The Third Policeman
On Monday, the 10th of March 2008, Police Sergeant Richard Fuller, 55, head of security for the Duchess of Cornwall, Camilla Parker-Horseface, was found dead after apparently shooting himself at his home.
Camilla's security chief found dead after 'shooting himself' at home
The officer, who was nearing retirement, had seemed happy and showed no signs of depression.
But you probably didn't hear much about that because, . . . on Wednesday, the 12th of March, 2008, it was announced in the media that:
UK Top Cop Who Led CIA Probe Found Dead
Manchester Chief Constable Michael Todd, 50, was found dead in Snowdonia, about 240 miles northwest of London,. . . . He had been missing since going out for a walk Monday during his day off.
and obviously since a Top Cop such as a Chief Constable of Manchester is far more important and therefore bigger news, than a mere Police Sergeant (even if he is 'head of security' for the Duchess of Horseface) Sergeant Fuller's death got scant notice in the rush to provide salacious details 'relating' to the death of Chief Constable Todd.
Now for those of you that are counting:
That’s two peelers immediately declared ‘suicided’ by the media, without any use of the word ‘apparent’, in the space of a few days.
What struck me most about the reporting on Chief Constable Tood's death was how quickly the media was saturated with stories of how he had been:
found dead next to a half-empty bottle of gin. His coat had also come off and some of his clothes were discovered nearby.
and also that he had been sending 'troubling' SMS messages to friends and collegues:
The BBC News BBC 4 "PM" at 5.00 pm GMT made the odd announcement that Michael Todd sent texts to friends on Monday afternoon which gave rise to concern that suggested danger to his life and that of the recipients . (This wording was slightly revised on the 6 o clock news)
Michael Todd - A death has been reported - Curiouser and curiouser
One of our policemen was missing - now we know he is dead. Did he fall ? ..... Or was he pushed ?
Despite the media's many stories telling us in no uncertain terms that Chief Copper Todd had fallen off a cliff and that his body body had been found with a half-empty bottle of spirits nearby the inquest into his death announced:
A post-mortem examination carried out on the body of the police chief found on Snowdon found no signs of trauma from a jump or a fall.
See: 'Police chief's body showed no signs of fall'
Todd was found to have 105 milligrams of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood in his system, Caslin said. The legal limit for driving is 80 milligrams per 100 millilitres.See: Police chief had high blood-alcohol level, inquest confirms
In their headline on the subject the next day, The Guardian very forcefully told us that:
Police chief had high blood-alcohol level, inquest confirmswhile the BBC, more correctly, stated that:
Manchester police chief Michael Todd did not have a "huge" amount of alcohol in his blood when he died on Snowdon, the coroner said as his inquest began.
I mention the difference in reporting on the blood alcohol level because I find it hard to understand how someone with less than one and a half times the legal blood/alcohol limit for driving could be described as having a 'high blood-alcohol level' especially when one considers the fact that he was on foot and in Britain a blood/alcohol level of 105 mil per 100 could not possibly be considered above average given the high level of alcohol consumption prevalent amongst the population at large.
Nor was he driving at the time, so how the level of alcohol in his blood has any relevance to the legal blood/alcohol limit whilst driving a motor vehicle is beyond me.
That said, the level of blood/alcohol in his blood was, as I said less than one and a half times the legal driving limit.
As many are no doubt aware, the legal limit is purposely set at a very low level so as to ensure that any one driving a vehicle could not legally do so if their alcohol intake was sufficient to impair their driving ability.
Hence, to say that Mr Todd had a high blood-alcohol level, when the level was a mere 105 mil per 100, is quite misleading. Why The Guardian sub-editor that wrote the headline wished to mislead us is a question open to debate...
There has been some speculation that Chief Constable Todd was the victim of some shadowy Seekrit Service plot as a result of his 'investigation' into CIA 'rendition' flights reported to have passed through British airports carrying kidnapped Muslims on their way to be tortured in compliant 3rd world dictatorships/client-states. The implication is that he stepped on some very sensitive toes in the course of his 'investigation'. I find such speculation to be fairly laughable in light of what our good friend Lord Patel wrote on the matter:
This was not, we must remind ourselves, in any way an official enquiry, he was not empowered to seek out evidence or witnesses, no crimes had been reported or recorded, no Minister had officially sanctioned such an enquiry, it had not been approved by anybody. ACPO has no legal authority to sanction any such enquiry. Indeed the letter he wrote to doe eyed media star Sami, was on Greater Manchester Police notepaper.
"On behalf of ACPO, " Mr Todd wrote, " I agreed to look at the issues. None of the airports involved are located within my own police area and, consequently, I was able to look at the issues with a degree of independence." Ho.Ho.Ho."UKIS and HMRC’s respective interests in General Aviation Reports relate to identifying risk in relation to passengers declared on the form and on movement of prohibited and restricted smuggled goods. Passengers who remain on board an aircraft that lands on UK soil, for example to refuel, are regarded as airside transit passengers and not normally subject to immigration or customs control unless they seek to enter the UK. Both Services firmly point out that if their staff suspected that passengers were being transported illegally or in breach of their human rights, this would be passed to the relevant authority – most likely the Police in the first instance."
"I am encouraged by the reassurances from my colleagues in HMRC and UKIS about the action their staff would take if they thought that these offences were being committed at a UK airport. I can add that police officers would take such allegations made to them, whether from UKIS, HMRC or any other source seriously and take appropriate action including boarding aircraft, if necessary, to investigate."
It appears that no aircraft were boarded, or if they were Chief Constable Todd had not discovered any evidence that they had.
Mind you, he didn't spend a lot of time or effort in looking. Or did he ?
Something that happened on the night of Wednesday, the 13th of March, 2008, may also have escaped your notice. It was announced that Inspector Neil Munro, 43, of Dorset, apparently jumped off a cross-Channel ferry.
Police inspector's body washed up on exclusive beachfront after he 'jumped off a ferry'
A commended police inspector has died after apparently jumping off a cross-Channel ferry, it was revealed today. Inspector Neil Munro, 43, boarded the Brittany Ferries ship alone late last night in Poole, Dorset. The married father-of-one - the third policeman thought to have killed himself in the space of four days - went overboard in Poole Harbour a short time after it set sail at 11.45pm.
Now for those of you that are counting:
twothree peelers immediately declared ‘suicided’ by the media in the space of a three days.
For some reason the words 'Bryn Estyn' popped into my head as soon as I heard the news of the First Policeman.
With the addition of the Second Policeman, the word 'Jersey' is also firmly lodged there.
Now that we have news of a Third Policeman, both of those words can now be joined by the word 'Portsmouth' also.
UPDATE : 3 Top Cops, 3 Suicides? and 3 Days
See also: The Third Policeman, by that alcoholic Irishman, Brian O'Nolan
alias: Flann O'Brien
alias: Myles na gCopaleen.
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