Public frustration

A major part of my role is to be a voice for the people of Warwickshire. They are becoming increasingly frustrated at the amount of money and police time that is being devoted to Plebgate. To journalists it is the story that just keeps on giving. A very large number of people believe the Police Federation exploited the original incident in pursuit of another agenda. I believe an increasing number of people are now of the view that Andrew Mitchell’s supporters are seeking a pound of flesh, rather than a proportionate outcome. What I would like is for both me and my Chief Constable to get back to the jobs which the public expect us to be doing.

I welcome the apology from the officers yesterday for misleading the public and await one from the IPCC for committing the same offence. The officers who made an error are entitled to be judged proportionately, fairly and then dealt with accordingly. That has become very difficult to do as a result of an orchestrated media campaign against them. Those demanding for the rulebook to be thrown at them appear to want us to behave as if there were no rulebook.

The Officers made an error and have fully co-operated with an IPCC investigation that recommended that they face sanctions. They have offered an apology. It is right that Andrew Mitchell is being politically rehabilitated. It does him and his supporters no favours to be seen to be baying for blood.

I look forward to all the facts being clarified at the Home Affairs Select Committee.

Ron Ball

Warwickshire Police and Crime Commissioner



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