People in Glass Houses really shouldn’t.
I wasn’t going to write about this sorry saga, I’m sure numerous other people will have done so already, but it got the better of me.
This is, of course, the story of the now infamous meeting between 3 Police Federation Representatives and foul-mouthed Andrew Mitchell MP.
As a direct result of this meeting West Mercia Police conducted a disciplinary investigation into the conduct of the three Federation reps. It has been stated that West Mercia Police referred the investigation to the IPCC, who declined to investigate it, but made a decision to ‘Supervise’ the West Mercia disciplinary investigation. To the best of my knowledge that is exactly what happened.
After conducting what I assume was a thorough investigation into the conduct of the 3 officers West Mercia Police announced that there was no evidence of Misconduct or Gross Misconduct on the part of the 3 Fed Reps. That really should have been the end of it, but oh no, Deborah Glass, Deputy Chair of the IPCC and IPCC Commissioner for the LONDON area, decided that wasn’t good enough.
For some really obscure reason she has publicly stated that the West Mercia investigation, whilst carried out to her apparent satisfaction appears to have reached the wrong findings. She says that three Police Federation officials may have given a “deliberately misleading” account of a meeting with the Conservative MP, who has always denied calling officers in Downing Street “plebs.” and ”the evidence indicates an issue of honesty and integrity.”. Her organisation, the IPCC Supervised this enquiry from start to finish, and now she comes out and says something like that. The I in IPCC stands for Independent, Really?
It truly doesn’t say much for the credibility and ability of the IPCC if she can go all loose cannon on us and come out with a statement like that which surely reflects as much on the IPCC as it does West Mercia Police.
Then, our revered Home Secretary, Theresa May, bundled into the arguement saying things like “she felt that disciplinary proceedings should have been taken against the Police Federation officers.” and “the IPCC’s report “made troubling reading”.
At the end of the day Andrew Mitchell has NEVER made a complainst against any Police Officers in relation to this matter.
Despite claims to the contrary, whilst he has been vociferous in denying what he was attributed as saying, he has not yet publicly stated what he DID say, although he maintains that he has a clear memory of what he said.
I can only conclude that this is another chapter in the ongoing war between the Government and the Police. The IPCC have chosen their side and stand alongside Andrew Mitchell and Theresa May.
As @OldBill_43 put it yesterday “I have had court cases resulting in acquittals. Would it be OK to issue press releases stating how convinced I am of their guilt?”
If this is British Justice at it’s best, Guity when found Innocent, then I fear for the future of our country.