Tuesday, 3 August 2010


Special Constable guilty of attack on soldier


LONDON | Mon Aug 2, 2010 3:09pm BST
LONDON (Reuters) - A special constable was found guilty on Monday of assault after he was caught on CCTV pushing a man's head into the ground and hitting him with a police helmet during his arrest.
The police watchdog said the force used by Special Constable Peter Lightfoot, 40, during the incident in Wigan in July last year was "violent, excessive and unjustified."
Special constables are volunteer part-timers. Lightfoot and two other officers were attempting to arrest off-duty soldier Mark Aspinall in the street in Wigan town centre after he had been thrown out of a bar.
Aspinall was found guilty of public order offences and assault, but the conviction was quashed after the judge expressed concerns about the officers' actions.
An investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission led to charges being brought against Lightfoot and he was found guilty of assault and perjury in relation to Aspinall's appeal hearing.
"It is clear from the evidence that Mr Aspinall was drunk, aggressive and causing a nuisance. He was exhibiting the kind of behaviour that police officers have the unfortunate duty to deal with on a regular basis," said IPCC Commissioner Naseem Malik.
"However in this incident Special Constable Lightfoot's training would appear to have been replaced by a red mist. His actions were violent, excessive and unjustified."
The other two officers involved in the incident were cleared of assault and charges of perverting the course of justice.
"The conduct of SPC Lightfoot that day fell well below the standard we expect at Greater Manchester Police," said Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan.
"His actions in no way reflect the committed and professional attitude shown by the vast majority of our Special Constables, who are highly trained in the best ways to safely detain prisoners.
"We are even more disappointed that he knowingly lied before a criminal court."
Lightfoot will be sentenced on September 1 while the Manchester force's Professional Standards Branch will decide what disciplinary action should be brought against the three officers.
(Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Steve Addison)

 Speaking on the Stupid Channel, the UK's current unelected prime minister, Mr CallHimDave, said that this was the very thing he had been banging on about.. You know, decent, ordinary psychopaths like Mr Foothead, playing their part, taking over the duties of the policemen which we can no longer afford and kicking the shit out of their fellow citizens with uniforms and training which we, in govament, can provide, should provide and will provide to suitably qualified nutters. What we've gotta do, what we're gonna do, what I and Mr Gimp came into politics to do, only me more than him, is to get hold of this broken society and make it worse. It's like I was saying to the nignogs, only  the other day, a boot in the head saves nine. Even if they're wearing a turban, as some of them do.

HT Mrs Berserk


Woman on a Raft said...

Competent though the Reuters coverage is, it doesn't quite get to the outrage.

Main points:

Officers collude in a serious assault. The footage is caught on camera. Instead of the CPS dropping the charges, they push ahead with criminalizing the victim to make what they did OK, forcing the victim to play legal double-or-quits.

On appeal, Judge John Phipps confounds our expectations of judges (mark it in the other column of the book, Mr Ishmael) and flips his wig. He quashes the conviction and makes a statement such that even the IPCC can't ignore it.

After tarrying as long as they possibly can, the CPS is forced to bring charges. There are two sets, not one. The first is for ABH, the second - arguably the more serious in legal terms - is for perjury. Kicking someone's 'ed in is nasty but the attempt to lie about it by the agents of the state is the stench of corruption rather than just a vicious bloke going over the top. It's the double-dollop of intent which makes me shriek. Well, that and the IPCC coyly describing it as a s.47 offence, which sounds so much less serious than Acutal Bodily Harm.

Three officers face the charges but the regulars walk. WTF? There's more to that than meets the eye.

Lightfoot will be sentenced for perjury on 1 September. I await to compare the penalty with that for lying about whether one has had sex with a prostitute. Four years, says Wiki. (Yes, I know, he deserved jail for other reasons, but if it's in telling lies in court where the wickedness lies, then I expect to see commensurate sentencing.)

lilith said...

Yes, Woar, light touch reporting indeed. The footage of the incident shows two regular policemen holding
Mr Aspinall down whilst 20 stone SC Lightfoot gives him a beating and rubs his face into the road.

The cctv can be seen here but it is not easy watching.

mongoose said...

Perhaps we should open a book on it, Mrs WOAR: will he do time or not? Given that although he is not-quite-a-proper-policeman one would expect that a couple of months in Ford Open will be deemed a proper penalty for this sacrificial lamb.

Woman on a Raft said...

Rather bears out what Mr Ishmael said a few posts ago; smacky hands for some minor functionary but the bigger hoons rest safe in their police pensions.

call me ishmael said...

My abiding, All Coppers Are Bastards point, mrs WOAR, has been that you simply don't get to be Chief Constable unless prepared to walk past the cells in which someone is getting a kicking, unless happy to sign-off on juniors' verballed, fabricated evidence and prepared to spend a working life lying your fucking head off. It was the force's feigned indignation at matey lying to the Court which tickled me so, rather than the misconduct which eventually led him to the dock; must be the sign of an unsheltered childhood but I expect nothing else from the police but rottenness and criminal brutality.

banned said...

So it's only proper coppers who have been given the green light to behave how they like regardles of what the cameras show while 'Specials' will be hung out to dry?

call me ishmael said...

Rather, mr banned, as in the Troughing Memoirs of last year - they were all at it, maybe half a dozen got hung out; most of whom, by the way, we never heard of. Who the fuck was Elliot Morley? Who are the other ones? The special constable equivalent, I guess.