John Humphrys on BBC Radio 4 this morning, seemed amazed when he heard that 30,000 complaints had been made last year against police. That’s nearly one in four policemen complained against, he implied.
These figures always ignore some basic facts, and it is lazy journalism to continually fail to report this.
Anyone who has had dealings with the police can complain.
There are no checks to see if they are a criminal, related to a criminal or involved with criminals. There are no checks to see if they are mad.You know what also seems to suffer from this 'No checks' thing, Inspector?
There are no checks on CCTV, which can sometimes be a bit unfortunate for you in court.
There are no checks on attics when you're searching relative's homes while hunting for a missing girl.
There are no checks on eBay when someone tells you they've suffered a burglary, until they eventually do your job for you.
There are no checks on what it might be wiser not to say, given the laws in this country, even when you are of supposedly senior enough rank that you really should know better.
There are no checks on whether someone has form for false allegations before you start the whole thing off again.
There are no checks when you arrest an autistic girl (despite her being the victim & not the offender) and hold her in a cell for being drunk and disorderly. Well, except for the medical report by the police doctor, but you know better than him, right?
There are no checks on whether you've screwed up twice already before you go hammering the door down for a third time.
There are no checks on whether the information you are handing out to the public is based on anything other than lies and a desire to gild the lily to stitch up a political enemy.
There are no checks on which of two complaining parties might be a bit more believable, what with the restraining order and all.
I could go on, but I think you get the picture, eh?
Also, I do like the way it's assumed by you that those 'related to criminals or involved with criminals' must therefore be suspect. We don't get to choose our relatives, do we, Inspector? That's like saying that if you run a business, you should be held responsible for the actions of your custo...
Oh. Right. I forgot, that's the new policing, isn't it?
*No, I meant the cat! I'm not writing about Mandelson, am I?