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Police: Please, Just Stop

Written by RSS Poster Mental Health Cop

There is a commonly occurring scenario amongst our colleagues in green and blue where they end up conspiring together to cause a nightmare and it needs to stop before someone is disciplined or worse, hurt.  Wouldn’t BLOG on this unless it had happened a large number of times and I’ll prepare you: I’m banging on at length in this one to set it all out again(!) because it really grinds my gears how often I hear of this!  But if you just want the punchline, there is a Quick Guide on responding to mental health crisis in private premises.

It usually goes something like this –

Paramedics attend a 999 call reporting a mental health crisis on private premises. When they arrive they discover a non-compliant patient in distress and after talking to them, they form the view that the person has potentially serious mental health problems and appears to lack capacity around their immediate decision-making. They are concerned the person would be at risk if they were left at home. Paramedics call for police support and when...

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Police: BENCHES ARE NOT HANGERS AND FLOGGERS

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
There are single issue lobbyists financed often by wealthy individuals whose purpose in life, in addition to their salaries, is to discredit the benefit of short custodial sentences whilst at the same time to manipulate statistics to indicate that such sentences are failing, expensive and no deterrent to offenders. In addition magistrates are often accused of being too ready to sentence recidivists to immediate custody notwithstanding guidelines being followed. This case earlier this week before Swindon magistrates is an example of what really happens at every similar court every day countrywide. Benches go out of their way, sometimes in defiance of guidelines, to avoid sending offenders to immediate custody.  Indeed such decisions often bring unwelcome criticism from members of the public insofar as they are seen to be "too soft".  With the latest report on the utterly appalling conditions in our prisons a prison sentence must be a test of strength, mental and physical, for many in order to have a chance...

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Police: Ask Not What You Can Do For Your Country…

Written by RSS Poster RetiredAndAngry

……..but what your country can do for you. No, that’s not a misprint, it’s how I meant it.

The 20th July 2017 was a dark day in the middle of a dark era.

In no particular order as they say

Parliament broke for it’s Summer Recess.  No run of the mill business, discussions, debates.  How very convenient.

The Office of National Statistics released the latest ‘official’ crime statistics.

Crime Survey for England and Wales (CSEW) showed there were 5.9 million incidents of crime covered by the survey, a 7% reduction compared with the previous year’s survey.

The police recorded nearly 5 million offences in the year ending March 2017, which represented an annual rise of 10%; this increase is likely to reflect a range of factors, which vary by crime type, including continuing improvements to recording processes and practices, expanded offence coverage and also genuine increases in some crime types.

One set says ‘Higher’, the other set says ‘Lower’ and I have seen many arguments and...

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Police: DIVERSITY IN THE JUDICIARY

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
Latest judicial diversity statistics are published today.


Police: ACCUSATIONS OF VERBAL ABUSE CAN BE AN ABUSE OF FREE SPEECH

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace



“Verbal abuse is the use of words to cause harm to the person being spoken to. It is difficult to define and may take many forms. Similarly, the harm caused is often difficult to measure. The most commonly understood form is name-calling. Verbal abuse may consist of shouting, insulting, intimidating, threatening, shaming, demeaning, or derogatory language, among other forms of communication.”

It was brought home to me over twenty years ago in a fairly crowded retail unit in a town with the dubious reputation at the time of being just about the...

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Police: #WhoseStreets?

Written by RSS Poster RetiredAndAngry

I must begin with an apology dear reader, I had hoped to have finished with the thorny subject of Stop and Search, but it seems that at least one reprise is needed.

You may remember that in 2014 the then Home Secretary, Theresa May, issued a diktat regarding Police use of Stop and Search.

“I want to make myself absolutely clear: if the numbers do not come down, if stop and search does not become more targeted, if those stop-to-arrest ratios do not improve considerably, the government will return with primary legislation to make those things happen,”

Boy oh boy did those figures come down.

You can not be unaware of the epidemic of Knife Crime, Moped Crime and Acid Attacks spreading like wildfire across the streets of London and elsewhere. It has got so bad that I recently ‘shared’ a blog written by a Member of the Public, Jim Hind, in which he suggests, or asks for, an increase in the number of Stop and Searches by Police to tackle these crimes.

Increased use of Stop and Search – A controversial subject for many, but in...

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Police: PROHIBITION UK STYLE

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
From their very inception I was concerned at the implications of that wonderful, so they said, innovation; the ASBO.  Having to impose such I did my judicial duty but without enthusiasm. ASBO was but the first of many so called exclusion notices. For the last ten years constables have had the authority to issue a written exclusion notice to anyone considered to represent a "risk of disorder", even if they are not drunk or have committed no offence. The aim is to enable the police to stop violence escalating by immediately removing potential troublemakers from the scene. As a matter of interest David Davis, the shadow home secretary at the time,  said the Conservatives would consider backing the proposals but said Labour "has form for making headline-grabbing announcements only to fail to follow them up"; another politician`s words coming back to haunt him.......as if they care; it`s happening all the time. Soon to follow was the CRASBO; criminal anti-social behaviour order.  I sat on the very first hearing in this...

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Police: The Law of the Land

Written by RSS Poster Mental Health Cop

Did I mention I’d been to France?! … see above! We arrived home late last night and now have a recovery day before the harsh reality of work, first thing in the morning! I had a very interesting experience  once I’d arrived at Calais until disembarkment because of a discussion on social media which I found too interesting to ignore and which arose from the lack of beds to allow for an urgent admission to hospital. An AMHP found themselves in an invidious, albeit increasingly common position over the weekend following a Mental Health Act assessment after the police use of section 136. The lead doctor in the assessment was unable to provide a PICU bed to allow the AMHP to complete their legal application to a psychiatric intensive care unit so, after various escalations to NHS managers and no doubt a considerable amount of frustration by all involved, the man was released, his 72hrs assessment period having expired. This happened notwithstanding the AMHP describing the man as a “high risk to others” … and that there...

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Police: An Open Letter To @PoliceChiefs

Written by RSS Poster RetiredAndAngry

You are, by definition, all senior Police Officers, yet you seem to have lost touch with the fine officers that form the Front Line.

As you are obviously aware, when the Conservative-led coalition came to power in 2010 there were 142,363 Police Officers in England and Wales, excluding BTP, or 145,015 if you include BTP.  The next set of government statistics are due for release on 20th July, but the last set, up to end of September 2016, shows that there were 122,859 Officers, excluding BTP, or 126,252 including BTP. I expect that figure to have fallen again when the latest levels are revealed.

Every one of your members has worked your way up from lowly Constable to Chief Constable or Commissioner. Every last one of you.

Collectively, and individually, you KNOW what the Front Line has gone through in the last seven years, you have been there.

Of the 122,859 officers left in England and Wales, 121,167 are what I would call ‘Front Line”‘, Constables, Sergeants and Inspectors. Anybody above the rank of Inspector...

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Police: A NEW MAGISTRATE`S OPINIONS

Written by RSS Poster The Justice of the Peace
It would seem that MOJ has decided that more Justices of the Peace need to be appointed. The article in this local newspaper is one of many similar I have read over the last few months.  What does strike me, however, is the quote of a new magistrate when commenting on a decision of custody, "There were long discussions about whether it was the right thing to do, what purpose it would serve and the impact on both the defendant, and of course the wider community and the victim". 


He does not mention Guidelines or public protection except for "impact". I also consider it questionable if "the right thing to do" is part of a structured sentencing exercise.  As far as I am aware the victims` considerations should not inform sentencing. But then having been appointed 20 years ago my attitudes, training and experience might now be considered anti deluvian if I were still active. 



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