Mission impossible for police
PUBLISHED: 11:06 15 April 2009 | UPDATED: 23:23 15 June 2010
IT is unrealistic for police to report the outcome of every recorded crime to Honiton Town Council. That's what PC Ian Atyeo told councillors at a meeting last week.
IT is unrealistic for police to report the outcome of every recorded crime to Honiton Town Council.That's what PC Ian Atyeo told councillors at a meeting last week.He was speaking in response to a letter published in the Midweek Herald.Written by Ashleigh Road resident Tony Simpson, the letter claimed justice has to be seen to be done - to be fair.Mr Simpson is concerned too many crimes are being dealt with by means of fixed penalty fines or cautions, which are given out in private, offering the public less chance to see the justice system at work.But PC Atyeo said officers' hands were tied, because guidelines for issuing fixed penalty notices and cautions are laid down by the Government - not police forces."We don't have much choice," he said, admitting fixed penalty fines were introduced to relieve a clogged court system of petty crimes in much the same way that vehicle rectification notices have done over many years.However, PC Atyeo went on to assure councillors that repeat offenders end up in the dock and that those who flout an opportunity to change their ways are not given chance after chance to pay fixed penalties or receive repeated cautions.He said it would be impossible to report back on the outcome of every crime statistic revealed at council meetings - because, while some cases may be already detected or the subject of active proceedings, others were likely to be the focus of on-going inquiries, meaning the result would only be known months later.