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London Police "guilty" Over De Menezes Case  
User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 54
Posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 1421 times:

Highly unusual for them to prosecuted over health and safety legislation, but the more you think about it, the more it makes sense - not least because they are prosecuted collectively. As for the verdict, well the jury has spoken, I don't really have sufficiently clear knowledge to comment on that directly.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7069796.stm


She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
18 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 1, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 1409 times:

Quoting Banco (Thread starter):
Highly unusual for them to prosecuted over health and safety legislation,

I am always astonished that they did not manage to shoot somebody else as well. The whole episode still rather beggars belief. Then again, in a less violent way, the stuff ups were pretty similar in kind to what we saw here with the Haneef case.

It seems that calm approaches even to non dangerous situations have gone out of the window.

In both cases it will be interesting to see if anyone ends up suffering the sort of fate that you would expect for such a serious set of errors, well apart from Menezes and Haneef of course!


User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 54
Reply 2, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 4 days ago) and read 1396 times:

Quoting Baroque (Reply 1):
In both cases it will be interesting to see if anyone ends up suffering the sort of fate that you would expect for such a serious set of errors,

Well. I find this difficult, because the police in such circumstances - remember the period when this happened - are under extreme pressure, and I'm uneasy with the idea of individual police officers ending up in prison for making mistakes when they're desperately trying to prevent another series of bombs on the Tube network.

The jury did make it clear that the commander of the operation was not personally culpable, which suggests to me that the jury have some sympathy with the nightmare situation in which the Met Police as a body found themselves.

Nevertheless, it is right that the police are accountable for their actions, which is why I feel that the case itself sort of makes sense. I don't know, on one hand I have deep sympathy for the police trying to do an impossible job to protect the public from suicide bombers, yet on the other it is a fact that an innocent man lost his life, and that is (obviously) unacceptable.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 3, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1338 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 2):
Nevertheless, it is right that the police are accountable for their actions, which is why I feel that the case itself sort of makes sense. I don't know, on one hand I have deep sympathy for the police trying to do an impossible job to protect the public from suicide bombers, yet on the other it is a fact that an innocent man lost his life, and that is (obviously) unacceptable.

Perhaps my analogy was a bad one, or perhaps it was a good one. Depends on the view. The London police BELIEVED they had an imperative. Trouble was, they actually did not. So to my (somewhat puzzled) mind, it is the planners who were most at fault. That is somewhere between the guys who filled Menezes full of holes and Blair or whatever his name is. You could argue that if there is a suicide bomber ready to blow, more bullets would be better than fewer, but I still wonder if two arm shots might not have produced the same effect, inability to pull the pin.

I still wonder about how long if they were to keep doing that before they got a few collateral dead as well as the target. Judging from the first press releases on the Menezes shootings, any "collaterals" would be reported as other terrorists, at least for 48 hours!!

The way in which the Aus case was a good analogy (and it has come to life again today, with leaked emails) is that although there was no hint of interrupting a suicide operation, our police waded in with a set of incorrect and half baked interpretations, helped on by the DPP. This time it was "only" Haneef's professional life that was at stake. Interestingly, the Magistrate who heard the case seemed to have much less difficulty in working out how weak the case was. So it was possible for someone with their brain engaged to figure it all out.

With these dramatically lower stakes our police showed a parallel ability to misinterpret and as a result to act in a way totally unjustified by the circumstances.

While suicide bombers do produce arguments for faster and less well thought out actions, the Menezes case shows what can result when those actions are mistaken. Time was when the UK tended to be an example of considered actions on most matters. I hope it can get that reputation back, the rest of us are seriously in need of a good example.


User currently offlineDL021 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 11446 posts, RR: 76
Reply 4, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1334 times:
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Quoting Baroque (Reply 3):
, but I still wonder if two arm shots might not have produced the same effect, inability to pull the pin.

Let me put your mind at rest about that. Police and military are taught worldwide to aim center mass. When in a high stress shooting situation....especially when moving or firing from an unsupported position it's next to impossible to hit someone in the arm, and a miss produces an opportunity for the suspect to execute whatever maneuver the police were attempting to prevent.

Shooting at the arm with a sniper rifle is a very low percentage shot due to the fact that arms move. Shoulders move. Heads are easier to shoot at due to the width and breadth. The best shots....and I mean fewer than a few thousand worldwide....can hit the precise spot with a rifle or pistol unaided by support or specialty optics.

That idea is a non-starter as most police are not trained, nor can they be, to that degree. It's a combination of special training along with far above average hand-eye coordination and reflexes along with mindset. Sort of like having a guy who can run faster and farther than 90% of the rest of the world (i.e. the average infantry soldier), but is pretty far behind the Olympic runners due to the gap between the good and the great.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 3):
While suicide bombers do produce arguments for faster and less well thought out actions, the Menezes case shows what can result when those actions are mistaken. Time was when the UK tended to be an example of considered actions on most matters. I hope it can get that reputation back, the rest of us are seriously in need of a good example

Thinking like that is ok when you can live through being hit first (but with the possibility of dirty bombs and mass conventional attacks i.e. Spanish or British train bombings the ability to take that first slap is getting more costly). It's truly a great thing to hold yourself more civilized than the opposition, but when you're faced with making a decision for public safety in a moment of heat I'd rather the police err on the side of safety. Perhaps when technology comes up with a piece of equipment that allows them to immobilize people on the spot then it'll be easier to engage in non-lethal means of prosecuting arrest. oh...wait...we've got some non-lethal stuff on the shelf....the same people that want us to use non-lethal complain that it hurts too much and it's like torture. Oh, well....back to the drawing board.



Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 5, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 11 hours ago) and read 1328 times:

Quoting DL021 (Reply 4):
It's truly a great thing to hold yourself more civilized than the opposition, but

If you make that concession, then you have lost the war as well as the battle. The "but" means they win.

Do tell us how dangerous dirty bombs are. I keep forgetting.


User currently offlinePlymSpotter From Spain, joined Jun 2004, 11573 posts, RR: 61
Reply 6, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 10 hours ago) and read 1324 times:

Quoting DL021 (Reply 4):
Shooting at the arm with a sniper rifle is a very low percentage shot due to the fact that arms move. Shoulders move. Heads are easier to shoot at due to the width and breadth. The best shots....and I mean fewer than a few thousand worldwide....can hit the precise spot with a rifle or pistol unaided by support or specialty optics.

Thing is, this wasn't a long range shot, this was 11 bullets, point blank to the head. However, as far as I've heard from the reports, this was on government/security orders, as it was feared that shots to the body (chest/arms in particular) could detonate the explosives which it was believed suspects were carrying.

The thing I actually find most appalling about all this is that we now have pictures of a dead man's body laying in a pool of blood on a tube train, circling the internet for all those inclined to viewing them. It would seem that our society is so caught up in it's thirst for news, pictures and grim details that it has lost it's respect for the dead and, more so, their families.


Dan Smile



...love is just a camouflage for what resembles rage again...
User currently offlineMariner From New Zealand, joined Nov 2001, 24651 posts, RR: 86
Reply 7, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 9 hours ago) and read 1312 times:
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Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 6):
Thing is, this wasn't a long range shot, this was 11 bullets, point blank to the head.

I have always been amazed about that. One was not enough? Or even two?

With regard to the verdict and police culpability, I fully accept the situation - the circumstances of the day - but the police did make some horrendous mistakes and, in the final analysis, they executed a completely innocent man.

Okay. No "one" individual may have been to blame, but it is depressing to me, although far from surprising, that Sir Ian Blair is refusing to resign.

It happened on his watch. It is, ultimately, his responsibility.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 1):
In both cases it will be interesting to see if anyone ends up suffering the sort of fate that you would expect for such a serious set of errors,

I can't imagine that happening. Any bureaucracy will always protect their own. See above.

mariner



aeternum nauta
User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 54
Reply 8, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 5 hours ago) and read 1294 times:

Quoting Mariner (Reply 7):
but it is depressing to me, although far from surprising, that Sir Ian Blair is refusing to resign.

Yes, I agree with you there. I can't help but think that a truly honourable man, irrespective of whether it was his fault or not, would resign and state that it is ultimately his responsibility. He may yet be forced to go, since the opposition parties are loudly and publicly calling for his resignation. We'll see.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 5):
If you make that concession, then you have lost the war as well as the battle

Very true. However, where I think that is relevant is for us to have a degree of understanding when a highly stressed police force makes mistakes. Never excuse mistakes that shouldn't have been made, that's a different matter, but have a degree of understanding, and a degree of tolerance.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
User currently offlineOly720man From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 6610 posts, RR: 11
Reply 9, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 1279 times:

It seems to me that this is another tragic incident of friendly fire, to use a popular expression. It is easy, years down the line, to spend hours analysing every nuance of the operation and pick it to pieces, but when something is live and seconds count..... you go with what you told and I expect that someone's actions will tend to reinforce what you're expecting. Someone emerges from a building where potential bombers are under surveillance, he behaves "oddly" at times. And this 2 weeks after 54 people were killed on the underground.

Should there have been better identity checks? Because that's where the problem started. He looked "right" and subsequent observations seemed to fit the preconceptions. Was there someone who could actually stand back and say "are we following the right man?" or would that just have thrown everything into confusion?

What is the military sentiment? Plans are perfect until the first meeting with the enemy.

Why this H S case? For appearances? To give the Met a slap on the wrist for symbolic reasons? Yes, they got the wrong man, but this was a very stressful period. Accidents happen.

Quoting Mariner (Reply 7):
I fully accept the situation - the circumstances of the day - but the police did make some horrendous mistakes

I wonder how much the police are trained for situations like this? Is pursuing a suspected suicide bomber part of the curriculum? What is the psychology of pursuing and tackling someone who wants to die anyway? Would, say, the SAS, who I'd hazard a guess are more experienced at things like this, have behaved differently?

Should Blair resign? I'm not really sure it would achieve anything in policing terms apart from creating the added pressure of get it right (each and every time) or go. I'm sure the De Menezes family would be happy to see him go, and the man who shot their son. But then, next time what happens when a bomb goes off because the police were too careful and didn't react quickly enough or suffered losses because they tried to disable and arrest rather than kill? Will we have the same hand wringing? There sure as hell won't be a H+S case then. Sure, there could well be the 99 other cases where identity was verified and the supposed bad guy wasn't bad, but that never makes the news does it?



wheat and dairy can screw up your brain
User currently offlineWrighbrothers From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 1875 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 4 hours ago) and read 1273 times:

I think the problem is, the general public will not understand how stressful situations like that are, you've got all this information coming at you left right and centre about the person, with field agents following him. They then report that this suspected terrorist has gone into a tube station and you now have about 30secs to make a decision:
If you let him go and he has a bomb strapped to him, he calmly walks on the tube, waits for it to leave the station, presses the button and everybody within about 20M dies, which depending on how full the carriage is, can be about 20 + people. Then you'll be responsible for letting a terrorist kill many people when you had intelligence telling you he was a suspected terrorist let you let him go because you couldn't make a decision or made the wrong one. The press would have loved that one.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying him being shot was right, all I'm saying is it's too easy for people sit in chairs in a comfortable room without any of the stresses the police were under, to use good old hindsight to decide how they should have been able to tell he was innocent, even though intel said he was.
It's a gamble and game of numbers at the end of the day, like betting on a horse, you have to make a decision by what nformation you have and stick by it, ultimately, as cold as this will sound, one person dead is better than 20+ dead, it's a matter of split second decisions and once the decision is made, no matter how much you apologise, you can't turn it back.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 1):
I am always astonished that they did not manage to shoot somebody else as well

well they surrounded him and then shot him, so there was nobody else in the kine of fire.

Quoting Baroque (Reply 3):
but I still wonder if two arm shots might not have produced the same effect, inability to pull the pin.

As has been mentioned it's very hard to take a good aim while running, breathing heavily etc, and police marksmen are taught shoot to kill, not wound to question later.

Quoting PlymSpotter (Reply 6):
Thing is, this wasn't a long range shot, this was 11 bullets, point blank to the head. However, as far as I've heard from the reports, this was on government/security orders, as it was feared that shots to the body (chest/arms in particular) could detonate the explosives which it was believed suspects were carrying.

Yes, if you shoot someone in the chest who has explosives, it's like stepping on a landmine, you ultimately aim for the head.

Quoting Mariner (Reply 7):
have always been amazed about that. One was not enough? Or even two?

The weapon was most likely on full-auto, although it does surprise me, usually (special forces do, I assume police do too) you do a double tap (two rounds in quick succession) on a target as so to take them down, but when storming a room, the military use semi or full auto to kill anyone in a room so I guess they must have used full auto, or serveral men used semi-auto.

Wrighbrothers



Always stand up for what is right, even if it means standing alone..
User currently offlineGreasespot From Canada, joined Apr 2004, 3076 posts, RR: 21
Reply 11, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 1260 times:

Quoting DL021 (Reply 4):
Let me put your mind at rest about that. Police and military are taught worldwide to aim center mass.

Actually we are now being taught to do head shots for just this very reason....The only way to stop a bomber is to shut down the central nervous system ASAP.....

I will only say this about the situation as I was not there. I am given a gun to use in a society that has pretty strict gun control. With that gun come the responsibility that will use it when required. However, part of that responsibility is that if i use it when it is not warranted I will charged and tried. I also accept that I may or maynot be found guilty. I accepted that when I accepted the gun. But it will be the judge and jury that will convict me not society as a whole who usualy does not have the whole story...They usually have only one side.

I was not there in the tube. I only have one side of the story taken from video footage. Therefore I am not going to judge the officers based on that.....


GS



Sometimes all you can do is look them in the eye and ask " how much did your mom drink when she was pregnant with you?"
User currently offlineBaroque From Australia, joined Apr 2006, 15380 posts, RR: 59
Reply 12, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 23 hours ago) and read 1245 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 8):
Quoting Baroque (Reply 5):
If you make that concession, then you have lost the war as well as the battle

Very true. However, where I think that is relevant is for us to have a degree of understanding when a highly stressed police force makes mistakes. Never excuse mistakes that shouldn't have been made, that's a different matter, but have a degree of understanding, and a degree of tolerance.

With this case (and the Australian one) it was the series of errors that proved so unfortunate. At a number of stages in the sequence, a correct decision could have prevented the end.

Tolerance yes, but how much tolerance for fairly elementary mistakes, such as losing the track on the suspect and then a few more to compound the problem.

As to where you shoot, I don't know how these guys have their triggers, but I imagine it is in effect a reverse dead man's handle, so "closing down the CNS" would be likely to set the damned thing off just as much as if the guy did it deliberately. So what you should do depends a bit on how clever you think your terrorists are!

Blair should go in part for being charge of such a stuff up, but he should be frogmarched out for the false information that must have had his imprimatur immediately after the shooting.

It is a bad enough situation that we need to be protected against terrorists, but if we need to be protected against our law enforcement agencies, that is a step too far.


User currently offlineMariner From New Zealand, joined Nov 2001, 24651 posts, RR: 86
Reply 13, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 1222 times:
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Quoting Wrighbrothers (Reply 10):
well they surrounded him and then shot him, so there was nobody else in the kine of fire.



Quoting Wrighbrothers (Reply 10):
As has been mentioned it's very hard to take a good aim while running, breathing heavily etc, and police marksmen are taught shoot to kill, not wound to question later.

If they surrounded him in a very small space - a train compartment - who was running?

Quoting Greasespot (Reply 11):
Therefore I am not going to judge the officers based on that.....

I am not judging the police officers, despite all the screw ups. But if you have someone under close surveillance, how close is that surveillance if you lose sight of the target to take a leak?

I am not blaming the individual officers. But why did the Metropolitan Police decide to fight the case?

The life of an innocent man was forfeit, and, we are told, no one individual is to blame, only the Metropolitan Police as an amorphous whole. Sir Ian Blair has responsibility for the Metropolitan Police.

The difference between "them" (whoever "they" are) and "us" (whoever "we" are) is that innocent life has value.

If Sir Ian stays, if no one is culpable, then it is just an arrogant man clinging to power, and that difference is lost.

What, then, is the battle about?

mariner



aeternum nauta
User currently offlineLeezyjet From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 4041 posts, RR: 54
Reply 14, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 1215 times:

Quoting Banco (Reply 2):
Well. I find this difficult, because the police in such circumstances - remember the period when this happened - are under extreme pressure, and I'm uneasy with the idea of individual police officers ending up in prison for making mistakes when they're desperately trying to prevent another series of bombs on the Tube network.

Exactly, and if this guy had been a real terrorist and had blown up that train, then the Police would still be in the shit for not shooting him. Either way they cannot win !!.

Quoting DL021 (Reply 4):
the same people that want us to use non-lethal complain that it hurts too much and it's like torture. Oh, well....back to the drawing board.

Yeah and these are also the same ones who will also complain the Police didn't do enough if someone did blow themselves up !!.

Quoting Mariner (Reply 7):
I have always been amazed about that. One was not enough? Or even two?

Like in the case where the SAS killed those IRA Terrorists in Gibralter. One Soilder when asked by the court why he fired 30 rounds into the target, replied "It's all I had in my magazine Sir !!"

Quoting Oly720man (Reply 9):
Yes, they got the wrong man, but this was a very stressful period. Accidents happen.

Completely agree. If we reversed the situation, British guy shot in Brazil. Would we see compensation and visas given to that persons family and a lengthy inquest - I think not !!.

 Smile



"She Rolls, 45 knots, 90, 135, nose comes up to 20 degrees, she's airborne - She flies, Concorde Flies"
User currently offlineBanco From United Kingdom, joined Oct 2001, 14752 posts, RR: 54
Reply 15, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 21 hours ago) and read 1211 times:

Quoting Mariner (Reply 13):
But if you have someone under close surveillance, how close is that surveillance if you lose sight of the target to take a leak?

They had lots of people under surveillance, apparently. Don't forget they were trying to find four probable suicide bombers. The police were at full stretch, and probably beyond. That they made mistakes is not surprising, that the structures in place were so deeply flawed is a bit more concerning, that it resulted in the death of an innocent man is unforgiveable. Mistakes will happen, and it is never surprising that ithose errors could have been avoided. But, despite the tragic outcome, I wouldn't feel comfortable with hanging individual officers out to dry for trying to do their best to prevent another terrorist outrage.



She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.
User currently offlineFumanchewd From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 1195 times:

Quoting Baroque (Reply 5):
Quoting DL021 (Reply 4):
It's truly a great thing to hold yourself more civilized than the opposition, but

If you make that concession, then you have lost the war as well as the battle. The "but" means they win.

Do tell us how dangerous dirty bombs are. I keep forgetting.

His point was that it is not practical to purposely target limbs. That it is necessary to do what is necessary and not ideally right sometimes. If shooting for limbs causes an increased possibility of a detonation or an armed reation, then it is necessary to do what the police would rather avoid.

Continue extrapolating.


User currently offlineMariner From New Zealand, joined Nov 2001, 24651 posts, RR: 86
Reply 17, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 1181 times:
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Quoting Banco (Reply 15):
I wouldn't feel comfortable with hanging individual officers out to dry for trying to do their best to prevent another terrorist outrage.

I specifically said that I am not attaching "blame" to individual police officers. Neither did the court - the jury.

The court, the jury, found the Metropolitan Police - as an amorphous whole - guilty. Responsibility for the Metropolitan Police rests with one man, Sir Ian Blair.

He is the captain of the ship, and the ship foundered under his command. Common decency - and concepts of command - suggests he should at least offer to resign.

Whether that resignation is accepted or not then becomes a matter for the Home Secretary.

mariner



aeternum nauta
User currently offlineWrighbrothers From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2005, 1875 posts, RR: 9
Reply 18, posted (6 years 5 months 3 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 1163 times:

Quoting Mariner (Reply 13):
If they surrounded him in a very small space - a train compartment - who was running?

Well in a perfect world you shoot them before they get to their target which would mean shooting them on the move, but yea I worded it badly, what I meant was, if you were running, and/or breathing heavily (while standing still etc)

Wrighbrothers



Always stand up for what is right, even if it means standing alone..
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