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How Do You Find James Patrick – Guilty or Not Guilty?

Last updated on March 14th, 2019 at 02:26 pm

Reading Time: 4 minutes

I do not know James Patrick in the traditional sense, we have never met.  We have exchanged views many times on Twitter however.

As many of you know he came to our notice with a video on YouTube called The Last Call To Attention.  It doesn’t matter what I think about this, over 14,000 have now viewed this video made by a serving officer who clearly has the utmost passion for the Police Service.

Further videos followed and then a series of blogs, at first collectively entitled “The Police Debating Directive”, and then succeeded by “The Candle Legacy”

A book was published entitled “The Rest Is Silence”. This book was nothing more than a collection of previously published blogs, nothing new. Nothing that hadn’t been seen previously. It is important to note that James did not receive a single penny in recompense for this book, all proceeds were donated to charity, Care Of Police Survivors, and that was always his stated intention.

After the book was published the Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards took an interest and disciplinary proceedings followed. James found himself in the absolutely awful position of being investigated for Gross Misconduct, an allegation that could have a profound effect on his future career.

The allegations made against him were;

1. He has written and published a book about police service in contravention of MPS Policy.
2. Some of the contents of the book could be harmful to the reputation of the police service and adversely impact on public confidence.

I can’t comment on allegation 1 as I don’t know what MPS policy on this matter currently is, but I do not believe that he is the first serving Police Officer to have written a book about his/her experiences.

As far as allegation 2 is concerned I have now read this book cover-to-cover twice, and I can’t find anything in it whatsoever that would damage public confidence in the police service.

There is plenty in it that might damage public confidence in the government and other public AND private organisations but these are not James’ words.  He has merely circulated information which is already in the public domain and easily accessible to anyone who’s halfway decent in the use of Google (other search engines are also available. I honestly don’t believe that I read a single sentence that was not obtained from public domain material on the interweb.

So by collating and distributing this information does James (and I do mean James personally) damage public confidence in the police service? Or is any perceived damage caused by the authors of the documents and policies that James highlights? Personally I believe that it’s the latter, but you are obviously free to make up your own mind.

And finally, last week James appeared before the Public Administration Select Committee of Parliament chaired by Mr Bernard Jenkin, a Conservative MP.

I watched James give his evidence together with the other 3 witnesses in that session. If you haven’t already seen it, or you want to watch it again, you can find and follow it here

Personally I have a few minor issues with the manner in which James sometimes presented his evidence, but I can easily write that off to nerves.  I don’t have a single issue with WHAT he said however. He gave a full and frank statement to the committee not only highlighting what I, and numerous others, have known for years, but also things that I hadn’t previously known,  He then went on to explain how skewed crime statistics perversely influenced resource allocations across London. He was broadly supported by the three other witnesses in his session and the chairman ended up saying this “I would like to apologise on behalf of politicians of all parties”.  Mr Jenkin said politicians were responsible for “creating this atmosphere in which targets must be achieved”. He added: “I have no doubt political leadership has played a big part”.

And James Patrick still stands accused of “harming the reputation of the police service”.

A Met Commander whose name was immediately forgettable appeared on our TVs that night defending Met Crime Statistics, implying or stating that the 4 witnesses that morning had been wrong.

Only today, Policing Minister Damian Green said “Recorded crime has fallen by more than 10% since the government came to power and we have put in place long-term reforms to help the police continue that downward trend.

“We have stripped away targets and red tape to free police from desk-bound jobs; we have installed the National Crime Agency to take on organised crime; we have installed a College of Policing to professionalise policing; we have modernised outmoded pay and conditions; and we have introduced a newly-reinforced ethical framework to ensure police conduct is on an equal footing to cutting crime.”

Erm excuse me Mr Green, but aren’t those figures in severe doubt now? But you still rely on them to spout your propaganda.

Additionally much of what James told us about in his book “The Rest Is Silence” and his earlier blogs has now been endorsed by Lord Stevens, no less, in his report published today;

The review said the PCC model had “fatal systematic flaws” and “should be discontinued in its present form at the end of the term of office of the 41 serving PCCs.”

The review’s survey of officers had found that the government’s “failure to engage the service in the programme of reform” had led to a “damaging stand-off” and “plummeting morale”, Lord Stevens said.

Restrictions on the use of private companies such as G4S and Serco for policing functions

That is just some of it.

To return to the beginning, do I think that James Patrick has damaged public confidence in the Police Service? He has said many things that have made me wince, we have not always agreed on everything he has said or done, but when I strip that away I see a man who is totally dedicated to his profession/vocation. I have seen untold numbers of people on Twitter who have no direct connection with the Police Service supporting James for his stance. I don’t recall seeing anyone (apart from MPS management) condemning him. He has done nothing more than tell it like it is. Should we prevent our police officers from telling the truth? Do we want them to not tell tell the truth. Who would you trust more, someone who is demonstrably trying to get the truth across or someone who is endeavouring to fudge the issue?

Finally, unless someone can correct me, James has NEVER been instructed to remove his book from sale, or take down his blogs, thus permitting a continuance of the alleged offence.

I rest my case members of the “jury”.

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48 thoughts on “How Do You Find James Patrick – Guilty or Not Guilty?”

  1. ..and while we’re still (not) on the subject, why the hell is PC Patrick being allowed to waste away in front of a streaming CCTV screen all day by the Yard of the soon-to-be-independent Scotland, if they value “some truth” he exposed, as Hogan-Howe pretends?

    It’s bad enough that the Met ignored warnings for months that rape victims were being pressured to drop allegations, leaving perpetrators uninvestigated and free to harm others and the most vulnerable victims without the vital care they of all people had the most urgent need of.

    It’s bad enough that the Met arranged for two officers to intimidate James and his family on a Friday evening after dark, three days after his PASC appearance, using “bully boy tactics..on the pretence that they were concerned about his welfare” [Karen Todner quoted in The Times, Sat 14th Dec ’13 or]

    It’s bad enough that Hogan-Howe and Winsor claim to want to get to the truth about misrecorded rape and other sexual offences so sets up inquiries to establish the extent of the problem – yet PC Patrick had been able singlehandedly to feed back one erroneous trend back over some statistical deviance in reverse before breakfast in order to pinpoint and expose the dodgy management interventions which led UKSA to withdraw their ‘these figs are kosher’ kitemark from all police crime stats – yet HH & Winsor STILL haven’t consulted James, despite earnestly promising to, as to how he pulled such rabbits from their hats.

    It’s bad enough..

  2. News Update 15/01/14:
    (a hit, a palpable hit?!)

    The UK Statistics Authority (UKSA) has removed the National Statistics designation from all crime data recorded by the police, meaning it no longer complies with the watchdog’s official code of practice
    UK Statistics Authority letter to PASC chairman re crime stats—correspondence/correspondence

    “..Our assessment was undertaken between June 2013 and January 2014, and we have also followed with close interest the Committee’s inquiry into crime statistics since it began in November and the oral and written evidence that your Committee has recently received..”

    Keith Vaz MP, chairman of the home affairs select committee, said:

    “This is an extraordinary step which fuels the concern around the reliability of crime statistics.
    “The recent allegations of manipulation of crime figures go right to the heart of the public trust in the police and how crime figures are compiled.
    “It is vital that we understand if crime data is being incorrectly recorded by the police.”

    Responding to the report, PASC chair Bernard Jenkin MP said the report was a “wake-up call” to chief constables across the country and revealed Home Office minister Norman Baker would be quizzed over crime figures by the committee next week.
    “PASC has exposed complacency about crime stats at all levels,” he said.
    “Following the evidence we have been taking, it comes as little surprise that police recorded crime stats have been downgraded by the UKSA.
    “They no longer qualify for the UKSA kite mark as National Statistics.
    “We have focused on the Metropolitan Police in our inquiry into crime statistics and our inquiry was provoked by their whistle-blower, but this is a wake-up call to chief constables all over the country.
    “Next week, the Home Office minister and UKSA will appear before our committee to explain why this has been allowed to happen.”
    Jack Dromey, shadow policing minister, said: ” For the UKSA to express no faith in the key Government crime figures is unprecedented. It exposes Theresa May’s claim on crime reductions as baseless and out of touch.
    “When challenged on hollowing out the police service, with 10,000 frontline police officers axed, Theresa May and ministers have repeatedly hidden behind the 10% fall in police recorded crime. But now we know that the UKSA has no faith in that measure – despite giving the measure its approval for the period before the general election.
    “The Home Secretary needs to explain what action she is taking to establish the true levels of crime and what has actually happened since she began hollowing out our police service.”

  3. Yes, applying all the classification rules in practice sounds a nightmare – apparently the guidance runs to ~400 pages. Should think it requires a specialist available 24/7 to avoid errors these days, let alone misreporting. Doubt if de-criming then re-criming is in the index either..!

  4. HASC session video recording – at time 1:23:40 – reference to earlier session of PASC on Tue 19th Nov, in relation to fiddling of crime stats.

    The accusation was that a deliberate attempt had been made to downgrade reported rape (by 22%) and serious sexual offence allegations (by 25%).

    Bernard Hogan-Howe said he’d “not heard those allegations before”

    This claim by BHH of no prior knowledge is highly likely to be wrong and, what’s more, able to be shown to be.

    BHH: “..inaccurate figs don’t help police”
    On the contrary, it is precisely the case that the more inaccurate the resulting crime figures, the more likely they may paint a rosier picture – to the benefit of the promotion prospects of those felt to be responsible for their improvement.

    Keith Vaz is incredulous
    ..during your 2 years 2 months as Commissioner and throughout your 36 years of policing, your saying that was the first time you’ve heard of police misrecording crime figures?
    BHH: That’s not what I said

    Then BHH misleads committee “..some of the comments made by this officer relate to a period over 2 years ago”

    BHH nevertheless conjures inquiry by academics to investigate, to ask women involved in such incidents, going back over “at least the last 2 years”
    But why the “last 2 years” in particular, if the fiddling claim was dismissed as only having occurred during a period before the last 2 years?
    Is the inquiry intended only to confirm that the 2 year period with BHH as Commisioner has shown a big improvement?
    If this is not its purpose, why isn’t the inquiry primarily investigating the period before the last 2 years, the period from which the dodgy figures were falsely claimed by BHH to have been drawn?

    1. I can’t really comment on the allegations relating to sexual offences,, but when I last served on a borough (circa 1998) crime stats in relation to burglary and robbery etc were dubious to say the least. As I have said before it was not unusual to find a crime of Criminal Damage that had a Point of Entry suggesting an Attempted Burglary or a Common Assault with serious injury.

      Another trick that I am TOLD took place but again have no personal knowledge is to classify a crime down to a less serious offence and then reclassify it back to what it should have been after it had been counted, but as I say that is just anecdotal.

  5. Bernard Hogan-Howe questioned by Keith Vaz on the Home Affairs Select Committee earlier this afternoon re evidence from PC James Patrick that over 20% of notified rape is later downgraded or misreported.

    BHH responded that he thinks those figures related to the situation 2yrs ago or more (ie before he was responsible as head of Met) and that an inquiry with external participation is being established to examine these matters.

    The opinion offered by BHH on the figures is clearly wrong.

    From the written evidence submitted by James ( at the PASC session on Tue 19th Nov:

    19. Researching the issue..I requested twelve months basic data (April 2012-March 2013) on total offences, in order that some basic, current, analysis could be carried out.
    ..In this worst case scenario the Met had under-recorded Rape by over twenty-four percent and almost nine hundred offences were brought into the undetected figures. Total sexual offences were under-recorded by almost twenty-two percent and over two thousand offences had been brought into the undetected figures.

    22. I continued with the research, expanding it to a random sample of eighty-six sexual offence CRIs from May 2013, to ensure that it was current behaviour that was subject to scrutiny. The total list was sifted to focus on Rape offences only. This produced a random list eighteen Rape offences, a sample size of just under twenty-one percent. Twelve out of eighteen (almost seventy percent) were identified as crimes and should not have been recorded as CRI.
    ..the OCU Commander, regarding staff resourcing. He stated that there are currently seventy-eight unfilled vacancies in the Command and also over one hundred absences, including one third of the officers trained to deal with sexual offence victims.
    ..found that Rape was prioritised well under petty theft and subsequently was not regularly audited at all due to the volume of work.

  6. One thing which appears to undermine the case against James by the Met is that, despite claiming concern that his revelations would bring them into disrepute, he was still employed in a post which allowed his research into ‘gamed’ crime statistics to continue unabated.

    One would have imagined that an employer worried enough to silence an employee for a year – muffling his social media activity and blocking invitations for him to lecture to university students and even to appear in front of the Home Affairs Select Committee – so that further revelations could be prevented, would also ensure the source materials for his revelations would then also be kept well out of reach or that access to them would at least be heavily restricted and/or closely monitored.

    But no. The work James continued to carry out was valued at least to the extent that no such restrictions were imposed – at all.

    It’s almost as though the right hand, the one which always knows it is right, didn’t know what the left hand, the one which left him in post, was up to.

    Now, even after the day the cases for and against the gross misconduct charge were presented, James has been invited back to continue work within Scotland Yard, work which colleagues in the Home Office have previously stated they valued.

    It’s almost as though the left hand, the one which prefers that he’s left doing much-valued work, doesn’t know what the right hand, the one which presumes bullying an employee is a posture it can assume as a right. is still up to.

    1. Hope they’re not just trying to trip him up now, working within Scotland Yard but on slightly different work.

      Head of national unit dealing with crime of rape on R4 this AM talked of issues dissuading victims from coming to police. No mention of points raised at recent (Tues 19th Nov) PASC session. BBC interviewer didn’t refer to anything so topical either.

      In other words, no mention that one “perverse” dissuasive issue might well be a suspicion that, if victims do go to the police, they may be unlucky and encounter a police interviewer willing to pick on those most vulnerable to persuade them it wasn’t really rape, didn’t really happen or that “mitigating” factors like alcohol or a shortish skirt may’ve played a determining role.

      So this may be the pattern. A spokesperson feels impelled to say something is wrong and must be done while still ignoring one of the main issues: the one resulting in under-reporting by 22-25%, the one due to an inbred culture of bullying of the most vulnerable girls, the one most likely to dissuade young women from going to the police and the one revealed – but only by an “annoying” whistleblower – to be part of the systemic and deliberate downgrading and misreporting of crime figures: actions taken merely so that officers occupying the more senior police grades can squeeze within “non-existent” (according to the Home Secretary) targets – and so past someone else in the promotion sweepstakes.

      Will researchers for the BBC and Press remain as docile nearer to the next election and continue compartmentilising topics to the benefit of interviewees?

  7. Yes – The Glory That Was Home (Office)!

    But luckily, at least, the parallels between James and Ison (not James Dyson..) didn’t materialise, as Ison appears to have dematerialised.

    All the evidence suggests James’ truths weren’t torn apart in his close pass today, in contrast to comedy Lovejoy – whose sixth previous series in 1994 was judged antique – and was disrupted (probably by Tinker Dill)..

    All the evidence suggests Ison’s nucleus was torn apart in the close pass, in the same way that Comet Lovejoy – a previous hopeful in 2011 – was disrupted.

    1. “Comets are like cats; they have tails, and they do precisely what they want”
      This comet also seems to have something else in common with cats: nine lives

      All that is gold does not glitter,
      Not all those who wander are lost;
      The old that is strong does not wither,
      Deep roots are not reached by the frost.

      Let’s hope the tentative reappearance at least of the core of Ison
      reflects a gradual realisation that the PASC session last Tues may in retrospect be seen one day as a vital turning point, the point at which truths laid bare became unanswerable, allowing a butterfly wing a crucial flutter.

      From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
      A light from the shadows shall spring

  8. Well, the most likely reason must have been the state of shame to which they were reduced by the defense legal bods, shame for the shabby treatment of their client, shame that the ‘prosecution case’ for misconduct had morphed like an eel since last year – and shame that the case demonstrated such bullying and paucity of any duty of care by an employer for a member of staff, that no case remained for the Met to look the defense in or near the eye and claim “fitness for purpose” could ever apply to their ability to perform an employee-related function with impartiality..
    Where’s John Reid when you need him?

    1. I’m sure the defence team were able to put up a compelling argument to have the case dismissed, but therein lies the problem when facing Commander Julian Bennett……..he doesn’t appear to listen to proper legal arguments and does just what the Met want him to do. The fact that James has remained in post does undermine their case and I am hoping his appearance at the PASC will make them think very carefully indeed about how to deal with it.

  9. Thanks – just seen. Yes, how can only a third have been seen as reasonable requests and a full quarter dismissed? May be of interest to see these proportions compared by year, in case a pattern of declining transparency is emerging..!

    Rumours abound that the decision by the DPS to invite another force to replace the Met for their own internal misconduct hearing may indeed be unique or at least represent a reversal since 1860. Some precedent, some chicken..!

    1. I have previous figures somewhere if I can find the will to crunch them

      And yes, I do believe this may be unprecedented. It would be fascinating to know the reasons behind this concession.

  10. Yes, most FOI requests appear to be treated like playthings. Just a game for them. How to avoid an answer while ensuring the maximum possible delay before anything useful must be released – all with impunity.

    At least James is happier and even looks unlikely to be walled up in the pernicious cage of some Empress –

    Was Ison propitious for James or will a move to Scotland Yard persuade the Sun not to destroy Ison after all (only half an hour before the dice are thrown now:!

  11. I suppose they’re still not obliged, or likely, to allow the hearing in public though? Swine..!

    Yes, let’s hope it’s positive really and that the hearing does turn out to be fair now. The recent committee hearing must have helped in that respect.

    As Bob S says, there is the possibility that, whichever force does end up running the hearing, it may suffer untoward interference..

    One totally impossible idea, of course: what if these particular officers just happened all to request transfers to that force – gradually, one by one – over the next 12 weeks:

    DI James Raphael
    PS Iain Martin
    DCI Iain Raphael
    PS Ross Gibbings
    Assistant Commissioner Simon Byrne
    Inspector Mike Rawsthorn
    Detective Superintendent Simon Laurence
    Detective Chief Superintendent Simon Letchford
    Commander Allan Gibson
    Commander Peter Spindler
    Commander Ephgrave


    It could never happen. But then, if it did, at least we could all scream so loud that surely they’d be forced to hear it in public in a dramatic U-turn..

    1. Funny how they refused the FOI request, it’s not like the Met to do that. They refused a DPA request I made on the grounds that a matter was under investigation and so was exempt. When I mentioned section 35 of the DPA they still refused to provide me with the information. They claimed an internal investigation was subject to the same protections as a criminal investigation. Funny how they allowed one of my managers, who was involved in the investigation, to make a DPA request compelling me to disclose all data I held relating to her though. I am sure the fact she used to work in the Met’s DPA department had nothing to do with her request being actioned.

      1. I hope she did too, but they do have Ailsa Beaton, ex head of MPS DOI as part of Information Commissioner now, so that might get zapped 🙂

  12. It is a step forward, but I fear for interference that will take place behind the scenes between Met DPS and whichever force ends up running the hearing.

  13. Update from Solicitor for James

    Karen Todner ‏@kaimtodner
    “On our application the disciplinary panel for PC Patrick will now be non MPS officers. New date 20th Feb 2014.”

    A hit, a palpable hit..!
    Truth now has slightly better chance to emerge unscathed

  14. Thursday 28th November 2013

    Auspicious day today, as James “Ison” Patrick travels closest to star “Nemesis”..

    Most good folk of planet UK vote that he’s NOT guilty as charged and wish him well as he nears his closest and hottest approach so far.

    We all fervently believe he shouldn’t be torn apart in the heat of this battle and hope the truth still has a good chance to emerge intact on the other side.

  15. Recent Home Office written evidence to Public Administration Select Committee inquiry into Crime Statistics

    An example translation from Plain English into the modern idiom “Nudge Nudge, Clink Clink”..

    8. (excerpts)

    1) “..the Home Office retains the responsibility for ownership and oversight of the HOCR and for the initial collection and quality assurance of the data..”.

    ..whatever fiddling’s confirmed, it’s the responsibility of the Home Office. This is a small price to pay for retaining control over the recommended quotas for cuffing, bluffing & stuffing, skewing, stewing & screwing, etc. The system is immensely flexible and excellent value once you consider the initial correction and quantity reassurance facilities thus available. Amazingly, the self-oversight advantage alone repaid the original investment within the first two years!

    2) “..only once Home Office statisticians are satisfied with it is the data passed onto ONS..”

    ..the Home Office is allowed to “filter” the figures before the ONS even sees them. Sophisticated statistical techniques are employed to befuddle the Romanian teenagers employed on zero-resistance auditing contracts at the ONS.

    3) “..referred back to forces for clarification prior to publication..”

    ..the Home Office is allowed to request that the figures be “rearranged” to fit the trends shown in their online mapping tool if they still don’t seem to fit – even after the ONS has seen them. Any force not complying at this stage may find fewer nods and winks awaiting their next promotion referrals.

    Consultation fees from jealous Governments the world over requesting advice on how to create similar systems or adapt their current ones represent an increasing revenue stream for the Home Office. I tell you, this is a UK product we should be immensely proud of..

  16. + Recent:

    8. Whilst publication of police recorded crime statistics has shifted to the ONS the Home Office retains the responsibility for ownership and oversight of the HOCR and for the initial collection and quality assurance of the data. Only once Home Office statisticians are satisfied with it is the data passed onto ONS. The Home Office statistics unit carry out a range of checks to highlight apparent inconsistencies and where identified these are referred back to forces for clarification prior to publication.


    Comments in triplicate please..

  17. He is not guilty. The guilty parties are the Met’s Directorate of (Un)Professional Standards who demonstrate time and time again that they will happily fit up honest officers for misconduct proceedings and individual officers ( I could name two who were part of DPS South West that I have personal knowledge of) happily make false statements when prepping misconduct cases, and also the Met’s senior management, who abuse those who are brave enough to expose wrongdoing. Another example of how they operate is DS Howard Shaw (just google him) who exposed wrongdoing and integrity issues and was then falsely investigated.

  18. Yes, the hollow promise of protection for whistleblowers.

    And the pressure from us all, the public, for our politicians to show they’re reducing crime – while we’re collectively unwilling to pay appropriately to ensure this actually, rather than just notionally, happens.

  19. Not Guilty…..Aren’t ‘Whistle-blowers’ protected under the law? Oh! and watch the ‘clear -up’ rates rise towards the end of March 2014, just like every year. No pressure, no targets, just get those crimes deteceted, one way, or another.

  20. Yes, great post. I suspect total unanimity re James and his shabby treatment by the Met. Anyone not already having seen the session last Tuesday should reserve an hour and a quarter to do so – it’s riveting!

    NB: Link in post above goes to
    (giving an error)

    PS: Temporary alternative is
    (also re James, see

  21. NB There are two versions of “The Rest is Silence”, (1) The original un-redacted version and (2) The heavily redacted version published and sold by Amazon, which is the one libraries will purchase if it is requested. To get the full picture I recommend acquiring the original version. It is so obvious there are those in the establishment, corporate and government who did not want some of the details to come out. They are a corrupt nest of snakes, who do not have the best interests of the people of this country at heart. I have great admiration for James Patrick, and declare him Not Guilty.

  22. I think James has acted with the courage, integrity & intelligence that are an absolute must from a police officer

    So, not guilty

  23. I too have followed James Patrick’s musings on contemporary policing and his encounter with the Met’s PSD is no surprise. One wonders if the target is not James, but the “many” who just might engage in public dialogue. It is called the “chilling effect” of such a policy and the implicit surveillance used.

    Is James Patrick guilty? No.

    If the Met are really concerned about Charge Two (cited in part) ‘harmful to the reputation of the police service and adversely impact on public confidence’. They should consider how the public trusts ‘senior police officers’ as found in YouGov polling over the period 2003 to November 2012, it fell from 75% to 49%. For ‘Local police officers’ it fell from 82% to 69%. Link:

    The UK is now a society which is far less respectful of authority, the polling found politicians and other public bodies fared badly. Alas the senior ranks of the police will not recognise this, respect and trust needs to be earned. One way of doing that is a knowledgeable public debate – which James Patrick has contributed to.

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