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*Guns/Crack: The Commander - your opinion please?




There's one thing that stands out here to me....

Just because any law enforcement officer is sworn to serve the laws of this country, and the crown, it doesn't necessarily mean we can't have an opinion. Nor does it mean that our opinions match the official voice of our force politics.

I've been offered various substances, from steroids in the gym up. But it doesn't mean that when I see 16 year olds smoking class A's I'm not going to do anything about it. It's a requirement and comes as part of the profession.

So a pat on the back and a pint all around to Brian who's stated what possibly people don't want to hear. I guess that some of the top brass ain't the as*hol*s I thought they were!

Oh, and of course, I'm married to someone that works at the end of the legal system in Brixton, so this is all very interesting.... and we're a gay couple, so a target for every institutionalised bioggotry there is. But that's another topic entirely.

Long live free opinions and speech.... ;)


The Commander is not alone!

Well, where to start! I've just spent the entire afternoon checking this and related threads and have 13 pages of notes.

Firstly, what a mind-blowingly interesting debate. HatBoy - respect man for starting it all up. :cool: I'll try and keep on topic. Too many other brilliant contributions to mention.

Secondly, respect to Brian for having the bottle to do what he has. I can't see anything too radical in what he has said myself but it seems to have been enough to launch a witchhunt. Good luck - I fear you'll need it.

I have decided to post following the (all too predictable - well done AlanJ as far back as 14Feb) monstering of Brian by the Mail on Sunday and Sunday People today. Boy, does he need your support now! (Be interesting to see how many of the signatories to the Big Issue letter (see Grubbylocal 11Mar) stick around now)

Next, a declaration of interests. I'm another copper, an experienced detective albeit not of such exalted rank as Brian. I've worked Brixton fairly recently but don't at the moment. I live in the leafy suburbs and originate from the countryside. And I'm a gay man. Sorry I can't use my full identity - will explain if you're interested.

I can't answer for current Lambeth policing but I may be able to provide general information / explanation. It looks like Brian may not be seek here for a while and I think it is important that the debate is maintained in some way.

I despair of an establishment which finds it so difficult to deal with conflicting opinion. The police service encourages the public to be challenging (independent advisors, etc) but can't deal with challenging officers within it's own ranks.

Couple of things about crack and guns in Brixton. Every tactic discussed has been tried and tried. Many work short term but we just do not have to people / resources to mount operations everywhere they are needed simultaneously. And that means displacement. :(

Totally agree with Brians choices of priority - screw the dealers, help the addicts I think summed it up. But that brings difficult questions. If you still have users and there is no legal source you will still have dealers. And if use is still illegal how can you provide help to addicts. The question is definitely beyond local resolution - all you and Brian can possibly do is mitigate the symptoms and press for more fundamental change (but don't hold your breath!).

Several people have asked how local Brixton residents can help. As modern citizen says (11Mar) ask "what can we do to help the police". Here are a few ideas:

1. Don't walk on by - don't put yourselves at risk but don't just ignore violence being used or threatened. Start the old "hue and cry" - call us - gather a crowd (strength in numbers). (see Dr Franni story, 8Feb, "We made the street a safer place for a few seconds")

2. Stand up and be counted - give us your details as witnesses - be willing to tell what you saw - I know it's difficult and scary but we can't give the evidence you saw.

3. Provide information - preferably with a way of us contacting you to ask for more detail or whatever - it's really annoying getting something anonymous, knowing that the caller MUST know the other bit you need but having no way of getting back to them. If not "Crimestoppers" 0800 555111 - it honestly is anonymous. (Someone somewhere listed a load of car tyupes belonging to dealers - give us the registration numbers and background).

4. Get involved - as lay visitors, independent advisors, members of the community/police consultative group, by giving us your views here or elsewhere. Talk to local officers - you'll find the vast majority are just doing their best but they know as little about you as you do about them as human beings).

5. Help educate youngsters - the breakdown of families, problems in education, etc. leave massive holes in the education of our youth - tell them how to make their opinions heard, become politically active, help break their resentment / perceived exclusion.

6. Support robust policing initiatives - action on suspicion inevitably means some innocent people will be inconvenienced but we're not psychic. Ensure we do it nicely!

7. Cheer the police (metaphorically if not actually), encourage us to be your protectors (Dr Franni's idea - 29Jan). Been to New York recently - their support for the NYPD and the Fire Dept is awesome (despite a record at least as bad as ours!). Even saw an NYPD jockstrap on a mannequin in the window of a gay shop on 8th Avenue! (By the way, thanks for the support for our "pay dispute" - neat trick Mr Blunkett, getting the anarchists to support the old bill!).

8. Force the mainstream press and "opinion formers" (I hate that term!) to engage with a rational debate about drugs and legalisation, etc. (Can't really add to the debate on this thread except to mention the impact of product liability if pharmaceutical companies got involved (touched on by Rowland, 20Feb - great post, mate) and the ability to keep drugs from kids more effectively if outlets were licensed).

9. Target other agencies (local authority, health, education, CPS, Courts, Law Society, etc.) where they have the power to make changes (It has been suggested that Brian get better street lighting, improve health care and education. Beyond the Old Bill, people! Help us put pressure (using the Crime and Disorder Act) on those who can make the changes.)

10. Get together a local initiative like they did in Harlesden ("Young, gifted ... and dead" posters by the Not One More campaign). They have a young rap group with a record with a positive message (malign influence of Gangsta rap raised by Bruise on 11Feb). (Hatboy for Chair - you'd be brilliant man!)

11. Be aware that many of your problems in Brixton come from outside the area ("ghetto tourists" - Slowdog 15Feb; visiting drug buyers/dealers - Lee Jasper, quoted by HappyHappy JoWonderland (great name!) 17Feb) - make it known they are not welcome.

12. Press for local authority / housing associations to provide low-cost housing in Lambeth. The absence of police officers within your community is a huge part of the basic problem (" would have been better behaved if I knew the local cop and respected him" - Christian Evans 15Jan Movement for Justice March thread).

13. Press for the acceptance of the principles of diversity (allowing people to do it their way whenever possible) rather than equal opportunity (allowing everyone an equal opportunity to join and do it our way) - See book "Managing the Mosaic - Diversity in Action" by the Institute of Personnel Development (IPD).

Sorry to have gone on, but believe me I can bore you further on all the above if you want, have opinions on virtually everything else mentioned on the thread and find the whole debate envigorating. And don't even think about getting me on to the subject of the media ...

Get back if anything I have said is of the slightest interest.


PS. I think AdamPorter would prefer me to Brian as I am about to leave the police because I do not feel I can change it effectively from within (being unable to be politically active, etc). But HAS HE DANCED OUTRAGEOUSLY WITH HIS CAT as promised on 28Jan (MfJ thread) if Brain turned out to be Brian!

PPS. Mikee - if you still haven't heard re- your £3000 claim you says down to our cock-up, write a letter asking for compensation to the local station or go and see a solicitor about lauching a negligence claim against us.


Keep the herb, dash the Crack!

Brian said that he didnt want drugs to be dealt on his streets. I know what he means, but if there was a REAL outlet for drugs to be bought, there would be less trouble and less arrests. Basically, we should legalise cannabis. There is nothing wrong with the drug at all. It doesnt make you flip out and halucinate, therefore it as less of a side efect than beer! But, I dont agree that crack shouls be legalised! That is some serious s**t. Crack has very bad side effects, and they could be fatal. Cocaine causes alot of problems in our society, where-as cannabis only causes problems because of the law.


Just came in to give some support to the Commander when some tabloid rag is trying to do him in again.
Keep up the sensible stuff, Commander, hopefully folk will see the rag for what it is and for what it's trying to do soon enough.



Been hearing some bad thing about Brian.

Yo, The commander has been getting a lot of stick from the press. You lot hear about what they have been saying?

Just came to say hi, really. But still... it was this whole Brian the commander thing that showed me this place.

All my support.


Detective Boy - my mind is not very clear at the moment due to a very late night. Your detailed and considered posting deserves a longer response. You talk sense and I think it is a great pity that you are leaving the Police force. You seem to be exactly the sort man the Met needs.


Thorrasic Beats
True, true

Hatboy I couldn't agree more. It is indeed a shame that there aren't more officers on the force with the balls to speak the truth. However its even more of a shame that there's no-one in government capable of doing so. Anyways, I too am the victim of a late night so will shut up now - its probably for the best......

Evening all.......



Watched ITV news tonight. Seems that as soon as you come out into the open to express an opinion ( I guess that U75 is 'the open' given that it is public) people will reveal things about you that are either irrelavant or fictional. Not that my support means much in the face of media frenzy, but I have alot of respect for 'The Commander' and would like to say my thoughts are with him.


Thanks, Hatboy and Mikee

Thanks for the comments. Look forward to more detail later. Strangely, you're not the first (inside and outside the Job) to say I'm the sort of officer the MPS needs (and I agree, but then I would, wouldn't I!) but, hey, you only get one life so best you enjoy it.


New Member
the gutter press

The sustained campaign against Paddick in the gutter press is really pretty disgraceful. The Mail and the Screws especially, who will apparently use any means necessary to discredit Brian Paddick personally and professionally.

The reason for this is that middle england is desperate to silence a debate on drugs they know they can't win - they are holding onto diseased moral majority ideology which crimalised the drug problem 100 years and gave birth to corrosive crack 'n' smack inspired social decay we now enjoy in the 21st century.

This latest episode is so totally disgusting it deserves no special comment.

The whole 'gay' issue is by and large irrelevent. But they are tailoring a story for a particular audience, where the fact that someone sleeps with men still has negative political currency. Or in other words, Paddick is a fag.

Paddick - you've got a lot of support from intelligent people prepared to discuss the issues who admire the courage of your convictions in the face of this bullshit.

Dean Becker

Demonize, vilify and destroy

In the US, all that is necessary to incarcerate a person is the word of a Judas.

Last week in the NY Times, they carried a story about "snitches".

The crux of the story was that justice is bought and sold not by true detective work, but rather through a "smear campaign." It seems that many "drug busts" were nothing more than the word of a snitch who says he bought drugs at a certain house. Often, the snitch would hide some drugs on his person, visit a certain house without buying or even using drugs, then after leaving, they would produce for the cops the "evidence" that ruined the "sellers" life, taking away their future and their family.

They closed their story with this quote: "All a District Attorney needs is $20 and a lying snitch to ruin the lives of a half dozen people."

100,000 pounds is something like 150,000 USD. That's a lot of money to any snitch.

Best of luck to you Commander, my thoughts are with you.


I am absolutely gutted by todays news about Brian Paddick. :(

1) The level of homophobia is disgusting. So extreme to me it is akin to racism. Some of these tabloids should be seriously held to account over this.

2) What the f*** do these journalists (so-called) know about Brixton! Brian Paddick is the best thing to happen to the police force here I can remember. It should be the people of Lambeth who decide whether he stays, not the Sun!!!!

Lee Jasper has said that he will mount a campaign to keep Paddick in his job if he is removed. I will definitely be getting in touch with Lee and supporting this.

adi baby

Ricin Crispies
Theyve dumped brian - The Met have shown their true colours and the rags have shown theirs - dont worry brian the people of brixton and progressives around the world support you - its a sad day for all of us when your sexuality has been used against you because you are trying to build better relationships with the community and better policies to target resources in the most effective manner. It is a bloody disgrace and i hope everybody is thinking about how to support Brian and get him reinstated. C'mon Ken Livingstone, Editor's of The Big Issue/ The Voice/The Guardian - actually DO something and support anti-prejudism and progressive policing.


New Member
The Daily mail, the Sunday mail, the People, News of the world, the Sun, watch out. Boom boom time to shake your fucking room....



Just wanted to add my voice to those who have posted in support of Brian Paddick, and to send a heartfelt "bollocks" to the red-top shitrags that work so hard to ruin the lives of millions.


adi baby

Ricin Crispies
Richard Littlejohn in the Sun today certainly showed that as far as he's concerned, gays are second class citizens and that he personally despises them. This right wing creep like so many 'journalists' in todays rightwing press behave as if he's in the biggest gang in the playground and therefore he's as safe as houses. He picks on kids who are different in some way and loves the applause he gets from his 'gang' as he humiliates his next victim. Can we think of any way to make him think again?


Good Luck Brian

How sad that the gutter press and their cheque book journalism have nothing better to do than destroy careers and rob communities of leadership.

Good Luck Brian !!

fela fan

sunny thailand
Sorry, this is not a short one…

Truth and honesty are dangerous to men who have power. They live their lives outside those values. Along comes such a person, a policeman (a commander to boot), and of course he will be ‘got at’.

I feel forums such as urban75 are a sign that, through the internet, us people on the street can start making things happen, can begin to dent the abuse of power by the powerful, can perhaps return democracy somewhat to the people. The key though, is changing the British press.

In my humble opinion, as a 10 year outsider, the robustness of a democracy in a nation can be judged by the state of its press. Unfortunately, Britain’s democratic foundations were ruined all those years ago when Murdoch got hold of the Sun. No more information, no more knowledge, no more reporting. Ever since then the press have degenerated into bingo, sexual shenanigans, and hatred. Their currency is to humiliate and expose anyone who is: famous, has a ‘non-mainstream’ view, or is ‘anti-capitalist’. Those they ‘expose’ are human beings with feelings, but no, that doesn’t concern newspapers.

Abroad, the English press have become a story in their own right. We are often told what the Sun or Mail (never forget these are the two biggest sellers, with the Mail being particularly dangerous) are saying about so and so. Without the context of actually being in England and having to deal with the repercussions, it is often just a giggle, and you just shake your head in complete bafflement at why this stuff is being printed/selling. This of course is unfair on those at the receiving end. Unlike the politicians, who at least have to pander to us every four years, these papers (well, the proprietors and editors really) answer to no-one. Indeed, it used to be said that papers reported what politicos said, now politicos debate what ‘journalists’ and columnists rant on about. The power and influence of the press is out of control. It doesn’t help when the likes of Blair are in bed with Murdoch. The press are outrageous, are celebrity mad, are no longer acting as the check and balance a democracy requires, and practise hypocrisy on a grand scale. They actually make me sick as fuck when I think about them.

As people have noted on this website, those who have some sort of power (eg Brian) and who then try to change the system from within, will always come up against the inertia of change practised by those with vested interests. It really is hard work, but I hope that through such excellent websites as urban75, like-minded people (they don’t have to agree, they just have to care) can slowly turn the tide. I only wish I could be back in London to actively participate in the defence of Brian. The best of luck to you all as well as Brian and those other coppers who are doing their best to drag the force into the 21st century. It’s great to read of such positivity as in this thread, and is a massive move forward. There can be revolution in reaction, but for change, there can only be evolution in action. It will take time, but the start has been made, no little thanks to Brian and all those debating on this forum. Don’t leave him in his hour of need.

I leave this post with the following comment: your biggest enemy to change and a better and less negative life in England is the popular press. And don’t think it’s just the tabloids, the Telegraph and Times are in the same boat – and they’re not rowing in our direction. I mean, in this day and age how on earth can the story of Brian being gay and being with a partner who smoked spliff have any credence or publicity. It is a real sad indictment of modern day Britain. It is pathetic. PATHETIC.

We may have a problem with police, but ultimately they are under the orders of the politicians, who themselves are under the cosh of the press. Hence spin doctors. Go get the press – they are the REAL bastards.


Message of Support


Stick with it. Don't give up against those who are trying to take you down. This country needs more people like you are prepared to put themselves on the line to change things for the good of everyone.

The history of Britain is littered with examples of people like yourself battling the forces of conservatism. The one lesson to be learned. They always lose.


Originally posted by adi baby
Richard Littlejohn in the Sun today certainly showed that as far as he's concerned, gays are second class citizens and that he personally despises them. ------ Can we think of any way to make him think again?
Maybe somebody could find him and kick the fuck out of him? Oops - sorry - forgot myself there for a minute...!

Actually, to be honest mate, I don't think there is anyway to get through to the sweaty old bigot. Like his mentor Garry Bushell he probably makes a handsome living out of writing this shite. Lets just hope he dies a long and painful death - soon - and that I can be there to video it.

"Go get the press – they are the REAL bastards."

Well put 'fela fan' - I couldn't agree more. I too get that sicky feeling just thinking about them.

William of Walworth

Excellent post, fela fan, excellent. I agree with every word of it. The right wing press are the real spin doctors ... and as you say the real bastards :mad:

Only confirmed by what adi baby is saying about what L*ttl*j*hn is apparantly saying :mad: :mad:

Can anyone confirm details of that toerag's latest bile-filed rantings? :(

fela fan

sunny thailand
An idea to add to popslut's...

Surely the likes of Littlejohn drink in certain establishments. Can't he be found there, and bought a drink that can then be spiked, so that he can then be kidnapped, so that he can then be forced to change his ways, or else?? He could also have some drugs planted on him, the bill could then be called, and the Mirror can then do an expose on him.

It's strange how such bastards have you reducing yourself to their level... I want the irony smilie here, but it ain't working for me...

adi baby

Ricin Crispies
A 'Dont buy The Scum /News of the Screws/Hate Mail ' campaign like the one after Hillsborough when The Scum said liverpool fans were looting the dead - never sold the same - we could get a nationwide campaign going - designs for stickers here at urb75?

hit them where it hurts.

Mrs Magpie

On a bit of break...
The post-Hillsborough Sun boycott in Liverpool worked because a lot of people bought the Sun and switched from the Sun to the Mirror and made a noticeable dent in sales.......are there enough Mail on Sunday readers in Lambeth to make an impact? I'm not really sure of that.

Mr Day

Brian P vs 'Little'john

:mad: :mad: :mad:

I tend to 'lurk' on this website as I don't feel I can comment on any of the Brixton topics. I live in a rural town, a million light years from the social problems of the inner cities and have had no experience of what it must be like to grow up in an environment where dealer's set up shop on street corners and where youngsters carry weapons etc etc. However, even sat here it doesn't take an idiot to work out that Brian Paddick's refreshing approach has paid dividends to the community he serves (ed) - I've just had the displeasure to cast my eyes over Richard Littlejohn's revolting tirade in The Sun newspaper and subsequently am not starting the day off in the best of moods. I want to know how this man can sit in his office typing out such offensive, inane bullsh*t and still have a job, yet Commander Paddick, who has made such a difference gets moved to a different position for daring to have, not only a personal life but also, shock, horror, personal opinions!!!!! This is so obviously a witchhunt and so wrong !!!! I suspect that a lot of people forget that behind the uniform of any officer, regardless of rank, there is a human being, just like the rest of us (Littlejohn excepted); maybe that's one of Brian's problems - he's seen as too human; but how hurtful must it be to find out that someone you cared for has gone crawling to the tabloids. This ex is as bad as Littljohn himself. Sorry, I'm very angry - this country seems to indulge in kicking good men and women when they're down - it's time that things changed. If there's any petitions going around or marches planned or whatever to support Brian then count me in. As I said at the beginning of my post I might live light years away from the world of Brixton and the like but I think I am long inthe tooth enough to know the difference between wrong and right, fairness and disgusting homophobic journalism. I haven't bought the Sun for years (Read the rubbish I mentioned above after following a link on here- thanks Complex ) and this has just underlined to me why I don't buy it. The Mail is even worse. Angry angry angry - I'm going to go and get some air.

And Brian, I hope you're still reading the posts on here. You have mucho support and I hope you're bearing up.