police do not make court bail decisions, nor sentencing ones.
  • Family, friends and neighbours are quick to blame the police post-death, but may not have been willing to give statements or intervene before the murder happened.  They should not be blamed for wanting answers as they deal with feelings of guilt and bereavement, but they may be no more or no less culpable than the police.
It is an eternal frustration to read headlines like the above, especially in a case where the police really did very little wrong.  Of course, when the police do get it wrong, the case should be highlighted, and any officers who messed up through laziness or incompetence should be duly dealt with. 
In all such cases, it would be nice if the press would remember that in every case of domestic violence that does NOT lead to a murder, there is the possibility that the police did something right. 
Which doesn't make for such a snappy headline.

'Diary of an On-Call Girl' is available in some bookstores and online.


Blogger staghounds said...

Hurrah, you're back!

12 April, 2016 12:25


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