It has been a while since I have awarded my prestigious "Prat of The Week Award", and therefore high time that I did.
Therefore, with a shrill blast on the trumpet, this week's Prat of The Week Award goes to...
The Chief Constable of Derbyshire, David Coleman.
He refused, earlier this month, to publish photos of two wanted murderers Jason Croft and Michael Nixon. Coleman claimed that the killers posed 'no risk' to locals, and the the force said that it had to consider the Human Rights Act and data protection laws when asked to publish 'wanted' photographs of the two men.
As the media were quick to note, this caring attitude to people is in contrast to Coleman's attitude towards speeding drivers. One hapless victim of Coleman's anti speeding clampdown was a 62 year old, who was jailed after being caught doing 38mph in a 30mph zone.
Jimmy Leckey, the father of 19 year old bludgeoned to death by Nixon in 1995, said that Coleman and his force needed to 'sort their priorities out'. He also noted that the police had not bothered to contact him to say his son's killer was on the run, even though he might be the victim of a revenge attack.
Mr Leckey said:
"This is madness, totally ridiculous.
The police should be out there catching
dangerous criminals rather than chasing motorists.
And to suggest they had to consider Nixon's
human rights is unbelievable.
He is a convicted murderer.
What about my human rights and my son's human rights?"
Nixon and Croft had absconded from Sudbury open prison in Derbyshire two months ago, and the police were asked to provide photos. However, Derbyshire police force said that there was 'no proper policing purpose' in releasing pictures and claimed the men posed no risk to Derbyshire residents because they were thought to have left the county.
So that's alright then?
Even Lord Forkbender, Lord Chancellor, stated that Coleman's refusal was 'absolute nonsense'.
Happily, some police forces are not so daft.
Greater Manchester Police instead released the photos of the two men together, with an appeal for information.
My congratulations to them.
Shami Chakrabarti, director of Liberty, also thought that Coleman's decision was bollocks.
"Nothing in the Human Rights Act prevents publishing pictures
to capture a fugitive on the contrary,
the rights of potential victims may create an obligation to do so."
A well deserved award this week, methinks!