Posted: Friday 18th July 2014
It is hard to believe it is one year since the tragic murder of Bijan Ebrahimi. I must admit that I never thought that his family would be left waiting this long for answers. The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) are carrying out a detailed and complex investigation which not only looks at the circumstances building up to Mr Ebrahimi's tragic murder but also looks at the police contact with him over many years. A number of police officers and staff of Avon and Somerset are under investigation and a file of evidence on three police officers and one Police Community Support Officer was sent to the Crown Prosecution Service last week. This does mean it will be some time before we can expect a report from the IPCC as the criminal matters must take precedent. I appreciate that this is understandably frustrating for Mr Ebrahimi's sisters who have an agonising wait extended even further however it's important that the IPCC carry out a thorough and robust investigation which answers all our questions.
The IPCC have also released an update on the on-going investigation into the conduct of the Chief Constable. Their independent investigation continues and I would like to reassure residents that day-to-day policing is unaffected. Acting chief constable John Long continues to be in charge and officers and staff remain committed to a busy summer of policing activities. It's been a popular time in Bristol over the past few weekends. My team and I have been out at many great events such as St. Paul's Carnival and Pride last weekend. Everyone was in great spirits at both events and we found speaking to residents about local policing both interesting and useful. The team are looking forward to the Harbour Festival this weekend I just hope the scheduled rain doesn’t dampen the mood.
This week I launched a consultation with residents about how people who commit anti-social behaviour (ASB) and low level crime should be dealt with. Community remedy, is part of the new Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act designed to introduce simpler and more effective powers for tackling low level issues. Although anti-social behaviour is often referred to as a low-level crime it is a type of crime that can affect so many and erode the quality of daily lives. This is exactly why I set ‘tackling anti-social behaviour,’ as a priority for the police. While good progress is being made across Avon and Somerset, with 82% of ASB victims satisfied with the police it is vital that local people let me know how they think offender should be dealt with. It is really important that people use this opportunity to have a say in the sanction an offender receives if the crime warrants an out of court settlement. In October, victims will be able to choose from a menu of options about how an offender will make amends for the matter, which could include paying back the victim for the damage they have done or repairing the damage themselves, such as removing graffiti. I would encourage everyone to visit www.avonandsomerset-pcc.gov.uk to have their say.