Blast From the Past

Monday, January 29, 2007

Police on Speed

I have already looked at taxi drivers, mobile phone users and those who dont wear seatbelts and not forgetting speed cameras!

What about all the stories we hear about how naughty the police are as we speed all the time. Sometimes without the blue lights and sirens.

Just to clear up to members of the public who may be unaware.

Section 87 Road Traffic Regulations Act 1984 exempts certain emergency vehicles from speed limits if observance would hinder the use of the vehicle for the purpose it was being used for on that occasion.

Basically, if sticking to the speed limits would hinder the emergency/incident, then the police (and other services outlined in Section 87) then they can speed.

This means that
  • Blue lights do not have to be used
  • Sirens do not have to be used
  • If a police car is speeding and doesnt have blue lights and sirens going, doesnt always mean that they are just speeding for the hell of it (obviously sometimes it does)
  • If a police car wacks its lights on overtakes you turns them off and bombs it off, they are not always late for the Kebab house run, they may be going somewhere urgently but dont want to give the fact away to who they are looking for.
Obviously, this leads to many problems.

1) The moaning member of public. This is the sort of person who goes out of their way to find a non story, and blow it out of proportion. Such stories include the caller complaining that the police car went through a red light "too fast" or just the fact that they did it, that they were not wearing a seat belt at the same time as having the person in the back of the car jumping all over the place (kicking off).
This sort of thing is something that happens quite often. This is one of the latest stories.

You might even get the odd disalusioned person saying things such as

"Speed cameras, and the way speed is being enforced, are criminalising everybody, but the police's own people are let off"

Nigel Humphries of the Association of British Drivers. Lets see what he says when his house is being burgled with him being threatened with a knife or a gun and to have the police stuck in traffic, or making at the speed limit from 20 miles away.

2) The more serious stories crop up from time to time which involve police vehicle accidents.
Apparently, according to the good old Home Office anyway, 126 people died as a result of an accident involving a police vehicle between 2000 and 2004.

Everytime a police officer gets into a car, they could be open to being charged with driving without due care and attention or even dangerous driving should something happen. Examples of this can be found here here and there are many times when a crash happens which injures or kills an officer.
Not forgetting cases such as PC Milton - these dont help in what the public think of police driving!

What should be done about it though??
How many times on an average shift do officers go to a grade one (blue light job). Many thousand times a day across the country. How many of these result in an accident?

What would happen if there was no exemption? People would critisise the police for taking too long to get somewhere, for not doing enough.

This just relates back to my good old theory of damned if we do, damned if we dont.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

This Week

Following my last few posts on Prisons, this week I shall focus on "traffic laws" and stories to do with traffic.

As for my previous theme, let me know what you think to this idea below!

Theme Weeks
Yes! Great Idea!
Nah, its rubbish
Themes? I didnt notice

Friday, January 26, 2007

Britain Britain Britain!

Is this the only country where if your a dangerous sick (as in perverted) criminal, you dont get sent to prison yet if you "hack" a Royals phone, you get sent to prison.

Now I know which one I would rather see locked up!!

In the words of Inspector G "You couldnt make it up"

Aint it Funny

Scroatsville has been hit quite badly over the past few months with robberies in a specific area.

Solution: An operation
Details: Have dedicated plain clothes and marked patrols in the area
Sucessful: Yes - the main offender was caught in the act and arrested.
But really, was it sucessful: No - the offender that we caught is still out and about doing robberys and keeps getting arrested.

Surely he shouldnt be out on the streets!

A solution to this??

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Prison II

My last post looked at how "bad" prisons apparently are.

This time, a look around the world - I shall let you see how nice and cushty prisoners in Britain are compared to the rest. As always, please let me know your views.


Criminals in the former Soviet state are still sent to the “gulags”

Russia has 900,000 prisoners and many are held in the 120 remote hard labour camps which date from Communist dictator Stalin’s brutal reign.

During winter temperatures can fall to -40°C. Inmates are expected to cover their own costs and often have to cut timber in bitter conditions to earn cash.

City jails are just as tough. Kresty prison in St Petersburg, where revolutionary Leon Trotsky was once held, was built for 1,000 inmates — but now holds ten times that figure.

Up to 14 people share cells measuring just over 9ft by 9ft.

Food is very basic and rationed and Russian prisoners complain of malnourishment.

The conditions have led to poor health among inmates with one in ten contracting TB.

Russia’s crime rate is 1,754 per 100,000 people. However, the country has an extremely high murder rate — four times that of America.


Greece has a prison population of around 8,841 in 25 boot camp-style jails.

In Athens’s Drapetsona detention centre, inmates — who can be detained there for up to a year — sleep on the floor, receive only basic food and little medical care.

Prisoners are expected to buy their own toothpaste and other toiletries and use crude toilet and washing facilities.

Detainees here are not allowed access to social workers or other state services. Greece’s largest jail is the Korydallos Prison Complex, which houses some 2,200 inmates.

Its claustrophobic cells measure 6½ft by 10ft and prisoners are confined to their beds while under lock and key.

Criminals on remand in Athens’s Kolonos police station jail also sleep on cell floors and are not allowed baths or hot water.

Wardens feed them just one basic meal each day.

Greek crime is 4,145 offences for every 100,000 inhabitants.

Saudi Arabia

Westerners held inside Saudi Arabia’s no-mercy penal system often complain about harsh conditions — but very few risk becoming repeat offenders.

Around 23,000 adult inmates are behind bars in 30 jails and more than half are foreign nationals.

Saudi’s largest prison al-Hair, in the capital of Riyadh, is modern and clean but offers only the most basic of “comforts”.

Jailed British expats complain of brutal conditions in al-Hair and other Saudi jails. They claim wardens regularly use axe handles and iron bars to extract confessions.

Four hundred prisoners held at Al-Jawf’s central prison recently rioted over conditions.

Inmates wanted newspapers, doors on bathrooms and recreation facilities.

Saudi has just 405 offences per 100,000 people — the lowest crime rate of the nations on this page.


Scores of inmates leave Brazil’s tough prison system before the end of their sentences — but only in wooden boxes.

Brazil’s 512 prisons — known as presídios — are among the harshest in the world.

Sao Paulo’s Carandiru jail is Latin America’s largest jail, holding 6,500 inmates.

Prisoners live in dormitory cells laid out along long corridors. Inmates depend on relatives to provide bedding, mattresses, clothing and toiletries.

Brazil also locks up criminals inside local police jails. These often consist of a covered patio flanked by cells.

An inmate in one such jail in Minas Gerais said: “Every Friday we have a full search. Everyone is forced to strip naked and wait on the patio, often in the cold.”

Conditions at Mata Grande Penitentiary in Rondonopolis are so bad inmates regularly riot or try to escape. Thirteen were killed during one break in March 2000.

Brazil has just 927 offences per 100,000 people.


The French prison system is said to suffer from serious overcrowding and unhygienic conditions.

A recent report by the Paris-based International Observatory of Prisons revealed the average jail was working 25 per cent beyond its capacity.

In Mans prison for instance, 135 people share just 45 places.

The report also claimed conditions in most jails were unsanitary and the head doctor of Paris’s La Sante prison has told how mattresses were filled with lice, cells were infested with rats and inmates became so depressed they swallowed rat poison.

A report by the Council Of Europe also described French jails as “repulsively dirty”.

France has a much smaller prison population than Britain, with 61,000 inside. Its crime rate is 6,932 reported offences for every 100,000 people.


The US got tough on their dangerous criminals by building “super-max” prisons.

They are used to hold the worst kinds of murderers and rapists.

One of the harshest regimes is in Ohio state penitentiary in Youngstown where prisoners spend 23 hours a day in small, sealed metal cells.

Cell lights are never turned off and lags are never allowed outside into the fresh air. They are granted just one hour of exercise a day, undertaken alone in a bare room.

Whenever an inmate leaves the cell block they have to wear a set of rigid metal handcuffs.

There are more than 50 such supermax jails for the “worst of the worst”.

The country has 1.96million prisoners and the crime rate dropped last year.

There were 4,118 crimes per 100,000 people in 2002.

Friday, January 19, 2007


Facts about prison

  • Up to three-quarters of men in UK prisons suffer from two or more mental disorders.
  • One in four women in prison has spent time in local authority care as a child
  • The number of 15-17 year olds in prison has more than doubled over the last ten years
  • It costs over £40,000 per year to keep a person in prison
  • 67.4% of all prisoners re-offend within two years of release
  • The suicide rate for men in prison is five times that of men in the community
  • Almost one third of suicides occur within the first week in custody, 1 in 7 within 2 days
  • One study found that 72% of those who committed suicide in prison had a history of mental disorder
  • Boys in prison aged 15-17 are eighteen times more likely to kill themselves than in the community
  • Almost 1 in 5 of those held on remand before trial were acquitted or not proceeded against
  • Recalled prisoners now make up nearly 11% of the population of local prisons
  • One third of all women in prison had no previous convictions
  • The majority of women in prison are held for non-violent offences
  • Nearly two thirds of women in prison have a drug problem
  • Over half of the women in prison have suffered domestic abuse, 1 in 3 sexual abuse
  • It is estimated that 150,000 children have a parent in prison
  • England & Wales has the highest number of life sentanced prisoners in Europe. It has more than German, France, Italy and Turkey - combined.
  • 30% of people released from prison will have nowhere to live
  • Over half of all prisoners are at or below the level of an 11 year old at reading
  • Just under half of all male prisoners were excluded from school
Does prison work? Does it rehabilitate people? Does it solve matters? More importantly, does it reduce crime?

Is it time to actually tackle the causes of crime, the upbringing of a child & parenting.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

What I Saw Today

A driving instructor driving about on his phone. I do wonder what he would say if one of his pupils decided to do this.

Another thing I saw today . . .

Why is it perfectly legal for someone to, whilst driving, mess about in their handbag looking for their fags, find them, open the packet, stick a fag in their mouth, search around for the lighter, attempt to light the cigarette, find the lighter doesnt work so have to pay even more attention to the lighter trying to get it to work, even using their other hand.
However, its illegal to hold something to your ear and will soon carry 3 points and £60 fine.

Go figure.

(by the way, before I get jumped on, I do not think using a phone whilst driving is a good idea)

Monday, January 15, 2007

Ok Sarge

Start duty at 1800 hours, get kitted up etc with another special. Aim of the night, (just like any other regular night ie. same shift each week) is to take out a car and respond to jobs and in the quiet hours to get a few competencies for my collegue.

Off I go to get a car and there are quite a few hanging up so instead of taking on I go and ask the sergeant if I can have one.

"Sarge, can I borrow a car this evening please, you got a few hanging up"
"What are you doing tonight?"

I then explain what I am doing, and that I do the same thing when I go out with another special.

Sgt.: "Well, I rather you didnt have a marked car"
Me: "How come if I can ask?"
Sgt: "Incase you get flagged down by someone"
Me: "Yeah and...?"
Sgt. "Incase you dont know what they want"
Me: "Riiiiight"

Off I go and get a plain car.

2 FPN's
2 PND's
1 arrested for assault
1 arrested for drink driving
2 crimes booked on with statements taken
12 "incidents" attended

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Nobody Available

This has probably been posted already but hey!

George Phillips of Scroatsville was going up to bed when his wife told him that he'd left the light on in the garden shed, which she could see from the bedroom window.

George opened the back door to go turn off the light but saw that there were people in the shed stealing things.

He phoned the police, who asked "Is someone in your house?" and he said "no".
Then they said that all patrols were busy, and that he should simply lock his door and an officer would be along when available.

George said , " Okay," hung up, counted to 30, and phoned the police again.

"Hello, I just called you a few seconds ago because there were people in my shed. Well, you don't have to worry about them now cause I've just shot them all." Then he hung up.

Within five minutes three police cars, an Armed Response unit, a dog handler, and an ambulance showed up at the Phillips' residence and caught the burglars red-handed.

One of the Policemen said to George: "I thought you said that you'd shot them!"

George said, "I thought you said there was nobody available!"

Thursday, January 11, 2007

PC Copperfield

It appears DC has been on the news again which is brilliant! Also seems that we may be in the same/neighbouring force too.

Alas, here is the link.


Monday, January 08, 2007

Hell Hath No Fury a lesbian domestic. Not the PC word to use, but I dont really care as im not saying it in an offensive way!

Anyhow, arrive to the flat, open the door and see blood everywhere.

"Shit, whats happened" I think to myself. I find someone on the floor, and this once again makes me very worried.

Its ok though, they are cleaning up the blood. The person causing the blood is her partner, Anne. Carol was a nice lass and easy to talk to. She explained that her partner isnt all there in the head at the moment, and this has been made worse by alcohol. She then gets Anne's sister on the phone to tell me exactly the same thing.

There is glass all over the floor, so the obvious question of "how did this happen" is asked.
Anne had smashed a photo of her and Carol, and cut her hand. She didnt want to be seen by ambulance and would rather bleed to death - apparently.

I kid you not there was blood all over the floor and wallks - it looked like a scene out of Kill Bill.

No offences, but one has to go to prevent further breach of the peace. Now this is where the problems start.

Both Anne and Carol are very emotional and crying their eyes out and shouting, although this is mainly Anne. Anne is shouting how much she loves Carol and doesnt want to leave her.


Now Anne was quite, how can I put it, erm, Butch! She began to get very rowdy, but then was calmed down and insisted on hugging my collegue, covering her in blood.

Her mother then turned up (Anne's, not my collegues!) and my goodness, she put her in place! Well, for a while she did anyway. We went round and round in circles

  • Tell Anne she is going to her mums
  • Anne screaming to Carol that she loves her
  • Carol screaming that she wants her to go
  • Anne's mum telling Anne to shut up and get out
  • Get Anne to the door, then back to stage one
This happened for quite a while. Eventually after we all got covered in blood from this hand wound (still refusing to be seen by paramedics) we got her out the flat into her mums car. They drove off as we went to our car to follow. The mum had gone though.

We got halfway back to the nick and as I was updating control about the sitation, we got a further call to say that Anne had returned.
So back we go to the flat, it turns out that she had literally jumped out of her mums car halfway to her mums, and used her keys to get back into the flat.

We were all very very pissed off with the situation, so we went to arrest her and take her in (her mum didnt return) when we went through another cycle:

  • Tell Anne she is going to her mums
  • Anne screaming to Carol that she loves her
  • Carol screaming that she wants her to go
  • Get Anne to the door, then back to stage one
Right thats it. She could tell it was the final straw, luckily this cycle lasted about two minutes. Anne then left all her keys behind and went. We went after her to ensure she got to her mums, but she had vanished. Literally vanished.

We didnt get anymore calls to the address and got another unit to check all was in order later.

Worst domestic I have been to though - quite odd. No time to get the blood off us - off to some more grade ones.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Taking The Piss

Yahoo News Story

Police said on Friday they were hunting a man who stole a urinal from a pub toilet.

The suspect walked into the Royal Oak pub in Southampton, ordered half a pint of beer and then made several visits to the men's toilet.

There he carefully removed a white urinal from the wall, stuffed it into a rucksack and was captured on closed circuit television walking out with the bulging sack on his back.

"He made a very, very expert job of dismantling it from the wall and turning the water off. A very professional job," landlord Alan Dreja said in a video posted on the Southampton Daily Echo newspaper's Web site.

A police spokesman said the thief may have been a tradesman.

"One of the theories is the guy is some sort of cut-price plumber who is going round and stealing parts to order," he said.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

The Storm

My goodness, what a night New Years was!

Firstly, the night shift had, which is a first I have ever seen, 10 double crewed cars. Not just double crewed, but response ones too! Usually lucky if we have two on a shift let alone 10! Ofcourse this isnt taking into account the late shift which were on until about 0300, and all the town centre vans which were about too. There was also all the traffic cars knocking about too.

First off, a small get together of youths at a house gone wrong. Someone turned up drunk and started to trash the place. Once he was out the house he decided to try and attack my collegue and was carted off to custody by another unit.

Next thing was someone who had gone into a house and trashed it and gone to bed. No signs of forced entry into the house except for one small window which had been broken (wasnt easy to see it had!)

I opened the window and jumped into the house so that we could open the door and let the dog in. Turned out he just wanted to sleep, how very random. Once the dog scared him and 4 traffic officers had wrestled him to the floor, he was arrested and taken back. I didnt realise the time until someone said "Happy New Year". It did feel quite odd as whilst the majority of Scroatsville were enjoying the new year, whilst we were wrestling with scroates who opted to be shits for the new year. How strange it was.

We then attended a burglary which had just occured. Some little scroates had entered someones garage and from there gone into the house through a door and taken peoples bags and car keys. This was whilst the occupents and friends were in the room next door celebrating. A car was taken with the keys and was sighted later, but no units could find it.

Once we took details and statements etc we resumed and passed a group of youths. We started to search them when one of them was a bit cocky.

Me: Do you have anything on you I should know about
Him: Yeah I have a knife (so many people say this trying to be funny)
Me: Where is it then
Him: In my pocket

I then go to his pocket expecting him to be joking about trying to look good infront of his mates and see a handle. I pull this handle out to find a huge bloody meat cleaver!! He is very quickly handcuffed and arrested. My collegue has no idea what has gone on until he sees the cleaver in my hand.

The rest of the night is spent doing paper work for all the above and other stuff we did which wasnt really worthy of mention.

For the vast majority of the night, most of it for everyone was going from job to job to job. From about 00:00 01/01/07 to 05:00 in the county there were about 150 grade one incidents deployed to. Quite busy!

New years day wasnt too bad though. The usual domestics, recovered the stolen car which was taken from the burglary I attended on New Years.

Observations were put out for someone driving dangerously, I went and did an area search for this car and found it. The driver blew 138 at the station! That was the first of the "interesting" part of this drink driver. Seized his car for no insurance too whilst I was at it! There was a lot more but sadly I cant say what on here!