October 24th, 2008

Ready, Steady, Cook!

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

I don’t know about all this fuss over the police ‘cooking the books‘ on violent crime. I didn’t realise there was any story in it, to be honest; we’ve been classifying crime to the government’s best advantage for 30 years, I have no reason to believe it’s not much longer than that.

What I don’t understand is that we’ve actually done anything wrong. The nuts & bolts of it are that we’ve apparently been under-recording violent crime & classifying stuff less serious than it actually was.

The example I’ve seen on TV all seem to revolve this around the GBH with Intent offence. GBH (grievous bodily harm) is a serious injury usually involving some kind of serious wound or broken bone, so a black eye would be ABH (actual bodily harm), a fractured eye-socket would be GBH. A more serious offence than straight GBH would be GBH with Intent, so not only did you cause a grievous injury, you actually meant to injure him.

The example the reports are giving is that someone who, for instance, tries to hit someone with a broken bottle but misses should be charged with GBH with intent, because they obviously meant to injure someone.

Maybe we have a lot of failed violent thugs. You can picture the scene. “I’m a failure officer, I really meant to do him some damage but I only managed to cause a little love-bite sized bruise, please record this as a GBH with intent, it’ll go down much better on the litter-clearing community service I’ll get.

I guess, ultimately, it is part of the government’s modern ethos of recording ‘everything’ in the biggest arse-covering exercise we’ve been through which means we now criminalise people for throwing cream buns & pushing each other in the playground.

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