PC Scudder ... denied that more information on his past, such as violent incidents and the fact his mental condition could deteriorate very quickly, would have made a difference to how they dealt with Kevin.
She earlier said that “all the information is better” but that “it doesn’t necessarily have an overall impact on the decision that is made, given what officers are presented with at that time”.
“We can’t judge people based on the past. We have to make a decision based on what is presented to us at that time.
“For example, if someone had been arrested for robbery 18 times, that doesn’t mean that he’s committed that robbery at that time,” she said.
Errr, well, no. But it does mean that, should you be scouring the streets for a robbery suspect, he'd be firmly at the top of your list, and worth stopping and questioning. Just as a mentally ill patient who has a history of decompensating rapidly should be considered more of a risk.
What are they teaching them at Hendon these days?
The coroner asked PC Scudder if the “tragic incident” had made any difference to how she “personally” conducts herself. Tearfully, the officer said: “This particular situation with Mr Clarke is incredibly heartbreaking.
“It’s something that I think about every single day.”
PC Scudder took a break after becoming upset.
On return she said: “In a situation like this, I believe it would be recommended to take a staff member with us at that time when trying to communicate with Mr Clarke.
“In my eyes, they are the professionals, and they maybe would be able to ask questions […] that may have changed the outcome of the situation.”
She said she would “pause and give people the opportunity to talk” and she would “ask more questions and not have the view that the [health professionals] would tell me what’s necessary”.
You're a police officer, and you think people will always volunteer information without the need for probing and questioning? Jeez! No wonder you cry when you can't get your own way...