Sunday, December 31, 2006

Review (whinge!) of the Year

Things I've seen too much of in 2006, would like to see less of in 2007.

Dead people.
Maggots in dead people.
People spread across several square metres of tarmac after road accidents.
Activity Analysis.
Incompetent management who can't see there's a problem until someone points it out, and then get the person who points out the problem to sort it out, and then take all the credit for it.
Computer Screens.
Sensationalist media reporting.
Paper forms that exactly replicate computer forms, but both have to be completed.
Computer forms that exactly replicate paper forms, but both have to be completed.
Computer forms that contain exactly the same information as other computer forms, but both have to be completed, and you can't cut and paste.
Rescuscitating people who are barely hanging on to life after a drugs overdose.
People dead after a drugs overdose.
People jumping from the 5th floor onto concrete in front of me.

Things I would like to see more of in 2007.

Spare police vehicles to replace the broken ones
Broken police vehicles being fixed the first time.
People being talked down from the 5th floor. (This did happen. It couldn't be made official as myself and the fire brigade chap conveniently ignored Health & Safety to climb up the scaffolding to get to him)
Patrol time.
Common sense.
Properly enforced and resourced probation and community service sentences.
Police officers on response team, so we aren't always going from job to job to report to statement to job to report, and can actually go and do some preventative police work

Hum I will come back with some of the good highlights of the year, but in true Sergeant fashion I'm grumpy at the moment, as it's new years eve, I can't go where I was planning as the car broke down this morning, and in any case I'm on early turn tomorow and will need to be out of the house by roughly 5am. Hurrah!

Friday, December 29, 2006

Merry new year.

To say I get angry about this kind of thing is an understatement.

This on christmas day, this three days later.

This latter one nearly made me lose my temper.

Stupid, selfish halfwit. It's one of the few things that sorely tempts me to revert back a few decades in policing style. One of those that if I'm at the custody desk, I have to pause, take a deep breath and tell myself I have to treat him like everybody else.

What a scumbag. Disqualified from driving, sticking two fingers up to both courts and police, couldn't give a toss about anyone but himself, showing off to the girl. Even if she knew there was something not right about this guy and this car there is absolutely no way she deserves this. Nobody does.

Death by dangerous driving is the equivalent of manslaughter, and without checking my law books that's at least 14 years. But I bet he'll get about 3.

The Manchester bloke'll probably get something equally limp, and disqualified from driving for 10 years, which really makes a difference to these kind of people. See the London story for evidence of how much.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Coming Soon

Coming soon: Sergeant Says' Review of the year 2006.

To include: things I saw this year I will quite happily go without ever seeing again;
things I would like to see more of next year;
things I would like to see less of.

I was planning on actually doing this tonight, but I've only just finished prepping stuff for tomorrow, and I wanted to go to bed twenty minutes ago- so it can wait.

Hope all had a good christmas, and better than the poor sod who I came across just before christmas (see future post: things I will quite happily go without ever seeing again).

Hope all have a jolly good new year. With the following small print: this specifically excludes people who drink too much and either a) fight their partners b) fight their friends c) fight the police officers who are called by their partners or friends d) fight random poor sod who happened to be on the wrong crack of the pavement at the time.

Small small print to point D: exception to this is when you do it in front of a vanload of motivated old bill who particularly dislike eejits who like to engage in such things. As what happened christmas eve. "Happy Christmas. You're nicked." I'm trying to think of an adjective that suits such a person, but I'm struggling to think of something that is both contemptous and venomous enough.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

And Finally

I know, no updates in a week then 4 in a day. But I'm on late turn tomorrow (lie in......... aaaaah) and the missus isn't feeling too well, and was off to bed very early, so could spend a bit of time both on this and looking around the other job bloggers.

Very sad to say the Blogger's Graveyard is expanding. Sensible Policing has simply just disappeared off the face of the earth (never a good sign) and now even the PCSO blog has joined the ranks of those found out and has deleted every post he's ever written.

Every time I see that happen I ask myself- again- just why am I doing this, when all it will ever bring me is trouble.

Really, really can't make it up.

I know I've nicked Guvnor Gadget's tagline but it is the only way to describe this (also on the official GMP website). You can hear the criminals laughing all the way from Carlisle to Chester.

An extraordinary piece of pink and fluffy optimism policing.

Unless, there is a glimmer of hope here, that the GMP article is so laden with sarcasm and that the officers in the Chadderton nick are the ones laughing. But surely not, not from the official GMP website? Please someone tell me this is a christmas joke........

Winter Warmers

Okay yes I am a bit grumpy at the moment. I cheered up a bit when I saw Inspector Gadget's appeal for witnesses to an apparent abduction by Met Officers: here. I laughed even more when I saw HobbyBobby's retort- here! Who says police can't have a sense of humour?

But the icing on the cake is this. How I laughed when I saw this, especially as it's Met officers hahahahahahahahahahaha (at least, I think it is- that is their logo just peeking out on the right hand side?)

I know it's a silly photo from a photoshop bodge. But those pink leggings crack me up.

bah humbug

Good one. I'm shattered.
You know those medieval torture methods where you had a horse attached to each limb who each try and pull you in different directions? Thats a bit how I feel at the moment. Inspectors from every which department (licencing, tasking, Intelligence, Motor Vehicle Crime, Robbery and the rest blah blah blah) all wanting my unit to help with their problems in the run up to christmas. Plus some problems with some of my Pc's in the unit, problems which have to be dealt with like now and not left till after christmas. Sooooooo I'm full of the joys at the moment!

There's something about this job which makes people think that a number of officers in yellow jackets will solve any problem you care to mention, whereas the only problem it really solves is that they can now finally tell senior management that some resources are being targeted to combat their particular problem.

When I finally get some days off (not for a while yet!) my phone will be turned off throughout christmas (the couple of days that I have for it, anyway.....)

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

A bit more

I think I'll leave my media whinges alone for the time being. Instead, just hope and pray that Suffolk police get their man (we all assume it is a man, but I think it is a fair assumption) quick.

My thoughts are with the families of the murdered girls, and the officers working on the case who I know will be slogging their guts out following useless lead after useless lead, always hoping the next one will be the one. The BBC have published a useful article on how it is calls from the public that are really what are crucial. TV shows would have you believe forensic science can solve everything. It has a role but it isn't enough. A simple "I was here, at this time, and I saw this" will be all the jumpstart this case needs.

Link to Suffolk Police website here.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Norfolk reporting

I don't wish to make comment at all about the things happening in Ipswich, save that I hope to God that Suffolk police catch whoever is responsible pretty damn quick.

For those who may know me I am quite interested in media issues, in particular the way they present stories, the accuracy of any facts that are claimed, and even when and how stories are chosen in the first place.

Found myself agreeing with this article from the Guardian. In a nutshell, its how the media seem to treat prostitute crime as unnewsworthy, and the only reason the Ipswich events are in the news at all is because suddenly there's a "serial killer" or a new "ripper" attacking prostitutes, who are now "vice girls".

The police are familiar with being labelled (justifiably, let me make clear) of having certain ways and attitudes "institutionalised" in their working practices. But I think the media (certain sections in particular) have a case to answer too, for having equally deeply entrenched attitudes that perhaps aren't as fair and appropriate as they'd like to make out.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Eyebrow Raising

Speaking to an analyst friend of mine. They reckon that a recent (nearly 25%) drop in particular type of theft related crime in Nutville is down to the arrest of one individual, and thus now he is off the streets there has been a corresponding dramatic fall in crime.

Needless to say, this individual is hopelessly addicted to class A drugs.

Even more quickly

For those who think we blog without the threat of being called in to the SMT's office: a new link has been added to the blogger's graveyard. So long, Semper Fi.

Said with an air of resigned sadness. It'll be me one day.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

just quickly

Apologies to non-police blog authors, as this is aimed fairly squarely at blog authors.

About a month ago, I got an email from a certain police magazine asking me to phone their london office. Am I alone in this? I emailed a reply to them (mostly stating I wasn't prepared to ring them, but was happy to answer any and all questions on email) but I have never recieved any kind of reply in return.

This has merely fuelled my suspicions about the nature of the request in the first place, which specifically requested don't post about this. But as I say it's been long enough with no reply so I can post about it.

Anyway. Anyone else get this? Am I being over paranoid.....

Thursday, December 07, 2006

PCSO's- should they be more distinct from police?

PCSO's are in the news for all the wrong reasons.

As per the link below, getting stabbed in the neck and now this, (courtesy PCSO blog for alerting me)

And then I go back and look again at those two Devon & Cornwall police articles in the previous post.

They take away 150 officers from the street. To meet government targets. As in they're going to go and stick them behind desks to massage statistics.

What the ?!@!#! I know I say don't believe the media but unfortunately I do believe that.

And they are to be replaced with 458 PCSO's.

Don't get me wrong on this. I have nothing against PCSO's. I just find the current situation ludicrous and frustrating. Home office demands have created a climate where PC's need to be taken off the streets in order to improve the force's detection rates, or whatever statistical measure that currently has priority attention.

This in the meantime creates a void on the streets, in which to fill, the government spends vast fortunes on PCSO's. PCSO's are designed to look like police in order to fill this "policing gap". But they don't get any of the training, equipment, or backup.

And so PCSO's, devoid of training, equipment, and most crucially of all, experience (even the longest serving PCSO can only have been on the street maybe 4 years now?) are sent out onto the street designed to fill the gap between police and public.

Which in my opinion shouldn't be there in the first place. Spend the money currently spent on PCSO's to recruit and train them as PC's, and they can do exactly the same important job but with better training, better resources, and better backup.

In the meantime, as the above is never going to happen, I reckon an effort should be made to change PCSO uniform to make it pretty clear they are not police. I don't think it's coincidence that the chap stabbed in the neck was the PCSO rather than the eviction officers. Make their uniform distinct- red or something. Not the psuedo-police it currently is. The media don't help in blurring the lines between police officers and community support officers. Check out the headline from

But make no mistake, I wish these two well. Unlike what I wish for for their attackers.

What do people think about their uniform? Should it be clearer they are not police officers? Or is the close association with police a good thing? Views from all sides of the fence please :-)

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Slightly miffed.

What the hell? One.

What the hell? Two. Linked to one.

Makes me want to cry.

And in the meantime: what the hell was he doing there in the first place? Should not have been there! Non-confrontational?????

Monday, December 04, 2006

More car v foot

Apologies, my research isn't quite as thorough as I thought. Pc Bloggs over at Blandmore posted on this issue a while ago (Blogger posting isn't let me put hyperlinks in at the moment for some reason- click on Bloggs's link to the right and its the "Celebrations Are In Order" post in the November archive) and there has been quite a response.

Bloggs I think people weren't too happy with yours because you fairly comprehensively dismiss the calls for Pc's on the beat! Correct me if I'm wrong, heh thats another advantage of blogging, you can tell a skipper he's talking crap without fear of red pen in pocketbooks.

Anyway. My point was that from a response point of view Pc's on foot are next to useless. However, from a preventative point of view in a very small geographical area, they are considerably more effective than a car. I've seen it myself. Scroties see a marked car coming and dive out of the way, and hide behind walls etc until job car has trundled past. They are quite happy that the chances of job car returning there are slim- that street has been patrolled now and they won't be back for a while- so they carry on with their crafty joints and cans of spray paint.

However, stick someone out on foot and makes a heck of a difference. They know that PC Shankpony isn't going to blat off to somewhere else, and that they can't make a deal of noise as Constable Shankpony isn't insulated by steel and glass, and will hear their shouting and their moped revving (Oh how I hate mopeds. Even in Nicetown where I reside I find myself glaring hatefully at a moped driven by anything with a hoodie.)

My biggest whinge is that because response teams are response teams, I have to put people in the cars first, and to be honest I usually expect them to stay in the cars. I barely have enough officers to crew the cars, so any benefit of foot patrol is, for my part of Suburbia, just theory.