Wednesday, 12 March 2008
Punk in Drublic
It was a dark, stormy night, and all good people were in bed. Naughty people were out to play though, and causing us to get wet repeatedly. Non Police readers may remember the days of school uniform getting wet and the trousers drying against your skin, a lovely feeling... We have the same type of trousers in the Police.
We took a call off our division, to assist an area that had run out of units to send, a request from the London Ambulance Service for our assistance with a drunk patient. When we turned up on scene it turned out that the division we had been sent to assist had in fact mustered up two units to attend, who arrived on scene at the same time as us, but hey ho.
LAS quickly explained that they had been called to two drunk females, who had become abusive.
Both girls were easy to spot - fifty feet up the road, staggering about in dirty t-shirts, soaking wet, with one of them shouting "Filth! Filth! Filth!" repeatedly. LAS stated that she may have taken more than just alcohol.
We approached the girl shouting, to have a word. Six coppers, and she did not want us anywhere near us. Her face snarled up in hate, and she let out a barrage of abuse. As one of the local officers approached her, she hit him in the chest and pushed him into the road.
Ah. I could sense that a subtle approach was going to be needed here.
Another copper pushed the girl away, and tried to talk to her. She stormed off about ten paces, then just as quickly turned back, and pushed at the first officer she saw and swung a fist at the next. As she did this she kept up a barrage of abuse, screaming like a banshee "Cunts, you fucking cunts, fuck off!"
Her friend did the "leave it Shelly, it's not worth it" routine, but to no avail.
I think we could safely assume she did not want LAS assistance.
The barrage of abuse kept up, some of it quite inventive. She kept pushing the two closest officers, who kept cool and kept marching her up the road until her friend grabbed her by the hand and pulled her away.
The thing is - how have we come to this? How have we come to the point where you can get away with shouting "Cunt" repeatedly at a Police Officer without any punishment? In the met we are told that a Police Officer can NOT be a victim of minor public order offences, which in effect means that it's open season to abuse coppers, unless there are other members of public around to be offended. CPS will not even run with a public order offence against a copper in my division. Apparently it's our jobs to be abused.
Assault Police? Well, no... Although the pushing and shoving, and the misguided punch fell into this category, again, CPS drop so many assault police charges, we all knew that there was no way they'd run with an assault police by a small built girl against six, burly, male coppers.
Besides, I could hear on the radio that all our units were getting tucked up, and it was looking again like my car would be the only one on the streets covering a population of well over a quarter of a million. The neighbouring division's radio was screaming out as well, with top graded calls stacking up.
As we all walked back to the cars, there was no satisfied smile, no feeling of jobs well done; shamefaced again at being unable to fight back against the idiots on the streets, knowing that we had done the right thing for keeping us available to try and keep a lid on the incidents that were coming out, but also knowing that the right thing was far from the way it should be.