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Daily Telegraph take up the challenge

February 5, 2007
Regular readers may remember this post, back in January, where I challenged members of the IPCC to have a go at firearms training.

Well, Robert Chesshyre, who is a reporter with the Daily Telegraph, spent some time out on patrol with members of the Metropolitan Police CO19 firearms team.

Robert’s account is published on the Daily Telegraph web site and it makes interesting reading if you think that UK firearms officers are a bunch of gung-ho Tackleberrys, popping caps into the asses of bad guys at random.

Some of the highlights of this report include the fact that armed Met officers are called out 40 times a day, yet they only discharge their weapons on average once a YEAR! They are trained to use a weapon and then given more training on how to resolve situations without having to resort to firearms. In the UK in the past 10 years, 25 people have been killed by armed police officers, nine of them in London. Compare this to the 400 people who are shot dead each year in the US.

The article also talks about the number of gang-related shootings in London each week. On one weekend, there were seven reports of people being shot. None of them want to tell the police about it and bring the offenders to justice, instead, the victim gets a gun and goes after their attacker. Yet this doesn’t spark outrage in the national press – in fact it rarely makes the news. Of course, if an armed police officer was confronted with one of these gang members wielding a gun and shot them, the incident would immediately become trial by media.

Robert had a go on the simulator and reports on the perceptual distortion that affects even the most experienced of firearms officers. This distortion is a natural result of the stress that the officer is under, but it becomes translated into accusations of fabrication and cover up by the time the lawyers get hold of it in the comfort of their chambers.

Have a read of the article for yourself. I think it puts the whole issue into context.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. M&MBM permalink
    February 15, 2007 08:46

    Thanks for that link, Stan Still

  2. Burt Bridgefield permalink
    April 3, 2007 10:58

    Just what is your beef against gung-ho Tackleberrys, popping caps into the asses of bad guys at random then?

    They gotta put food on the table and pay the rent just like you lilly-livered limeys do.

    God bless America.

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