Last updated on September 23rd, 2023 at 03:16 pmReading Time: 2 minutes
Or are they? Independent I mean.
Yesterday they casually released three tweets to the world which ignited a pure shitstorm on Twitter and Facebook.
So after FIVE years of investigation, and all that involves for both complainant and officers, they simply issued a statement announcing the withdrawal of proceedings and apologising to all those involved.
Having been most insistent that proceedings for Gross Misconduct were warranted against the officers, meaning that the officers were at risk of being summarily dismissed from the Met and all that involved, they suddenly decide to withdraw the proceedings.
Because it became apparent that not ALL of the evidence had been served on the officers’ defence team. Witnesses who could support the officers’ version of events were neither interviewed by the IPCC investigators nor was their existence revealed to the officers and their defence team. At the point when the reasons for this were about to be challenged the IPCC decided to withdraw from the proceedings and not even turn up for them apparently.
We’re not talking about one or two witnesses who may have been overlooked, there were apparently SCORES of potential witnesses who would have supported the officers.
There was also information available that the complainant did not do as the officers told him to do at the scene of an incident and had no desire whatsoever to help them in any way. He was apparently behaving in a manner which could have inflamed the situation more.
When their shortcomings became apparent the IPCC merely acknowledge that their report did not meet legal requirements, discontinued the proceedings (after 5 years don’t forget) and submit a letter to the panel containing an apology. Is this really sufficient? Is it ethical? It most certainly isn’t professional.
So, there is now to be an “in depth review” of what went wrong. In my humble opinion there should not be a Review, there should be an Investigation. Whoever is responsible for this farce at IPCC should be identified, disciplined and face the same sanctions as the officers were facing.Was this a case of Gross Negligence where the IPCC investigators were blissfully unaware of their obligations under Disclosure? I very much doubt that on the grounds that they investigate Police for similar failings.
Or is this part of an emerging trend where Disclosure obligations seem to be simply cast aside in the rush to convict a Police Officer of something? Could be.
The IPCC don’t like recruiting ex Police Investigators on the grounds that they might not be ‘Independent’ enough. The other side of that coin is that they know how to investigate and know all about the relevant bits of legislation that dictate how an investigation must be conducted.
Last night I asked who the IPCC are actually accountable to
I don’t expect an answer any time soon, but it’s a perfectly reasonable question. Who ARE they responsible to, and what do they propose to do about this travesty?
This is NOT a “one off”. The issues raised here must be simply swept under the catpet. Heads should roll, in the same way that the IPCC were after heads, and it must never be allowed to happen again. EVERYBODY should benefit from the same lawful, ethical and professional standards of investigation. If this had been the Police “stitching up” a few local criminals there would be public outrage.
Let the outrage begin.