Monday, 19 July 2010

Hate Crime, Public Sex and a Failure of Policing

Sometimes the police are like a schizophrenic lover. One minute, they want to chop up your trousers and throw you out the house and the next minute they want to jump your bones. At least that's how it seems when it comes to public sex environments.

Different police forces take different approaches to public sex but even then, they can send out mixed signals. On the one hand, public sex can be treated as a bad thing with the police recording license plates, stopping and asking questions of cruisers and sometimes even arrests. On the other hand, all police forces seem to talk of their concern at homophobic crime. Hate crime is bad. The police are there to protect you. The trouble is when you have hate crime in a public sex environment it all gets a bit, well, to want for a better phrase, it all gets a bit fucked up. The police find themselves protecting people they are simultaniously trying to stop, maybe even arrest for another crime. It cuts to the heart of the difficulty of policing PSEs and the police understanding their role and explaining it clearly to cruisers.

So, when, as the Pink Paper reports, a series of hate crimes appear to be taking place in a public sex environment, the apparent inaction of the police ( because the attacks have not been formally reported) is a result of years of failed policing and bad law. Read about these developments in Kent here.

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