Successful policing requires the consent, collaboration and trust of the general public. This last year has been challenging for everyone but Derbyshire police decided to make it more difficult than necessary. They fined ladies for drinking coffee, though they had done nothing wrong. They manned en-masse all the local park gates, though a visit was perfectly legal. They told families they couldn’t play with footballs, a rule they apparently made up. They chased people across the peaks with drones to shame them on social media. This without knowing who they were or even having any evidence that the rules were being broken. You might excuse this with the changing rules, getting caught on the hop. But these were not isolated . The mistakes were repeated all year, destroying the trust and harming the effectiveness of the force. The repercussions will last for years. The police exist to provide a service. That service has been very lacking. Let’s put this straight.
We need to return to providing a service, remove the politics, restore the trust and respond in the best way possible. Derbyshire has a bigger than average drug problem. Let’s not chase the innocent and make up our own laws while entrenched drugs lords operate openly in our streets. We need to remove the cannabis grows that are rampant in our neighbourhoods and catch the thieves that often seem to disappear without trace. Picking the easy and often innocent targets this year has been the biggest policing mistake in decades but we need to rebuild the police relationship with the public as only then will these issues be solved.
This statement was prepared by Timothy Prosser : 37 Hollis Street, Derby DE24 8QW
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