Archive for January, 2011

January 11th, 2011

Some Housekeeping

Posted in Blogging by 200

I’ve had the blog updated to the latest version & one of the downsides is that it is flagging some genuine comments as spam.

I’m not sure what to do about that as I’m not all techy when it comes to WordPress blogging software, so if you do comment & it doesn’t show up then it’ll have gone to a list which I need to approve. I hope I won’t miss any genuine comments as I don’t want to discourage anyone from contributing, apart, that is, from the no-good, low-life, scum-sucking spammers.

If anyone has any bright ideas how to deal more effectively with spam comments, I’m all ears (most do get flagged as spam, it’s the genuine ones which seem to get flagged in error since I updated the software last night).

January 10th, 2011

‘kin scum

Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

I’ve mentioned many times on this blog about the scum who prey on society’s weakest & therefore easiest targets.

There can be few victims you want to see less than the elderly whose money & valuables have been plundered by the lowest dregs of society who live by a moral code so low it could crawl under an ant’s knackers with room to spare.

We had another one this week. Young teenage girl knocks on the door & tells the lady who answers – a women not far shot of 100 years old – that she has hurt her leg, can the lady get a tissue & a glass of water.

The lady goes to do just that & while her back is turned two blokes go through the front door, one goes upstairs & ransacks the bedroom stealing  jewellery & cash while the other goes to the living room & steals a purse from a handbag on the sideboard. The lady disturbs the man coming down the stairs as she is looking to help the teenager, he barges past her & walks out the door ignoring her request to answer what he is doing in her house.

On a related note, we locked up two males from the travelling fraternity before Christmas. They were convicted of 3 or 4 similar burglaries & suspected of many more. They got four years. There can’t be many more cases you will get more pleasure from than binning one of these utter scumbags.

January 9th, 2011

Don’t Text & Drive

Posted in Videos by 200

BLUtube is powered by PoliceOne.com

January 8th, 2011

It’s all about image

Posted in The Job - General by 200

Has your force gone over to the ‘paramilitary, oppressive & facist-like’ black uniforms?

It doesn’t look like the Met will be doing so any time soon, not since their chief made his views on the uniforms known. Speaking about the forthcoming Olympics & the appearance of his boys & girls in blue, Sir Paul Stephenson said: “I’m not awfully keen on ever-more paramilitary-type equipment on our streets. On occasions, we look paramilitary enough now. Frankly, that worries me. I want to continue to look like the British police officer whenever we can. It’s one of the reasons why I’m very passionate about continuing to make sure Met police officers look like Met police officers in white shirts, and not awfully keen on the move in other areas of the country towards different sorts of uniform that look more paramilitary.”

It’s probably why he doesn’t want his officers to be able to protect themselves with Taser & only allows the firearms units to have them. It wouldn’t do for officers to be able to defend themselves & others by having the right equipment if it makes them look bad.

I remember a visit to to Scotland some years ago, before the black uniforms were popular down here, and seeing Strathclyde officers walking about in black shirts, no ties. I  thought they just looked practical & wasn’t struck by how similar they looked to Oswald Mosely’s black shirts.

When the uniforms started to creep in down in England I thought they were far more practical & comfortable & fit for purpose. A shirt & tie is all well & good for attending the statistics meetings with the divisional management & sitting on your arse all day creating or digesting Exell spreadsheets, not so good for rolling around the High Street with a bunch of drunks.

But we wouldn’t want the public thinking we looked fit for purpose, or anything.

January 7th, 2011

Google protecting privacy?

Posted in The Job - General by 200

I posted back in November last year about the case where a Google Street View car had possibly captured an image of someone who may have been responsible for the theft of the caravan shown in the image below.

It seems Derbyshire Police are having a little bit of a problem getting Google to assist with their investigations. Google can provide a copy of the original image they captured which shows the number plate of the car involved. They are refusing to do this unless the police get a court order. Google & supporters say that they shouldn’t be forced to release information willy nilly to any old police force trying to detect crime, while others say it is only right & sensible for Google to assist in the fight against crime.

Google have said: “It’s very important to Google and our users that we only provide information if valid process is followed, as laid down by governments in law. We have a team specifically trained to evaluate and respond to requests when they are received, and we will of course co-operate with police requests as long as they are legally valid and follow the correct processes.”

The investigating officer, PC Adrian Mason, said: “It is amazing that we have such a clear image of a man who we think will be able to give us information that would help the police enquiry. It was an amazing co-incidence that the Google Earth car was passing at that time. I’ve made extensive inquiries since the image was discovered but because the registration plate of the 4×4 is blanked out we have been unable to trace the man through his car. That is why we are appealing for the public’s help.”

Derbyshire Police are considering whether to apply for a court order to force Google to release the information.

January 6th, 2011

We’re all strangers here

Posted in The Job - General by 200

I was out socialising this week when I happened to bump into someone who used to live in my street. I’ve known her since she was a child, well actually I don’t know her as such, I know of her. I don’t think I’ve ever spoken to her & I can’t recall her name. I know her parents to say hello to but I’ve never had more than a two minute conversation in the street in passing with either of them.

I know the people on my side of the road, either side for a few houses & I know the people on the opposite side of the road for a few houses either side. I know their names, I have conversations with them, I’ve been in their houses & they in mine.

When I was a kid we knew everyone in the street. If ever we got in any trouble whoever’s parents were the nearest dished out the punishment. There was something in the saying that it takes a mother to have a child but a village to bring it up (or something like that, I can’t remember the exact phrase & don’t have time to Google it).

Of course now things are very different. I think I’m unusual in that I know a dozen or more neighbours quite well. I don’t think most people do, at least most people who call on the services of the police.

A large percentage of social problems, anti-social behaviour, disrespect of people’s rights & needs, stems from the fact that is easier to do something negative to someone if you don’t know them. How many times do we rant down the phone at some innocent customer service rep who has done nothing to cause the problem we complain about but has to take the full force of our anger & frustration? Would we talk to them in the same way if we happened to know that they were the person who lives next door who we had a meal with last week?

I get it all the time in the control room; the sarcastic comments, the couldn’t-care-less responses, the can’t-be-arsed attitudes all come from people on different shifts. The people I work with who know me & whom I know are far more respectful. For all I know some of them they may be similarly sarcastic when they have controllers from shifts they don’t normally work with & I guess, to support my view then I’d say they probably are.

It’s easier to call the police on someone you don’t know. It’s easier to tell someone you don’t know to fuck off.

What went wrong that we suddenly stopped speaking with each other?

January 5th, 2011

Did you have a good Christmas?

Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

I had such a great set of rest days this week. It wasn’t that I did anything special, it was just that I wasn’t working.

At the moment any day not working is a good day. I managed to watch a couple of DVDs that I was given for Christmas. I chilled out on the computer shooting terrorists & Russians. I went shopping & bought a couple of things I didn’t need, but wanted. It was great.

It might have been that these were the first days off since the Christmas holiday. Tonight I was asked by someone I hadn’t seen for 3 weeks if I had a good Christmas. The answer I gave was quite truthful, “No, not really.” Christmas doesn’t mean the same to someone when it is just another day at work. They seemed genuinely surprised. I cut the conversation short before I got too depressed & we made plans to go to a pub quiz next week, on my next rest days.

I so love my days off. I wonder whether I am just going through a depressing patch or whether I really have had enough of the Constabulary. Thirty two years is a long time.

More often I find my mind wandering to what it would be like if I was working somewhere nine to five, weekends & bank holidays off, and whether I could get twenty-five grand by other, legal, means.

We got a letter this week from one of our insurance companies. One of our endowments is due to pay out in a few weeks time. We were led into the trap twenty five years ago where we were told if we took out an endowment, it would pay off the mortgage & leave us a handy surplus. We are quite lucky with this endowment, we will get a surplus, about £300 which and we still have to pay the full loan.

When this reared its head a few years ago, we went through all the complaints procedures ‘were you missold a mortgage?’ yes bloody right we were, will you do anything about it, will you bollocks.

Christmas, what a bloody depressing time of year.

January 4th, 2011

Radio 4 Freudism

Posted in The Job - General by 200

Nothing to do with policing but I just had to share this one…

January 3rd, 2011

Meanwhile, in real life

Posted in The Job - Comment by 200

Silent Witness started a new season tonight.

I quite like the programme, in a light-entertainment, suspend disbelief kind of way. Just like most of the police procedural type programmes you have to sit back & go with the flow otherwise you spend the whole hour commenting ‘we don’t do it like that’ & ‘that would never happen’.

One such moment occurred in tonight’s episode. One of the central characters, completely out of the blue, fires a shotgun out of his bedroom window. A few minutes later, police officers are running round the target zone rescuing women & kids & getting everyone else out of harm’s way while the firearms squad are jumping out of the their vehicles whilst unpacking their sniper rifles.

The shooter then steps outside the front door, there is a tense moment as he surveys all the armed officers who tell him to put the weapon down. He slowly lifts his weapon & a firearms officer tells his snipe to shoot. The man goes down with blood oozing from 4 holes in his chest.

The daughter wonders why the police had to shoot him as he’d not actually killed or injured anyone. I’m sure I saw this script played out with a drunken lawyer in Chelsea not so long ago.

Anyway, police officers in the same street as a man with a gun before the episode had even finished, are you having a laugh BBC?

January 2nd, 2011

Normal Service to be resumed

Posted in The Job - General by 200

For those interested, the reason the site has been down for the last 24 hours or so has nothing to do with PSD.

The site the blog is hosted on fell over. Trust it to happen on a bank holiday.

Anyway, I’m told it’s back & running, if it falls over again it’s bits & bytes not the rubber heel squad, who are all on bank holiday leave.

January 1st, 2011

Credit Crunch Policing

Posted in The Job - Experience by 200

In an ideal working life, if you worked Christmas Day, you’d get New Year’s Eve off, and the following year yo’d work the opposite. thi8s would stop people having to work Christmas & New Year two years running.

The way it works in the police is that you can often work both for several years running. In theory, the way the shifts work, if you stayed on the same shift you could work seven Christmases in a row, then have two off then work seven more.

I managed to cop both again this year. There was a time when I thought if I cam back as a civvy I could choose many hours & have Christmases off, they don’t allow that round these parts. Still, if you can’t take a joke you shouldn’t have joined.

Bank holidays this year have seen a drastic cutting of staff, in this credit crunch era money has to be saved. Christmas & the new year saw us just scrape by. Lots of people didn’t get the service they expect or deserve. The stats that we ‘no longer keep’ dropped though the floor. The serious incidents normally dealt with by the specialists were dealt with by the front-line grunts. We got by through the skin of our teeth, mainly because nobody died. I dread to think how many people were hoping the wheel would come off just to show those who make the decisions that you can’t rely on good will & a following wind, the trouble with that is that someone probably has to die to show them. P

Some of us controllers were run ragged, again.

I haven’t checked the duties for next year, but pound to a penny I’ll be working again.