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  1. Several people were injured after a roof partially collapsed at a holiday park in Somerset. https://www.standard.co.uk/news/uk/pontins-holiday-park-eighteen-injured-as-ceiling-collapses-at-somerset-building-a4072336.html
  2. Poignant songs and touching tributes to tragic PCSO. Solemn act: Leading the cortege at Wyre Forest crematorium for PCSO Holly Burke's funeral Colleagues put on a brave face as they paid their final respects at the funeral of a police community support officer who “greeted everyone with a big smile” Dozens of West Midland officers lined the entrance to Wyre Forest Crematorium in a guard-of-honour tribute to PCSO Holly Burke – killed in a crash last month after a car being tailed by police failed to stop during a 15-minute pursuit. The hearse carrying PCSO Burke’s coffin was followed by a police car and four outriders while officers carrying blue roses greeted the family as the cortege came to a stop in the crematorium grounds. As the coffin was carried inside, Smile by Nat King Cole was playing softly in the background. Other songs by George Ezra, Jess Glynn, Freya Ridings and Ed Sheeran punctuated the service. Thursday's large attendance saw a number of mourners forced to watch and listen to proceedings via TV screens as the Rev Viv Baldwin and Matthew Hopley led the service. Catherine Boraston, one of PCSO Burke’s colleagues, said her friend greeted “everyone with a big smile and always had us smiling with her singing voice”. A family statement was also read out: “She thought it was her role in life to put people first. She has so much more to do in her life and this has been taken away from her. We will always remember her infectious smile.” Colleagues put on a brave face as they paid their final respects at the funeral of a police community support officer who “greeted everyone with a big smile” Dozens of West Midland officers lined the entrance to Wyre Forest Crematorium in a guard-of-honour tribute to PCSO Holly Burke – killed in a crash last month after a car being tailed by police failed to stop during a 15-minute pursuit. The hearse carrying PCSO Burke’s coffin was followed by a police car and four outriders while officers carrying blue roses greeted the family as the cortege came to a stop in the crematorium grounds. As the coffin was carried inside, Smile by Nat King Cole was playing softly in the background. Other songs by George Ezra, Jess Glynn, Freya Ridings and Ed Sheeran punctuated the service. Thursday's large attendance saw a number of mourners forced to watch and listen to proceedings via TV screens as the Rev Viv Baldwin and Matthew Hopley led the service. Catherine Boraston, one of PCSO Burke’s colleagues, said her friend greeted “everyone with a big smile and always had us smiling with her singing voice”. A family statement was also read out: “She thought it was her role in life to put people first. She has so much more to do in her life and this has been taken away from her. We will always remember her infectious smile.” View on Police Oracle
  3. A driver who swerved "to avoid an octopus" before crashing has been arrested on suspicion of drug-driving. Police were called to the A381 between Malborough and South Milton in Devon, where they found a vehicle upside-down in a ditch on Tuesday evening. The 49-year-old driver was checked over by paramedics before being arrested. Officers, who tweeted about the incident, said they found no evidence of an octopus on the road. Octopuses are not unheard of in the seas off the south coast of England, but this particular cephalopod would have had to crawl more than 5km over hills and fields to find itself in the path of a car on the A381. A spokeswoman for Devon and Cornwall Police said: "He did a bit of a slow roll into a ditch. "An ambulance went out and the driver was checked over by paramedics but there weren't injuries enough to go to hospital." The man, from Salcombe, was arrested on suspicion of driving while unfit through drugs or drink and has been released under investigation pending further inquiries. Twitter users were quick to respond with puns. However, police pointed out that driving under the influence of drugs - illegal or prescription - was a serious matter, and could be "just as dangerous as drink-driving". http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-devon-47144891
  4. Commissioner Cressida Dick has today announced to Met officers and staff a range of decisions to support them in their roles and to recognise their efforts. Recognising Extraordinary Pressure On Hard Working Police Officers In recognition of the extraordinary pressures officers have faced in London throughout 2017 and 2018 the Commissioner has today announced the payment of a one-off recognition payment of £350 to the majority of Metropolitan police officers up to and including the rank of Chief Superintendent. The payment recognises their superb response to the multiple terrorist attacks in London, the Grenfell Tower fire, other major events, and responding robustly to the rise in violence across London amongst many other pressures. The impact on officers, and the disruption to their family lives over this period, has been significant. Commenting on the recognition payment, the Commissioner said: “It is absolutely right that we have made this payment to our officers. Their bravery, dedication and professionalism has been put to the test over the last two years to an extraordinary degree. Officers across the Met have made a huge contribution to London by doing outstandingly demanding, important and frequently unpleasant work. The challenges continue. This has come at a considerable cost to them as individuals and their families. A £350 payment cannot come close to matching the contribution in delivering through these extraordinary times, but nevertheless it is right that recognition is made. “We planned in our budgets for higher pay for police officers in 2018 than was finally awarded. By planning effectively, we can therefore make this recognition payment to our officers from our existing budget, and I am pleased that we have been able to do so.” Police staff pay award agreed The pressures of the last 18 months have equally been felt by our police staff. The pay award for this year reflects the demands that police staff have faced, both those in front-line and operational support roles. The 2018 pay award for police staff will be a 2.5% increase. The pay award will be backdated to 1st August 2018 and be made at the end of February 2019. An investment in additional equipment to support effectiveness and officer safety Ensuring the Met makes best use of technology is important in helping us be as efficient and effective as possible in keeping London safe. 2019 will see: • By November 2019 the current Taser Uplift Project will provide 6,467 specially trained Taser officers across the Met. In addition we have now agreed an extra uplift of 330 Taser trained officers from November 2019 to March 2020. • An increase of an extra 400 mobile fingerprint devices, which will mean we can take and process more fingerprints on the streets making it quicker to identify or rule out individuals suspected of a crime without having to go back to a police building to undertake the checks. • Detailed guidelines to be developed to allow the roll out of spit and bite guards to officers beyond their current use in custody in the coming months. This follows a careful consultation about an extension in their use in order to provide more protection for officers against getting bitten or spat at. The Commissioner said: “My role is to ensure officers have what they need to do their jobs effectively and safely. The announcements I have made to colleagues today are important issues that are intended to support officers and staff in keeping London safe. Officers, in particular are tasked with responding to often dangerous situations and they need the protection to be able to do so safely, in order to protect the public, victims and suspects.” The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “Our police officers work extremely hard and in challenging circumstances to keep Londoners and our city safe. After a period when our under-resourced and overstretched officers have had to cope with the terrorist attacks and other horrific events on top of their day-to-day duties keeping London safe, I am glad we are able to make this additional payment in recognition of their ongoing efforts to protect us. “I’ve been clear that attacks on officers who put their lives on the line to protect Londoners and visitors are entirely unacceptable. It’s vital the Commissioner is able to ensure the police have the equipment they need to do their jobs, although of course it must always be used in a proportionate and transparent way.”
  5. Police stations were closed on Wednesday and long queues formed at passport control booths as officers staged a “black day” of protest to demand better working conditions. https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/12/19/police-stations-closed-french-officers-demand-248m-unpaid-overtime/
  6. ‘If you show out you're seen as weak' Attitudes towards mental health may have “dramatically” shifted over the last three decades within the Met, but in practice, austerity measures mean officers are more likely to burn out than ever before, the federation’s diversity lead told politicians yesterday. “We are, I hate to say this, paying lip service to our officers”, Metropolitan Police Federation Diversity Secretary Anne Shuttleworth told the London Assembly Police and Crime Panel on Tuesday. Although representatives from the NHS, mental health charity Mind and an MP made a Lord for his work on social inequality praised the progress of the MPS on its approach to mental health incidents, the Fed is concerned this is not translating to better welfare for its officers. Ms Shuttleworth, who is nearing the end of her service said one phrase going unmentioned in the force is “burn out”. “Culturally we have moved on. I think our younger officers have a better understanding of mental health issues. “Attitudes have shifted massively. “But I think officers very often make mistakes - small things go wrong because they get to a point where they are overwhelmed with the volume of work that is coming in. “They just seem to rush from call to call to call to call and they’re expected to give this gold star service every single time. “And that’s fine for a while.” She told how working as a Sexual Offences Investigation Trained Officer at the start of her career had left her so drained she could no longer “emphasise and sympathise naturally as a human being”. But her experience compares favourably with that of probationers in 2018, she said. At the time the Met allowed her to rotate with other officers so she could refresh herself but this is no longer possible for most officers, she said. “Now because of the position we’re in because of resources, officer numbers, volume of calls and the complexity of what we deal with, we do not very often take into account that we’re burning officers out.” She said the BCU model had created issues she is “not at liberty” to discuss which has “put more pressure on people because they’re being expected to move and to take on more work and to take on greater responsibility.” The decision to outsource the MPS counselling services is also taking its toll upon officers she said. The counselling service doesn’t work like it used to, she said “in respect that it [doesn’t] understand that we’re a 24/7 service. “It tells us when we’re going to go to it and how it’s going to be from its perspective and if we miss any of the appointments we don’t get them back. “So where an officer might need ten counselling sessions, they’re not likely to get them because shift work will prevent that. “Since we’ve outsourced a lot of our resources I’m afraid I’ve got concerns because yes we do try to look after our officers’ mental health but there is still a stigma for some of us. “If you actually show out you’re seen as weak. “Culturally it’s always going to be under the surface. “It’s the sort of job where you work with a team of people and you don’t want to let your colleagues down and if you show out and say 'I can’t do this anymore' you feel you’re letting your peers down. “I can only speak from experience and I’m finding it always ends up being too late by the time an officer would come to me.” Chairman of Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust Andy Trotter spoke of a “transformation” in the police service towards mental health incidents. “There’s a real willingness to work together, I’m very impressed with at the moment,” he said. Head of policy at Mind Vicki Nash said she was well aware the police were trying to “plug the gap where other services are failing to meet demand” and Lord Victor Adebowale CBE said he has “a lot of sympathy with the police because they were faced with extremely stressful situations but weren’t being briefed or getting the support they needed”. But he added: “I would like a clearer public acknowledgement of the police’s responsibilities with regard to mental health. “They do have responsibility under Section 2 of the Human Rights Act. I can’t sit here in all honestly and say I’m really pleased, everything’s fine because it isn’t.” Ms Shuttleworth said clarity is needed on the role of the policing service within mental health. “We should have not have people who are mentally ill in cells at all. “We are not employed to diagnose. It is not our role. “How well do you want us trained? Do you want us to be the equivalent of psychiatric nurses and doctors? “People have got to decide where that limit finishes.” She added: “Sometimes it can take a whole shift - waiting with patients. Dealing with people with mental health issues is not a five minute job. “My colleagues in the main are really good people and they get really frustrated when they get constant calls. It is very draining.” View on Police Oracle
  7. TV stars speaks out to millions of live viewers Nick Knowles has received appreciation from emergency service workers following his passionate exit speech on I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here! DIY SOS host Knowles has become the sixth contestant to face the boot from the show after a public vote. He managed 20 days in the jungle and became the camp's de facto cook - playing a fatherly figure to the group's younger members. After hugging his campmates, Knowles joined Holly Willoughby and Declan Donnelly where he said he hoped the camp's camaraderie could be an example of unity to a UK rife with "division". After taking a long swig of water, Knowles, 56, added: "When I came in here I wanted to see whether a whole bunch of people could get together and make friends. We are having such a hard time in the UK at the moment. There's so much division in the UK. "I thought if we could all get on in here then it would be a bit of a pointer for everyone at home. There's this big split going on in the UK." He then used up the rest of his live airtime to praise the work of emergency services saying: “One last thing – please support our veterans, support the police, support the NHS, support the emergency services. They all do amazing jobs and they have it a lot harder on a day-to-day basis than we do in here.” Thank-you messages began flooding in shortly after from police, veterans and members of the public on social media. Last year, DIY SOS, renovated the home of an officer who was left paralysed after the Westminster Bridge. PC Kris Aves suffered a devastating spinal cord injury when terrorist Khalid Masood hit him with his car. The crew, backed by hundreds of local tradesmen, installed a lift and widened the doors so PC Aves can now move his wheelchair round the house. View on Police Oracle
  8. Road to new legislation is far from smooth for campaigners The chaos that has engulfed Parliament amid Brexit may hinder the progress of eagerly awaited draft laws which would enhance legal protection for officers who pursue helmetless moped riders. The Police Federation for England and Wales (PFEW) cautiously welcomed the news last May that the Home Office was drafting legislation to ensure skilled police drivers are “protected”. PFEW was awaiting the results of the government’s consultation when it received the news there will no longer be time in the parliamentary diary because Brexit-related work must take priority. Instead, the Home Office hopes the same ends will be achieved through Sir Henry Bellingham’s Emergency Response Drivers private members bill. It was originally introduced as a ten-minute bill in December 2017 but was shelved after government objections in March. The bill was due to have its second reading on November 23 but Sir Christopher Chope, who is notorious for blocking private member’s bill on principle, raised an objection. Sir Christopher invoked the ire of activists earlier this year when he blocked the progress of a bill to make upskirting a separate offence and Finn’s Law, which would increase the penalties for those who injure police animals. This, however, did not stop him submitting several of his own private members bills last month. The Emergency Response Drivers Bill second reading has been rescheduled to March. PFEW Pursuits Lead Tim Rogers, who has been campaigning to change the law for more than seven years, told Police Oracle the government has some concerns the bill will not match the issues covered in the consultation and that it will include ambulance and fire engine drivers, who are not trained to the same standard as police officers. He said: “If you compare officers to the careful and competent drivers standard the techniques they use are illegal. “The deal officers get is 'as long nothing goes wrong that’s fine and we won’t do anything about it but when something does happen you’re on your own'. “Roads policing officers are highly trained professionals who go to work and carry out these manoeuvres every day but that isn’t recognised in law. “It’s just stupid. “Even the IOPC came out and said officers shouldn’t be compared to the careful and competent drivers standard.” Mr Rogers said Policing Minister Nick Hurd had given himself and PFEW chairman John Apter personal assurances last week he remained committed to the issue and will soon issue a ministerial statement confirming this is the case. It is still hoped the bill will gain Royal Assent by 2019/2020, he said. A Home Office spokesman said: “We recognise the difficult job that police drivers do every day to keep road users and the wider public safe. “That’s why we have worked closely with the Police Federation, other government departments and groups representing road users and those advocating road safety to review the law, guidance, procedures and processes surrounding police pursuits. “Ministers are expecting soon to be in a position to announce the next steps following the consultation. This will be subject to final clearance across government.” View on Police Oracle
  9. Overstretched officers are having to act as a last line of defence Is it time to say enough is enough? https://amp.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/nov/29/police-force-cuts-mental-health An interesting point here: “Now consider the people we cannot identify and quantify – the callers who couldn’t get through because the police were busy dealing with those 8,655 calls. What if they too were vulnerable, and some almost certainly were? What if they came to significant harm or even died – and they may have? Where was our duty of care to them?”
  10. Police officers took almost 40,000 days off work last year due to stress-related illness. The Scottish Police Federation say some members have taken their own lives because of pressures they faced at work. https://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/news/scottish-news/scots-cops-anxious-suicidal-stress-13530271.amp ”Kennedy said: “One officer had a manager try to serve discipline forms on him the day after he tried to take his own life.” Did the manager know he’d tried to take his own life? If so what a ...... 😡
  11. POLICE officers and staff "failed in their duties and responsibilities" after a vulnerable woman was found dead almost 17 hours after her social worker raised concerns about her. https://www.gazette-news.co.uk/news/16960773.police-found-woman-dead-17-hours-after-999-call/ Is A&E the best place for someone who has had a major depressive disorder? Is it right to expect someone to make their own way - should an ambulance have been called or at least a friend or family member? Who investigates social services?
  12. The system has been tested for three years and is now undergoing a live pilot. Custody sergeants are trialling a system which will aid them in making difficult risk-based judgements. The tool, created by Cambridgeshire University, helps identify detainees who pose a major danger to the community, and whose release should be subject to additional layers of review. “The police officers who make these custody decisions are highly experienced, but all their knowledge and policing skills can’t tell them the one thing they need to know most about the suspect – how likely is it that he or she is going to cause major harm if they are released? “This is a job that really scares people – they are at the front line of risk-based decision-making,” says Dr Geoffrey Barnes. “Imagine a situation where the officer has the benefit of 100,000 or more real previous experiences of custody decisions? No one person can have that number of experiences, but a machine can,” Professor Lawrence Sherman added. In 2016, the researchers installed the world’s first AI tool for helping police make custodial decisions in Durham Constabulary. Called the Harm Assessment Risk Tool (HART), the AI-based technology uses 104,000 histories of people previously arrested and processed in Durham custody suites over the course of five years. Using a method called “random forests”, the tool can create thousands of combinations of predicted outcomes, the majority of which focus on the suspect’s offending history, as well as age, gender and geographical area. “Imagine a human holding this number of variables in their head, and making all of these connections before making a decision. Our minds simply can’t do it,” explains Dr Barnes. The aim of HART is to categorise whether in the next two years an offender is high risk, moderate risk or low risk. “The need for good prediction is not just about identifying the dangerous people,” explains Prof. Sherman. “It’s also about identifying people who definitely are not dangerous. For every case of a suspect on bail who kills someone, there are tens of thousands of non-violent suspects who are locked up longer than necessary.” Durham Constabulary wants to identify the ‘moderate-risk’ group – who account for just under half of all suspects according to the statistics generated by HART. These individuals might benefit from their Checkpoint programme, which aims to tackle the root causes of offending and offer an alternative to prosecution that they hope will turn moderate risks into low risks. However, the system cannot prioritise offences, which often change over time, so it has to be supplied frequently with up-to-date information. An independent study found an overall accuracy of around 63 per cent, but is 98 per cent accurate at detecting a ‘false negative’ – an offender who is predicted to be relatively safe, but then goes on to commit a serious and violent crime. The researchers also stress the technology is not a “silver bullet for law enforcement” and the ultimate decision is that of the officer in charge. Prof. Sherman said: “The police service is under pressure to do more with less, to target resources more efficiently, and to keep the public safe. “The tool helps identify the few ‘needles in the haystack’ who pose a major danger to the community, and whose release should be subject to additional layers of review. At the same time, better triaging can lead to the right offenders receiving release decisions that benefit both them and society.” View on Police Oracle
  13. A police worker who unwittingly prosecuted himself for having an untaxed vehicle has been mocked by colleagues online. West Yorkshire Police's Roads Policing Unit said the man had "managed to fill a form in incorrectly" - seemingly putting his own name on the paperwork rather than the actual offender. In a letter from the DVLA he was told to pay £81 or face court action. The letter appears to have been posted to a police station in Bradford. The Roads Policing Unit posted: "To the great amusement of the rest of the office, one of our colleagues managed to fill a form in incorrectly, and prosecuted himself for driving an untaxed vehicle!" The letter, dated 15 March, states the untaxed vehicle was found in Oak Street, Bradford, on 15 February, and makes a demand for payment of the fine by 1 April.
  14. Many drivers are breaking the law without even realising https://www.liverpoolecho.co.uk/news/liverpool-news/how-you-could-lose-your-14377497 There's a poll on our Twitter feed on the same subject:
  15. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-manchester-43306423 A professional rugby player, Tasered six times after driving at 150mph in a police chase, has been jailed. Scott Moore crashed into a house in Leigh and fought officers, threatening one with a Taser he stole from them. The ex-England rugby league star, 30, used "his size and experience on the rugby field" to evade arrest, Greater Manchester Police said. He was jailed for 23 months at Bolton Crown Court after admitting dangerous driving and assault. Moore, of Ranworth Drive, Lowton, Wigan, was disqualified from driving for two years. Police spotted Moore in the early hours of 14 October 2016 driving a black Mercedes at speed along Chaddock Lane towards the East Lancashire Road. He refused to pull over, sparking a pursuit during which he overtook a lorry at 100mph on a stretch of roadworks which had a speed limit of 30mph. He then accelerated at more than 150mph into a housing estate in Leigh and crashed into the wall of a house before stopping at a dead end, police said. 'Tug of war' Moore elbowed an officer and "violently resisted arrest in a struggle lasting 50 minutes" during which he was Tasered six times but "kept rising to his feet to fight and charge at officers". At one point, the former St Helens, Widnes and Wakefield hooker grabbed the Taser's wires after being stunned and removed them from his body. He then grabbed the Taser in a "tug of war" with the officer, shouting: "You're getting it now!" while pointing it at the officer's face, police said. The terrified officer fought with Moore to release it from his hand and the other officer struck him numerous times. Moore eventually dropped the Taser and, following a further struggle, was detained. The officers had never in their careers "been so scared nor witnessed such a violent individual", Det Con Lynsey Watson-Perry said. One officer had to undergo surgery. "Whatever level of force he is used to displaying on the pitch, this was not a game - people's lives were in danger", she added.
  16. The study analysed almost 1.5 million tweets. Corporate police twitter accounts should learn from individual officers’ use of social media, researchers say. A study of almost 1.5 million tweets from 48 corporate and 2,450 non-corporate police accounts, encouraged official social media controllers to embrace the techniques used by more personal police accounts. The Knowledge Media Institute analysis of UK Policing Engagement via Social Media, presented this week at the Evidence Based Policing conference described corporate police accounts as a “one way street.” “One of the key elements that can be observed from our manual analysis of tweets is that non-corporate accounts are more interactive than the corporate ones. “Another observation is that although non-corporate accounts may not have a large number of followers, they tend to have some key followers (e.g., local neighbours). “They know their communities better and they manage to engage their community members by participating in discussions and providing direct feedback to users. “Corporate accounts could benefit from identifying highly engaging police staff members and community leaders, and involve them more closely in their social media strategy,” the report said. The most popular tweets for both types of police accounts used sensitive and respectful humour. But researchers acknowledged the tightrope police Twitter users must walk as misjudging the tone of a comic tweet can result in irreversible reputational damage. Popular tweets were more likely to come from corporate accounts which had been established for a long time but personal account tweets were more likely to attract retweets if they followed many other accounts. This sometimes had the opposite effect for official police twitter accounts- users felt “surveyed” if they noticed a centralised police account was “following” them. For both types of accounts tweets attracting high levels of engagement were longer easy to read, avoided jargon, were highly informative and used pictures or videos. But using mentions had a negative impact on a post’s popularity, the paper said. The researchers found users were more likely to engage with tweets which talked about roads and infrastructure, events, missing people, mentioned locations or aimed to raise awareness about issues such domestic violence and modern slavery. On the other hand, tweets receiving lower engagement talked about crime updates: such as burglary, assault or driving under the influence of alcohol, following requests (#ff) and advice to stay safe. The report said previous research suggests people are more likely to retweet posts about weather conditions, missing people and road problems “since by sharing these messages users feel they are helping others.” The potential for police to engage with the public through social media is being limited as there is often no budget for staff training, the report said. “Nowadays, the public is getting used to seeing companies and organisations using social media 24/7 as communication channels, and have started to expect the same coverage and behaviour from the police. “However, social media is not the main policing communication channel, and the police social media accounts are not active 24/7. “There is therefore a mismatch between what the public expects, and what the police provides.” View on Police Oracle
  17. Jihadi who got classroom of pupils to act out the Westminster terror attack has been convicted thanks to the hard work of detectives and security services. A "high-risk" strategy to arrest a terror suspect before the extent of his crimes were fully known has paid off after the school administrator, who made children re-enact the Westminster terror attack, was convicted. Umar Haque, 25, of Newham, east London, first came to the attention of law enforcement when he tried to travel to Turkey in April 2016. He was stopped and his passport was revoked by the Home Office after research into terrorism was found on his phone. But it was not until almost a year later, according to Commander Dean Haydon, that the first evidence came to light of his plan to radicalise children, after Haque had been arrested for driving without insurance. In May 2017 Haque was arrested on suspicion of terror offences as police established he had been working at a school. Commander Haydon said: "We intervened early, that was probably a high-risk strategy on our part but we needed to fully understand what was happening in the school." It turned out Haque who worked at one school, and had previously been employed by another was also teaching at a mosque's education centre. He had been in contact with 250 children aged 11-14. He was showing them graphic terrorist videos of beheading and other serious violence in a bid to radicalise them towards Islamist extremism. "He made them role play terrorist attacks, part of that was the role of re-enacting attacks on police officers," Cmdr Haydon added. The children were told repeatedly to act out the then recent Westminster terror attack in which PC Keith Palmer and four other innocent people were murdered. He planned to create "an army of children" who would stage a wave of attacks on up to 30 identified targets, mostly in London. It was his aim to teach the youngsters to drive and continue radicalising them until they reached adulthood. The Met says none of those in charge at the institutions – the Lantern of Knowledge school, and the madrassa at the Ripple Road Mosque, in Barking - were aware of what Haque was doing. Nevertheless the radical, employed as an administrator not a teacher, was left alone with groups of children on a regular basis. The Charity Commission is now carrying out its own investigation into the mosque. Some 110 children had been identified as having been shown propaganda by the jihadi, with 35 of those now on a long-term safeguarding programme. Cmdr Haydon said: "They were paralysed by fear in the classroom, he told them he had significant connections into Daesh. "He showed them pretty shocking videos of beheading, involving serious injury, murder, mostly overseas, he threatened them that if they were to talk to their teachers, parents, or allude to anybody outside of that classroom of what was going on that they would meet a similar fate. "It doesn't appear that any of those children raised the alarm bell of what was going on. There was a wall of silence." Six of those children gave evidence during his trial. Umar Ahmed Haque, 25, pleaded guilty to one count of dissemination of terrorist publications and three counts of collection of information useful to terrorists. A jury at the Old Bailey found him guilty of two counts of preparation of terrorism attacks and one of collection of information useful to terrorists. The jury was hung on one count of of dissemination of terrorist publications and he was found not guilty of conspiracy to possess a firearm. Abuthaher Mamun, 19, of Barking, who helped Haque, was convicted of one preparation of a terrorist act. Muhammad Abid, 27, Newham, was found guilty of having information about acts of terrorism. View on Police Oracle
  18. The current criminal justice system 'isn't working', according to the APCC chairman. Police and crime commissioners should be given joint oversight of probation and offender rehabilitation services with the Ministry of Justice, the head of the commissioners' association has said. David Lloyd, chairman and criminal justice lead for the Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC), said on Tuesday the current system “stifles innovation” and does not work in its current form. “Although we call the criminal justice system a system - it isn’t. It’s made up of a series of often competing organisations that together manage to forget the needs of the victim and the offender," he said at a Justice Committee meeting. “I really believe this is a moment when we can make a step change in reducing reoffending if we all work together. “The biggest culture change is the lessons that fire can bring to police and that is rather than investing in more fire trucks look at how you reduce fire in the first place. I think it’s exactly the same in criminal justice.” He added: “Frankly there is no one who holds the ring around criminal justice. “What works poorly is for the democratic accountability is to be held centrally at the MoJ. “The positive thing is if you bring PCCs to have responsibly for it there is a very direct democratic oversight.” Mr Lloyd said he would be in favour of adopting the “Manchester model” (a combined local authority in which the mayor has taken on PCC responsibilities). “There isn’t a great amount of parliament time. By allowing the local leaders to get on and do it we can move on and that is the solution for you. “What we need is some leeway -to take on the Manchester model for example. “I think the role of PCC broadly a local leadership," he told the committee. He also claimed UNISON, one of the largest unions in the police and justice system, are in favour of probation and prisons coming under the jurisdiction of PCCs- much to his own surprise. When asked whether he thought disengaged PCCs would pose a risk to such a system he responded: “I believe in the wisdom of the electorate at the end of the day. The electorate shows great wisdom.” In a separate statement on the APCC’s website, Mr Lloyd said: “It is my view that PCCs have a key role in working with partners to ensure an efficient and effective criminal justice system. “That means real oversight and accountability of local criminal justice services, including offender management services, in the first instance, this should include joint oversight of Community Rehabilitation Companies and the National Probation Service with the Ministry of Justice." The APCC also wantS to see funding handed over to PCCs without a ring fence. View on Police Oracle
  19. Confusion over why money has not been spent after three years. One million pounds of government roads policing funding has been gathering dust for three years. Concerns were raised about what had happened to the money, approved in 2015, at a roads policing conference in January as “equipment only gets more expensive”. Delegates were later told the cash had been transferred to Surrey Police. A department for transport spokesman told Police Oracle there had been no delays in handing over the funding to the police and it had been transferred from Sussex to West Mercia Police. The money was intended to fund forensic roads policing equipment. A National Police Chiefs' Council (NPCC) spokeswoman confirmed there had been no government delay. After repeated Police Oracle requests for clarification to West Mercia, Surrey and Sussex Police a West Mercia spokesman confirmed the cash was still with Sussex Police but could not explain the three-year delay. A comment from Assistant Chief Constable Martin Evans of West Mercia Police last week stated he “updated on the circa £1 million” when he stepped up as NPCC lead for forensic collision investigation in July 2017. "A significant amount of work had taken place to try and secure a national procurement for laser scanners with this money for those forces that required them but unfortunately as is the case in many areas currently this has proved unfeasible due to forces using different systems, some of which still have a number of years to go on their existing contract, differing processes carried being out within different teams etc,” he said. "As a result a national procurement was not possible. “I have therefore recently conducted an audit across all forces to identify those in most need of Laser scanners and my intention is to provide them individually with the funding required from the DFT money to be able to purchase the equipment that they require themselves. “The money has not been transferred but remains with Sussex Police pending the purchase of equipment.” But when Police Oracle asked his office to clarify whether any work had been carried out on the national procurement before July 2017, we were told he did not wish to comment further. Neither would he explain what kind of lasers he was referring to, whether he was replacing old equipment or commissioning new scanners and when it became clear national procurement would not be possible. Police Oracle lodged a second request to speak directly with ACC Evans last week and was told he would not be in the office until Friday. On Friday - three weeks after our first request - a West Mercia Police spokesman said ACC Evans would not be available until next week. View on Police Oracle
  20. Target date for merger has been shelved. The merger of British Transport Police into Police Scotland north of the border will not go ahead in April next year. The merger was due to take place in 2019 despite a recent admission that terms and conditions, third party contracts and ICT would not be ready to transfer from the railways constabulary by the target date. But a statement from the Scottish Government says a revision of the timetable with “allow for enhanced engagement with officers, staff and their representatives on key issues, including pay and conditions”. No new target date has been set. Justice Secretary Michael Matheson said: “The Scottish and UK governments are working together to ensuring the legislation passed by Parliament last year is implemented as effectively as possible. “The benefits of a single command structure and improved access to the full range of capabilities of Police Scotland will be delivered for railway policing, providing an enhanced service to both the rail industry and travelling public. “While much has been achieved so far, we want to ensure a seamless transition which delivers continuity of service for rail users and staff. As I have previously said, any issues raised by the Joint Programme Board in their role as overseeing the project would be given due consideration. “While a later integration date is disappointing, it will provide all partners with the opportunity to enhance the process of engagement, in particular with officers, staff and their representatives on key issues.” Scottish Labour's Justice spokesperson Daniel Johnson called for the whole process to be shelved. He said: “This is a welcome u-turn at the 11th hour by the SNP. “Scottish Labour opposed folding BTP into Police Scotland from the start alongside officers, trade unions and experts – and it is welcome the SNP appears to have finally listened. “This delay reopens the debate about whether this foolish and misguided merger should go ahead at all given the distinctive nature and requirements of policing our railways.” View on Police Oracle
  21. MSPs have passed legislation aimed at merging railway policing north of the border into Police Scotland. The Railway Policing (Scotland) Bill is the first step towards the national force taking on the role of British Transport Police (BTP). There had been a lengthy debate over the plan, with police bosses warning it could be "massively complicated" and "a real challenge". The bill passed by 68 votes to 53, with the Greens backing the SNP. Labour and the Conservatives have opposed the merger and the bill throughout, and the Lib Dems - who had supported the legislation in the stage one vote in order to pursue amendments at committee stage - also voted against the bill. Look back on the stage three debate and vote on Holyrood Live The Scottish government has long wanted to integrate railway policing services into the single national force, and tabled a bill to that end in December 2016. The Railway Policing (Scotland) Bill confers extra powers on the Scottish Police Authority and the Police Service of Scotland, but further legislation would be needed at Holyrood and Westminster to transfer staff, properties and cross-border policing functions. The Scottish government insists the integration will provide "efficient and effective" delivery of policing. However, there has been debate over the plan, with concerns ranging from how cross-border services would be affected to the potential dilution of the special skills of transport officers. The BTP wanted to continue providing railway policing in Scotland, but with oversight from Holyrood rather than Westminster. Chief Constable Paul Crowther warned MSPs that a merger could present a "real challenge" in replacing officers amid a "significant outflow of expertise". However, Police Scotland's Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins told the justice committee the move was not a "land-grab" by his force, saying the transition would be "complicated, but not insurmountable". 'Absolutely committed' After a series of votes on amendments during the stage three debate, Transport Minister Humza Yousaf said the "primary objective" of the move was to "maintain and enhance high standards of safety". He said the bill would improve accountability of railway policing in Scotland, and said he remained "absolutely committed" to backing staff. The Scottish Conservatives opposed the plans, with MSP Oliver Mundell describing the merger as "an ill-judged and ill-thought out idea". He added: "The list of those with concerns is almost as long as the Scottish government's list of excuses on policing matters." Image copyrightBRITISH TRANSPORT POLICE MSPs have passed legislation aimed at merging railway policing north of the border into Police Scotland. The Railway Policing (Scotland) Bill is the first step towards the national force taking on the role of British Transport Police (BTP). There had been a lengthy debate over the plan, with police bosses warning it could be "massively complicated" and "a real challenge". The bill passed by 68 votes to 53, with the Greens backing the SNP. Labour and the Conservatives have opposed the merger and the bill throughout, and the Lib Dems - who had supported the legislation in the stage one vote in order to pursue amendments at committee stage - also voted against the bill. Look back on the stage three debate and vote on Holyrood Live The Scottish government has long wanted to integrate railway policing services into the single national force, and tabled a bill to that end in December 2016. The Railway Policing (Scotland) Bill confers extra powers on the Scottish Police Authority and the Police Service of Scotland, but further legislation would be needed at Holyrood and Westminster to transfer staff, properties and cross-border policing functions. The Scottish government insists the integration will provide "efficient and effective" delivery of policing. However, there has been debate over the plan, with concerns ranging from how cross-border services would be affected to the potential dilution of the special skills of transport officers. Image captionTransport Minister Humza Yousaf said the government had "listened closely" to concerns about the plans The BTP wanted to continue providing railway policing in Scotland, but with oversight from Holyrood rather than Westminster. Chief Constable Paul Crowther warned MSPs that a merger could present a "real challenge" in replacing officers amid a "significant outflow of expertise". However, Police Scotland's Assistant Chief Constable Bernard Higgins told the justice committee the move was not a "land-grab" by his force, saying the transition would be "complicated, but not insurmountable". 'Absolutely committed' After a series of votes on amendments during the stage three debate, Transport Minister Humza Yousaf said the "primary objective" of the move was to "maintain and enhance high standards of safety". He said the bill would improve accountability of railway policing in Scotland, and said he remained "absolutely committed" to backing staff. The Scottish Conservatives opposed the plans, with MSP Oliver Mundell describing the merger as "an ill-judged and ill-thought out idea". He added: "The list of those with concerns is almost as long as the Scottish government's list of excuses on policing matters." Image captionThe bill was passed by 68 votes to 53 Labour's Claire Baker also spoke out against the plan, warning of a loss of expertise and saying: "The Scottish government have ignored concerns of staff and unions". Her colleague Neil Bibby, who moved a series of amendments to the bill, said it was "shocking" that the government was "ignoring the views of our police officers". Lib Dem MSP Mike Russell said the merger was the riskiest of three options put forward, saying that ministers had decided that the majority of those in the policing sector who opposed the move were wrong. However, Green member John Finnie said his party would support the bill on the condition there was no detriment to staff. Commenting after the bill was approved, Justice Secretary Michael Matheson said: "With this move we are ensuring that policing on Scotland's 93 million annual rail journeys is fully accountable to the people of Scotland and our parliament. "Making this change gives our railway officers access to the specialist resources of the UK's second largest police force including, crucially, counter-terrorism capabilities." http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-scotland-politics-40404532
  22. Mohibur Rahman was sentenced to 16 years in jail this year for wounding two restaurant workers. Mohibur Rahman Durham Constabulary failed to respond in time to phone calls from a man hours before he launched a frenzied knife attack on two restaurant workers because it did not have the resources, a police watchdog has said. Mohibur Rahman inflicted serious injuries on two restaurant workers in a ‘horrific’ knife attack Darlington on July 21, 2016. Rahman, 43, was given a 16-year sentence after pleading guilty to wounding at Teesside Crown Court on February 7 this year. He had made four 999 calls to Durham Constabulary and spent several hours in detention at Darlington custody suite for possession of a controlled substance in the 43 hours leading up to the attack. During this period, there was also a non-emergency 101 call from his landlady reporting criminal damage. He was on bail for grooming girls in Tyneside at the time. Rahman had called the police describing increasingly violent hallucinations, saying there were about 50 dead bodies inside his house, he could see spirits and a gun gang were after him. In his final 999 call he claimed he could see people with guns, which would have meant officers should have attended within one hour. But Sheila Reay, a priority dispatch centre supervisor at Durham Constabulary, told the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) the target for a priority dispatch is missed regularly "by which I mean during every shift". Another call centre handler told the IPCC very few priority jobs met the arrival target of one hour ‘due to a lack of officers and she was aware of some priority incidents not attended to for three to five hours. She said over 20 outstanding incidents used to be a busy day for the Darlington area but now under 30 was a good day. The call handler explained when there are several priority incidents waiting for officers to attend, part of her role, as a dispatcher, is to decide which priority incident to send officers to first, effectively "prioritising between the priorities”. Durham Constabulary referred the case to the IPCC but the investigator found none of the police call handling staff or police officers involved had a case to answer for misconduct. “Although Durham Constabulary did not send officers to Rahman’s address within their one hour target time in response to his final 999 call, in the investigator’s opinion, this was as a result of a lack of resources rather than any individual failure to follow policy,” the IPCC report stated. IPCC Operations Manager Lauren Collins said:“I’d like to offer our sympathies to everyone affected by this horrific attack on innocent people and to reassure the families involved and the public that we carried out a very thorough and detailed investigation. “Our investigators examined all of Durham Constabulary’s contact with Mohibur Rahman in the days prior to his attack. We reviewed the content of the calls made by him and his landlady and the CCTV footage from the custody suite. We also interviewed police officers and staff, and considered whether local and national policies were complied with. “Although there were no identifiable conduct issues, we have identified learning for Durham’s control room staff about how they handle calls concerning firearms. We have also reiterated the importance of accurately recording information received from callers and accurately recording actions taken as a result of those calls.” View on Police Oracle
  23. Mr Justice Mitting says witnesses need to know who was working covertly for police to give evidence to inquiry. One of the officers infiltrated the campaign for justice for Stephen Lawrence The cover names of at least two special operations or special demonstrations squad officers are to be made public. The Undercover Policing Inquiry, now chaired by Sir John Mitting, will release the assumed identities of two officers – despite acknowledging this will increase risks to them. One of the two apparently infiltrated the campaign for justice in the wake of Stephen Lawrence's murder in 1993, the other is someone who may have had sex while undercover. A statement from Sir John, referring to the individuals with coded references, says: "The Inquiry cannot fulfil its terms of reference on a critical issue – the alleged infiltration of the Lawrence family campaign and the intelligence gathered and reported upon it by undercover police officers, in particular HN81– unless the cover name is published. "It is essential that members of the group against which HN81 was deployed and others in the Lawrence family campaign should be able to give evidence about HN81’s actions. "They cannot sensibly be expected to do so unless they know who HN81 was in the name by which HN81 was known to them." He adds that it is likely that the move will have an adverse impact on the individual's mental health but says the public interest outweighs HN81's rights. Elsewhere he says: "Publication of the cover name of HN16 is necessary to afford an opportunity to any individual who may have had an intimate relationship with HN16 under the cover name to provide information and evidence about it to the Inquiry. "This involves a small risk of significant interference with the right to respect for private and family life of HN16, if it leads to the revelation of the real name of HN16." Another officer's cover name is to be released, the judge says, if the Met does not submit an application to stop this. No details have been given yet about what the officer, referred to as HN330, did while undercover. Sir John Mitting has taken over the inquiry from Sir Christopher Pitchford who stood down in June. Last year, it was determined that there would be no automatic anonymity for those who had worked covertly in the past and that applications for secrecy would be decided on a case-by-case basis. View on Police Oracle
  24. After sustained period of cuts, the APCC fears funding shortfall may lead to rise in crime, hurting police and state legitimacy https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/oct/29/england-and-wales-police-in-need-of-13bn-to-tackle-and-terrorism?CMP=twt_gu
  25. Staff were bestowed with the 'Sword of Honour'. NPAS staff, who do not wish to be named, alongside Police and Crime Commissioner Mark Burns-Williamson (far right) The National Police Air Service (NPAS) was presented with a prestigious national award in recognition of its outstanding contribution to aviation. The ‘Sword of Honour’ was presented by the Honorary Company of Air Pilots (HCAP) at a ceremony at London’s Guildhall on Thursday evening. This award marks the highest achievements and excellence within the aviation industry across the world and is being awarded to NPAS particularly for the part the service played in the emergency response to two of the UK’s terror attacks earlier this year. Chief Constable Dee Collins, QPM of West Yorkshire Police and Air Operations Certificate Holder for NPAS said: “I am delighted that NPAS have been recognised for their outstanding response to two major national incidents, one in Westminster and one in Manchester earlier this year. “The crews, across a number of NPAS bases and within the National Operations Centre, provided an unprecedented response and invaluable command and control of the incidents without which, both colleagues and communities would have been put at much greater risk. “Every day crews carry out remarkable work from a national network of 15 bases to keep communities safe and it is highly fitting that NPAS should receive such a prestigious award.” NPAS crews were recognised for their provision of sustained cover throughout the protracted duration of the incidents at Westminster Bridge, in March, and in Manchester, in June this year. Both of these attacks necessitated a sustained and unprecedented response from UK policing and from NPAS as a part of that to provide a continuous aerial view of the incidents as they unfolded. NPAS strategic board chairman and West Yorkshire Police PCC, Mark Burns-Williamson said: “NPAS winning a highly prestigious award reflects the outstanding efforts and work carried out in response to two major national incidents. “NPAS exists to reduce the risk to communities and during both these incidents an unprecedented response was provided to ensure the safety of the public and colleagues. “The response provided demonstrates the value of borderless air support provision to UK policing.” View on Police Oracle

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