A long time ago when you were young and I was even younger a woman was sectioned because of Social Services. I do not know what was wrong with her or what she did. After due course the section was removed and the woman was allowed to live again as a "normal" person.
She never knew why she was sectioned and it was never explained to her by the health services or social services and quite rightly she wanted to know. She asked her doctors and social services but nobody would tell her. All she did know that it was Social Services that had instigated her sectioning in the first place.
When she received no answers to her questions she started to write to senior council managers but got know reply. She wrote repeatedly sending the letters recorded delivery to ensure that they go there. She would record all phone calls she had with the council staff. The years passed by and still she did not get the answers she was looking for. Her files of letters and taped phone transcripts were now running into volumes.
In the end she decided to write to the top bod at the council, the Chief Exec. She thought that this would be the only way she could find out why she had been sectioned all those years ago. The Chief Exec did not answer her letters so she persisted. None of the letters were threatening , insulting or distressing in any way they were just persistent. In the end after still getting no response after many months of writing letters and making phone calls to the Chief Exec the lady now very old and frail put together a dossier of all her correspondence and evidence and turned up on the front doorstep of the Council Leader’s house. She thought this would be the only way to get the answers she wanted and make the council take notice of her after all this time.
She knocked on the door and the door was answered by the Council Leader’s daughter. The old lady asked if the girls Father was at home and when the reply was yes she handed the dossier to the girl and asked her to pass it on to her father. The old lady then left. Again no threats were made, no abuse was shouted. Just the paperwork was handed over and the old lady left.
Obviously the Council Leader was quite freaked out by this as his address should not be public knowledge but it is not difficult to find out where somebody lives if you really want to know. There are plenty of public records out there to be looked through if you know where to look. Does everybody remember http://www.b4usearch.com?
The Council Leader decided to report this to the police now as harassment. It was passed on to a response officer to deal with as this type of thing usually is and the response officer issued a First Harassment Warning even though technically this was crimed as a 2+ Harassment and the offence was complete according to NCRS. The warning seem the common sense approach to take as per Sir Ronnie’s request as this was the first report that had been made to the police about the matter. The crime was then closed. Or so the response officer thought…
After the old lady was given the warning she continued to write to the Council Leader, not to his home address but through the correct channels at the Town Hall. What a mistaka to maka.
The Council Leader being a pillar of society and well respected in the fair county plays golf every 2nd Tuesday of the month with the Chief Constable. Whilst on the 7th fairway he asks the Chief if there is anything that can be done about this crazy old bat who refuses to stop writing to him. The simple answer the Chief could have given would have been to write back and answer her questions or at least acknowledge her to say the matter would be looked into. But no, the Chief says to leave it with him and he will see shat he can sort out.
Over the next few days the order filters down the ranks to the Station Inspector that this old lady has got to be arrested for harassment having continued to write after being given the harassment warning. The order lands firmly in the lap of the original response officer who gave the warning as it is his job. The officer’s sergeant is very supportive of his staff and agrees to help him with it so early one morning they attend the home address of the old lady to bring her in.
When she realises what is happening she refuses to open the door. Not wanting to look stupid as this is a very old lady the officers discreetly ask for backup and the front door is put in. The old lady is waiting for them with a knife inside the address. She obviously has no intention of using it and she is quickly disarmed by the officers and has to be literally dragged from the address. Her neighbours see this and cannot believe that the police are treating an elderly lady in this way.
The lady is then taken to the police station. The officers return to her house and conduct a Section 18 search and recover boxes full of paperwork relating to the lady’s quest for answers. Someone senior finally realises that there is too much for a lone response officer to deal with due to the mountain of evidence that has just been uncovered during the search so a DS and a couple of D’s are brought on board. After all the so called victim of this is a personal friend of the Chief.
A quick flick through some of the paperwork shows that none of it is of a threatening or abusive nature so early advice is sought from the CPS. The CPS advice is very clear. At the current time there are NO OFFENCES. Their clear instructions were to not interview the old lady at the current time and to bail her immediately. All of the documentation was then to be passed to the CPS so that it could be reviewed to see if any of it amounted to a personal harassment of the Council Leader.
As things stood at the minute, although being over persistent, all the old lady had done was to write legitimate complaint letters and request information that she was legally entitled to request. It is not possible to harass a company or organisation and a person is perfectly entitled to address their correspondence to a named person within that said organisation.
This was fed back up the ranks to the Station Inspector who called the area Super Nintendo on his radio and told him what the CPS had said. Not wanting to look stupid in front of the Chief the message came back that under no circumstances was this lady to be released that night. She would either have to be charged and remanded or sectioned again!! but she was not to be bailed.
Around about this point the custody sergeant suddenly felt ill and went home sick. He must have come down with a 24 hour bug or maybe he just didn’t want to illegally detain an elderly lady (who under normal circumstances would never have been accepted into custody in the first place) for fear of getting on the wrong side of the Chief. So a replacement custody sergeant was found.
Despite what the CPS ha said, the old lady was interviewed by the D’s but then had to be bailed later that night. I await to see if there were actually any offences.
Filed under: CPS, Police, Ridiculous | 25 Comments