Police forces across London have responded to Shadow Home Secretary Diane Abbott’s criticism of the Met’s new tactic of ramming fleeing scooters and motorcycles – as they attempt to fight crime in the capital.
The Labour MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington took to Twitter to say that officers are “not above the law” and that “knocking people off bikes is potentially very dangerous”. But Camden police officers hit back, saying that someone who is responsible for law-making should realise that using tactical contact to terminate dangerous pursuits was “entirely within our lawful power”.
Knocking people off bikes is potentially very dangerous. It shouldn't be legal for anyone. Police are not above the law https://t.co/boptGhJYbB
— Diane Abbott MP (@HackneyAbbott) November 27, 2018
The Met’s latest plan to tackle scooter crime in the capital was unveiled last week, with footage of ‘Scorpion’ officers using the tactic to stop fleeing criminals in their tracks. Officers from Camden Police – one of the London boroughs with the highest rates of moped-enabled crime – also responded to the Shadow Home Secretary tweet.
Camden Police said: “Someone who’s responsible for law-making (or at least debating and ratifying new legislation) should probably realise that using tactical contact to terminate dangerous pursuits is entirely within our lawful power… And our responsibility.”
Officers from Waltham Forest also replied, saying: “To mitigate risk to the public & also offenders, we use a range of tactics including tactical contact. There has been a significant reduction in motorcycle & scooter crime with a decrease of 10,974 offences to date this year in comparison to 2017”. At this stage, Ms Abbott has not yet responded to the officers.
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