November 25th, 2008

If you go down in the woods today…

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

I don’t generally read the Daily Mail, honest.

Perhaps as I journey towards a grumpy old man I’m finding more in common with the Mail than I used to. I see the occasional copy at work, if I can concentrate during the wee small hours between the occasional PNC check, I read whatever is available. This usually amounts to the Sun, Mirror, Mail & Express. I don;’ know what it is about people who work in control rooms but why doesn’t anyone read the Telegraph & Times, it would make me feel so much more intellectual.

Anyway, back to the Mail, it does come up with stories with which I have some broad agreement.

A story this week had me nodding my head in shared-experience mode. It’s entitled ‘Mother and teenage daughter who stumbled on open air gay sex told to “use a different path” by police‘. It tells the story of a 44-year-old mother out walking her dogs with her teenage daughter when they happened upon that age-old quaint British sight of two half naked men having gay sex in a local beauty spot. After realising they’d been spotted, the men, naked from the waste down, carried on their exploits.

The woman was later advised to avoid the area in future if she didn’t want to stumble across naked men pleasuring each other on a public footpath.

The local police in Preston seem to be giving out mixed messages. Whilst a local senior officer said behaviour like this in public would not be tolerated, their Assistant Chief Constable, Mike Cunningham, has recently advised police to turn a blind eye to cottaging & dogging. Mr C is the ACPO lead on lesbian, gay bisexual and transgender issues. He believes that attending reports of illegal public sex alienates the gay community. Probably similar to arresting bank robbers alienates the criminal fraternity.

I can confirm that prior to Mr Cunningham’s official report into the matter, we were being advised in the control room that any reports of homosexual activity in public should not be dealt with by the sending of a police officer, but should be passed to the local team ‘for their information & development’ which may include getting local officers to patrol the area, putting up lighting or CCTV to ‘discourage’ such activity. And there was me thinking management teams were intent on easy arrests to get their figures up for morning prayers every day.

I’ve said this before & I’ll be saying it again – there are times when I wish the police would stick to savings lives, & preventing & detecting crime.

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  1. Oi says:

    I’m trying to think of a down-side to alienating riveters….

    November 25th, 2008 at 06:05

  2. Dr Melvin T Gray says:

    Weakened foundations threaten the castle when police no longer see themselves as moral guardians or choose to ignore specific laws relating to crimes of indecency.

    November 25th, 2008 at 10:11

  3. Dr Melvin T Gray says:

    When police no longer see themselves as moral guardians or choose to ignore specific laws relating to crimes of indecency, gravity will have its way with their castle.

    November 25th, 2008 at 10:14

  4. bill says:

    I have mixed feelings on this, if it’s a couple of pillow biters then throw the book at them.

    However, if it’s two beautiful women engaging in gay sex, then I see no problem…

    November 25th, 2008 at 14:14

  5. Civ_In_The_City says:

    I have some sympathy will bill, funny how beautiful women tend to prefer the privacy of a nice cosy bedroom.

    As a straight I find it a curiosity that there seems to be an element to some interpretations of homosexuality that it must involve sex acts in public places. I acknowledge lot some straights do the same thing for the buzz.

    But if I dump an old car tire in my local park I`d get nicked soon enough. If I played my stereo too loud, or threw crisps at passers by I`d be collared too.

    Gay sex may not be anti-social behaviour to those involved but there has to be a time and place. In a public park, during daylight, where you can be overlooked by non participants isn`t it.

    Can anyone gay men offer some counter-arguments as I`m really trying to be fair-minded and inclusive here!

    November 25th, 2008 at 20:53

  6. Core blimey says:

    The papers are full of stories like this, mainly about Police inaction. But I feel the common ground here is the telephonist who takes the initial call. Are they paid to ignore calls, as has happened to me in the past. I feel that coppers are driving around waiting for good calls, but none come because it has been siphoned off and binned. Same day as your article, yobs overturned a car, the police operator told the informant to call the AA. As Littlecock says, you could not make it up

    November 26th, 2008 at 00:06

  7. Blueknight says:

    I hope the Police were not too scared to deal because of the ‘diversity culture’
    When males and females engage in this sort of behaviour, it causes just as much ‘nuisance’, but more seems to be done about it.

    November 26th, 2008 at 01:46

  8. john says:

    Doubtless there are a legion of offences that woman/woman sex acts violate, but there has never been a law that “illegalised” acts between
    women. In any case, they would both (if you managed to apprehend both) deny the act/s. Leading to a trial. Which the witnesses may well have not wanted to take part in.Probably the thought was in the minds of those who should have rushed-out to “nick” them about what happened to
    the fire(persons) who shone a bright light on gay men ?

    November 26th, 2008 at 10:20

  9. Agent Douane says:

    I always understood that where an erect penis is exposed in public and can be seen as such by another person that this was called indecent exposure.

    November 26th, 2008 at 17:27

  10. blueknight says:

    Woman looks at naked man. Man is a ‘flasher’
    Man looks at naked woman. Man is a voyeur.

    November 27th, 2008 at 00:36

  11. Dr Melvin T Gray says:

    To be fair, Blueknight, there is beauty without any threat in the deficiency of female dress. What fond memories would we have to have been deprived of flattering invitations to gaze upon such?

    November 27th, 2008 at 08:14

  12. john says:

    It’s just “exposure” now, as per Sexual offences act 2003.


    (1) A person commits an offence if—

    (a) he intentionally exposes his genitals, and

    (b) he intends that someone will see them and be caused alarm or distress.

    (2) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—

    (a) on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or both;

    (b) on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years”

    You may see the difficulty ?

    As for “voyeurism”:


    (1) A person commits an offence if—

    (a) for the purpose of obtaining sexual gratification, he observes another person doing a private act, and

    (b) he knows that the other person does not consent to being observed for his sexual gratification.

    So, we’re all voyeurs then ?

    November 27th, 2008 at 14:00

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