Blast From the Past

Friday, June 23, 2006

People Lie About Crime

I found this news story online at BBC News. It is basically about people admitting they ring up the police and make up incidents/over exagerate in order to get a police response. Obviously I will leave it to Life of a Comms Operator and A Year In the Life of a Police Operator who have discussed the "non merits" of doing such a thing. However, it begs the question why do people do this.

Often (depending on the controller and their mood etc) will get sent to a "juvinile nuisence" and before I get sent the controller will occasionally add a comment. The most frequent one being "im sure its nothing except them just being young". What do they mean by this?

MoP View: "As they are young and hanging around, they will be waiting to pounce on someone and rob them and kick them in and kill them and vandalise my house and every other bad thing under the sun

Youth View: "There is bugger all to do in this dump so I am going to hang around the park kicking a ball about with a couple of mates until its time to grab some food"

Quite a difference. When I go to these jobs not only does it annoy me that I have been sent to it, it annoys the "youths" also. It annoys them because it makes them feel "criminal" when they have done nothing wrong whatsoever. We often tell them that their only crime is "being young" and sadly people just have a stereotype of a young person being up to no good all the time and nothing they do can be good.

Back to the original news story, what benefit do they have making something up? It gets a police response. Thats it. What happens when they genuinly need a police response but cant as police officers are currently otherwise engaged dealing with a made up report of youths kicking a car in and setting it on fire (as I was the other day). It turned out that these youths had just arrived on the park, this car had been set on fire the day before (it was stone cold, and no wet around it from where fire would have no doubt put it out and it wasnt there the day before the day before!)
The caller wanted me to give him the names and addresses of all these "hoodlems and little shits". When I told him I couldnt and wouldnt, he got a bit pissy at "my attitude" and the fact that it took me "half an hour to get there" (yes mate, im sure it did - I got sent here 5 minutes ago from the other side of town, so actually it didnt take me half an hour, it took the police service half an hour)

He was writing a "report" on my town (ohhhh nearly wrote my force name there without realising!!) which he was going to send to some newspapers/magazines. It was examining how much we are paid and where this money goes (as in deployment) and the hours we work. I was very tempted to "uriniate on his pile of combustion" and tell him that 1) I do this for free 2) will go home when I get fed up 3) have done 4 nights this week for free 5) he would have had to wait longer for a police response had I not got my lazy arse out of bed that day. Ofcourse being such a nice kind officer I am I simply made him feel happy about what he was doing . . . but alas, where does this tie in with the original story (I digress yet again!)

I reckon, that if it were only "actual police related calls" (I use that term in the best meaning way possible) that response times would increase as we actually have officers available to deal with proper jobs rather than silly little arguments which are of a civil matter and have shockingly actually been dispatched to!

So before you pick up that phone to make a call to the police, think about is it actually necesary! (Obviously if its an emergency do call! I am talking about the innocent group of youths playing footbal who are somehow when it gets to us, beating someone up and injecting each other with heroin!)


Dom said...

I totaly disagree with you there mate, I think if you lived in a bad area you would know what it feels like.

I would imagine some of the MoP do lie, but this isnt everyone, and when they do its down to two things they either want you out fast to deal with the problem that is intimidating them or they dont know any better and truly believe what they have told you.

The youth do not think like that, surly you was young once??? its cool to get done by the police, its cool to be out at night late with a beer with you mates and girls, its cool to carry a knife, its cool to be causing trouble, shouting, screaming, banging on windows, what youngster is left out at night with a football who isnt up to no good? yeah one or two maybe but a good majority NOT! seriously! And i bet in your job 99% of these scum bags you take home have bad young parents, the ones who wasnt cared for themselves when they wree young, so dont pass it on to thier kids.

Most kids love to rebel against the law and adults both good and bad kids, its a way of life but some scum bags go too far. I know one bunch of kids around my way who kick everyones fences in garunteed every Fri, Sat and sometimes Sun nights. One of the little wasters boasts about stabbing someone and everytime the police get called out (when i call them out i tell them the truth, look some kids are kicking in a fence, there is a group of about 5 to 7). Its a horrbile way to relax on the weekend having to worry what these buggers are going to do before the police ocme and send them in a diffrent direction for an hour or so.

I can see where your coming from SPC and if you read all this ok I hope you can see where im coming from, yes a lot of kids a victims of youth and peer pressure but thier are some real bad apples out thier so dont let that youth tag disarm you.

Well that should be it for now, great blog by the way.

ExtraSpecialCopper said...


I can actually see where your coming from in all honesty! I will be honest with you, I live bang in the middle of a very juvi nuicence "hot spot" and I might know they are not going to do anything but still I dont like going to the local tesco express as they are intimidating!

It is by no means an easy subject to talk about as we each have different views yet agree in certain places.

Oh to think of a life without youths causing problems :)

Thanks for your comments also its nice to start a discussion/debate :)

I do wonder though what happened to turn rebelious kids into violent obnoxious rebelious kids with no respect!

Dom said...

Im glad you could understand my ramble, for a moment there I thought no one would get me, :D

'I do wonder though what happened to turn rebelious kids into violent obnoxious rebelious kids with no respect! '

I truly do believe it is down to the parents because if you arent acocuntable to your parents why would you listen to anyone else? If you see what I mean. Its that kind of attitude "You cant tell me what to do, I can do whatever I want" and unfortunatley it escelates from giving back chat to people in respectable jobs teachers, police etc... to getting violent, stealing and even becoming hooked on drugs.

ExtraSpecialCopper said...

Totally agree, we have spoken to different types of parents.

Those who are really really dissapointed and genuinly didnt have a clue
Those who couldnt give a toss - infact your almost certain you nicked them the other day
Those who say that they are dissapointed and will punish their kids to find that the kids actually run the house and tell the parents to do as they say.

Shame isnt it :( Not often I come across catagory 1

Anonymous said...

LOL - we dont event ake them home, usually they run when they see us and if they don't they get sent on their way.. and thats only if they are doing something illegal, if they are just hanging around they dont even get moved on, I don't have time to waste on kids, for the past few weeks there has been between 9 and 15 people on briefing to cover a major city (minimum staffing level = 30) ah well, never mind!!

ExtraSpecialCopper said...

Blimey 9 - 15 people . . . sounds very similar to my place!
Taking them home is a last resort and tends to embarass them and show the others we mean it when we say bugger off. Obviously I am not going to come back and take them all home as 1) that would be a huge waste of time 2) the first ones we took home will have returned as we are taking the last ones home 3) there are better things to do than play taxi!

Thanks for reading :)

Joe90 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Joe90 said...

All The Police need is the authorisation to shoot these youngters on site, after all they are worse than murderers and rapists, right?

Anonymous said...





Anonymous said...


politicaluniform said...

Hmmmm. I would suggest people only lie about crime because of their relative perceptions about it: they think it is serious. When us cynical buggers turn up we tend to dismiss it as nothing. Its not made easy by the fact the kind of stuff that makes people's residential lives a misery is rarely constitute substantive criminal offences and about all we can do is say "I'll pass your concerns to the neighbourhood team" or whatever label its given in whatever part of the country you're in.

The problem with the kind of stuff Dom is talking about, when there are criminal offences, is proof. He'd be brave if he was prepared to stand in court and identify the scrote who is kicking the fences in. CPS wouldn't even consider advising a charge without an independent witness. We might arrest them on initial information, but it'd never go further than that.

The little scrotes know this, they soooooooooo know this. Which is why they carry on with impunity trashing whatever they feel like. It takes a brave resident to be prepared to stand up to it.

Unrelated PS: I have reciprocated the link ;-)

ExtraSpecialCopper said...

interesting the point made about the cps here . . . the little buggers know exactly how to play the system which is probably why they (some of the ones I have come across) boast about being arrested loads but never having anything done about it

Gargoyle said...

It was great to discover your blog. I was deciding if I should start my own blog today and, seeing yours, I thought, "Why not". I am living and working in Australia as a Scenes of Crime Officer, basically forensics for volume crimes, such as Burglary, Stealings and Assaults, etc. It's good to see Policing in the UK is so similar to here. Same things that p*** us off!

ExtraSpecialCopper said...

gargoyle, welcome to the happy world of blogging! Have added you to my side bar!

Mystic mog said...

You know now all about the "two sides to every story!" After ringing in about little darlings hanging about (and in an increasingly "elderly" environment they all look a bit threatening!) Getting no response from the call taker they then ring in again and mention the magic word "WEAPON" (mostly "knife) as "Gun" is not really likely amongst 10/12yr olds in rural Oxfordshire! This of course the call taker cannot ignore - So "boots and saddles"
and so on and so on !!
I feel a rant coming on - I will do a blog entry on it I think

Another Constable said...

Rest assured, callers who up the ante to generate a police response can and do get an £80 fine for wasting police time.

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