Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Another Guard Dog Bitten...

Sergeant Roy Jennings now has something in common with former police officer Paul Lawson. Something, that is, other than their choice of careers:
A police sergeant launched an angry attack on his own force yesterday after yobs who threw a stone that smashed his car window were let off without prosecution.
Yeah, soft policing. It's a crime, isn't it, Sergeant Jennings?
The policeman said: 'I feel very frustrated and angry'.
Welcome to the club!
But he later discovered to his astonishment that his bosses had decided the boys should not be taken to court.

Sergeant Jennings, who has served with Hampshire Police for 22 years, called the punishment 'a slap on the wrist'.

He said the boys should have faced the more serious charge of causing criminal damage likely to endanger life. This would have meant a court appearance.

'In my view this was a case that could only be dealt with in the courts,' the sergeant added.

'It was so severe that it didn't warrant a simple warning.'
Hard to disagree, given they stoned a moving vehicle, showering Mrs Jennings with broken glass. However, Inspector Dave Hunter isn't moved:
Inspector Dave Hunter rejected his criticisms and defended the decision not to prosecute.

He said: 'All that happened was that a window was broken because of a moment of impulsive stupidity. They'd say it's just criminal damage.'
Hard not to read that in the voice of a sulky teenager forced to do chores, isn't it? 'Oh, Muuuum, but it's too hard!'

Perhaps the ranks should be reversed, and 'Inspector' (Ed - of what, exactly?) Hunter could do a bit of sergeanting for a change...

Naturally enough, this wasn't the yobs first offence:
In this case one of the two boys, who admitted throwing the stones, was given a reprimand, and the other a final warning.
Bet he's shaking in his trainers...

3 comments:

Tomrat said...

Ah but JuliaM remember that had they even managed to get a court appearance the judges would have let them go with even less; the only difference here is in the cost of policing this matter, from the mere "waste" of police time (in that noone was punished) to a waste of judicial time (as the judges would almost certainly not put these kids in chokey, fine or chastise them in any meaningful manner).

Rob Farrington said...

"Impulsive stupidity"?!?

I remember that I suffered from that, as a teenager, although I never felt the need to throw stones at car windows.

There was me thinking that a big part of my growing into adulthood was learning that my every action has consequences. Duh! I can see now that the poor dears have no control over their own actions, and as long as we let them indulge their youthful impulsiveness now and then, they'll eventually turn into valued, civilized and law-abiding members of society.

JuliaM said...

"had they even managed to get a court appearance the judges would have let them go with even less"

That's probably true!

"There was me thinking that a big part of my growing into adulthood was learning that my every action has consequences."

Such an old-fashioned concept! Aren't we better off for having 'progressed' beyond that...? ;)