So Just When Will Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe Resign?

I’m sure you don’t need reminding that Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe is the ‘top cop’ in the land, the Commissioner of Police for the Metropolis, Big Cheese, Top Johnny. He is in charge.

Under his stewardship we have seen one of the biggest scandals to rock the Met for decades, (but by no means the only one, where do I start?).  The recording of Crime Statistics for Metropolitan Police District.

It has been known by almost everyone within the Met that Crime Figures have been fiddled, it has been going on for decades and quite probably since the very first year that numerical targets were first introduced.

The then Police Constable James Patrick (amongst others) gave evidence to the Public Administration Select Committee and they eventually reported back that crime figures were being manipulated.

Tom Winsor of Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary admitted that the manipulation of crime figures was taking place. The UK Statistics Authority withdrew the Met’s gold standard national statistics status. Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, was forced to admit the numbers were being fiddled and said the issue was a cause for concern.

FOUR eminent authorities all admitting that Crime Stats were being fiddled.

So what happened next? Was it put right?  Is all OK now?

Personally I have no idea whether I can yet trust the Met’s Crime Stats.

What happened next is that Police Constable James Patrick was hounded out of his job for daring to speak up.

Bernard Jenkin, the chair of the parliamentary committee that investigated the manipulation of crime stats, said: “The most depressing part of our inquiry is the way in which the Metropolitan police have treated my constituent, PC James Patrick, who was our key witness.”

The Grauniad went so far as to report this;

The Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) made repeated attempts to silence a whistleblower who exposed the widespread manipulation of crime statistics, it has emerged.

Documents seen by the Guardian show that senior officers made three separate attempts to stop PC James Patrick speaking out over the course of less than five months.”

Not a very honourable course of conduct in my opinion.

We also have the sorry tale of the TSG6, also on Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe’s watch.  If you missed that story previously you can read the transcript here.

In the last few months two senior people have resigned from Tesco due to ‘an accounting error’.  First we had the Finance Director falling on his sword, and just this week the Chairman.

So isn’t it about time that someone from the Met fell on their ceremonial sword and resigned as a point of honour over the most dishonourable things that appear to have happened, not to mention ‘an accounting error’ i.e. the Crime Stats?

Anyone want to run a book on when this will happen?

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Stating The Bleeding Obvious

What is it that’s so bleeding obvious?

That the Met has lost its way.  Never before have I known it to flounder and flap around like a fish out of water as they are at the moment under their current leadership, Sir Bernard Hogan-Who and his team of muppets.  Even in the disappointing times under McNee (The Rubber Hammer) they were a more positive organisation than they are today.

Take the case of James Patrick. I’m not going to bore the pants off you by repeating everything, and James is currently waiting his Employment Tribunal, but just look at what’s already in the public domain about his treatment by the Met and the disciplinary matters that have arisen.

He was subject to Gross Misconduct proceedings, a review by an outside Force decreed this constituted no more than Misconduct. A process that hung over his head for 18 months or more was concluded in a hearing lasting no more than 10 minutes, you can read James’ views of this elsewhere.

James decided that be had no alternative but to resign, then whilst serving his ‘notice’ was served with further discipline papers alleging Gross Misconduct once more. James has now the left the Met, as you know, but has the disciplinary process been staid? No it has not. James now runs the risk of facing a disciplinary hearing after his resignation, possibly in his absence, and be added to CoP’s list of Struck-Off officers, with all the consequences of that. This seems to me to be driven by spite and revenge. The Met clearly don’t know how to handle a man like James, but is this any way for an ethical organisation to behave?

Take the case of the TSG6 as highlighted by Tessa Munt MP recently. She was covered by Parliamentary Privilege when she made her revelations but they were absolutely staggering, accusing senior members of the Met of criminal acts, and, once again, highly questionable behaviour by Directorate of Professional Standards officers. You can read the transcript or watch the video elsewhere. Is this any way for an ethical organisation to behave?

Call me picky but I can’t think of a single Freedom of Information request that I have submitted (in relation to James) where the Met has actually told me anything. On at least one occasion I truly believe that the Met has LIED to me.

Another FOI is delayed while they consider the Health and Safety implications of supplying me with a set of Minutes of a meeting.

In relation to another I have asked for a redacted copy of a letter sent to James by DPS. They have refused this request on the grounds of Personal Data. The only Personal Data this letter could contain is someone’s name, i.e. the author of the letter.

This from an organisation that has had a policy for over 10 years that officers will display their first name and surname on their uniform or name badge.

So Personal Data under the terms of the Data Protection Act doesn’t really float does it?

Members of the House of Commons and the House of Lords have expressed their disapproval of James’ treatment at the hands of the Met. Is this any way for an ethical organisation to behave?

The Met briefed Counsel to oppose James at the first hearing of his Employment Tribunal, specifically to oppose Interim Relief, which, if granted, would have ensured a basic income continued up until his ET was settled one way of the other.  A few thousand pounds. The Met spends millions on defending actions, paying compensation for something or other.  There was a time when the Met would pay up without even questioning what it was for, but thankfully those days are over at least.  All in all it has the smell of VINDICTIVE about the whole sorry saga..   Is this the way an ethical organisation should behave?

I find myself with three questions;

  1. Are the Senior Management of the Met and the officers of Directorate of professional Standards so out of control that they can treat their ‘underlings’ in this manner with impunity?
  2. Is this merely blind panic as they find themselves in a situation they don’t know how to deal with and haven’t got the balls to admit it?
  3. What on earth would happen if a PC/PS/DC/DS etc treated a member of the public, or even the criminal fraternity, with such venom and apparently a total lack of regard for Disclosure and the law in general?

 

It wouldn’t be a pat on the back and a quiet retirement I assure you, but then I’m stating the bleeding obvious again.

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The End of a Chapter

As you all know I have been banging the drum and asking you all to donate for James Patrick.

Good news – he has now received all the monies donated so far, and has found some employment to help towards his legal costs for his Employment Tribunal, which is due for hearing in September I believe.

James has publicly thanked his donors via Twitter and he sends his thanks to all of you who don’t Twat, or whatever it’s called.  Accordingly he has asked me to stop fundraising on his behalf, so that is exactly what I am doing.

Onwards and upwards, good luck with your Tribunal, your work with COPACC and your new venture into the world of novella writing.  This chapter has ended, let’s see what the next one holds.

It’s been fun, I’ll have a sleep now, and maybe get a new quill.

The James Patrick Update

James Patrick is now plain old Mr Patrick, PC James Patrick belongs to a different life.

Monies raised to date are in the process of being transferred to James and his wife now that he has left the employ of the Metropolitan Police Service,and has yet, as far as I am aware, to find another gainful employment.  That is far from the end of the story.

Many of you have already donated and I am not about to ask you to donate again, that is entirely your business, and you can make that decision without any influence from me.

There have been significant donations from abroad, Canada, USA, Switzerland and Africa, from people who do not know James, but appreciate the position that he is in and have donated to the fund.

I am simply asking this;

If you haven’t already donated please consider doing so now.  I know that some of you have had some reservations about donating to this appeal for a variety of reasons, and some have expressed concerns about using a Paypal account for the purpose.

All I can say in reply is that James IS receiving the monies raised, and, while I haven’t asked him, I’m sure he would be willing to confirm that fact, so if you haven’t previously donated, please consider doing so now.

Thank you

From within your opening screen (after logging in to your account) choose Send Money

Send it to the following email address

XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

Enter the amount in GBP you wish to send

Click on “I’m sending money to family or friends” This option should be free of charges unless you pay by Credit Card and the money ends up in exactly the same account as if you had pressed the Donate Button.

A little more complicated and it only works for Paypal account holders but every fee that we can reduce is more for the Fighting Fund

For more info please see

http://www.wikihow.com/Send-Money-via-PayPal

I thank you

Please do it for James. #Justice4PCPatrick

THIS FUND IS NOW CLOSED

More Than One Way To Skin A Cat

There most certainly is.

If you live and work in the UK, at, say, maybe somewhere like the Met for example, you could be what they like to call a ‘Whistleblower’.  You can report wrongdoing, corruption, unacceptable practices, maybe even dodgy #Crimestats to your management, the bosses, those people that have taken the place of Leaders in the Met.  In return you can get shafted, publicly maligned, bullied, humiliated, forced to the point of taking your employer to a Tribunal only to be deprived by them of all your income.  I have it on good authority that things like that happen occasionally. Allegedly.

Or you could do it the Irish way. No this is not a Paddy joke, bear with me, read on.

Irish barrister Sean Guerin conducted an investigation into claims of corruption and malpractice in the Garda after allegations by Garda Whistleblower Sergeant Maurice McCabe.

The report vindicates Sgt McCabe, but finds that Garda Síochána and former minister for justice Alan Shatter failed in their duties to properly investigate matters raised by Sergeant McCabe.

The report  says that a comprehensive commission of investigation is “desirable in the public interest” to ensure “continuing confidence in the institution of An Garda Síochána and the criminal justice system”.

Responding to the report, Taoiseach Enda Kenny said that a root and branch analysis of the policy and practice of the administration of justice in Ireland is now needed. Mr Kenny said the Dail would debate the content of the Guerin report next week and he would welcome the contributions of all members.

This is not just about politics, it is about getting it right for the people of our country, for the citizens, for the next generation, for everybody to have integrity, belief and faith in the Garda Siochana, in the accountability, in the transparency in the way it is run,” he said.

Sgt McCabe expressed his thanks to Fianna Fail leader Michael Martin for taking on his case and forwarding his file outlining his concerns over garda conduct to Taoiseach Enda Kenny.

Mr Guerin found that the “overall impression given by the internal Garda investigative process was that complaints or matters of concern were put through a process of filtration or distillation so that, by the end of the process, any matter of concern had been removed as a form of impurity, and only what was good was found to remain.”   Maybe that sounds familiar to some of you, I don’t know.

You can read the full press report here.

There is/was a campaign in the Met called the Do It Right campaign.  Come on MPS – Do It Right

What’s Your Favourite Tipple?

Costas?

Starbucks?

Cafe Nero?

White Wine Spritzer?

Gin and Tonic?

A Pint of Foaming Ale?

How about donating the cost of just ONE drink to the James Patrick Fighting Fund?

Since I started these blogs for fundraising they have been read by over 3,000 people from a couple of dozen countries around the world.  Donations have been received from USA, Canada, Switzerland and Africa as well as the UK, but the total number of individual donations is only just over 130.  That’s not many out of 3,000 potential donors, plus the total number of serving and former Police Officers.

Not everybody CAN give, I get that.  Not everybody still serving feels comfortable, I get that too.  But if you CAN give and you haven’t already, please think about giving the cost of your favourite tipple, just once even.

Certain sections of the Press that ran James’s story to sell some papers now look as they may have given up on the story, or maybe there’s just more important news to fill their papers, who knows.  The bottom line is that James could do with a barrister in September(ish) to help him slay the dragon Met.  Your cup of coffee will definitely help James in his quest, and we know his fight is honourable. Are the Met’s intentions honourable?  Are we going to leave him to fall to the flames of the Met’s dragon?

 

Sir Bernard Hogan-Who hasn’t donated yet, but you can, here.
If you have a Paypal Account it’s easy;

From within your opening screen (after logging in to your account) choose Send Money

Send it to the following email address

justice4pcpatrickAToutlookDOTcom (see what I did there?) (substitute an “@” and a “.” as appropriate)

Enter the amount in GBP you wish to send

Click on “I’m sending money to family or friends” This option should be free of charges unless you pay by Credit Card and the money ends up in exactly the same account as if you had pressed the Donate Button.

A little more complicated and it only works for Paypal account holders but every fee that we can reduce is more for the Fighting Fund

For more info please see

http://www.wikihow.com/Send-Money-via-PayPal

I thank you

Please do it for James. #Justice4PCPatrick

THIS FUND IS NOW CLOSED

An Open Letter to Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe and Mr Tom Winsor

You are both well aware of the total furore that has erupted in past months about the alleged ‘fiddling’ of crime figures.

I am aware Mr Winsor that your HMIC recently published an interim report on the matter and I am in the process of digesting it.  To help you with the rest of your report, and to better inform Sir Bernard on how it’s done I thought I’d put together a little montage of genuine ways in which crimes have been ‘distorted’ or ‘misrepresented’ over a large number of years.

It will also help the public to better understand what all the fuss has been about but because the majority of it has been about Rape allegations, but it exists in so many other areas as well.

In no particular order

Criminal Damage (Value under £20) for many years that would have been No Crime’d  by Force Policy since the early 70s, but a crime had still been committed (allegedly).

House/Shop/Car window smashed – No Crime, window broken by stone thrown up from passing lorry/bus/car wheel.

Attempted Burglary classified as Criminal Damage.  Arguments will rage forever over this one, but we all know it happened.

Post Sentence Visits to convicted felons in prison to ‘Clear Up’ some outstanding crimes. A dubious practice designed solely to influence the Clear Up Rate, I doubt that any outstanding stolen property was ever recovered and restored to the victim.

Bringing prisoners out of prison to the police station cells and driving them round so that they could point out the houses they had burgled.  See my previous comments above.

A local prolific burglar for example dies, suddenly he seems to have been credited with a large proportion of the unsolved crimes, shown as Cleared Up. Dubious to say the least.

Theft Person being classified as No Crime, property lost in the street.  The nature of ‘Dipping’ is that the victim is frequently unaware of the offence at the time of commission, that is no reason to record it as Property Lost, if there is some credible evidence that it has been stolen then the appropriate classification should be used. However, there are tales such as this “Known Dipping.. CID sent out a memo. We Had to ask the question. If it ‘could’ have have fallen out, the bag was open. report it as Loss in the street!  Even though it was at the bottom of a bag”

Now this one’s rapidly becoming a favourite of mine.  Theft of a large bird from garden premises, classified as No Crime – bird flew away. It was made of concrete.

Fraud was never properly investigated for years because it was no-one’s priority crime.

I have heard recently of one Attempted Burglary being classified as No Crime because “a trapped, enraged bumblebee caused the damage to the window?”

Assaults with counter allegations were frequently classified as No Crime instead of two or more assaults, even one would have been better.

Assaults where the victim refused to substantiate the allegation even where there was corroborating evidence in the form of CCTV footage. Shouldn’t be No Crime’d. It;’s still a crime, it’s just the victim doesn’t want to go to Court.

Burglaries in bedsits, hotels or offices with multiple victims that all went down as one burglary.

Offences of Criminal Damage by Graffiti were frequently classified No Crime if they could be cleaned off.

A whole road of cars damaged – one Criminal Damage with 24 victims. 24 Crimes same venue?

“Another favourite was number plates stolen…..no they fell off. Both front and back. No crime”

“Kited cheques with obvious intent – No crime, victim referred to bank. And… obvious frauds using cloned cards etc – victim referred to bank.”

“A certain concert venue somewhere in South London where people were never dipped, they just danced so hard that their phones fell out of their pockets/handbags and were lost. No crime”

“I tried reporting Crim Damage. Occupants in lounge, saw group walking past , making a noise and saw one throw a brick to someone on opposite footpath. Over threw and it smashed glass in door. I put it in as crim damage but got memo saying it was an attempt burglary. I tried to argue my corner but crime desk wouldn’t have it. Strange decision.”

“I retired 2 years ago having spent my last 4 years in the Met heading up the XXXX Crime Management Unit. All crime classification change requests came through my team. I have seen all manner of stupidity. The range is incredible. From a DS who became an internet expert on the thermo-dynamics of sealed double glazing units and how a sudden drop in overnight temperature can cause them to shatter! He wanted an attempted burglary no crimed. Unfortunately, the dets already explained how the victim actually disturbed the suspect walking down the shingle path below the window, and found the brick used to smash the window too…..! The other extreme being the self appointed “hate crime champion” for one borough who liked to remove Racial flags (on undetected crimes of course..) on the basis the Mr Ahmed (sic) must have been mistaken in his belief that the only reason he felt he was the victim of race crime was because none of his white neighbours had dog shit continually posted through his front door. Sadly, I have too many stories like these, as well as more about those who were too spineless to respond to official reports of such corrupt practices. Believe me PC Patrick is very brave, but his story merely scratches the surface.”

“I remember a smash and grab at a pet shop where an expensive Macaw parrot was stolen there were no witnesses no CCTV. The D/S on the crime desk wrote it off as No Crime putting it down to the parrot making a successful escape from captivity after the shop front window was broken by, as mentioned earlier on this post a stone thrown up by a passing vehicle!”

Sir Bernard, PC Patrick has given the more analytical version and I have given you actual examples from current or former officers. May be you could explain to the public exactly why you didn’t invite PC Patrick to become part of the solution, and continued to oppress him, eventually instigating further disciplinary matters during his period of Notice?

Mr Winsor, your team have completed the first part of their study, maybe they would like to look for examples such as these when they do the next part.

Mind you Mr Winsor I’m disappointed that you didn’t mention on Radio 4 the other morning that you have already met with Constable Patrick.  Gives people the wrong impression.

Maybe, Sir Bernard, you or Mr Winsor would like to contribute to the James Patrick Fighting Fund, if you have a Paypal Account it’s easy;

From within your opening screen (after logging in to your account) choose Send Money

Send it to the following email address

justice4pcpatrickAToutlookDOTcom (see what I did there?) (substitute an “@” and a “.” as appropriate)

Enter the amount in GBP you wish to send

Click on “I’m sending money to family or friends” This option should be free of charges unless you pay by Credit Card and the money ends up in exactly the same account as if you had pressed the Donate Button.

A little more complicated and it only works for Paypal account holders but every fee that we can reduce is more for the Fighting Fund

For more info please see

http://www.wikihow.com/Send-Money-via-PayPal

I thank you

Please do it for James. #Justice4PCPatrick

THIS FUND IS NOW CLOSED

Thank You