Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Still rotten

In the early 2000's, we learned that the New Zealand Police had covered up rape and sexual assault by police officers, because the criminals were their own, part of the gang. The resulting scandal led to prosecutions, sackings, a commission of inquiry, and a promise by police to change. But did they change? You be the judge:

The Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) has found police failed to “adequately” respond to multiple allegations of a police doctor sexually assaulting new recruits over a 13-year period.

In 2019, the IPCA received two separate complaints about police’s handling of concerns recruits raised about medical examinations conducted by a doctor, who was contracted as a Police Medical Officer to conduct routine medical examinations on recruits between 1999 and 2016.

The IPCA found new recruits had raised concerns about the doctor’s medical examinations “at least seven times” between 2002 and 2015.

However, the watchdog found police “failed to act and continued to send recruits to the doctor”.

To ignore one sexual assault complaint could be a mistake. To ignore seven goes well beyond carelessness. It seems to be the same dynamic at play: when the accused is a police officer, police just look the other way. And while the IPCA doesn't suggest an active cover-up, from the outside a culture of looking the other way on crimes committed by your own is absolutely indistinguishable.

And all of this was happening at exactly the same time the police were saying that they'd changed. Clearly they haven't. When it comes to crimes committed by their own, they're still rotten to the core.