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Bonkers Blog July 2016

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13 July - The law is dragging its feet. Political interference again?

BaconIt’s two years since Michael Barnbrook alleged Misconduct in Public Office against two Bexley police constables and their senior officers. The two PCs were called to Councillor Cheryl Bacon’s notorious Scrutiny meeting when she decided to exclude every member of the public from attending it.

There was no lawful reason for her to do so and the PCs who Councillor Bacon had hoped might evict the public were so unconcerned about the public’s presence they didn’t ask for anyone’s name and address and made no notes and didn’t think the incident was worthy of an official report when they got back to base.

When pressed for a report by the local press (see below) they said that no member of the public had committed any crime.

A year later Bexley Council had lied themselves into a corner and the police’s confirmation that the public were all well behaved became an embarrassment to Bexley Council, so Bexley police were asked to write a false report to support the Council’s lies. Among other things they said I had to be ejected from the Council chamber when the fact is the PCs weren’t even present when I left. Hence Mick’s allegation of Misconduct.

It is still lying in someone’s In Tray. Possibly it is awaiting the outcome of the associated allegation of Misconduct against Councillor Cheryl Bacon, Bexley’s former Chief Executive Will Tuckley and the Council’s Legal Team Manager Lynn Tyler.

PoliceAnd what happened to that two year old allegation?

Well as far as anyone can see, Greenwich police did a first rate job of investigating Mick’s claim and in August last year (a date which the police have only recently put in writing after originally informing me by phone) they sent their file to the Crown Prosecution Service.

Three months later I was told the CPS would reach a decision by 5th December 2015 and when that date passed, 18th December was offered. Greenwich police apologised profusely when that didn’t happen either.

In the New Year another date was given, the CPS would make up their mind by 5th February.

On the following day the CPS said they had referred the papers to counsel, something they confirmed had happened when I asked more questions on 2nd April.

On 3rd May, 8th June and 28th June I asked Greenwich police if they had any more news. They hadn’t.

Today I asked again, showing just a little more exasperation at the delay.

Greenwich police replied to say they are as “perplexed” as Mick and I are. When Bexley police made a mess of investigating the obscenities that originated on Councillor Craske’s phone line they eventually admitted that the case was “crippled by political interference”. Déjà vu?


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