Archive for May, 2008

May 31st, 2008

Just a Thought

Posted in The Job - General by 200

 

I don’t know much about Civitas, well, OK, I don’t actually know anything about them other than they are described in the papers this week as a "think tank". presumably this is where people get together in some kind of large container to think about things.

Recently, they’ve been thinking about police work or to be more precise, the lack of police work.

Apparently, we only spend 14% of our time on patrol. This finding must be why we spend 2 weeks every year filling in forms documenting everything we do every 15 minutes, so that Civitas can look at these forms & think about them.

Civitas have also thought about the police spending more time getting easy detections & ignoring things which are a bit more important, difficult & which the public actually want us to investigate. They say that we have to get so many "sanction detections" a month by either charging, cautioning or fining an offender, and arresting or fining a normally law-abiding person for a minor offence is a good way of reaching our targets. It says that the police insists on criminalising those whose offences are ‘trivial’ because it helps to meet our targets.

One could be forgiven for thinking that Civitas have been sitting in their tank & reading all the police blogs since we’ve been saying this for the last 3 years or more. There doesn’t seem to be anything in their report which you can’t find on one blog or another (or all of them).

I don’t know what the government will think of the think tank’s thoughts but I think it won’t make any difference to them because there are none so blind as those who will not see.

May 30th, 2008

New Blues

Posted in The Job - General by 200

Monday sees a new TV series on Police Community Support Officers. "New Blues" is a three-part documentary following the training of PCSOs in West Yorkshire.

It airs Monday 2nd June at 7.30pm and continues Wednesday & Friday. Given the sheer amount of controversy concerning the adoption of PCSO & their effectiveness, it may be surprising that it’s taken so long for something like this to appear. The series follows former personal assistant, Nat, electrician ,Mark &  repossession agent, Gary as they undertake their seven-week training course & venture out onto the streets of West Yorkshire.

I’ll be watching with interest. I have no idea what the take of the producers will be but I have a feeling that whether you are pro or anti the implementation of the scheme, the programme will provide ‘evidence’ to support your views. i.e. it won;t actually answer anybody’s concerns. We shall see.

In the meantime, here’s another police-dashboard-camera video on what can happen during a routine traffic stop, this one is from the States & involves deadly force.

BLUtube is powered by PoliceOne.com

May 29th, 2008

Compensation

Posted in The Job - General by 200

Not really got time to post up a thought-out blog today (so what’s new?) So I thought I’d ask a question?

This will probably be only for those in the job unless employment law in this regard extends to us too.

If you get a rest day cancelled and happen to lose out financially, the job doesn’t have to pay you a bean extra. So if they give you 15 days’ notice they just change your day off and you get paid normal rates. i.e. no overtime. If I happened to be taking my wife to the theatre that night & lose out £120 on the tickets, the job just says ‘tough shit’.

My understanding is that if you are cancelled an annual leave day, then they do have to compensate you for financial loss. Is this correct? And if it is correct, are we within our rights to book annual leave on all our rest days, so that when they are cancelled we have to be reimbursed our losses, because right now, it’s beginning to look like we can’t plan anything with our families in case our day off is cancelled.

I’m not at work for a few days (leave!!!) so can’t ask around yet, I just thought there might be someone out there who knows.

May 28th, 2008

Don’t worry, be happy

Posted in Other Stuff by 200

I went to town today to post some items. We’re in one of those towns where the Post Office has taken a leaf out of the Police Service’s books & closed down the local post office, much like we’ve closed all the police stations. This, like the police, is done to improve the service to the public. I’m not sure on what planet the people who say this live on but clearly it’s not Planet Earth. 

Instead of a largish post office with about 8 counters & maybe 5 or six staff we not have a small counter with 3 counters & between 1 & 3 staff, despite the fact that in the last few years we have a couple of large new estates around the edge of town which has attracted several thousand new residents. It’s an improvement, remember?

So I walked in & took my place in the usual queue, pleased to see there were 3 staff in there. I’m not sure who employs these staff because they’re not the same people who worked in the Post Office, so I assume they are privately employed & the Post Office sacked everyone in the older operation. Wherever they came from it wasn’t the local branch of The Happy Clan. All three of them looked like they’d just been told their pay rise had been cancelled.

I try to be cheery when I’m in the shops. I’m usually in a good mood anyway as I love spending money & I always like to leave a little smile if I can, even f it means walking around town with my flies open (which I did last week).

So I’m standing in the queue checking out the staff. The bloke who looks like he should have retired is busy dealing with a woman sending a parcel who wants to know the ins & outs of a cat’s arse on every conceivable method of getting her box of tatt to Blackpool, she’s already been there 9 minutes & there’s no sign of her completing. So I’m unlikely to be served by him. That leaves the black girl who looks like her cat just died or the gum-chewing-blond who appears to be on a day release from Cell Block H.

I get the black girl who, on seeing that I have 4 items to post rather than just wanting to buy 1 stamp, appears to have been told on an invisible earpiece that not only has her cat died but the body has been stolen by the local gang of feline-necrophiliacs.

"Hello", I smile, she grunts & indicates the scales to the side of the counter. I place the first item on. "Second class please", I make sure the inflection in my voice rises to show I’m friendly & approachable. She grunts something, I don’t know what. It just gets worse so I give in & shut up. She doesn’t reply when I wish her a cheery goodbye.

It appears that things can be worse elsewhere, and I thought I was pissed off in my job.

May 27th, 2008

A Tale of a Tail wagging a Dog

Posted in Other Stuff by 200

A prison officer dog handler has been transferred from Belmarsh Prison.  HMP Officer Chris Langridge & his drugs dog ‘Ali’ have been moved from the high security prison to Swaleside Prison on the Isle of Sheppey.

The reason for his move? He’s not requested a transfer, hasn’t been punished for breaking the rules or because of a shortage of sniffer dogs at Swaleside. He’s been moved because a Muslim prisoner made an official complaint that the prison dog was called ‘Allah’ which was offensive to his religion. (You did note in the second sentence the dog’s real name?)

A prison service source said, "There is no suggestion that he did call the dog Allah but, on balance, it was thought better to transfer him". Balance? What balance would that be then? The prison service claimed the move was for "training purposes".

What about an alternative way do deal with this complaint?

My suggestion of an appropriate response would be "Shut the fuck up & get back to your cell".

May 26th, 2008

Mugs-R-Us

Posted in Other Stuff by 200

Some government policies are just soooo easy to mock. Take the scheme for voluntary repatriation of immigrants. 

In 2007, more than £2million was paid to bribe people to return to their own country. Critics called this a cynical ploy to meet government targets when it was clear they were going to fail to send back the 4,000 in Tony Blair’s pledge for 2007. This scheme hands over £3,000 to someone who agrees to leave the UK.

Hakim Benmakhlouf, 26, a career criminal from Algeria, must have been laughing all the way to the bank when he was handed 3 grand to agree to return to Algiers whilst he was serving a prison sentence for theft.

His M.O. is bag snatches from wealthy tourists at top hotels in London & airports. In December 1998 he was sentenced to 2 months in a young offenders’ institution. In March 1999 he got 15 months. In December 2000 he got a year’s probation, 21 months in February 2001, 30 months in June 2003, 12 months in August 2003, 18 months in October 2004 & 42 months in December 2005.

He was offered voluntary deportation in July 2007 whilst serving his latest prison sentence, paid £3,000 & sent back to Algeria. On landing, he made his way straight to Paris & was back in the UK within days of leaving, probably with a back pocket full of lovely cash courtesy the British tax-payer. He has just been sentenced to 3 more years for seven offences of theft which netted him over £16,000.

Is this some sort of sick joke played upon us by the UK government? Someone who has come to this country as an immigrant and shown time after time they they cannot abide by the laws of the land, jailed on no less than 7 occasions for the same offences and we have to pay him to leave the country voluntarily??? What I want to know is why isn’t the government kicking people like this out of the country so fast their fat, lazy, good-for-nothing arses don’t touch the runways?

It seems to me that countries like Italy & Australia have no problem booting criminals who don’t want to live by the rules out of their countries, so why do we?

Algerian 

This man knows a mug when he sees a country full of them

May 25th, 2008

Pick a Winner

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

Why is sentencing such a lottery for the decent folk out there?

In April 2008, James Howard (then of Carlisle) was sentenced to a 12 month suspended sentence for GBH when he broke a man’s cheek during an assault. (he also got a night-time curfew for 4 months & 200 hours community service). Judge Barbara Forrester said Howard appeared unable to control his temper after drinking and offered him a ‘last chance’. The probation service assessed him as ‘a medium risk’ to the public.

He then moved to Lancashire.

Just days after the move a neighbour was found dead. A post mortem examination showed he had died of “external haemorrhaging from a severe fracture to the nose”. Howard has been charged with manslaughter. The victim, a Mr Waterworth, was 42. His family must be so pleased the previous judge was so thoughtful as to offer a clearly violent man another chance. It’s a pit Mr Waterworth was not offered the same chance.

Meanwhile, a 28-year-old, Peter Savage, was arrested for drink driving just 15 minutes after a previous 3-year-ban for drink driving had ended. He was found to be twice the limit. He was jailed for 3 months in 2005 & banned for 3 years for drink driving. On the latest occasion he was banned for 3 years, given an 18-month supervision order & 200 hours community service.

I wonder how many of the good folk of Canterbury are playing the lottery right now as they make their way around the leafy roads of Kent.

May 24th, 2008

Nine out ot ten Cats

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

We all know the phrase "There are lies, damned lies & statistics" & how you can make stats say anything you want. We also know that when a particular organisation decides to fund some research the result will generally support the ethos of the organisation which is behind tthe funding.

It is, therefore, no surprise that the recent Police Federation poll on PCSOs came out heralding how rubbish they are & how much people don’t want them.

YouGov, on behalf of the Federation, asked 2117 adults whether they would feel safer if all the PCSOs were replaced by PCs. Apparently, 70% of respondents said they would. (well no shit, Sherlock!)

Julie Nesbitt, chairman of the Constables’ Central Committee, said "The Constables’ Central Committee warned the government when PCSOs were established that trying to police on the cheap was short-sighted & it seems our position has been vindicated."

Well I hope Ms Nesbitt uses a standard of proof somewhat higher in court than she does in her political posturing. What concerns me is that 1/3 of people wouldn’t feel any safer if all the many thousands of PCSOs were replaced by police officers! I don’t know if that’s a condemnation of the police or society but I don;’ think the Federation should be encouraged when you look at the stats that way.

I wonder what the result of the same poll would have been if the question had been "would you prefer a PCSO on the street or nothing?" which is probably  a far more realistic question than the idea that the government would suddenly find the where-with-all to scrap PCSOs and fund all the extra police officers. Would we see similar headlines in the media saying the general public want PCSOs now?

I’m going to conduct a poll. The question will be "Would you prefer to run naked through the town centre or have a red hot poker stuffed up your arse?" I will follow this with big headlines in as many papers as I can afford (that’ll be the Catford Chronicle) announcing "New figures reveal 95% of people want to expose themselves in public." (I can’t think of a suitable headline for the remaining 5% but I know of some government clubs which might entertain them).

Personally, I think the Federation should spend my monthly subscriptions on supporting me against the bloody awful working practices I have to put up with currently – for which ,to date, they have done the sum total of twice times bugger all – than expensive posturing.

May 23rd, 2008

Send someone on a course

Posted in The Job - General by 200

I’ve got a course coming up!

Fantastic, a few days out of the control room learning stuff which I’ll probably never use. I probably wouldn’t use it if I had years to go, I almost certainly won’t use it in the last few months of my police career.

One of the girls on the course with me is as excited as me. She won’t use her learning either. She’s leaving the control room to go to another department. I won’t go over the reasons she’s leaving as I’ve mentioned them before. Everyone leaves because it’s such a shite place to work where you get treated like shite.

So the taxpayers are paying for at least two of us to go on a course which lasts several days, the benefits of which they will never see.

The reason that this money is being wasted is because the people who run the place don’t treat the employees as individuals. We are items on spreadsheets. This means when they have a course, they have so many spaces to fill, they fill the spaces with details off their spreadsheets & don’t know nor care whether those little numbers will benefit from the course, or indeed, whether the organisation will benefit from the little numbers going on the course.

I don’t care really, it’s a few days away from the control room as far as I’m concerned. I get to claim travelling & meal expenses too.

May 22nd, 2008

I think we know where the prick is

Posted in Other Stuff by 200

If I wanted more evidence of my post 2 days ago about anti-police bigotry, I need look no further than this forum. I found them because they linked to one of my posts & came up in my blog stats.

If you can be arsed, check out the thread about Police & PCSOs interfering in photography/filming. Then check out the photograph used by forum administrator ‘Anonpedant‘ – and he has the cheek to call the police pricks?

May 21st, 2008

Cha-ching…yeah, right

Posted in The Job - General by 200

I listened to the Home Secretary, Jacqui Spliff’s, speech to the Police Federation conference live on Radio 5 today.

No I didn’t expect her to change her mind over the back-dated pay farce. I did enjoy the bit  a few moments earlier when Jan berry (Federation Chairman) said:

"How was it that the government found 2.7 billion pounds to dig itself out of a tax hole in advance of a by-election but couldn’t find 30 million pounds to honour our pay deal?"

The one bit of the Home Sec’s speech I was interested in was this:

First, I am announcing today new commutation factors for calculating retirement lump sums under the Police Pension Scheme 1987. These new factors – which are the same for both men and  women – should be implemented in forces from 1 July this year. And they will be back-dated to 1 October last year.

This will increase the lump sum payable to all officers who retire under the ‘old’ police pension scheme, or who retired with a lump sum under the old pension scheme on or after 1 October 2007.

To give you an idea of what this could mean for different officers in different circumstances:

• a 50-year old male constable on the top of the pay scale and with CRTP threshold payments who retires after 30 years and commutes the maximum will get a lump sum of just over £109,000 – almost £23,000 more than under the old factors.
• a 52-year old male sergeant in similar circumstances will get a lump sum of just under £120,000 – almost £24,000 more.
• a 55-year old female inspector in similar circumstances will get a lump sum of just over £142,000 – about £14,000 more.

This is purely for selfish reasons, you understand, being as I retire soon and will be commuting a certain amount of my pension in terms of a lump sum.

Another £23,000 on my lump sum seems pretty good to me. But then I remembered that the government only change things to save money, so what they will probably do is increase the lump sum & decrease the  final pension by an amount which overall will mean they save more money in the long run, back for more tea & medals on the Home Office lawns.

I’ll wait to see the fine print before celebrating

May 20th, 2008

It’s not just the police who are bigots

Posted in The Job - General by 200

Being a bit sad, I spend a lot of time wandering the corridors of the internet during my private ‘down time’. As well as one or two police forums I frequent, I also use a couple of non-police websites, kind of hobby type interest sites.

It’s interesting how often websites discussing such diverse things as Mitsubishi motor cars, fly fishing & cross stitch end up talking about the police & usually end up in slanging matches about how useless, evil, corrupt or stupid police officers are.

There’s one in particular I visit often which has a handful of regulars who queue up to slag off the old Bill whenever the opportunity arises. Apparently, we’re all power-crazed dictator-neanderthals who are thick, don’t know the law & like nothing better than fitting people up or smacking them in the gob whenever we can.

Sometimes I ignore these threads, sometimes I really enjoy winding people up by joining in & stirring things along. They hate it when people speak out in favour of the police.

One of these folks makes a point of saying how much he does for the community. I’m not sure what he does for a living but apparently he’s been connected to the underprivileged, drug users, minority groups & alternative lifestyle folk. He gets very annoyed when people stereotype these groups & the accusations of bigotry & racism flow quite freely from his keyboard.

He refers to the folks-in-blue as "PC Plod", he is forever saying how stupid police officers are & whenever a story appears which shows the police in a poor light he says the whole police are at fault. He never accepts that he is as bigoted as those he seeks to criticise.

May 19th, 2008

It must be jelly ‘cos jam don’t wobble like that

Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

We had a guy on the patch who liked touching women in the street & running away. We decided to run a special operation to catch him.

We grabbed one of the two female officers on the shift & got her to agree to bring in some civvy clothes so she could be our decoy. There were 3 or 4 of us & we brought in civvies too & all made our way to the railway station, which seemed to be the locus for most of the offences.

It was like something off an old Ealing Comedy. We got the ‘decoy’ to walk up & down a set stretch of the road while the rest of us were hiding in bus stops & bushes or sitting on park benches with eye holes cut out of our Daily Telegraphs.

Normally, it’s pissing down with rain, you do it for 4 days solid & nothing happens, except you’ve made a few days in overtime. Someone must have been smiling on us because it was a really nice spring day. Within an hour or two some bloke walked up to our honey-trap & started talking to her as they walked side by side. I think he was just passing the time of day, commenting on the weather, that sort of thing. The rest of us were all talking into our wrists, CIA style, planning which routes we’d take if he struck.

Within a minute our potential offender turned to the undercover female officer, grabbed two handfuls of ample bosom & squeezing tight said, "You’ve got big tits love", before running off straight into the waiting arms of two hairy-arsed coppers.

The things some officers will do for a detection.

May 18th, 2008

Good Bosses

Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

You like to think a good employer will look after its staff, what’s the saying, ‘you can’t do enough for a good boss’? The working environment is all about give & take, on both sides.

There must be something in the training manual for bosses which says that your staff will be much more productive if they are happy (or at least not pissed off).

Sadly, the people who run our department must have been in the bog during the ‘how not to fuck off your staff’ lesson.

I’ve mentioned before about the difficulties we have getting any leave approved. Just when you think things can’t get worse, it always does.

We currently have the farcical situation with blocks of leave being refused because one day in the middle isn’t granted. One of my mates has recently had 2 weeks of but had to come back for 2 night shifts slap bang in the middle, meaning the holiday he planned couldn’t be taken. Someone else put in for one day’s leave so she could move house but was refused & had to work while her husband & kids moved to a different town. Someone else has to come back from the States a day earlier than their holiday should have been because their shift is 1 under minimum strength for 4 hours on that day.

Another couldn’t take part in the London Marathon & someone else was unable to be best man at a mate’s wedding even though he’d given the department 6 months notice of the date. Someone has been given three weeks off at Christmas this year but has to come back on Boxing Day because they are short-staffed.

I have it on reliable authority that up until just over a year ago nobody would have had any of these problems & solutions would have been found.

It’s no wonder there is such a high turnover of staff.

May 17th, 2008

Hymns & Arias

Posted in The Job - General by 200

I reckon the guv’nors dread it when they get the call to say Her majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary is coming to call. 

It must be the same for head teachers & school governors when they learn they’re next in line for an Ofsted check.

If you’re really lucky the HMI will pick your department to come & inspect. I have no idea what they do when they ‘inspect’ other than inspect a lot of things & some time later write a report saying how bad we’re doing. Sometimes the HMI will want to see lowly PCs which must strike fear into the hearts of chief inspectors & superintendents. HMICs must know this. They must also know that if they want views free from management speak & corporate indoctrination, they will only get it from those with nothing to lose.

The HMI came to our force. Some of us on the shift  were to be granted an audience the him, whether we wanted one or not.

Names were duly picked & on the morning of the visit the chief inspector came down to see the shift inspector. I’m told the conversation went something like this:

C/Insp: "Ok Inspector, everything sorted for the HMI’s visit this afternoon?"

Insp: "Yes, sir."

C/Insp: "I take it you’ve ‘specially selected’ the officers to see him?"

Insp: "No, sir, we did it completely ramdomly by drawing names out of a helmet."

At this point the chief inspector gulps & the blood slowly starts to drain from his face.

C/Insp: "I take it then that those officers have been properly coached?"

Insp: "Coached, sir?"

C/Insp: "So we’re all singing from the same hymn sheet."

Insp: "No sir, not at all, if the HMI ants to speak to officers who have been told what to say he can speak with the divisional management team."

The chief inspector, now white was last seen locking himself in an office.

May 16th, 2008

Happy Days

Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

One of the best courses I ever did was the advanced driving course. Five weeks of tear-arsing around the countryside of the UK in an adrenalin-rushed bewilderment.

Most of the course was 9 – 5, although we did do a few evening runs. It also involved a little classroom work to learn ‘the System of car Control’; the police bible for driving since it was first introduced around the time that someone had to walk in front of a motor vehicle waving  red flag.

The idea behind the course is basically to enable you to make progress up the road as safely as possible under any & all conditions. The by-product is that you drive all kinds of roads fast, very fast. It wasn’t unusual to reach speeds of 130 to 140mph all done in unmarked vehicles.

We also had skid-pan training where you had to drive round an oval track sideways. When I did it we didn’t have any of these fancy wheel-rigs attached to the car, we had a car with bald tyres & a surface covered in oil with water sprayed on to it constantly.

If you passed the course, you then had a couple of days of pursuit training which was spent chasing an instructor around the highways & byeways of the county.

Although much was at high speed, this was only ever in derestricted areas. If you went 1mph over in a 30 or 40 mph limit there was a fine system which usually took the form of buying the donuts or cakes at the next tea stop.

To say the course was intense would be something of an understatement. I’ve not been so tired on a shift system as working 5 weeks of 9 – 5. Locking the brakes as you hurtle along a country lane at 95mph (as one of my colleagues did much to my laundry lady’s annoyance) certainly concentrates the mind.

Then there’s the commentaries. If you don’t know what they are – I think anyone who has done the Institute of Advanced Motorist course, you will – check out this police motorcycle video . You basically have to describe every thought process & decision you make during the course of a journey.

I did my course some time ago. You can tell this when I say that the vehicles we used were Vauxhall Senators, BMWs, Ford Sierra 4x4s & Cosworths & Volvos.

You’re supposed to be ‘refreshed’ on the advanced course every few years, I was never refreshed once & I think I’m probably in the majority. I’ve still got my advanced licence though I’ve not driven a police vehicle for months.

It’s the one thing I miss about not working on the streets.

May 15th, 2008

Some People have no Conscience

Posted in The Job - General by 200

How many times have you heard the phrase "life must mean life"? A fair few, I’d bet. Whilst a life sentencemay be just that in many countries of the world, in the UK you have more chance of being hit on the back of the head by a Zeppelin than getting a real life sentence.

According to some human rights lawyers a life sentence breaches the human rights of offenders! Incredible, you might think. Not so QC Anthony Trollope (how apt that his name is the same as that which he spouts). Trollope is acting for David Beiber, the American who coolly shot dead PC Ian Broadhurst in 2004 during a routine stop check. (He also attempted to murder 2 other officers). He tol the court of appeal that a whole life sentence is a breach of Beiber’s rights saying a term of 30 years should be sufficient. The case is currently adjourned for legal argument.

Meanwhile, one of the UK’s worst serial killers, Peter Sutcliffe, the Yorkshire Ripper, is saying pretty much the same thing.

Acting on his behalf is female lawyer Saimo Chahal – oh the irony, Sutcliffe murdered 13 women in the late 70s – who claims his human rights were breached when a set tariff for his sentence was never set at his conviction in 1981.

Chahal will try to use the European Convention on Human Rights to win Sutcliffe’s release once he has served 30 years in 2011.

Sutcliffe was sentenced to 20 life sentences.

How does Chahal sleep at night? Oh yeah, because she’s a lawyer.

May 14th, 2008

Times Change

Posted in Other Stuff by 200

 

When did we become a society of selfish, lazy self-obsessed wasters who think only of me, me, me? Did it come in with Thatcher’s Government? Has it deteriorated drastically under Labour, is it the government’s fault, what’s the secret to world peace?

OK, I just threw that last one in to see if you were paying attention.

I can’t be the only one fed up with the actions of others as I go about my everyday life.

This week I went out to Tescos.

I went out to the car to find broken glass all over the drive of my neighbour; the recycling collector-operatives have picked up the container of glass bottles & dropped it. Rather than picking the shards of dangerous glass they’ve just abandoned them all over the drive leaving my neighbour to run the gauntlet with her kids & car. My recycling bin hasn’t been returned to the house & is 30 yards up the road presumably because the council employee can’t be arsed to return it.

As I drove through the town centre a car pulled out on me on a roundabout, the driver happily chatting away on his mobile phone not caring a tinker’s cuss for my rights to personal safety on the road. I got to Tescos and saw a space on the left, I was being followed by two girls in a new Peugeot hatchback. As I like to gove plenty of warning about what I’m doing I signalled left that I was slowing intending to take the next space on the left, as I did so I started to pull to the right past the space intending to reverse into it. Before I could pull fully right at the usual 45 degree angle to start reversing, the Peugeot behind swung out to my offside and started to pass me forcing me to stop my manouver & let it past. I can only assume that the 5 seconds it would have taken to allow me to park was too much for the impatient bitch.

Then I complete my shopping & go to return my trolley. I must be the only one who does this because the pathway between rows of cars is littered with trolleys which people have emptied into their car & just left right across the path, fully blocking it, too bloody lazy to either return it or push it 2 yards so it doesn’t block the whole width of the pathway.

I get home & there’s a panel van parked opposite, 3 lads are loading stuff into it from a house opposite. As I’m unpacking y shopping in the kitchen I hear the van rev up & drive off followed by a large clattering sound. Thinking they’ve struck a parked car, I look out to see they haven’t closed the shutter on the rear of the van. Some ladders, long plastic strips, sheets & other assorted items are strewn all over the road. The lads jump out, throw the ladders & sheets into the back of the van & leave some broken plastic strips & other assorted items in the road, jump back in the van & drive off.

There must be someone I can blame for this. I remember when I was young our front doors were never closed. You could go on holiday, leave all your windows open, come home & a  kindly neighbour would have popped in, tidied your house & done some shopping for you. You could leave your wallet open in the street outside the house & come back 36 hours later & someone would have filled it with money.

What went wrong?

May 13th, 2008

Down Time

Posted in The Job - General by 200

Just a quickie today – BTW, thanks for the comments on yesterday’s entry regarding suggestions for improvement, keep them coming.

If you’re patrolling the streets of the UK and truly nothing is happening, all the crimes are locked up and no house is being broken into, nobody is risking death on the roads & the nick is fresh out of cannabis warning forms, you could consider some activity back at the police station. We used to call it ‘down time’, or rather the bosses called it ‘down time’ & they expected to use your ‘down time’ productively. The truth was that you never actually had any time when you were effectively free to do some little project or other for some HQ department, usually consisting of filling in forms or surveys.

Anyway, this is what they get up to in the good ol’ US of A during down time.

BLUtube is powered by PoliceOne.com

Seems like fun…

May 12th, 2008

Onwards & Upwards

Posted in Blogging by 200

I think today marks  8 months of blogging a post every single day. Yes, this is the most productive Police Blog in the Blogosphere. (OK, sometimes I go for quantity rather than quality, it’s true). What started off as an attempt to post every day for a month slipped into three months & then six months, so I guess it would be rude not to try for a whole year (although when my holiday comes up it might be interesting).

Thanks to my small band of regular supporters & commenters, it would be soul destroying if nobody ever reacted to anything I typed, either pro or against (or indifferent). I couldn’t do it without you!

I was wondering what makes a good blog in general and a good police blog specifically. I know the ones I like & I also recognise ones which I don’t. I guess it’s a matter of personal taste but there are one or two really popular blogs out there which don’t light any fires for me. Yet they are read in the thousands.

So, you read blogs, presumably there is something here which persuades you to give up your valuable time to read it, you probably read other blogs too. What is the secret of a good blog, or in other words, how can I improve this one?  Is it the subject matter, the writing style, how important is humour/seriousness? Is length of post a factor, pictures? What is it which makes you want to come back to read the next update?

Suggestions greatly received….