Well, what a fiasco eh? A week ago, Raoul Moat, a violent man, was due to be released from prison. He told the warders, parole board and anyone else who would listen, that he had the intention of hurting his ex-girlfriend upon his release. The police (in all their wisdom) decided to bury their heads in the sand and do nothing, after all, they had their hands full trying to catch those dastardly bastards who will insist on eating Kit Kats whilst driving.
So sure as eggs is eggs, out he comes, stomps round the ex-girlfriends gaf, and blows her new boyfriend away, and does a pretty good job on her too. Then he wanders off and shoots a copper in a car at point blank range. Apparently, he had got it in his head, that the ex’s new fella was a copper. Apparently he wasn’t, but hey, he wasn’t going to let the facts hinder his judgement.
The tragic part of this story had just occurred, now we moved onto phase two, the farce. Raoul Moat now took off, and settled in the small Northumbrian town of Rothbury. He didn’t bother paying a visit to the local estate agents, no, he felt he wanted to live alfresco.
So off he meandered into the woods, and managed to give eleven, yes count ‘em ELEVEN police forces the slip for seven days. These are the ELEVEN police forces that have all the latest equipment, helicopters enabled with heat seeking devices etc etc and even the assistance of the SAS. Along the “Journey” the police came into the possession of various letters blaming everybody else for the predicament that Moat now found himself in. This bit stumped me a little. Now obviously I don’t know all the facts, but how did they receive this correspondence? If it was via the Royal Mail, I am surprised they received it at all, or did one of the handful of crims that were undoubtedly assisting Moat in his nocturnal meanderings deliver it to the police station by hand? If this was the case, wouldn’t it have been a good idea to apprehend the messenger, and maybe just ask him where Moat was?…….just a thought.
Well he trundled around taking in the morning air and the July sunshine for seven days, until he was finally corned on a river bank at about six thirty pm. We now enter the part that actually inspired me, nay, incensed me to write this.
Picture the scene if you will. A no doubt dishevelled, dehydrated, disoriented and slightly psychotic Moat is laying on the grass of the river bank with a gun pointed at his own head. He was apparently completely surrounded by police officers, armed to the teeth with all the latest assault rifles and sub machine guns. Some of the officers were only twenty feet away. Now in the good old days, the days where Gene Hunt and the like were on the beat. The days when coppers were proper coppers, you know the one’s that actually wanted to apprehend scum, and took pleasure in doing it, not just float through a career in the police thinking up poncy initiatives and all the rest of it, they would no doubt have shouted something at Moat like “Put the fucking gun down fuckface, or we will shoot your fucking arse off.” At which point Moat realising that the police were proper police, and weren’t going to fuck around, would have given himself up. Either that, or he would have entered such a state of psychosis that he would have pointed the gun at someone, and then been duly shot.
Fast forward to 2010 where human rights and health and safety are far more important than arresting scumbags, and the scenario is oh so very different. Now I am no expert on apprehending armed villains, but they were twenty bloody feet away from him for Christ’s sake. Apparently a tazar might have made a muscle spasm and ended up with him unintentionally pulling the trigger, and blowing his own head off (Like that wasn’t go to be the absolute inevitable end result anyway) so that was out of the question.
For years special forces around the world have had things called stun grenades, or ’Flashbangs’ They do what it says on the tin. They make a deafening bang and create a blinding flash, thus disorientating the miscreant for a fraction of a second, which is just enough time to give the assaulters the tactical advantage. So why not chuck half a dozen of those at him (Remember, they are only twenty feet away) and while his ears are still ringing, and he can’t see, rush at him (Remember, they are only twenty feet away!) whack him on the back of the head with a truncheon, and say “Your fucking nicked my son.”
Sigh, this is 2010, so they entered into six hours of debate with him! I could understand the softly softly approach if he was holding a gun to the head of a hostage, but he was holding a gun at his own head! So he had effectively taken himself hostage, and the police were trying to persuade him to let himself go! You could not make it up. “Trained negotiators” were speaking to him. Just how much training does one need to ask someone “If they want tea or coffee” Yes I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, reports were coming in that they were giving him food and drink!!!
Miss Marple and myself were watching all of this unfold on sky news (There was nothing else on, on the nine-hundred channels available!) The inevitable Psychologists were rolled out in front of the camera. Is it just me, or is psychology really just stating the bleedin’ obvious? There they are spouting forth with “Moat is a man that likes to be in control” - really! “He is blaming everyone else for this situation” - really! Well thanks for that insight. Where would we be without you?
So, back to the hotel, sorry siege. Yes he was being offered sustenance. I had visions of a little butler shuffling forward with a pad and pencil taking his order.
“What can I get you sir?”
“Have ye got any lobster?”
“Oh I am sorry sir, the lobster is off. We have some rather nice veal.”
“Yeah all right, I’ll have it medium with some French fries and lightly sautéed wild mushrooms.”
“And to drink sir?”
“Chateaux nerf du pape, ‘85.……obviously.”
“A very good choice sir, perhaps sir would like to listen to our string quartet while he waits for his food?”
“Yeah, that would be reet grand kidda, oh, and have you got a pillow for me heed, this grass is getting damp.”
“Of course sir…….A pillow for Mr Moat, and bring on the string quartet. Perhaps sir would enjoy a massage, I am sure he must be feeling a little tense.”
For fucks sake!!! What is going on in the world???
Apparently drinkers from the local pub had started putting out deck chairs so that they could take in the unfolding drama with a pint! That was until a party pooping health and safety obsessed policeman told them to go back inside.
Just when you thought things could not get any more weird, ridiculous, pathetic or down right silly, a pissed up Paul Gascoigne Arrived!!! He was claiming to be a good buddy of Mr Moat, and was offering to help “Talk him down.”
LOL, every bloody thing today is just Hollywood isn’t it? In the good old days, you didn’t get celebrities turning up at an armed siege. I suppose it is a shame he shot himself really. If only he had given himself up, he would have undoubtedly only got a couple of weeks detention for killing someone, and maiming to others, and he would have been out in time to be the star attraction in “I’m a celebrity, get me out of here”! Jordan would have unquestionably dumped the cage fighter and shacked up with “Moaty” ITV2 would have been hot on their heals for a reality show, and the autobiography would have been in W H Smiths for Christmas.
Stop the world, it’s gone way past my stop!
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