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ECHO COMMENT: Investigation into police officer was waste of everyone's time

By GlosEchoEd  |  Posted: December 21, 2012

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THE most important question about the investigation of what was or wasn’t said by a black officer at a private police event hasn’t been answered.

Just how much did the investigation cost?

We’re told it was “covered by the professional standards department as part of its regular duties”, which doesn’t tell us anything.

But if ever a mountain has been made out of a molehill, this is it.

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The officer, allegedly, commented privately to the only other black officer present that he felt he “should be offering around the cocaine or something.”

It was apparently a joke; if not a funny one. If, in fact, it was said at all.

Because the investigation reveals that the complaint was third-hand from someone who was not even at the event.

Surely there was a point earlier in this process where somebody should have said two little words: “So what?”

If anybody present had been offended, they certainly hadn’t complained about it, so why was an investigation even held?

We seem to have reached a point in society - and in public sector organisations in particular - where being seen to do the right thing has taken precedence over common sense.

We’re told the words attributed to the officer were completely inaccurate, that no racist language was used and that no disciplinary action was necessary.

He was completely exonerated then? Well, not quite. He has apparently been given “words of advice” because the conversation - which only one other officer heard - could have been inappropriate.

Confused? So are we. But one thing is crystal clear. This was a colossal waste of everyone’s time - and an investigation that should never have happened.


IT’S a terrible indictment that the system has let homeless couple Cathy Johnson and Lee Simms down so badly they are living in a tent.

Perhaps they can do more to work with the authorities to get help, but it is not their fault that circumstances have transpired to put them both out of work.

The fact a new night shelter will open in February is little consolation to them this Christmas.

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  • sticks_stones  |  December 22 2012, 12:03AM

    Confused? So are we" We? Are you answering for us all... This is disgraceful behviour from a police officer - sack the bone-head(s)!

  • eyeopener  |  December 21 2012, 11:23PM

    @Ms_Superstar While I agree with 99% of what you said, the reason the gates are kept shut as much as possible is for security. The gates when closed are seen as providing a useful barrier against attacks such as the IRA Mortar attack that was launched on Downing Street on the 7 February 1991 attack. It was an assassination attempt on Major and his War Cabinet who were meeting to discuss the Gulf War. After the mortars had landed, and the sound of the explosion and aftershock had died down, John Major said, "I think we had better start again, somewhere else"

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  • Ms_Superstar  |  December 21 2012, 6:25PM

    Oh dear me, what a country we live in. Didn't I hear somewhere else this week about a statement about an altercation in Downing Street by a policeman who wasn't even there? First we couldn't trust the banks, then the press, then the BBC, and now even the police are heading that way. And talking of the Downing Street incident, why couldn't the guy push his bike through the gate? Was it simply that the policemen were too lazy to open it? If it had been someone from Cheltenham, he'd have insisted on RIDING it through the gate!

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  • Raccoon  |  December 21 2012, 4:29PM

    It seems that there are lot of people who can't take a joke. Clearly, the cocaine joke was made in a good-natured way, not intending to cause offence. Surely, the royal hoax call was also not intended to cause offence. It can be very difficult to judge who may take a joke the wrong way. It is, as they say, 'political correctness gone mad'.

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