Episode three of the story of Bexleyheath police dishonesty exposed at Dartford Crown is now available. Tantalisingly. the author and father of a young lad assaulted and seriously injured at school still withholds the names of the police officers concerned but the extent of their incompetence which appears to be their trademark is clear to see. Some may think that incompetence is not the only problem endemic at Bexleyheath police station.
For the time being I shall withhold the names of individual officers involved with the failed investigation into the assault upon my son and concentrate on how Bexleyheath police operates.
The investigation got off to a slow start. Two attempts were made on consecutive days to report the assault to Police, but each time there was no one available to take the call, and a message was left on answerphone.
When Police did eventually get round to calling back, a regular Police Constable was appointed to investigate, who then called in a Detective Constable (DC1) from Bexley CID.
My wife and I had been keeping vigil by our son's hospital bedside from the moment the assault took place. DC1 phoned us just after we had received news that our son had a fractured eye socket with eye tissue trapped in the fracture. DC1 at first demanded to know why we had not reported the matter to Police earlier. He then told us that he would visit to question our son that afternoon; but he never turned up, nor phoned to tell us that he would not be coming.
DC1 wrote in the crime report that our son had “got into a fight”. The judge ruled that this was incorrect.
There was CCTV footage, showing the attacker jumping down from a bench and punching our son several times in the head and face. However, DC1 wrote in the crime report that the main assault was “out of view” and that the CCTV “did not capture” it. The judge ruled that these remarks were “wholly inaccurate”.
The attacker was brought to Bexleyheath Police Station for questioning. He was joined by members of his family. Another person also became involved – a regular police constable (PC1) whose family shares close friends in common with the attacker’s family.
DC1 had noted that the investigation would now be fully handed over to Bexley CID. However, within less than half an hour, he was replaced as officer in charge of the investigation by the regular police constable PC1 mentioned above, despite the fact that PC1 was just about to go off on holiday for twelve days.
Before setting off on holiday, PC1 did find time to phone the Headteacher of the school where the attack took place and (according to the Headteacher)…
• praised the attacker, saying he “seemed a nice enough lad”
• expressed disapproval of the decision to permanently exclude the attacker from school, explaining that he had promised the attacker’s father that he would challenge this decision
• informed the school that the charge had been downgraded from Grievous to Actual Bodily Harm, before even seeing the medical report on our son’s injuries
• declined to receive a copy of this medical report, as it would be of “no use”, and
• acted in a “dismissive” and “disinterested” manner on learning of the permanent damage to our son’s eyesight
Also before setting off on holiday and before even speaking to our son to find out what had happened, PC1 was further able to reach a swift conclusion and to phone to let us know that the attack was “unfortunate”, and that it was just “the result of a little bit of messing around”.
While PC1 was away, the investigation was handed over once again (this time to a trainee - TDC1), and virtually ground to a halt until PC1 returned twelve days later.
PC1 was supervised by a Detective Sergeant (DS1), who set an 'action plan' to research if there was any “bad character evidence” on our son.
Both PC1 and DS1 further reported to a Detective Inspector (DI1), who I am told is the officer in charge of the stalled 18-month old obscene blog ‘investigation’.
Officers DC1, PC1, TDC1, DS1 and DI1 all feature in the court case and in the story to follow.
I don’t know exactly where this story is going next but I wouldn’t mind betting that the words “Another person also became involved – a regular police constable whose family shares close friends in common with the attacker’s family” turn out to be very significant.
The complete story so far.