Opinion: Getting what they deserve
PUBLISHED: 08:30 15 February 2020
Do you trust the police? I don't mean in a way you'd see in a film with you saying: "We can't take this to the police, we don't know how high up this alien invasion goes." I mean it in the simple sense of trusting them to solve your crimes.
Matt Parr, HM Inspector of Constabulary, has said the failure of the police to investigate high-volume crimes like car thefts, assaults and burglaries was having a "corrosive" effect on the public's trust in the police. Many of us have been in the situation where you are the victim of a crime but you wonder if it's worth your while reporting it. If no one investigates and all you are is recorded as a statistic it feels like you're taking part in a market research survey for the police and little more.
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It can't be the police themselves. We often hear of an off-duty officer stopping a terrorist on the streets of London. Those people earn the public's respect and trust. It must be the system.
Even the extra 20,000 officers promised will only take the system's staffing levels back to the numbers they were in 2010 when we had far less cyber crime and online bullying to investigate.
I have had both in my time. I have been the victim of online abuse and I had my car broken into a few roads away from Hackney Downs station. I know which I'd rather be protected from in the future.
In case you wondered, they didn't nick the car but they got away with the bag that was on the back seat. All it had in it was five pairs of pants. I'd like to think in this case the criminals got exactly what they deserved.