Britain’s Police Are Seriously Not Fit For Purpose

The Tesco supermarket chain started life as a London market stall in 1919. Today, it is a major international company employing over three hundred and fifty thousand people. It has now been announced that its frontline staff in UK stores are to be offered body cameras due to rising numbers of assaults on them. According to the Daily Mail, over two hundred Tesco employees are victims of serious assaults every month. And serious means? How about being attacked by a knife wielding thug as in this Sky News report

At the end of this video, the journalist says the police don’t even bother to respond to 71% of serious retail crime. Why not? Well, they have far more serious matters on their plate. Last month, a 16 year old autistic girl was arrested in Leeds for committing a “hate crime” – saying a female police officer looked like a lesbian. As this outrage was committed in her own home, it is difficult to see how it could have been considered a public order offence. 

Almost as bad is what happened in a less urban part of Yorkshire. At Hebden Bridge, population four and a half thousand, someone put up a sticker that read ‘Keep males out of women-only spaces’. An elderly woman took a photograph of this sticker, and that was enough to earn her a visit from the local plod. The sticker had been affixed to a “pride” poster, and this appears to have been the cause of this imaginary problem.

Difficult though it is to believe, this sort of nonsense has been happening the length and breadth of the nation because most police officers would rather surf Twitter all day looking for someone who has uttered a rude word than chase real criminals who might be armed and shoot back. Sir Mark Rowley was appointed Police Commissioner in September last year. He has stressed his commitment to improving the service to the public which includes fast tracking the dismissal of corrupt or unsuitable officers and clamping down on real crime. This has to include tackling retail theft because the madness we have seen in California and other blue states has already crossed the Atlantic, as we saw last month with those disgraceful scenes in London’s Oxford Street. 

If law and order breaks down, we will see a rise in vigilantism or simply frustrated shopkeepers dealing with shoplifters and assailants in this fashion. Rest assured if and when that happens, it is the shopkeeper who will be arrested and dragged into court rather than the miscreants who are destroying his livelihood.

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