Just had the BBC on, asking if I'm free to do a phone-in on North Wales Chief Constable, Richard Brunstrom's latest headline grabbing activities. It seems that he's made some derogatory remarks about Ian Lucas, MP for Wrexham, which were broadcast last night. Mr Lucas has responded by announcing that he has 'no confidence' in the Chief Constable - which is politico speak for the 'P45'. Unfortunately, I've accepted an invitation to have lunch with Gungrog Infant School in Welshpool and can't do it.
I've always thought that Richard Brunstrom is a very good policeman - when he is trying to enforce the law. I am willing to accept that his innovative approach will lead to mistakes - such as the showing of photographs of a decapitated motorcyclist without the deceased family's permission. But he acknowledged his mistake and apologised. No need for a P45 here - even though many of the people he should be working with have called for it to be brandished. Neither do I think being rude about a Member of Parliament is P45 country either - though I cannot see the sense of creating enemies for the sake of it. And he does need to remember that Mr Lucus has been elected by the people of Wrexham, which means that to some extent he insults them as well. Very foolish of the Chief Constable.
I don't think he is appropriate to carry on as the head of North wales Police is because of his high profile campaign in support of the legalisation of all drugs. I have no objection to there being a debate about this issue, though I find it hard to imagine that I could ever be persuaded of the case for legalisation. But a serving chief constable is not the right person to lead the argument. In doing so, he seriously undermines the ability of North Wales Police to enforce drugs laws. In my opinion, it is Mr Brunstrom's cavalier approach to his main purpose which is to enforce the law which is the strongest reason for the P45. That is what I would have been saying on today's phone-in.