Let us see crooks’ faces

Let us hope that the police take note of Andy Trotter, who specialises in media issues for the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO).

He wrote to UK forces this month reiterating guidance on the release of police photos that was first issued in 2010, Press Gazette reported.

Recognising that there is enormous public interest in pictures of convicted felons, he reminded forces that the presumption should be that they are issued unless there is a good reason not to.

Frustratingly, the opposite seems to be case for many forces.

A Mail on Sunday report brought attention to what many of us in the regional press have had to face for some years.

There are times when it seems photos are released almost grudgingly.

Baffling criteria are applied to when a picture can or cannot be made available. For instance, impractical single-use restrictions are applied, and bans are issued on pictures of people whose sentences fail to exceed arbitrary lengths decreed by the police.

Overall, the impression given is that the primary concern in this area is protecting the criminal.

The Data Protection Act is inevitably cited (as if it were ever intended as a shield for criminals) when newspapers complain.

People need to see the face of those who break laws. It shows that our system of justice is working and that criminals are receiving their just deserts.

Mr Trotter’s reminder is most welcome.

Advertisements

About John Wilson

Group deputy editor of the Worcester News, Berrow's Worcester Journal, Malvern Gazette and Evesham Journalist. Journalist for more than 30 years.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s