Sunday, 28 December 2008

Good will to all men

Christmas Eve

Busy night judging by the number of bods in custody, I spoke to a mate on the other team as I took the vehicle over, he looked completely shattered. No one had a break (as usual on nights) and they were live dealing with constant calls from early car at 6pm until we came in the following morning for 7am. There were only a couple of calls outstanding, a couple of drunks on buses refusing to get off, shop alarms going off, so we cleared them up and headed back in for briefing. They had quite a few people in custody considering it was the night before Christmas Eve.

The next couple of hours were lots of calls to alarm activations then we had the first ‘proper’ job of the morning; executing a court order to seize travel documents of a three year old whose mother was threatening to remove from the country permanently. A Judge in the high court has seen enough intelligence to determine that a child is at risk of abduction and has seen fit to order the Police to execute the court order “as a matter of extreme urgency” to seize all and any documents related to travel, but has not provided us with the intelligence pack and has only authorised a power of arrest if the officers have reasonable ground for suspecting that any person has not complied with the order.

There is no power of entry or power of search, and no information as to exactly which travel documents we are to seize. Short of someone slamming the door in our faces, we can’t really do anything other than ask ever so nicely if they wouldn’t mind handing the bits over, as we don’t know what we’re looking for.

I call the court up to check exactly which documents we are supposed to be seizing and ask a couple of reasonable questions - does the child have a passport? Where has the intel come from that the child is at the address? Is there intel that a flight has been booked or other travel arrangements have been made? The answer from the court is they don’t know anything. Not very helpful. We get no joy at the address, or with any agency related to travel documents as Christmas Eve is a discretionary day for civil servants, and they all appear to have taken it off. It’s not as if a suspected child abduction is anything serious anyway. We manage to find some other addresses as well as the court issued one and check each of them. No luck, to be honest the mother has probably taken the child already.

We all contributed to putting a buffet together so each crew on our team can get some food and we can at least experience a modicum of festive cheer in between calls to shoplifters, arguments, dippings, people getting drunk and fighting etc.

Later on we get the best example of instant karma I’ve seen for a while. A bloke trying to shoplift sprints away from security, decides to cross one of our main roads to lose them, and promptly gets gobbled up by a taxi. Thankfully the taxi driver and his passengers were unharmed, and after LAS checked the guy over and confirmed he only had minor injuries he got nicked. It turned out he was also wanted on a warrant for burglary. The warrant wasn’t backed for bail meaning we couldn’t release him and had to keep him in custody to put him for the first available court hearing.

Unfortunately for him, the first court wasn’t until the 26th. Mwah ha ha ha ha ha ha. Merry Christmas.

Christmas Day

So much for expecting to have a nice chilled day. As I walked down the corridor to get the car I walk past the front office and see a mountain of exhibits scattered around the place, loads of seized clothing and a couple of the nightshift guys sitting on the floor cataloguing everything. One of them looks up and see’s my rather puzzled face “R&B night” he says. I shake my head and ask “how many injured?” without looking up again he says “four separate GBH’s that we dealt with, one’s in a really bad way, there are a couple of scenes as well. It went pretty tits up when the clubs kicked out”.

I was surprised it was only four then his colleague said “there were a few other ABH’s but they didn’t want to know (didn’t want to make a crime complaint to Police) and LAS dealt with them”

The hospital and scene guards took up most of the morning and tied up pretty much everyone, then as yesterday there were lots of alarm calls, a couple of building searches, a couple of domestics (one was quite nasty apparently) and then lots of driving and walking around deserted side streets looking for people to search, if appropriate, obviously. We had some good vehicle stops and searches and got some good intel although we didn’t get as many bodies in compared to a normal dayshift.

We did manage to actually get a bit more proactive patrolling done than usual and the visitors with nothing else to do did seem to appreciate seeing lots of Police officers around to take photos with. Considering some Christmas days that I've spent at work, it wasn't actually that bad really.

Boxing Day

We’re standing in the back yard listening to the radio and it seems that every cock and his mate has decided to visit our patch and cause mayhem for the families out shopping and the shop staff trying eagerly to sell them everything possible. It got so bad during the day a Section 60 was authorised in the hope that some aggressive searching and Policing would discourage most of them to bugger off somewhere else. A couple of vehicles come back in for a quick handover and after the usual pleasantries and friendly insults we chuck our kit in the back and head out.

Despite having extra people on, plain clothes units out targeting steaming teams (thieves who swamp an area enmasse to cause mayhem and steal as much as possible) there are calls coming out all over the place for Police assistance to stores and from other units requesting back up. We get a couple of urgent assistance calls which ended up in several people arrested from different jobs, we also had a couple of officers injured at each one. With the majority of shops closing, the calls dropped off a bit but those who came up just to cause trouble just went to other parts and carried on. Group robberies, assaults, steaming off licences etc carried on for a bit and for the first few hours of the shift was a case of blues to a call, jumping out, throwing whomever in the van and then blatting off to the next.

It was stupid.

After the shoppers went home the calls eased off a bit as the pubs started filling up and we managed to get a brew in, it then went pear shaped again as the pubs kicked out and the clubs started filling up. We had quite a few pub fight calls with doorstaff requesting support, “innocent people assaulted by doorstaff” and units requesting backup after queue fights and ejections got continually out of hand. As the drink and Christmas cheer really got going we had a couple of nasty GBH’s and a few ABH’s involving some of the most unpleasant casualties I’ve met in a while who started the fights but failed to get the first punch in and then tied up desperately busy ambulance crews.

Another ‘victim’ was found in a bleeding heap outside a hotel, fortunately for him the first crew on scene had already dealt with him earlier on after seeing him and a couple of mates square up to a group of blokes, they circulated the description of the suspects who were picked up not far away. I can’t go into too much detail, but they had very stupidly linked themselves to the attack on the victim and we were literally in stitches as we got them out of the van.

We then spent the remainder of the shift ‘encouraging’ drunks to grow up and go home, such as the idiot who decided to step in front of the car and shake his cock at us whilst we were on blues, until he realised we were the Police and not an Ambulance, and that we were neither impressed, nor amused.

All in all, it was a rather busy and somewhat unpleasant blur, and reinforced my view on a couple of things -

1) I hate drunk people.
2) I should have booked it all off.



Blue Eyes said...

Sounds like you work in a nice part of town!

Anonymous said...

"such as the idiot who decided to step in front of the car and shake his cock at us whilst we were on blues, until he realised we were the Police and not an Ambulance" As I sit here, crying, wanting my sides to stop hurting I'm reminded of a similar event.

I walked upto a gent sat in a car, I wasn't happy with wear he was parked (parking restrictions were in force as there was a parade due later on in the day) and he'd been hovering around a bit so I decided to go an speak to him, move him along etc. So there I am in uniform wearing my hi-vi. The one that says POLICE OFFICER on it. To be fair I wasn't wearing my lid as a small reservoir of gloves was in it being used by the others searching bins and checking doors and what not. It went something like:

"Hello chap, can you move your car, this bay is suspended"
"What do you want?"
"This road is closing shortly, you can't park here"
"Why not?"
"I've just told you"
"You can't tell me where to park"
"Yes I can, I'm the Police"
"oh, are you? Sorry, I'll, erm, I'll.."
"Move your car and park somewhere else, yes, yes you will"
"Well you should be in uniform or something" *drives off muttering*

My mate asked me what all that was about and I asked if there was something about being dressed up like la-la off the tellytubbies with the words POLICE OFFICER on my jacket which led him to believe I was a street sweeper. On second thoughts, don't answer that.

I got out of those three days, I'm on new years eve though!

Max said...

Busy for you too then mate. Gonna post the second party of my own "christmas carol " later...
Today is the first day over the xmas period I have had off, so have placed myself under house arrest for the day.A day of booze , xbox live and food await me.
The rest of the world can F***K itself for today.....and maybe tommorow too!!

Anonymous said...

"until he realised we were the Police and not an Ambulance"

Sums up my last few shifts beautiful........ the phrase "I bet you wouldn't have done that if it was a copper" have been uttered from my driving seat (along with a few other profanities) several times!

Though it sounds like we had it fairly easy compared to you...... our biggest problem and (A/E's) was that there were very few GP working out of hours meaning we couldn't refer anything! It all went to hospital!

Metcountymounty said...

Louise and anon 1328 - When his excuse was "sorry I thought you were an Ambulance" I think he realised pretty quickly that that was the wrong thing to say when we both said in unison "that's even fucking worse!!!"

Anonymous said...

I hope it's good will to all women too Mr MCM.

I cannot abide drunks either, and I used to be soooo tolerant, and patient, and understanding, and forgiving, when I was younger and less world weary.

YES, you should have booked it all off, because it is very clear that the stress of the job has got to you, and you need some TLC.

X X X and cyber hugs
Will that make it a bit better?
Be gentle with yourself MCM, and have a stress free new year.

The Best of wishes to you

ER Indoors

Hibbo said...

Good post MCM, I know I'm a bit late reading it...

What did the taxi driver get done with? Dangerous driving or just Without due care (or whatever you call it nowadays). Has he been to court yet? Not a very happy new year for that poor sod, hope he keeps his licence... You must've been happy though - two detections for the price of one! Xmas indeed!

Metcountymounty said...

The taxi driver didn't get stuck on for anything, why would he? It was the stupid scrotes fault for getting run over!!!

Hibbo said...

Is it down to the CPS to bring charges for motoring offences?

Metcountymounty said...

Only for death by dangerous really, anything up to and including serious injury is still dealt with by the Police investigators and would be dealt with by summons direct to court if appropriate. The only exception is if a Police driver is involved then it is referred to the CPS as they have a considerably lower threshold for prosecution and apparently stops allegations of the Police "looking after their own".

Unless there is a reason for the driver to be arrested (rare but if alcohol is involved or the driver is unable to be summonsed such as unverifiable ID or false details) the CPS don't get involved with traffic matters until/unless it goes to court and they are prosecuting the case.

Nothing relating to traffic attracts a Home Office 'detection' which is why traffic departments have all but been abolished as they don't see it as a priority, it is also why response teams aren't targeted on it. As I've said many, many times before, we only use traffic as a way into someones car for intel or to name check them.

You've actually inspired a post Hibbo after a conversation we had at work the other night when we were going through our end of year figures, I'll try and write it tomorrow if I get a chance.

Hibbo said...

Nothing relating to traffic attracts a Home Office 'detection' which is why traffic departments have all but been abolished

Ah! That explains it, I wondered why you hardly see traffic police about; thus if you want to get leathered or off your tits on drugs and then go for a spin, that's fine, as the chances of getting caught are tiny, IF you stick to the speed-limit. Do 80mph on an empty dual carriage way though, oh dear! Your ever expanding network of cameras will have that extortion letter landing on your doormat in no time at all!

Looking forward to whatever post I've inspired! ("Why everyone who's not in the police is scum"?)

Metcountymounty said...

hibbo, read this post and let me know what you think.