I’m still working through old emails and a week old comment says that Bonkers
is hard to get into. The complaint is not one of site navigation but that only long
term readers will understand how an individual blog fits into the bigger
picture. That is probably true and if I think of a solution I’ll implement it.
New readers might do worse than look at some of the old Home pages all of which have been salted away. (Go to Site map and scroll down to the very end.) Together they shed light on some of Bexley council’s worst excesses.
Two emails say I should recruit a team to run the blog. I can’t see that working either, I get spammers daily pleading to be allowed to write articles for BiB but no locals are silly enough to get involved in the nuts and bolts. Even if they did, how could the editorial consistency and integrity be maintained? I think I am trapped.
A subject that frequently crops up, known to old timers as ‘the obscene blog’, might be a mystery to newcomers. It is, despite the odds, not yet dead after 31 months. Some people are hoping it can be kept alive until next Spring because there is a plan afoot to drop a summary of the case through every letter box in the Sidcup and Lamorbey ward before the election. The subject is in need of a small update but first, for new readers…
• In May 2011 someone posted obscenities on the web under my name. The content made it obvious it was the work of someone at Bexley council.
• The matter was reported to Teresa O’Neill and Will Tuckley and a couple of hours later the filth disappeared. They subsequently said that was pure coincidence.
• The police were reluctant to accept a crime report but did so on 8th June only to say ten weeks later that they were unable to investigate due to lack of evidence.
• When questioned the police refused to discuss the matter claiming it was not in the public interest.
• A formal complaint went to the Met. Commissioner covering the period June to August 2011 and at the end of 2012 (yes 2012 not 2011) Sergeant Michelle Gower from the Directorate of Professional Standards said Bexley police had done a pretty much perfect job.
• That verdict was challenged and the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) agreed that Sergeant Gower’s report was what most people would call a whitewash. The original complaint is now being reinvestigated and the outcome is not yet known.
So here we are almost in 2014 and the police are still investigating their own August 2011 decision to bury Bexley council’s crime as soon as they decently could.
After that date, pressure from two local MPs ensured the case was reopened. The police say that the MPs had little to do with it and the real reason was new evidence which came to light. Before the end of 2011 the depraved blog had been traced to an IP address used by Bexley Conservative councillor Peter Craske. However that renewed investigation hit the buffers too. According to the police it failed because of political interference and ultimately lack of evidence.
One reason for the latter might be the police’s decision to wait from the Autumn of 2011 to 21st June 2012 before conducting any search of councillor Craske’s premises. The police’s excuse was that they spent all that time making sure I had not somehow set up councillor Craske by some ingenious high-tech method well beyond my skillset. Why it took about eight months and did not involve interviewing me is one of life’s mysteries.
So that’s the background, here’s the new stuff.
A letter received from the IPCC yesterday said that a complaint covering the period September 2011 to January 2013 centred on the political interference and the search warrant delay is now with the Metropolitan Police. It would appear that under the Police Reform and Social Responsibility Act 2011 the police are allowed to make the decision whether they or the IPCC is the appropriate body for new complaints. Presumably whoever drafted that Act must have been under the illusion that the police are as pure as the driven snow.
The second complaint stars Chief Superintendent Victor Olisa and several officers who misled me through most of 2012, the earlier complaint featured his predecessor Dave Stringer et al.
Three years spent seeking an honest response from the police might seem a lot but my daughter and her partner have been at it for 26 years. On the other hand I suppose ensuring a critic placed his head in the path of a swinging axe is in a different league from protecting a councillor. As far as I know, even Teresa O’Neill has not hired an axeman yet. #justice4daniel for the relevant Twitter feed.