Letter: Racist policing

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The Independent Culture
Sir: I have from the moment of being elected to office taken a very public stance over the Stephen Lawrence murder investigation ("Met 'ready to take a beating' on Lawrence", 2 February). I have acknowledged that it was not handled as well as it might have been and mistakes were made, the real Achilles heel of course being the first review of the inquiry ordered by the then senior officers in that area. The report was signed off and accepted as correct, and passed up the chain of command and relied upon as a shield to deflect criticism. That act has let down every Metropolitan Police officer regardless of rank.

The inquiry by Sir William McPherson will we hope point the way forward, and police officers will never again be placed in the same situation - without sufficient IT equipment, trained users and officers - as those at the centre of that process.

Metropolitan Police officers are outraged and angry that murderous racist thugs still walk the streets, but to put 26,000 officers on trial for something that didn't involve them and that they had no control over is another miscarriage of justice.

GLEN SMYTH

Chairman

Metropolitan Police Federation Joint Executive Committee

London E14

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