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Police: The New Commissioner’s In Tray

Written by RSS Poster policecommander


This week sees the final interviews for the job of Met Commissioner. There are some truly outstanding people in the running.

And what awaits the successful candidate? Simply, the honour and responsibility of leading the finest police service in the world. The Met has its faults and failings of course – some of them grave – but it remains an extraordinary institution.

More than the institution though, there are the people – as fine a group of women and men as you could ever hope to meet. Some of them fall short, but most of them are about as remarkable as people can be: the everyday heroes and heroines who police our streets. It seems to me that serving them is the greatest leadership privilege of all.

The new Boss is going to arrive to a set of eye-watering challenges – a combination of operational and organisational demands the like of which policing has not seen in a generation and more. And they are not unique to London – policing the length and breadth of the country is feeling the strain.


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Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Yesterday`s question in the House of Lords on the subject of the magistracy provided the usual rehash of the noble lords rehearsed opinions. Read for`ll take only three or four minutes at most.


Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
As a newly appointed J.P. it took me a while to absorb the fact that not only was police collaboration in writing up their notebooks of an incident normal; it was enshrined in page upon page of regulation. There is a link on this in the last post I made on this topic a year ago.  My initial thoughts were that within such a system were the foundations of corruption.  Phrases such as "rolling gait", "eyes glazed", and others similar were repeated in police officers` evidence read from their notebooks over and over again. One of the first questions of police witnesses when I first took the middle chair was to ask of them after they were sworn in if and with whom they had collaborated in their note taking.  Some colleagues  found this unusual but appreciated the significance.  It seems that now the Independent Police Complaints Commission has given this situation some thought although by its very mandate serious cases only are under consideration.  Its advice is that conferring should be eliminated.  That it has...

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Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
For longer than I care to remember I have been saddened by the cultural failure to divert addicts from courts to a medical pathway.  All the fiddling by successive Justice Secretaries and their minions from Sentencing Council to lies about the numbers of prison officers and all else in between makes me want to throw up. In today`s and this weekend`s  local newspapers  three cases shine the light on why we require custody for some non violent offenders, opposed by Howard League, and also why we should grasp the nettle to divert addicts committing low level crime from courts to a compulsory  medical pathway to eradicate their addiction. 

Although optimistic by nature I fear that no government with a democratic mandate to rule will ever have the balls to implement such a change in our attitudes to criminality.  We`ll have the same old cycle of events, claims and counter claims and Justice Secretaries who don`t even attempt to bang their heads against the status quo brick wall.


Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
With a prison population at almost record levels and no prospect of its being reduced without drastic reform of sentencing guidelines shrill voices are frequently proclaiming that incarceration for non violent offenders must no longer be tolerated. They must be dealt with in the community; whatever that actually means.  This offender sentenced earlier this week for driving whilst disqualified owing to a ban imposed for drink driving a month previously has been jailed for twelve weeks and had in addition a suspended sentence for the drink driving offence  activated.  She was not violent. Without the final sanction of custody just what would happen to such offenders?

Police: Queen's Police Medal Awards

Written by RSS Poster Old Plod

Over half of the Queen’s Police Medals
have been awarded to officers below the rank of superintendent.
Nine rank and file police officers have been 
awarded the prestigious Queen’s Police Medal
by Her Majesty The Queen as part of her 
New Year’s Honours – 3 times the number 
honoured in the 2016 Birthday Honours.
In one of her final actions as Home Secretary,
Prime MinisterTheresa May recommended 
that more officers below senior 
ranks should receive the Queen’s Police Medal, 
to recognise the vital role they play in protecting 
the public and address an imbalance over to 
whom the medal is awarded.
Police leaders responded by putting forward 
a number officers from junior ranks from 
across England and Wales who have shown 
outstanding courage and distinguished 
service in the line of duty. More than half 
of the 17 Queen’s Police Medals announced 
today have been awarded to officers below 
the rank of superintendent.
Home Secretary Amber Rudd said:
These deserving recipients of Queen’s Police
Medals have gone above and beyond 
the call...

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Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
The Ministry of Justice cannot be faulted for failing to publish statistics from every possible source for which it has responsibility; related to prisons, courts, offenders, convictions etc. etc. etc. For many journalists and lobbyists it makes for an easy life; comment on some aspect of these millions of numbers and use them as a peg for a story, a blog post, a tweet or for further ammunition in some cause or other. But to many people outside the professions involved the numbers behave somewhat like a balancing arm where their preformed opinions can be reinforced.  Take, however, a real live incident and its harmful or harmless significance can become a facsimile  of the reality within.  Such an incident happened earlier this week at Teesside Magistrates` Court where a District Judge was presiding. A known offender with 46 previous simply walked out of the courtroom whilst said DJ was in the middle of his summing up.  The mere fact that this happened does not reflect well on the performance of the...

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Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
This blog in its seven plus years of existence has attempted to bring to those interested in the goings on in a magistrates` court, matters directly related and sometimes offering a wider viewpoint including political and police involvement.   Since my retirement my comments obviously have relied upon items generally available in the public media with occasional tit bits from former colleagues and my own recollections of interesting cases. Observations on cases from the Appeal or Supreme  Court have generally been of little connection to my original motivation for inclusion here and consequently there have been few such related posts.  Today is an exception.

Many thousands of us, myself included, have appealed against a parking fine of one sort or another.  Fortunately I had the wherewithal and time a couple of years ago to make a successful appeal but the enforced procedures employed by the council might have forced many to abandon the fight.  It was therefore gratifying to read of a motor cyclist whose appeal...

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Police: Hearts and flowers? Not for one billion women

Written by RSS Poster Crimestoppers

One in three women will experience violence against them at least once in their life

V-Day, February 14 2017, is a global movement to stop this…


Inspired by Eve Ensler’s play The Vagina Monologues, they run large-scale fundraisers, events, films and conduct campaigns to educate and stop violence against women and girls. They have raised over $80 million and funded more than 12,000 anti-violence programs and safe houses in countries such as Haiti, Kenya, Egypt and Iraq.

Find out more about V-Day…

One Billion Rising

1billiobWith the support of the V-Day organisation, global protest campaign One Billion Rising was created, so named because over one billion women will be impacted by violence in their lifetime. The project urges women to walk, dance, and rise up in opposition to violence and has reached over 140 countries in regions including North Africa, Asia, and the Middle East, with special projects in each area dependent on local circumstances, traditions, and religions.

Find out more about One Billion...

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Police: Romance Fraud: Don’t fall for it

Written by RSS Poster Crimestoppers

Valentine’s Day is a chance to throw caution to the wind and let your heart rule over your head. But don’t get carried away with all the roses, chocolate and soppy poems – especially if you’re looking for love online. Valentine’s may be a day for the romantics – but it’s also one for the scammers. Research has shown a spike in the reporting of romance fraud around March and April as victims wake up to the fact that they’ve been duped.

Romance Fraud

Romance fraud: Don’t let your heart be broken by fraudsters this Valentine’s Day

We’ve invited one victim, known as Firefly to protect her identity, to talk about how she was fooled into handing over €1,000 to a scammer. She now works voluntarily with Scam Survivors to give support to fellow victims and raise awareness of the issue which affects millions of people across the globe.

She said: It’s not just about losing money. When I discovered I’d been scammed I felt like I’d lost everything – I lost my faith in people, I became nothing but a...

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