October 19th, 2009

We only accept PC rioters

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

It must have been interesting to be a fly on the wall in Ian McPherson’s house this week.

Mr McPherson is the chief constable of Norfolk who may have been a little annoyed at the actions of his 17-year-old son Jack recently.

Jack and several of his school mates were recently recruited to form part of a hostile crowd during as police riot training exercise. They were told to taunt the officers who would presumably implement various riot techniques in a practice senario without the risk of appearing on YouTube or the BBC News.

Young Jack took to the role quite keenly; he made some banners for him & his mates to carry during the pretend riot. One of them read “I’m McPherson’s son” and another read “All policewomen are dykes“.

Jack was removed from the training exercise & his father was informed. He promptly attended the night exercise where he & his son made an apology to those officers present. Norfolk police are keen to point out that Jack doesn’t actually believe that all police women are dykes but that he thought the comment was within the brief to tease officers.

One might have thought that if any action was necessary to protect the sensibilities of officers during riot training, then an apology at the time might have been appropriate. Not so for the person who made an official complaint later which apparently lead to the IPCC being consulted. Presumably the person who made the complaint was some kind of staff since the report states that the site where the training took place was secure & no members of the public were present.

Let’s hope that the officers training to deal with unruly crowds don’t face anything so nasty in a real riot, lest they drop their shields & all run off to the IPCC.

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


  1. copper bottom says:


    I was going to say, ‘I’ve heard it all now…’

    but I know I haven’t… as there appears to be no limit on the stupidity of people – certainly not in the field of IPCC and senior officers…

    Its stuff like this that strengthens my resolve to leave the job as soon as I find another occupation.

    October 19th, 2009 at 19:49

  2. the_leander says:

    Hmm. As I understand it the IPCC have to investigate everything that gets reported to them so I don’t necessarily hold this against them.

    I do wonder though at the officer who made the report. How will the dainty ickle darling cope when big bad mean Joe Public produce similar (and possibly even meaner!!!111eleventyone) signs in real life protests?

    I wonder what it says about me that I had a rueful chuckle at the idea of “I’m McPherson’s son” being produced by the officers son…

    October 19th, 2009 at 21:13

  3. Tony F says:

    Methinks the joined up thinking has failed… However, 10 out of 10 for the banner….

    October 19th, 2009 at 22:46

  4. SoCal says:

    Compared to a real riot, “dyke” is pretty darn tame. A lot of what happens isn’t words, after all. Hell, half of what your average rioter screams makes no sense whatsoever to any attempt to apply logic to it. But a mob’s energy, how ugly it gets, that’s where things really heat up. And where petty insults aren’t as important as the naked hostility. And so that’s where the officers have to learn to keep their heads and tamp down on anger and frustration: when they’re facing down someone who’ll spit out the most vicious thing they can think of, to express their hostility, while behaving in a threatening manner (but not necessarily threatening enough to justify a well-deserved smack, under the rules).

    October 20th, 2009 at 04:13

  5. rafanon says:

    May I ask, has the training of new PC’s gone very PC? I only say that because the military has gone that way to a certain extent. In the good old days one could expect a bit of “rough n tumble” going through training, the odd verbal assault etc etc. Then the PC brigade take over (and rightly so in some respects) and has made the “new boy” more like Kevin & Perry rather than someone who is on the ball and up for it.

    October 20th, 2009 at 08:02

  6. Brother Random says:

    I hope this is just Norfolk, not the entire country. Although I suppose Norfolk police could be drafted as warm bodies for other riots…

    October 20th, 2009 at 11:33

  7. Monkeypants says:

    Seems silly. Ask a bloke to stand somewhere and taunt people and then get all out of shape when he does just that. As previously said, he could have been a lot more insulting, the banners did seem to be tongue in cheek. I agree that the IPCC have to investigate all complaints made, but this investigation should have taken all of two minutes and the resulting report should have said “So what?”

    October 20th, 2009 at 14:06

  8. copper bottom says:

    what scares me is that these are officers that are going to be policing RIOTS!!!

    ‘run away!’

    October 20th, 2009 at 16:51

  9. MarkUK says:

    Must agree with Monkeypants.

    It seems a bit daft when a 17 yo has more sense than the IPCC.

    October 20th, 2009 at 22:09

  10. Fee says:

    The words “storm” and “teacup” spring to mind …

    October 21st, 2009 at 10:37

Leave a comment