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Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby shootist » Sat Feb 10, 2018 6:26 pm

Hairyloon wrote:It wouldn't at all. Consider the case on the table: how long were those four officers busy that day, and for how much of that would direction have been significantly helpful? From a minute or two before the suspect was approached until the arrest was complete: a few minutes out of several hours. One controller should be able to handle multiple officers on the ground.


When such things were uncommon, I had the idea of using a Dictaphone to record any encounters with the public. I soon realised that to work well, I would have to record every incident, start to finish, and keep those recordings for a considerable time. An officer might deal with a drunken woman being a little annoying one evening. She quietens down immediately and goes on his lawful way without any problem. No need to keep that recording, some might say. Then, six months later she makes an allegation that he let her off being arrested in exchange for a blowjob in a shop doorway, which is untrue, but she does this because he locked up her cousin's boyfriend a few days before and this can be payback. We then have an officer who records his arrests, but has 'mysteriously' failed to keep this particular recording. The storage implications alone are immense. Please don't pick holes in this example, it's just an example. I'm quite sure you could work out your own.

Then there is the decision to arrest. Does the officer decide, or the controller? What if they disagree?

It's so simple to suggest 'easy' solutions that you don't have to think through.
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby atticus » Sun Feb 11, 2018 10:06 am

The Supreme Court has set out the principle that the police are liable for harm done to others in the course of police operations, as a result of positive actions by the police, when that harm is foreseeable. This means that the police are not exempt from principles laid down in a string of cases from Donoghue v Stevenson to Caparo.

I expect that police forces the length and breadth of the country are examining the implications, together with their insurers. West Yorkshire will probably have conducted a detailed investigation into what went wrong in the particular case; I am sure that they will be carrying out a wider ranging review of operational procedures.

I suspect that individual officers going off piste in their own procedures will be discouraged.
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby Hairyloon » Sun Feb 11, 2018 5:44 pm

shootist wrote:It's so simple to suggest 'easy' solutions that you don't have to think through.

The purpose of making a suggestion is so that potential problems can be identified and thought through. Your example of the Dictaphone made a good point, back in the days when audio tape was still cutting edge technology. These days, not so much.
That is not to say there is no problem, but a system could be devised to automatically shed the least likely useful data over time.
This may lead to examples like those you suggest, where data is deleted that later would have been useful, but even then, it leaves you no worse off than if you hadn't recorded the data in the first place.
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby shootist » Sun Feb 11, 2018 9:55 pm

Hairyloon wrote:This may lead to examples like those you suggest, where data is deleted that later would have been useful, but even then, it leaves you no worse off than if you hadn't recorded the data in the first place.


But it does leave you worse off. The officer can be challenged as to why there is no recording, it's lack can point the finger of suspicion that it was 'accidentally' erased/deleted although the 'real' reason is, it contained footage that would discredit the officer and show the defendant in a good light. How many videos of that officer show him in a good light? All of them? Are you saying you have never done the slightest thing incorrectly, ever, officer? Not, of course, that police CCTV footage has ever been lost or accidentally deleted. No sir. Not here. Couldn't happen. [Fade to long shot of George Dixon walking down foggy London street whistling a happy little bobby's tune.]
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby Hairyloon » Mon Feb 12, 2018 12:07 am

shootist wrote:
Hairyloon wrote:This may lead to examples like those you suggest, where data is deleted that later would have been useful, but even then, it leaves you no worse off than if you hadn't recorded the data in the first place.

But it does leave you worse off. The officer can be challenged as to why there is no recording...


If, as I suggested, the data is shed automatically then that challenge is easily answered.
Unless the data is lost for some reason outside of the established rules, in which case it would be quite proper to be asking questions of how so.
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby shootist » Mon Feb 12, 2018 1:03 pm

Hairyloon wrote:If, as I suggested, the data is shed automatically then that challenge is easily answered.
Unless the data is lost for some reason outside of the established rules, in which case it would be quite proper to be asking questions of how so.


What are the setting for automatic data shedding? Who decides? Can that person be trusted? A person is alleging a serious crime by a police officer and another police officer has allowed evidence to be automatically deleted. Nothing to see here. Move along now. Remember that film "Enemy as the Gate"? No, not that one, the one about the MP on his bike at Downing Street.
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby Hairyloon » Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:27 pm

shootist wrote:
Hairyloon wrote:If, as I suggested, the data is shed automatically then that challenge is easily answered.
Unless the data is lost for some reason outside of the established rules, in which case it would be quite proper to be asking questions of how so.


What are the setting for automatic data shedding? Who decides?


I suggest perhaps that the rules be set out in statute, but they need not be. The technology could be set up to automatically categorise the types of recording as it goes, there are various ways of doing that.
I'd suggest to keep the entire record for perhaps a week, then lose the bits where there is nothing happening. Any encounters with the public should be kept for longer and anything involving anything like an arrest should be kept indefinitely.
It depends a lot on the space constraints.
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby shootist » Mon Feb 12, 2018 5:56 pm

Hairyloon wrote:I suggest perhaps that the rules be set out in statute, but they need not be. The technology could be set up to automatically categorise the types of recording as it goes, there are various ways of doing that.
I'd suggest to keep the entire record for perhaps a week, then lose the bits where there is nothing happening. Any encounters with the public should be kept for longer and anything involving anything like an arrest should be kept indefinitely.
It depends a lot on the space constraints.


You are still missing the point. What about the incidents where there is no arrest but an allegation is made against a police officer after a couple of months that he, perhaps, accepted a bribe which is why there is no arrest? What when someone makes an allegation for a time when nothing whatever was happening but the person making the allegation is lying? If an allegation is made under those circumstances it is likely to be an important one, and could easily provoke the allegation that 'of course it would be erased' the modern equivalent of 'well he would say that wouldn't he'.
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Re: Supreme Court Case - Police negligence

Postby Hairyloon » Mon Feb 12, 2018 9:13 pm

shootist wrote:
Hairyloon wrote:I suggest perhaps that the rules be set out in statute, but they need not be. The technology could be set up to automatically categorise the types of recording as it goes, there are various ways of doing that.
I'd suggest to keep the entire record for perhaps a week, then lose the bits where there is nothing happening. Any encounters with the public should be kept for longer and anything involving anything like an arrest should be kept indefinitely.
It depends a lot on the space constraints.


You are still missing the point. What about the incidents where there is no arrest but an allegation is made against a police officer after a couple of months that he, perhaps, accepted a bribe which is why there is no arrest?

You still seem to be treating it as if the recordings are on tape: these days data storage is cheap and easy. It does take a lot of space to store video files, but audio is pretty compact: the audio element of the recordings might be retained for much longer.
What when someone makes an allegation for a time when nothing whatever was happening but the person making the allegation is lying? If an allegation is made under those circumstances it is likely to be an important one, and could easily provoke the allegation that 'of course it would be erased' the modern equivalent of 'well he would say that wouldn't he'.

Is the burden of proof not on the accuser? If the system is properly established, then it ought to be very difficult to erase anything outside of the set parameters without leaving a trail. Thus if there is no record, then that would be evidence that there was nothing to keep a record of.
The defence might ask the accuser why they waited so long before making the accusation.
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