Friday Focus: This is no way to handle crime
I have a few words of advice for our local police forces: Don t allow your officers to demonstrate the same level of initiative as those in Dorset. Shopkeepers in Bournemouth were angry and upset when their local bobby told them not to bother reporting sh
I have a few words of advice for our local police forces: Don't allow your officers to demonstrate the same level of initiative as those in Dorset.
Shopkeepers in Bournemouth were angry and upset when their local bobby told them not to bother reporting shoplifting cases involving goods worth less than £75.
Why? Basically because responding to such trivia was a drain on resources and officers had better things to do.
To make matters worse the twerp of a constable suggested traders should order potential shoplifters out of their shops to avoid crimes being committed.
You may also want to watch:
The furore following this blatant insult to traders - who pay heavy taxes and business rates and expect at least a basic level of support from the establishment - has forced Dorset's police hierarchy to distance themselves from this efficiency initiative.
They say that despite their constable's best intentions, the letter does not reflect a policy change.
- 1 Crews tackle huge Fens blaze
- 2 Crash driver flees leaving female passenger injured
- 3 Sat nav 'takes one for the team' in bridge crash
- 4 Tonight's 24 Hours in Police Custody follows brutal Cambridgeshire murder
- 5 ‘I’m Lovin It’ burglars caught by McDonald's trip
- 6 Squash club marks 40 years of competitions
- 7 Road blocked due to crash involving a tractor on A14 near Godmanchester
- 8 Of all the places in all the city to park an uninsured 4x4
- 9 22 arrests, drugs, cash and weapons seized in county lines crackdown
- 10 Keep your eyes peeled for David’s dinosaur this weekend
I'm sure all Bournemouth shopkeepers are delighted to hear it, but this silly tale does highlight a nationwide problem. Our police forces are under-funded. That is demonstrably true of those serving our Fenland communities.
I'm sure countless Fenland residents will have their own stories to tell about the shortcomings of our cash-strapped police. Lack of officers on the beat would probably top the list.
And I can imagine the outcry, the disbelief, the anger, if any Fen trader was told to apply such an offensive tariff.
Police in Norwich, however, have come up with a commendable initiative which clearly ought to be passed on to other forces. They suggest sloshing Jeyes fluid in stairwells of flats in the hope that the pungent odour will stop gangs of youths and all manner of miscreants gathering there.
If the idea catches on it could do wonders for this smelly disinfectant's sales. And it offers the opportunity for a great advertising slogan: Jeyes cuts the crime as well as the grime'.
Still on the subject of crime, I note that a recent Government initiative tends to refute the persistent claims that our establishment is going soft on criminals.
A Home Office policy document says criminals serving community sentences may be needed to help prepare sites to the 2012 London Olympics. No doubt they will be helping dig trenches and smash concrete. Sounds a bit like the chain gang to me.