Monday, 9 August 2010

I Find It Hard To Blame The Police Entirely For This One…

A "highly vulnerable" young addict died from an overdose in a police cell while a custody officer surfed the internet and ignored his requests for help, a damning judicial investigation has found.
Yes, that’s bad, no doubt about it.

But read on…

The fatal accident inquiry found Tayside police custody assistant Stuart Lewis was deliberately sitting in a quiet room in the cell block, out of sight of the assistance lights linked to each cell, while he surfed the net in breach of police regulations.

Kristoffer Batt, a 17-year-old known addict who had taken diazepam before he was arrested, twice tried to raise the alarm before Lewis responded. Lewis then failed to ask Batt why he was calling for help and failed to turn off the warning light, making it impossible for Batt to call again for help.

Hmm, so he didn’t monitor the system as he should have done, and the lad died from the diazepam?

Well, no…

By then the teenager had taken a fatal dose of heroin, which he had smuggled into his cell between his buttocks.

/facepalm

Yes, it’s a bad thing that he wasn’t searched and it wasn’t discovered, but let’s face facts here, people; the police didn’t hold him down and inject him with the stuff! He took it himself!

Despite having been in custody repeatedly, including seven arrests in 2007, Batt was not strip-searched when he was brought into force headquarters in Dundee…

We aren’t talking about a first-timer here, clearly. This man was a habitual drug-user and criminal. Yes, the procedures that might have kept him safe (until the next time? And for what?) weren’t followed, but ultimately, the only one truly responsible for Batt’s death is Batt.

He was playing Russian roulette with his life, and simply happened to finally select the loaded chamber while on police premises…

14 comments:

Furor Teutonicus said...

The police should be commended on this, not punished.

One less druggie is good for us all.

I hope many more follow.

One question "Police custody assistant"???

Is this ANOTHER one of those cases wehereby a scum bag "civvy assistant" does something, for which the POLICE get haulerd over the coals? Or is this a "uniformed position"?

Hard to tell nowdays.

Furor Teutonicus said...

First of the day, follow ups...

RantinRab said...

One less junkie scumbag to rob your Granny.

Result.

Brian, follower of Deornoth said...

What FT and RR said.

Anonymous said...

only nature prevents us from taking our own life, people on the other hand usualy protect life or are so selfish and near sighted that they couldn't give a toss if most lived or died.

Blue Eyes said...

I don't think a strip search is standard. It has to be authorised and there has to be a good reason for it. I guess there is a balance between a prisoner's right to be treated politely, assuming innocence in the absence of proven guilt and the right not to come to any harm while in custody, even if that harm is self-induced. Presumably the safest thing for everyone would be to be strip searched, hosed down and given a paper suit while in custody. I wonder what the Human Rights people would say about that?

AntiCitizenOne said...

I do blame the ridiculous drug prohibition laws.

MTG said...

This was just a sad incident, if I may risk the Furor's work camp.

I am Stan said...

The fuz has a duty of care when they imprison people,they failed in that duty,as they do on a regular basis...however one more toe rag topping himself due to his own stupidity does not make me lose any sleep!....

Jiks said...

Sounds like the copper/plastic plod, whichever it was, wasn't exactly paying attention. However, I don't think that caused the death.

Unless ALL brought into the cells, many of whom will not have been charges with anything, are going to be internally searched and given full body scans there's nothing that is going to stop this sort of thing. An addict or dealer could just as easily hide the drugs where the sun doesn't shine or swallow them so a strip search is going to be useless to those that know the system.

All a mandatory strip search would do is annoy the bejesus out of everyone else, waste even more police time and make the general public loath them even more. So in this case, not guilty police IMO.

JuliaM said...

"Is this ANOTHER one of those cases wehereby a scum bag "civvy assistant" does something, for which the POLICE get haulerd over the coals? Or is this a "uniformed position"?"

I'm assuming it's a uniformed position. It always seems to be in the TV series, anyway.

"I don't think a strip search is standard. It has to be authorised and there has to be a good reason for it."

I'd have thought his notoriety as a druggie justified it, though?

"I do blame the ridiculous drug prohibition laws."

Quite..

Furor Teutonicus said...

I'm assuming it's a uniformed position. It always seems to be in the TV series, anyway.

Aye. And on T.V, they ALWAYS turn up to 999 calls, they ALWAYS "get the one who did it", and NEVER raid old granny Smiths house because No 32 sounds JUST like 75 when you have been "up in the police club" half your shift.

jonathan said...

Think of it as evolution in action.

Unknown said...

This boy was beautiful. My best friend. A 17 year old child. Your comments are disgusting. RIP Krissy