Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Now what on Earth is that supposed to mean?

Flippant, glib, disrespectful, self-serving and a sign of total denial. That's the only conclusion I can draw from Inspector Gadget's response to the news that the DPP has reconsidered the decision not to bring charges against Simon Harwood over the death of Ian Tomlinson. It simply reads:

Maybe, if we work at it, we can get PC Harwood charged with the Kennedy assassination.

It would appear that the Inspector does not agree with the decision to bring charges.

I can only guess why, as the Inpsector is unusually brief. Given his rather fatuous comment about the Kennedy assassination, I think I can safely put some words into his mouth.

The problem seems to be that a police officer who kills someone in the course of his duty should not, in Gadget's opinon, be subject to the same laws as the general population. This obviously gives a lie to the seventh Peelian principle:

Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent upon every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.

In other words, from his short posting, I can only draw the conclusion that Gadget believes that the laws the police enforce do not apply to them.

I can also only assume that Gadget feels it is also wrong that the affair was subject to an inquest, and that obviously the inquest returned an incorrect verdict of unlawful killing.

That's unlawful killing.

That's a police officer, on duty, taking the life of an innocent man, without any lawful grounds, a man who was walking away from him, apparently peaceful, nothing to do with the protest that was going on, indeed trying to get away from the protest.

Are we to suppose, Inspector, that you consider this inquest should not have gone ahead? Because I have a real problem with that.

I do not want to live in a country where the police can act without any fear of accountability, where they can kill people in the street without fear of consequence.

Gadget would no doubt point to the fact that Tomlinson had been drinking and was over the legal drink drive limit.

So? Does that mean he deserved to die?

Let's reverse the roles for a moment, shall we? Let us assume that  an individual shoved a policeman with significant enough force that the officer died. Let us assume that the officer who had died had just been walking the beat and had not been engaged in any controversial activity.

Would Inspector Gadget be so dismissive of an inquest verdict of unlawful killing? How would he react if a non-police blogger made a jibe about fitting the individual in question up with the murder of Keith Blakelock as well? Not well I'm assuming.

The Inspector will know well that in the public at large you get bad people and good people. Bad people will do bad things. Sometimes good people will make poor decisions. Sometimes people do things in the heat of the moment which are out of character, actions which they regret. Would the Inspector suggest that as this was out of character it is somehow unfair that they are called to account and held responsible for these actions?

PC Simon Harwood did a bad thing, one of the worst things someone can do. If Gadget would expect someone who does not wear uniform to stand trial for doing a bad thing, then he must surely expect someone who does wear uniform to stand trial? To suggest otherwise leads us down a road that finishes with scenes similar to those we have seen in Egypt, with a police force that is detested by the whole of society, not just those whose illegal activities mean they dislike the police.

I support Gadget's railings against the idiocy of those in management positions in the police, but I will temper it with the observation that I don't hear the Police Federation making much noise on the subject, an indicator of a lack of pressure being brought to bear by the membership, perhaps?

What I cannot agree with is Gadget's seeming inability to consider that anyone below the rank of Ch. Inspector is capable of any wrong doing. It does him and the police no favours at all.

1 comment:

Bucko said...

He did the same after that Sgt Mark Andrews had his prison sentance overturned when he knocked that woman about in the cells.