April 14th, 2012

It would be incredible if it wasn’t so normal

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

I often blog about the appalling service we give to members of the public. About how we consistently let down decent folk who ask for a simple but efficient service and only call us when they really require some police help, unlike the majority of our ‘service users’ who call us because they can’t be bothered to sort out their own lives and believe they have an entitlement for action as soon as someone looks at them funny.

News today of a corner shop in Wales who reported a local thief who ran off with two packets of cigarettes. They called within 15 minutes and were told police were too busy, (probably dealing with Facebook complaints, or harassing people who don’t really want to see police). The shopkeeper was told police would attend the following day.

They didn’t.

Actually, I’m suprised they said they would attend; in our force, unless the shopkeeper knows the thief personally, has a copy of his driving licence and birth certificate or a confession signed in triplicate, we don’t attend at all. We just take a report over the phone, largely so we can leave officers free to deal with the work-shy.

Anyway, the police in Cardiff didn’t attend the next day, or the day after that.

In an effort to track down the theif the shopkeeper put up a CCTV image of the thief inside the shop so staff would be alerted and customers might recognise him.

Cardiff Police eventually sent a PCSO, six days later, who told the shopkeeper to remove the photo because members of the public could see it.

Presumably, Cardiff Police are now checking asking al police forces to remove similar images from their websites and liaising with the producers of Crimewatch so they remove the relevant mugshot sections of their episodes.

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  1. SamYeager says:

    The depressing thing is that, as an ordinary member of public, this news doesn’t even surprise me. :(

    April 15th, 2012 at 06:35

  2. shijuro says:

    Me 2…

    April 15th, 2012 at 09:57

  3. Tony F says:

    Or me.

    April 15th, 2012 at 10:02

  4. Plodnomore says:

    I am reminded of an incident (in Cardiff, strangely) about 8 years ago where a similar thing happened and a Police officer told a shopkeeper to remove photos of a shoplifter as they were visible to the public. The difference being that photos were pasted to the shop window on a notice which read something like, “DUE TO PREVIOUS BEHAVIOUR IN THIS SHOP, THIS PERSON IS NO LONGER ALLOWED IN HERE AND WILL BE TREATED AS A TRESPASSER”. There was no mention of what this ‘behaviour’ was. Two days later, another poster went up on the shop window, showing a photo of the PC (taken in the street) saying something like, “THIS POLICE OFFICER WILL NOT ALLOW ME TO DISPLAY A PHOTO OF A PERSON BANNED FROM THIS SHOP”. It took a Sgt, an Inspector and two reporters from local papers before a ‘mutualy aggred’ compromise was reached. A wonderful example of shooting themselves in the foot.

    April 15th, 2012 at 11:04

  5. Gary says:

    Think I can see why G4S will be welcomed by so many victims.

    April 16th, 2012 at 21:24

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