August 21st, 2009

Safe at the Factory

Posted in The Job - General by 200

Senior officers in West Midlands Police in Birmingham, presumably with an eye on current fiscal restraints & budget cuts, agreed for a group of offenders to to their community payback work clearing the gardens of one of the police stations in Birmingham.

During their lunch hour the ‘cons’, including burglars, drugs dealers & muggers, were allowed to use the facilities of the police canteen. As a result all the undercover cops based at the station were seen diving out of fire exits, hiding behind pot plants &  looking through issues of the Daily Telegraph with eye-holes cut out in a bid to keep their ID secret from some of the criminals they are likely to be surveilling any time soon.

An un-named detective wrote in Police Review: “We have got a covert observation team who are meant to be incognito. We do not want them coming around the corner straight into people they are supposed to be doing surveillance on next week.”

Another added: “It’s ludicrous – how are we supposed to move around in criminal circles under cover only for a couple of them to recognise us as dining partners. Whoever came up with this plan needs their head read. They moved freely around the station – I saw undercover officers trying to avoid being recognised by slipping out of side exits.”

You might have thought that those who sanctioned the idea might have thought about the consequences of letting current & convicted criminals inside an area of the police station where officers relax, and probably discuss their work. Or at least, hearing the complaints afterwards might have had a ‘Doh!’ moment & realised it might not have been the best idea. But no.

Supt Surjeet Manku, of the Queen’s Road police station, said: “The programme was risk assessed and all access to canteen facilities was supervised. While I understand concerns from a few officers I also believe in treating everyone with dignity, fairness and respect.”

Hmmm, not sure how much dignity, fairness & respect was offered to the officers who didn’t want to be face to face with their clients in their own canteen.

You can skip to the end and leave a comment. Pinging is currently not allowed. RSS 2.0

13 comments

  1. the_leander says:

    Off camera, Supt Surjeet Manku was noted as giving a smirk and whispered to our reporter “actually, I did it for the lulz”.

    ~~~~wavy lines back to reality~~~~

    Of all the things you’ve ever posted 200, this one is the first to actually cause me to invoke facepalm.jpg for real.

    I can’t even begin to imagine the thought processes that went into this.

    August 21st, 2009 at 16:50

  2. Civ_In_The_City says:

    “..while I understand concerns from a few officers I also believe in treating everyone with dignity, fairness and respect..”

    Now THAT is what I call talking the talk.

    This is the best example yet of someone looking for promotion trotting out the best set of ‘right-on’ cliches they can – while at the exact same time implementing an idea that is in complete opposition to common-sense, logic, and the purpose for which he is employed.

    Let`s add some insult to injury and acknowledge that this particular bit of lunacy already has pride of place in his career development folder.

    Couldn`t they have been wheeled off to the local MacDonalds for 30 minutes instead? I wouldn`t have minded if Supt Manku had put half a dozen quarter-pounders on expenses.

    But to potentially undermine future operations, and put the lives of officers at risk is unforgivable.

    Risk-assessment? Promotion assessment more like.

    These may have been some of the local low-level scumbags but one day soon they might be hanging around with some of the hard-core baddies, and looking for kudos. The consequences for an undercover officer whose face ‘rings a bell’ will be a lot more costly than a plate of egg and chips.

    August 21st, 2009 at 18:02

  3. Same Old Faces says:

    I think we all know someone like Supt Surjeet Manku. I will put my house on the fact that his career postings have been Planning Teams, Corporate Development Teams etc etc ie nothing to do with real police work!!!

    August 21st, 2009 at 18:05

  4. Same Old Faces says:

    PS – I hope one his offenders screws his office or car whilst being allowed access to the police station and show him the same dignity, fairness and respect they probably showed the previous victims!!

    August 21st, 2009 at 18:13

  5. 200 says:

    this one is the first to actually cause me to invoke facepalm.jpg for real.

    I so wish I knew what this meant…is it an age thing? sounds like something my kids might do/say

    August 21st, 2009 at 18:17

  6. R/T says:

    Mind-numbing, I’m afraid. If the best Supt I ever knew, JC, read this he’d think that ythe world had gone completely insane. Which it has. And that was only 20 years ago.

    “00 – you seem an even-handed, erudite chap. WTF has happened to The Job over the last 25 years. The majority of superintending ranks must have joined when I (and you, to a great extent) did. I don’t remember that many wankers at training school. You?

    August 21st, 2009 at 18:19

  7. the_leander says:

    facepalm.jpg – the ascii version…

    ……………………………………..________
    ………………………………,.-‘”……………….“~.,
    ………………………..,.-”……………………………..“-.,
    …………………….,/………………………………………..”:,
    …………………,?………………………………………………\,
    ………………./…………………………………………………..,}
    ……………../………………………………………………,:`^`..}
    ……………/……………………………………………,:”………/
    …………..?…..__…………………………………..:`………../
    …………./__.(…..“~-,_…………………………,:`………./
    ………../(_….”~,_……..“~,_………………..,:`…….._/
    ……….{.._$;_……”=,_…….“-,_…….,.-~-,},.~”;/….}
    ………..((…..*~_…….”=-._……“;,,./`…./”…………../
    …,,,___.\`~,……“~.,………………..`…..}…………../
    …………(….`=-,,…….`……………………(……;_,,-”
    …………/.`~,……`-………………………….\……/\
    ………….\`~.*-,……………………………….|,./…..\,__
    ,,_……….}.>-._\……………………………..|…………..`=~-,
    …..`=~-,_\_……`\,……………………………\
    ……………….`=~-,,.\,………………………….\
    …………………………..`:,,………………………`\…………..__
    ……………………………….`=-,……………….,%`>–==“
    …………………………………._\……….._,-%…….`\
    ……………………………..,<`.._|_,-&“…………….`\

    Google Images also has a tonne of variations on this theme.

    August 21st, 2009 at 19:25

  8. copper bottom says:

    whilst I would love to say ‘wow, I am surprised!!!’ etc…

    Sadly, hard experience has taught me that there are NO level of bizarre decisions that ‘senior’ officers will not seek to attain…

    As the german philosopher Immanuel Kant once said, ‘there is no bizarre, wrong or seemingly insane thinking that has not, at some time, been seriously considered as truth and the correct way to behave.’

    right on Manny…

    I worked on CID when a supt decided to put all detectives into uniform- his thinking being that ‘it was not necessary for them to be out of it- and it created a them and us culture between uniformed officers etc…

    so, imagine his surprise when, following a crown court day out -sec 18 wounding- one of the family of the defendant followed the nicely painted uniformed panda containing the cid officers escorting the victim – back to her home.

    after a ‘brick v window’ incident… she pulled out of the trial process…

    nice job gaffer…

    cid back in suits and plain cars the next day (rumor says following a call from the chief…)…

    lol – derrr

    August 21st, 2009 at 19:53

  9. Blueknight says:

    When I had a couple of months in the job, I got a bollocking from the Sgt. for letting a witness sit in the canteen (with me).
    ‘What if one of us wants to swear or fart?’ he asked. But I knew what he meant.

    August 21st, 2009 at 21:34

  10. Sergeant Twining says:

    It wasn’t risk assessed well enough. Ok, offer them dignity to build trust but then make sure undercover cops don’t have to filter through the same area and be seen.

    August 22nd, 2009 at 10:25

  11. Sergeant Twining says:

    This is a pretty stupid idea, get them to work in the community, not in the police station. If they continue to carry on their criminality, you need to get them to pay it back in the community, not in the canteen.

    August 22nd, 2009 at 10:27

  12. Stan Still says:

    I bet they not only got to sit in the canteen, but were offered parking spaces as well? Which is more than the officers who work from Queens Road are given – it’s first come first served for a space on a street nearby!

    Anyway, it isn’t a proper canteen – they were the first victims of cost-cutting some years ago. There’s only one canteen in the force and that’s at the training centre. This is why we have to have outside caterers in to supply food for operations.

    August 23rd, 2009 at 16:48

  13. Jabadaw says:

    I am inclined to agree with Same Old Faces as to this Supt, career path and I too doubt if ‘coppering’ had anything to do with it.

    200, Have you misspelled his name?

    August 23rd, 2009 at 22:54

Leave a comment