John McLellan: Council contradicts itself over police's record

Edinburgh council recently responded to a Police Scotland questionnaire about its performance, which asked whether a variety of functions matched expectations.

Thursday, 1st March 2018, 6:00 am
Only enforcement of the 20mph speed limit didn't get full marks for the police from the council

Funnily enough, the only area the council didn’t give the police full marks was in enforcing the city-wide 20mph speed limit.

This of course, depends on how you define expectations, because given the police made it clear that the new limit would not be an absolute priority then it could be argued that those expectations were unrealistic.

Nevertheless, the response criticises the force for having “no real focus” on the scheme. Most confusing of all, however, is the “strongly agree” answer to the question about how well the threat of violence and anti-social behaviour is handled.

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Perhaps the claim that the Edinburgh Division has more crimes per 10,000 people than any other in Scotland should have led to a less favourable score, because the response says the figures “do not currently meet with our expectations”.

The council pays the force £2.6m a year for community policing and so is right to make demands, but is Police Scotland meeting expectations or not?

A judge would throw out the prosecution case for contradictory evidence.