Yesterday Simon Harwood, a Metropolitan Police Police constable was fired from his job for Gross Misconduct. He had pushed Ian Tomlinson over during the G20 demonstrations in
in 2009. Tomlinson was in his way and refusing to obey instructions to move on
but was NOT AT THAT MOMENT a threat to Harwood or anyone else. Tomlinson died a
short time later. Despite being acquitted of Manslaughter at a criminal trial,
the Met decided this officer’s actions were unprofessional and that such a man
had no further place in their organisation.
Harwood was unarmed when he pushed Tomlinson.
Today it was announced that PC Nicola Hughes, 23, and PC Fiona Bone, 32 have died during an operation which led to the arrest of a man already wanted by Greater Manchester Police.
They parked up outside a house in response to a burglary call in their police car. Went into the house without guns, stun guns or bullet proof armour. They wore only stab proof vests and carried extendable batons and pepper spray. They were shot dead and a grenade was thrown at them.
Both were unarmed.
In this world of unarmed cops, the Chief of GMP plus various politicians and influential figures have said how tragic the whole thing is and how their thoughts are with the families…blah, blah, blah.
Harwood, Hughes and Bone are not connected. But the flaws in the current system caused Harwood to lash out at Ian Tomlinson and the deaths of these two officers.
We are the ONLY country in the world that puts its 99% unarmed cops in amongst the public at all times, including volatile and violent situations. No gun, no real training on how to deal with attack of a sustained and vicious nature. Unlike the
where cops automatically assume that anyone not obeying instructions is a
potential threat and anyone invading personal space may hurt them, UK
cops are trained to believe everyone is an untainted angel UNLESS they do
something to prove otherwise. Even if approaching a person with extensive
previous history of biting coppers’ ears off… a UK
bobby will be obliged to simply keep a distance and then talk to the person
until they kick off. They cannot apply handcuffs just to ask questions, because
at THAT PRECISE MOMENT the suspect is behaving and it would be an assault.
when people want to demonstrate, be it students, socialists or Nazis they are
allowed to. But the cops line either side of the street behind barriers and
they only interact with the demonstrators if they need to arrest them or help
unarmed cops with only spray and baton, and stab proof body armour are plonked
amongst people who feel it is their unalienable right to verbally abuse police
and even hurl heavy things at them.
PC’s Bone and Hughes were NOT CARRYING FIREARMS and could not respond to lethal force with anything other than running away.
Now we need to finally acknowledge that telling cops that a reasoned argument and an authoritative (yet pleasant) tone of verbal command will make 99% of ne’er do wells hang their heads in shame…is utter cobblers.
From now on we need cops that maintain a distance. They are polite. They are pleasant. They will help you find your missing daughter or have a word with your neighbour for stealing your pears off your tree BUT they will from this moment forward AUTOMATICALLY assume a level of threat. Cops approaching a domestic burglary call will approach the house with caution. Reason being that anyone with an IQ over 85 knows that burglars are cunts and will at the very least be carrying heavy metal things to prise windows open with. They are also likely to use violence to try and escape. The responding officers will approach with guns drawn and will enter the house assuming a threat, a LETHAL threat is imminent. Only if the situation then proves itself to be benign, will they then holster their weapons and act in the “nice” way
cops are currently, and cretinously, forced to.
PC Harwood and his colleagues should never have been expected to get so close to the people at the G20 demonstrations in the way they were. No real crowd control, no respect for police. Instead of “here’s your designated route, stick to it or get nicked” the Police Senior Management just expected the crowds to obey “nice” requests to do as they were asked.
What happened today to these two female officers could have happened at any point to any cop in the last 5 to 10 years. So obsessed with the “looking good” that the Police as an organisation cannot see the wood for the trees and are putting all their cops except the firearms units in deep, terrible peril by tempting fate in this way.
If we had a police force that expected compliance from the pubic in response to verbal commands, that demanded co-operation or the very real threat of being arrested then Harwood might not have pushed Tomlinson because Tomlinson would have thought twice about being a piss taking, drunken twat in front of riot police.
Similarly if we taught police to expect danger, they would approach situations as if trouble was there and could be neutered.
Harwood lashed out because he was annoyed and frustrated and exhausted after being placed in crowd control WHILE UNARMED.
Hughes and Bone died because they were sent to deal with a call out WHILE UNARMED.
I’ll leave the last word to Drsolly, a fellow reader of Inspector Gadget’s blog who left this comment today on IG’s post about the deaths of these two officers.
“I’m a MOP, going out Thursday to do a computer mainenance task. I’ll have with me, a screwdriver, cables, CMOS batteries, and various other tools that I think I might need.
When I go out for a very long bike ride, I have a puncture repair kit, spanners, pump, bike multitool, small screwdrivers, spare inner tube.
Anyone going out to do something, takes with them all the tools they’ll probably need, and the tools they might need.
If someone suggested that I go do this task without the above, I’d just explain to them that it just isn’t feasible.
Why is it, exactly, that police officers aren’t armed?”