I have been extremely busy over the past couple of days which has meant that I have had my thunder stolen in respect to the latest plebgate events. Having said that, the Chair of the Metropolitan Police federation is only saying what I was going to say. What a complete and utter waste of everyone’s time the investigation into the incident involving Andrew Mitchell on Downing Street whereby 30 officers from the Metropolitan Police’s Professional Standards Department are to interview 800 Diplomatic Protection Officers. In case you missed it, Andrew Mitchell was reported by Police Officers as having sworn at them when they refused to open a gate on Downing Street asking him to use the pedestrian access. His response in swearing was the old I pay your wages type comment and also that the officers were plebs.
In fairness to him, he denied it. There is no independent recording of the actual conversation so you made your own mind up. It intrigues me that Mitchell did not deny the abusive language but seriously denied the use of the word pleb. I often apply the missive, having been accused of making up stories in my own career, that if the officers on the gate really wanted to stitch him up would they use an innocuous word such as pleb? Of course not, so my opinion of the incident for what its worth sides with the officers at the gate.
Then came the cctv footage which showed that Mitchell was forced to use the pedestrian gate. Somehow, even experienced journalists managed to infer that from a silent video the words attributed to Mitchell could not have been used! However, it did call into question the evidence of one person who happened to be an off duty cop posing as a member of the public and present at the scene. Unfortunately for him, the cctv does not appear to show him there. Of course, the utter b*llocks being spouted now is that because he is accused of lying it must be the case that all the cops are lying. The reality of it is that the behaviour which Mitchell admitted should have led to his resignation not just the use of the word pleb.
If it is true that now 800 officers are to be interviewed in this case then it is an expensive joke. However, we know that this witch hunt fishing for information over a poxy dispute instigated by a pompous MP will cost hundreds of thousands of pounds and will demoralise all those involved. Why doesn’t Andrew Mitchell do the decent thing and insist to Hogan-Howe that the Met Police Professional Standards Department should wind their necks in and get on with law enforcement. That way he gets a bit of credibility back – far more than a pathetically posed snog of an Inspector in his local constituency