Wednesday, 21 September 2011

British Justice System Executes Criminal

Well I was anticipating my next post being a blow by blow account of the Dale Farm eviction. A judge has decided that they can have another few days respite while he considers their case in more detail. If he allows them to stay it is yet another blow for justice. Does the law apply equally to all or does the law not apply to minorities? That is the only decision he has to make. If he allows the eviction to go ahead, the blow by blow account will follow next week.

Raymond Jacob

You may have read about the case of  Raymond Jacob, 37, who was stabbed to death during a burglary at the Bramhall home of businessman Vincent Cooke. It turns out that Jacob has a long history of offending dating back 20 years. Mr. Cooke was arrested on suspicion of murder but now been released on bail.

Jacob has dozens of convictions and was first sent to prison in 1995 for theft of a car. Since then he has served seven other custodial sentences, in between community penalties and suspended sentences, for numerous offences of theft, burglary, assault and robbery.

Jacob was jailed for 18 months after beating up a stranger during a night out in 1999. He admitted grievous bodily harm when he appeared at Mold Crown Court following the incident in Handforth, near Wilmslow. He served 8 months.

His longest sentence was 30 months for a burglary. He was also separately given eight weeks in jail for theft, five months for robbery, five months for assault, four months for burglary and another four months for burglary. He served less than a year.

Yesterday Jacob's alleged accomplice, Michael Anthony Thorpe, 33, of Outwood Road, Heald Green, appeared before Stockport magistrates accused of aggravated burglary at Mr Cooke’s home on Saturday night. He was remanded in custody and the case was sent to Minshull Street Crown Court for trial on December 2.

The role of the police within the justice system is quite rightly scrutinised and investigated. If we make a mistake or do anything wrong the IPCC or CPS will direct charges or discipline. The multi agency 'lessons learned' committee will give us the benefit of their wisdom having stuffed itself from the trough of hindsight.

The judges who dealt with Jacob's, The Prison Service, The Probation Service, The Crime and Disorder Partnership, The Prolific and Priority Offender Team, those responsible for writing the farcical sentencing guidelines, the Parole Board and the Government who approved the ridiculous early release programs to reduce our prison population are all responsible for his death. If Jacobs had been given appropriate sentences for his previous offending; if any meaningful rehabilitation existed in our prisons, Jacob's would still be alive. There needs to be a Royal Commission regarding our joke of a justice system.

My congratulations to Mr Cooke for defending himself, his home and his family so robustly. I apologise on behalf of our pathetic justice system that you will have to live with this for the rest of your life.


  1. The odd occasion arises when citizens can nod approval to a topic on this blog. Mr Cooke should indeed be congratulated for 'defending himself, his home and his family so robustly.'

    However, Mr Cooke's arrest effected wrongful tarnishing of his brave actions and good character. That which raised the eyebrows of millions, plod has yet to justify.

  2. Well, I am honoured to have your approval for something at last Melvyn.
    Whether the arrest was justified is a difficult one. I agree with your sentiments but at the end of the day a man has died and the police have to investigate it. His family are already in the media telling everyone what a wonderful reformed character he was. He was even thinking about getting a job soon! They want to know how he came to be in Mr Cookes house. Perhaps he was kidnapped?
    His arrest was probably arse covering so the police can say they investigated Jacob's death thoroughly. Arse covering is far more important in the justice system than pragmatism and effectiveness.

  3. An excellent post.
    I must confess, though, that I am sick of the police arresting just about ANYbody and then showing that they have no case to offer by having to release the so-called suspect!
    We used to complain that we had insufficient Powers of Arrest. Now, methinks the pendulum has perhaps swung too far t'other way?

  4. As regards the arrest I am not convinced that the police have much realistic alternative.

    They are called to a scene where one person lies dying and another has a knife in his hand.

    Quite possibly the householder is telling them the absolute and entire truth, but there is reasonable possibility he is not.

    In the interests of finding out exactly what has happened the possible offender needs to be removed from circulation at the earliest opportunity - to prevent any possible tampering with evidence, contacting witnesses or otherwise being involved in any concoction of a story.

    Without arresting him, removing him from the scene and ensuring he has all the rights and entitlements provided under PACE he is in the position of providing a untainted first account of what has happened, that can if necessary be challenged, whilst he is in custody with any forensic or witness evidence that is gathered, as well (and importantly) as establishing an exact cause of death which might corroborate or otherwise his account.

    Ultimately the only way we can be certain of what occurred is by carrying out a full investigation. If that was to reveal that things were not as they seem on the face of it, then a failure to conduct a good initial investigation, including his arrest, would mean a prosecution for murder would be extremely difficult.

    The detective's ABC - Assume nothing, Believe no-one, Challenge everything.

    I think it must be an utterly horrendous experience for him and his family and I hope the officers involved treated him as well as possible.

    Perhaps the only consolation is that if he is exonerated following a robust and thorough investigation, then no campaigning journalist can take the side of the offending burglar and start alluding to corrupt and inefficient police investigation and suggesting that he is actually guilty of murder.


  5. Risking gross unfairness to Tnago, I doubt there are any bad situations his unfailing ability to almost think a matter through, could not degrade. Arrest everyone, microchip all life on the planet and place the lot on a database.

    'It's the only way to be sure.'

  6. Tango is exactly right.Imagine one of these situations where the house-holder is guilty and the police didn't act i'm Melvin and his chums would jump on that band-wagon as well.

  7. Of course I can see the arguments FOR. It's just that, the thought of having killed an intruder under the circumstances of this case, and then being taken away and incarcerated for hours in a stinking police cell, which is what they are!!!, doesn't bear thinking about. Poor sod!

  8. You obviously haven't been in a police cell for a few years....they are bloody immaculate...he would have got treated with the utmost respect had he come into my custody and probably given a round of applause.

  9. Dear Jaded

    A serious error of judgement compounded by bigotry denies you a reasoned discussion. And I wager you never even noticed the UK's principal lifestyle choices narrowed down to prisoner or guard.

  10. Melvyn, you have reverted to boring type. Please desist.

  11. If this mongrel had broken into my place & post-mortem brought this scenario onto my shoulders the following would apply:

    The knife would be NOT in my fingers, but firmly embedded in Mr. Burglar's gizzard.
    I would be unable to recalle how this happened, except that "someone" (possibly the deceased) had broken into my place & had physically attacked me.
    My mind was a blank, except that all I can remember is the intruder screaming "I'm going to KILL you, I'm going to kill you" over & over.
    If the knife was from my kitchen (rather than one brought by the intruder) I would recall that the intruder had ransacked my kitchen for a knife, then brandished this knife at me before commencing the mortal grapple with me.

    End of my statement to police.

  12. @Melv, rather than a personal attack, perhaps you could explain where my reasoning was wrong. How would you investigate and if necessary prosecute the death of Jacob?

    @Dickiebo - As I said it must be utterly and indescribably awful to be in the position of Mr.Cooke if his description of events is correct. You must remember from your time in the police of dealing with victims as possible suspects. Cot deaths being one of the hardest examples of this.

    @Steve at the pub. Probably not a good idea to tell lies during a murder investigation.
    Remember you have to account for what the witnesses saw and heard, what his co-burglar has to say, what the forensics have to say about his movements in the house, what the post mortem has to say about his injuries.
    It's the same with most serious investigations, telling provable lies because you think that is either what the police want to hear, or because youy don't want to tell us what you think we don't want to hear, is a sure fire way to get either your court case dropped, or you charged.


  13. Melvin you've lost me again.Is it something on this blog that's upset you or somewhere else?

  14. Hi

    I read this post 2 times. It is very useful.

    Pls try to keep posting.

    Let me show other source that may be good for community.

    Source: Police sergeant interview questions

    Best regards

  15. "...he would have got treated with the utmost respect had he come into my custody and probably given a round of applause."

    That'll be some consolation for him when he's denied a visa to the States or allowed to pass a CRB check because his arrest will stay on file, will it?

  16. JuliaM - if you've got a problem with CRB checks or the Visa requirements for entry to the USA, then take it up with the relevant people.
    If you know a more appropriate way of dealing with the suspect in murder case, without the benefit of 20:20 hindsight or some form of clairvoyance then perhaps you could share it with us.

    That comment just suggests that either you have no idea of how a thorough investigation into serious crime must be conducted, or you are just trolling in a dumb, lazy, Daily Mail kind of way.


  17. Julia you are being unreasonable.To investigate this matter he has to be arrested and questioned,there's no way round it with the rules of PACE at the moment.This is just in case one of these house-holders is genuinely guilty and not defending himself legally.Imagine the howling if we didn't investigate it properly.
    Two cases spring to mind-most recently the house-holder who shot a burglar was found to be protecting a cannabis factory-not so clear cut that one is it? Secondly the Special WPC who was killed by an "intruder" but it turned out to be a contract killing.There's often more than meets the eye in some of these cases.

  18. Your insistence that police had no choice but to arrest this homeowner is as much nonsense as your claim of unreasonableness on the part of JuliaM, Jaded.

    And you may feel obliged to reconsider your accusation that JuliaM was "just trolling in a dumb, lazy, Daily Mail kind of way", Tango.

  19. Melv,
    Give me a sensible alternative to arresting the prime suspect in a murder investigation and I might consider a withdrawal.
    I cannot believe you would be so pompous as to castigate investigators unless you had some solution, based no doubt on your extensive experience of detecting and prosecuting serious crime.
    The only alternative would be that someone of your intelligence was also just trolling in a dumb, lazy, Daily Mail kind of way.


  20. My dear Tango,

    Once it has been assumed that the triangular peg fits into the square hole, reasoning is wasted on the child holding the hammer.

  21. Come now Melvin, you wouldn't be making assumptions that the peg was in fact triangular, the hole was indeed square and the two had some sort of connection would you?

    Life and indeed murder investigations are rarely that simple, and seldom that obvious at first glance. Hence they require investigation.

    At the risk of sounding like a typical detective - come on then - let's see your investigation plan?


  22. If we make a mistake or do anything wrong the IPCC or CPS will direct charges or discipline.
    If that's true, why have no officers like Ellie Bloggs or Mark Kennedy not been arrested for perjury?

  23. Whilst this is a while ago, i feel it is only a matter of time before another of these cases arises, where in future the homeowner may not get away unscathed.

    Tougher sentences are needed.