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Blakops

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PostSubject: Night Jack   Sun Sep 27, 2009 11:19 pm

Night Jack was a blog from here in the UK, written by a serving detective in a northern force. Details of his name & exact role & force can be found very easily through google. I started reading his blog middle of last year until middle of this. I then somehow blinked & missed the resulting hoo-haa.

The Times were trying to out him & he went to court to preserve his anonymity. He lost, meaning that under a current high court ruling a blogger has no right to anonymity.

The Blog had just won the Orwell Award for political writing.

Nightjack the blog, is gone. The google cache also disappearing. I cannot stress what a shame that is.

So I wish to reproduce one of his very last entries for your, discerning readers, edification, elucidation & education.

Do remember that this is written by a serving british police officer.

A Survival Guide For Decent Folk

"Paul has posted a number of lengthy replies on the “Modest Proposal" thread. In these days of us increasingly having to deal with law abiding folk who have fallen foul of the “entitled poor” and those who have learned how to use us to score points and exact revenge, I thought it would be a good idea to give out a bit of general guidance for those law abiding types who find themselves under suspicion or under arrest. It works for the bad guys so make it work for you.

Complain First
Always get your complaint in first, even if it is you who started it and you who were in the wrong. If things have gone awry and you suspect the cops are going to be called, get your retaliation in first. Ring the cops right away and allege for all you are worth. If you can work a racist or homophobic slant into it so much the better.

Make a counter allegation
Regardless of the facts, never let the other side be blameless. If they beat you to the phone, ring anyway and make a counter allegation against them. Again racism or homophobia are your friends. If you are not from a visible minority ethnic culture, may I suggest that that the phrase “You gay bastard” or similar is always useful. In extremis, allege sexual assault. It gives us something to bargain with when getting the other person to drop their complaint on a quid-pro-quo basis. This is particularly good where there are no independent witnesses. When it boils down to one word against another and nobody is ‘fessing up, CPS run a mile and you, my friend, are definitely on a walk out.

Never explain to the Police
If the Police arrive to lock you up, say nothing. You are a decent person and you may think that reasoning with the Police will help. “If I can only explain, they will realise it is all a horrible mistake and go away”. Wrong. We do want to talk to you on tape in an interview room but that comes later. All you are doing by trying to explain is digging yourself further in. We call that stuff a significant statement and we love it. Decent folk can’t help themselves, they think that they can talk their way out. Wrong.

Admit Nothing
To do anything more than lock you up for a few hours we need to prove a case. The easiest route to that is your admission. Without it, our case may be a lot weaker, maybe not enough to charge you with. In any case, it is always worth finding out exactly how damning the evidence is before you fall on your sword. So don’t do the decent and honourable thing and admit what you have done. Don’t even deny it or try to give your side of the story. Just say nothing. No confession and CPS are on the back foot already. They forsee a trial. They fear a trial. They are looking for any excuse to send you home free.

Keep your mouth shut
Say as little as possible to us. At the custody office desk a Sergeant will ask you some questions. It is safe to answer these. For the rest of the time, say nothing.

Claim Suicidal Thoughts
A debatable one this. Claiming to be thinking about topping yourself has several benefits. If you can keep it up, it might just bump up any compensation payable later. On the other hand you may find yourself in a paper suit with someone watching your every move.

Always always always have a solicitor
Duh. No brainer this one. Unless you know 100% for sure that your mate the solicitor does criminal law and is good at it, ask for the Duty Solicitor. They certainly do criminal law and they are good at it. Then listen to what the solicitor says and do it. Their job is to get you off without the Cops or CPS laying a glove on you if at all possible. It is what they get paid for. They are free to you. There is no down side. Now decent folks think it makes them look like they have something to hide if they ask for a solicitor. Irrelevant. Going into an interview without a solicitor is like taking a walk in Tottenham with a big gold Rolex. Bad things are very likely to happen to you. I wouldn’t do it and I interview people for a living.

Actively complain about every officer and everything they do
Did they cuff you when they brought you in? Were they rude to you? Did they racially or homophobically abuse you? Didn’t get fed? Cell too cold? You are decent folk who don’t want to make a fuss but trust me, it pays to whinge and no matter how trivial and / or poorly founded your complaint there are people who will uncritically listen to you and try and prove the complaint on your behalf. Some of them are even police officers. Nothing like a complaint to muddy the waters and suggest that you are only in court because the vindictive Cops have a grudge against you. Far fetched? Wait until your solicitor spins it in court and you come over as Ghandi.

Show no respect to the legal system or anybody working in it
You think that if you are a difficult, unpleasant, sneering, unco-operative and rude things will go badly for you and you will be in more trouble. No sirree Bob. It seems that in fact the worse you are, the easier things will go for you if, horror of horrors, you do end up convicted. Remember to fake a drink problem if you haven’t developed one as a result of dealing with us already. Magistrates and Judges do seem to like the idea that you are basically good but the naughty alcohol made you do it. They treat you better. Crazy I know but true.

So there you go, basically anything you try and do because you are decent and staightforward hurts you badly. Act like an habitual, professional, lifestyle criminal and chances are you will walk away relatively unscathed. Copy the bad guys, its what they do for a living."
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Blakops

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Mon Sep 28, 2009 12:04 am

I did find a cache with a bit of surfing.

Not all but most entries are here.

http://nightjackarchive.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2009-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&updated-max=2010-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=32

The "Only 24 Hours To Crack The Case" entries are quite an eye opener.
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Richard Grannon
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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Mon Sep 28, 2009 1:02 am

Good stuff, can see why it got him in trouble

excellent post
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UncloudedFall



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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Mon Sep 28, 2009 1:55 am

Great link! Also lead me to http://inspectorgadget.wordpress.com/ which Night Jack gives as his inspiration. Thanks!
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Blakops

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Mon Sep 28, 2009 8:01 pm

Yes. very good. Like gadget too.

The wealth of blogs out there is enormous & they provide a real insight into the difficulties of the people fulfilling various roles in our society. They really are a resource not to be missed.

I also recommend Winston Smith. http://winstonsmith33.blogspot.com/ (care home worker)

& to miss with love. http://tomisswithlove.blogspot.com/ (UK teacher)

Anyone read any US blogs? Would love some recommendations.
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Mike2010

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Wed Oct 07, 2009 9:07 pm

This is one of the most useful reads I have ever.. read.

I always wondered why they interview you (with the tape), sureley it's just a chance to let you hang yourself.

Thanks a lot Blakops, I have no doubt that this information will have saved me (at some time in the future) a nasty shock.

'Legal self defense classes' .. Eh.. ? Eh..? Hell I would pay for them.

Can't agree more (Edit: and I am a very liberal, tolerant empathetic person):

Quote :
Let the back story be years of pointless and undemanding intervention in the lives of this dozen or so violently criminal children. It turns out that it was all a near pointless waste of time and money. Their fingers left were poised on a half educated video violence attack reflex that had conflated “right to be heard” with “right to never be told no.” They strutted and binged round the streets of a small market town like occupying soldiers. They were just waiting for someone to try and stand up to them. The P.C.S.O.s visibly declined the challenge.Somebody with less authority but more sense of right made the mistake of trying to call them to order.

This is what happens when you teach and promote the stupid idea that you can have anything if you “just dream hard enough.” The Disneyfication of personal aspiration fails badly when even those with the dimmest of abilities can see that, from where they are, from the day they were born, only a very limited palette of dreams was really available. It makes a person sour but it isn’t the victims fault that you won’t ever be rich, attractive, intelligent or satisfied.

These children are gone somewhere beyond Omerta. I watch face after face, fresh from a half day of college, dodging the unemployment statistics. Each one sprawls at ease on the couches in the front room of Mum’s state provided house in their best Location Jackets and finest jogging pant. They find some collective dark amusement in knowing what happened, knowing who amongst them put another person in a hospital bed, knowing that there is not enough evidence for anyone to have to face the consequences. Once again they have gone out ruining other peoples lives, they have not been stopped and they are going to get away with it.
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Blakops

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Thu Oct 08, 2009 7:52 pm

Glad it was of use to you, Mike. Like your quote.

There is a fine video doing the rounds. In its dealing with the fifth amendment, it is aimed at our US brethren, however the basic premise..."Of never speaking to a police officer without a solicitor & preferably a duty solicitor still holds."




& remember, under the current UK Anti-terror laws, YOU HAVE NO RIGHT TO SILENCE. Refusing to answer a question is punishable by fine or three months imprisonment.

Legal self defence classes are a very good idea, I like the night jack suggestions (more comprehensive than most)

Perhaps train with a solicitor...I do!!!
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Mike2010

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Fri Oct 09, 2009 6:52 pm

Great video.

I had a quick Google on the subject of our right to remain silent in the UK. We do have the right, but if we use it the Jury will be notified (and that is used as a threat to get you to talk - presumption being that only the guilty have something to fear).

I might edit this post later if anything new or interesting comes to light (and nobody's replied).
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Blakops

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Fri Oct 09, 2009 11:46 pm

yes. thats what they like to claim, but....If they interview it is because they do not have enough evidence to prosecute. If they have enough evidence then they will charge you irrespective of what you say. Get a solictor & say nothing, it will probably never get to court. CPS decide whether it will go to court. Not enough evidence......it will get dropped.
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maija
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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Sat Oct 10, 2009 12:40 am

From the Dog brothers Forum, a thread where this was discussed a while back.

Quote from poster 'GM':

"..... Let me address the prof's core claim. If you are guilty of a crime,
don't speak to the police. Agreed. However, if you did something that
is potentially illegal, or potentially legal depending on certain
elements you'd better make sure the cops know those elements that will
vindicate you.

Let's say Miguel is walking down the street in
Santa Barbara, minding his own business. Suddenly he is attacked by
three thugs. Given the disparity of force and the violence of the
assault on his person, Miguel uses an edged weapon against the
attackers. One falls to the ground, mortally wounded, the two others
flee to tend to their wounds. While the battle was engaged, a passerby
calls 911 to report a "fight in progress". As patrol units roll up, the
find Miguel standing over the fallen perp, weapon in hand. Miguel gets
taken down at gunpoint, cuffed and stuffed in the back of the patrol
car.

Quickly, the initial investigation shows that Miguel is a
solid citizen with a clean record. The decedent is one Johnny Ratzo, a
freshly paroled felon with a violent criminal hx that goes back to his
teens. CDC has validated him as a member of the Aryan Brotherhood and
his corpse is littered with prison tats.

Heeding the advice he
saw on the net from a law professor, Miguel immediately "lawyers up"
and says nothing but a request for an attorney. The SBPD det. that
catches the case arrives on scene and examines what he has:

1. Dead Johnny Ratzo, apparently killed by edged weapon wounds.

2.
Live Miguel Goodguy, in possession of a knife covered in blood who
refuses to make any statement explaining how he came to be disheveled
and covered in blood.

There is a minimal crime scene to be
documented. Pretty much photos of the decedent and any visible blood
spatter. The crime scene tech mistakenly bags Miguel's knife in a
biohazard bag fearing bloodborne pathogens after seeing the badly
infected track marks where Johnny Ratzo had been skin popping meth
since leaving Pelican Bay.

So, the det has P.C. to arrest Miguel
and because Miguel has followed the advice from the professor, the
opportunity to preserve the serological/DNA evidence that would
demonstrated that Miguel acted in self defense against multiple
attackers is lost. Because the case appears to be so straight forward,
no other investigation is needed to pursue the case.

Because of
Miguel's silence, the det. never queries any database to check for
known criminal associates of Johnny Ratzo. Because of that, when those
two known associates drive to Bakersfield for medical treatment, and
BPD gets called by the hospital to investigate two subjects with knife
wounds, the is no "be on the lookout" flag attached their their names
when BPD officers "run" them for wants and warrants at the hospital.
Because Miguel made no statement, no one seizes the convenience store
camera footage that puts Johnny Ratzo and his two associates two blocks
away from the assault, 10 minutes before as they buy malt liquor and
Philly blunts before the footage gets erased.

By the time
Miguel gets his first face to face with his attorney, he's in county in
an orange jumpsuit and all the evidence that would corroborate his self
defense claim is gone. Meanwhile, the local press is abuzz with "local
man charged with murder" coverage.

Sound good?

Here is
the problem with defense attorneys, very few ever defend innocent
people. Their bread and butter is defending Johnny Ratzo and his ilk.
If Johnny Ratzo gets arrested, then nothing he says will help him, so
from that perspective the advice is good. However, if you are a Miguel
Goodguy, then it may well do more harm than good in a scenario like the
one I illustrated above."

Thread at : http://dogbrothers.com/phpBB2/index.php?topic=864.100
Starts page 3

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UncloudedFall



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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Sat Oct 10, 2009 1:41 am

Very interesting vid. Watched and downloaded the entire thing.
Interesting follow too from the dog bros forum.
Taking in both, I think of my own experience in having been called in for an interview with homicide detectives (not arrested, just a phone call, would you mind coming in and answering some questions), following the death of a drunk from a fractured skull in an area where I was the only easily identifiable soul around, owing to my night security patrols.
The detective I dealt with was very friendly, our chat occurred in an office full of his colleagues. I answered honestly, giving as best I could where I was at what time, what routes I took, my interaction with the deceased. After all, I was wholly innocent, had not touched the bloke (both because the first time I passed him on foot, I noted that he was pissing through his pants while seated on a park bench & in addition to the urine, I did not want to risk him going Linda Blair on me, as he really was that drunk). At the conclusion of our chat, he wrote down what I had said, and presented it to me, asked me to read it, and sign it if it was correct. It wasn't. I had to correct him on one decent part. It was only upon later reflection that I thought that this mistake was deliberate on his part. Perhaps a test to see if I was eager to sign anything and just get to freedom? Can't say for sure though. After having watched the vid though, I do know I made a couple of statements that could have been turned against me in court. Such as having expressed revulsion at seeing the deceased pissing through his pants, and too, talking with condemnation of the bar in question, and their application of the responsible service of alcohol policy. Those two things I imagine, could have been used in painting the narrative of a man disgusted by people like the deceased, people, who he had obviously had to deal with on a number of occasions in the past, and so this time, lost his temper.
None of this happened though. And after I signed my statement, the detective shook my hand and I never heard from them again. It was later ruled that the gentlemen died in the wee small hours of the morning, as a result of falling back and cracking his skull, while trying to drop his trousers and take a dump.
So, were my actions correct, from a standpoint of best protecting myself? After the vid and the dog bros post, I honestly don't know.
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Blakops

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Sat Oct 10, 2009 1:35 pm

I thought that what Mike implied was interesting & its an inference we all make. If you dont tell the policeman everything then you are guilty. Keeping quiet is a bad thing to do. It will get you in more trouble etc.


Maija. In your story, is the murder weapon lost? Because if it is I suspect once Miguel gets lawyerd & starts talking, then it may never go to court. No weapon & the law abiding citizen claiming self defence against a known violent felon......but I am not a lawyer or a policeman so I can only rely on the most commonly offered advice.

I wonder if so many people take issue with this because you see yourself as the hero in what ever occured & hero's always do the right thing?

Oh & Maija. I assume your response was to the never talk to the police clip. What do you think of the night jack list. He is a serving detective. Do that add more or less weight to his suggestions?
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maija
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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Sat Oct 10, 2009 3:11 pm

Blackops -
The story is not mine, it was posted by a guy called 'GM' on the DB forum. Not sure if he is a LEO, but I do know he is extremely well versed in US law (though not UK law).
He posted the story as a reply to the same vid clip you posted, and as such started a discussion about it. I recommend the thread to which I posted a link if you are interested - different points of view for sure.
The video clip is at the bottom of page 2, this story appears near the top of page 3 and goes on from there.
As to the weapon - in the story, it says quote:
"The crime scene tech mistakenly bags Miguel's knife in a
biohazard bag fearing bloodborne pathogens after seeing the badly
infected track marks where Johnny Ratzo had been skin popping meth
since leaving Pelican Bay."

I'll only add that I have a friend who is a criminal lawyer, and her advice is to say only "Great you guys showed up. I was frightened for my life. I feel really shaken. I think I should call my lawyer now." Period.

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Blakops

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Sat Oct 10, 2009 4:07 pm

Hi Maija

I did follow your link. DBMA has a great forum. Very informative.

I know you did not right the original post, but wondered if anyone else had run with the fictional account?

Your friends advice sounds very valid & as she is a criminal lawyer then she would have far more experience than me.

Please don't think i am argueing with you, glad actually that people think this thread has turned into one worthy of response.

Hope your having a good one.


Matt
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maija
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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Sat Oct 10, 2009 5:16 pm

No worries - feel free to argue, sorry discuss(!) anytime. In this case, all the info is from others, and as I have no personal experience here, have no personal opinion. Writing is a limited form of communication, so I appreciate you checking - but no offense taken

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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Thu Oct 15, 2009 9:23 pm

I bought 'Wasting Police Time' on account of this post, it's very .. informative. (Slightly senstaionalist but the core remains..).
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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Fri Oct 16, 2009 12:47 am

What is it? bit of a review? who's it by please etc.
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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Fri Oct 16, 2009 7:28 pm

It's by a guy calling himself 'David Copperfield'. I bought it from waterstones, it's one of two books in the same vein (I think the other must be NightJack's book possibly).

When I've finished i'll post back, i've not got very far yet.
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PostSubject: Re: Night Jack   Sat Oct 17, 2009 7:17 pm

Thanks mate. just needed a few details. ordered it from the library a second ago. I shall have a peruse.
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