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Police Performance

David Green, 23 September 2004

The police performance figures show that only 18.8% of offences were detected and sanctioned in 2003-04, slightly fewer than last year. Consequently, public confidence in the police remains below the half-way mark, with only 47.7% believing that the police do a good or excellent job. And yet many chief constables are complacent, regularly complaining that the real problem they face is exaggerated public fear of crime.
We can make some rudimentary comparisons with other countries. In England and Wales we have 241 police officers for every 100,000 population. In America, there are only 230 police officers for every 100,000. How do crime rates compare? In 2001 the USA suffered from 4,157 crimes per 100,000 population. The figure in England and Wales was more than double, at 10,608 crimes per 100,000. Perhaps the American police are getting something right.

How do we compare with countries closer to home? Germany has 289 police offers per 100,000 population, nearly 20% more. Its crime rate is 7,734 per 100,000 population, about 37% lower.
The French spend a great deal more on policing, with 381 police officers for every 100,000 population, 58% more. But they have a much lower crime rate, 6,879 crimes for every 100,000 population, 35% lower than the rate for England and Wales.
The number of police officers per head of population, and the efficiency of the police force, are far from being the only influences on the crime rate. Social factors, such as family breakdown, and the moral messages conveyed by leading opinion formers play a huge part, along with the effectiveness of the courts and the prison and probation services. But, while the police only detect one in every five recorded crimes, we will continue to suffer from more crime than other comparable countries.
For a fuller discussion take a look at The Failure of Britain’s Police by Norman Dennis.

1 comments on “Police Performance”

  1. The reason why the police no longer protects the public is because they have closed ranks against the general public as Tony Martin knows, and, they are being transformed into a Totalitarian, thought police.
    Last year adverts were placed on the London underground from a new type of police officer, Commander Dick, head of the Met’s Diversity Directorate, with its Soviet-Gestapo style title, asking for anyone with information on people saying politically incorrect things to report them to her.
    On 20/11/02, the Daily Telegraph told that columnist Robin Page had been arrested on suspicion of stirring up racial hatred at a pro-hunt rally. “I urged people to go on a march and urged that the rural minority should have the same rights as blacks, Muslims and gays. What is wrong with that in a multicultural society?” Robin missed the point: We do not have rights – we are the scapegoats, for its failure to materialise. Even famous journalist Richard Littlejohn was visited by police after a spoof on homosexuals in his column for the Sun.
    Trevor Phillips, the Witchfinder General, chair of the Commission for Racial Equality, said recently CRE could afford to take legal action against police forces. The imprisoning of police chiefs was a “theoretical” outcome and hoped not to have to prosecute to see cases reaching the courts. He warned of fines “big enough to make forces and police authorities take notice” in successful cases against forces which did not produce acceptable “race equality schemes”. The CRE action was threatened after the release of an interim report into police handling of their own racism, which was established last year after a television documentary, “The Secret Policeman”, showed police racism at a training centre in Warrington.
    The report is a masterepiece of totalitarian thinking designed to inaugurate a police state. Produced by a panel led by Sir David Calvert-Smith, a former director of public prosecutions, it looked at internal police issues, including monitoring race policies and training, recruitment and grievance procedures, rather than operational policing. Sir David admitted that they had decided before they started that police racism was still a “major” problem. It was “commonly accepted”, he said, and reinforced by “The Secret Policeman”, that “racism is still a major problem within the service. We have not set out to prove that it exists. We have taken it as a given”. He suggested there is overt racism, such as that seen in “The Secret Policeman”, and a more “creeping” racism – similar to the “institutional racism” found by the Judge’s pre-judgement of the Lawrence murder. Asked if he believed that institutional racism still existed, Sir David said: “The answer is yes, but it’s not confined to the police service.” His report described it also as “stealth” racism, alleging that many officers treated race and diversity awareness as “a big joke.
    There are already Stalinite purges on our police: the chief of the met, Sir John Stevens has announced plans to plant informers in police training classes to spy for and report on “racist” police officers. In Eastern German primary school teachers tested kindergarden children to see if they had watched any illegal western television. They also checked on the opinions of their parents, which children disclosed unintentionally.
    British citizens will be extradited for what is a “thought crime” under a new European arrest warrant, the Government has conceded. Opponents fear they could face trial for broadcasting “xenophobic or racist” remarks on an internet chat room in another country.
    The Government has undertaken that if such “offences” take place in Britain the perpetrators would not be extradited – but it will be for the courts to decide the location of the crime. This means a judge agreeing to extradite someone whose observations made in Britain were broadcast exclusively in a country where they constitute a crime. Legislation is before Parliament to make “xenophobia and racism” one of 32 crimes for which the European arrest warrant can be issued without the safeguard of dual criminality. This means that an extraditable offence must also be a crime in the UK. Alongside the arrest warrant, EU ministers are negotiating a new directive to establish a common set of offences to criminalize xenophobia and racism.
    Germany and Austria have criminalized denying the Holocaust but there is no equivalent in Britain. Under current laws, if a British citizen committed this offence in Germany then returned to the UK, he could not be extradited.
    As I write this, Dictator Blunkett is threatening £2,500 fines for those of us who refuse to have an ID card!
    We are awakening to a Totalitarian Dawn that is being imposed on us: Like tomorrow, Utopia never comes – we get stuck in the Totalitarianism.


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