Wednesday 7 September 2016

Police Don't Care When Someone Dies In Their Custody

Lee Martin, a 24 year old man from Bo’ness died while in police custody in July this year.

We have no idea what happened to Lee. All we know is that he became ill after being taken to Falkirk Police Office.

As is normal with these cases, the (toothless) Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (PIRC) is investigating. So don't hold your breath waiting for answers.

From previous cases of similar unexplained deaths in police custody, it's unlikely we'll ever find out what really happened. In particular I think back to the five police officers who gave five different versions of the story about how Sheku Bayou came to die in police custody. You get the idea.

But what has annoyed me immensely today is one bit of the quote from a police spokesman regarding the incident with Lee.

The police spokesman said: "Sadly, on Thursday, July 14, the man passed away in hospital and our thoughts are with his family at this time"

Let's be clear here.

When someone dies in police custody, police thoughts are NEVER with the family at this time.

How dare they.

Police thoughts are how they can get themselves out of the mess.

Police thoughts are how they can defend themselves against a failing in their duty of care.

Police thoughts are how they can cover up for whatever happened.

Police thoughts are how they can close ranks and protect each other.

We don't know any of the circumstances of Lee Martin's death so this post should not be seen as a comment on his particular case.

Rather, it's a general observation I make towards an unfeeling, uncaring, brutal, cynical and distrustful police force who continue to think they can insult the intelligence of the public who pay their wages.

Untrustworthy Police Scotland's thoughts are NEVER with the family of those who die in their custody or die due to their failures.

Their only thoughts at these times are how they can cover their own backs.