Former detective lifts lid on ‘chaotic’ crime evidence storage at Scottish police station
A former detective has lifted the lid on the “chaotic” storage of serious crimes evidence at a Scottish CID office. Steven Russell says he was shocked by mismanagement of files in Falkirk police station. He fears evidence could have been lost among materials relating to offences like murders and rapes. The ex-detective constable said he was tasked with bringing order to the windowless basement used by CID for storage.
Police Scotland set to spend £63,000 on repairing lift at HQ while closing a nearby station to save money
Police chiefs are spending £63,000 to overhaul a lift at their HQ – after closing a nearby station to save money. Residents in Kincardine, Fife, saw their police station shut last year and it’s now being sold to help Police Scotland balance their books. But on the edge of town lies Tulliallan Castle, the national force’s HQ and training college, and bosses there have just signed a massive cheque to overhaul the passenger lift.
Chancellor’s own MPs urge him to scrap police VAT bill
Philip Hammond is under pressure from his own MPs to scrap the £35 million annual VAT bill for Scotland’s emergency services. Scotland’s 13 Conservative MPs have written to the Chancellor demanding he ditches the controversial tax on the police and fire service. Theresa May’s wafer-thin majority means Scots Tories are essential to pass next month’s Budget. A UK Government insider confirmed the proposal was “in the mix” and multiple sources told The Sunday Post that the Treasury has responded positively to the VAT proposal. One MP said: “We have been strongly led to believe this is happening. We have all lobbied individually to have the VAT removed from the police and fire service and it was part of the letter we sent to No 11 [Downing Street] as a group.”
Police claim they don’t know cost of policing controversial far-right march in Perth
The force also refused to reveal how many officers took part in the massive operation which saw more than 400 people march through the streets in a counter-protest against the far-right group’s presence in the city. The SDL travelled to Perth on September 10 to show their opposition to plans to build a new mosque in the city. Scores of police, riot vans and officers on horseback were positioned throughout the city centre hours before the anti-fascist rally set off from Perth railway station. Chief Inspector Ian Scott, area commander for Perth and Kinross, recently stated he had received “positive” feedback from many groups regarding policing of the event. The Courier asked Police Scotland through Freedom of Information laws to reveal the cost of policing the march and counter-demonstration but was told its financial systems “do not record” such details.
Bully probe top cop Phil Gormley gets high-paid job offer while on ‘special leave’
Under-fire Police Scotland chief constable Phil Gormley has been offered a high-paid job in England while being probed for bullying. Gormley, who is on special leave, has been asked to head up a review of child protection by the head of the National Police Chief’s Council, Chief Constable Sara Thornton. She has written to Scottish Police Authority chairman Andrew Flanagan requesting he be allowed to carry out the review while on leave. Gormley is being investigated by the Police Independent Review Commissioner, who are looking at three bullying claims.
Police took days to respond to calls in van death case
A man lay dead and undiscovered in his van for three days after Police Scotland disregarded concerns from the public, a police watchdog report has found. David Penman, 46, died from carbon monoxide poisoning while his vehicle was parked in a layby on a country road between Falkirk and Stirling last December. It has emerged that two separate members of the public raised concerns about the van, but officers failed to respond properly to their reports. The Police Investigations & Review Commissioner (Pirc) and Mr Penman’s family have both raised questions over whether he could have been found alive if the initial warning had been heeded.
Inverness police control room expected to close in January
Police Scotland’s control room and service centre in Inverness could close in early January next year. The Scottish Police Authority board agreed to the potential closure going ahead following a consultation with staff. Highland Council has raised concerns about the risk of local knowledge being lost. A meeting of the board in Inverness heard the changes in Inverness could happen early next year. Police Scotland has been planning the closure and transfer of functions to Dundee since last year. A control room in Aberdeen closed earlier this year and its functions were moved to Dundee.
Hate crimes against mosques across the UK double in last year
Hate crimes targeting mosques and other Muslim places of worship across the UK more than doubled between 2016 and 2017, a Press Association investigation has found. Police forces recorded 110 hate crimes directed at mosques between March and July this year, up from just 47 over the same period in 2016. Racist abuse and threats to “bomb the mosque” feature heavily among the hate crimes, as do incidents of offenders smashing windows on buildings and parked cars. Other records include offensive graffiti sprayed on to buildings, violent assaults on worshippers, two cases of arson and two cases of individuals leaving bacon on door handles at mosques.