Drone farce erodes our faith in the po­lice

Western Daily Press (Saturday) - - Opinion -

WHAT a farce over the Gatwick drones. The po­lice ar­rested a cou­ple and held them for 36 hours when all along the sus­pect had a cast-iron al­ibi – he was work­ing as a gut­terer.

A sim­ple phone call to his em­ployer would have es­tab­lished this. It took the po­lice a long time to do this. Why was this per­son ar­rested in the first place? Where was the pro­fes­sion­al­ism from the po­lice?

It is in­ci­dents like this that make the pub­lic lose faith with the po­lice. And it shows that it is not enough just to throw more money at the po­lice – they need to be much bet­ter or­gan­ised.

It beg­gars be­lief that lo­cal of­fi­cers could not bother to check a per­son’s ac­count.

Un­der­stand­ably, the sus­pects are very ag­grieved and say they feel “vi­o­lated”. No won­der. This is not to say that the Avon and Som­er­set po­lice would act like this, but it makes you won­der if things are go­ing on, or have gone on, where other in­no­cent peo­ple have been wrongly ac­cused of of­fences when in fact they are com­pletely in­no­cent.

All of this cor­rodes pub­lic faith in the po­lice. Po­lice of­fi­cers need to ex­er­cise sound judg­ment and com­mon sense, or the pub­lic will rapidly lose faith. Chris Wat­son

Bris­tol

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