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Killer of two PCs should be sentenced to death
A police inspector in Worcestershire has said those who murder police officers should be executed as the country mourns the deaths of two officers gunned down in the line of duty.
Inspector Ken Mackaill, chairman of the West Mercia Police Federation which is based in Hampton Lovett, near Droitwich, spoke yesterday about the shock and anger of police officers following the murder of PCs Fiona Bone and Nicola Hughes in Hattersley, Greater Manchester.
Inspector Mackaill said he did not back the routine arming of all police officers, but endorsed the death penalty for those who murder police officers. This is also the official position of the Police Federation, a staff association for all police constables, sergeants, inspectors and chief inspectors, nationally.
The pair were killed in a gun and grenade attack on Tuesday after being lured to a house by a bogus 999 call about a burglary.
Insp Mackaill said: “Of course the feeling is absolute shock and sadness at the murder of two officers and, when the full circumstances or more detail became apparent, they have been lured into a trap specifically to be killed. I just felt sickening disbelief. “That has opened a wider debate on the routine arming of police officers. My view on that is that it isn’t a route we should go down. I think there are risks associated with that. We do have officers who are routinely armed, but that is not all officers. I think the level of arming we have is sufficient.”
At the moment, most police officers in the UK have personal protective equipment such as stab vests and batons, handcuffs and CS spray.
Insp Mackaill said: “This is an absolutely sickening murder of two police officers who appear to have been lured to their deaths and killed, simply because they are police officers. In my opinion that does justify the death penalty. It highlights the risk that all police officers face.”
PC Richard Gray, a trained firearms officer at West Mercia Police, was gunned down and killed while attending a domestic dispute in May 2007. Insp Mackaill said: “It is only five years ago that Richard Gray was shot dead. Officers are always conscious of the risk, but we can’t have it in the forefront of our minds or it would make the job impossible. “This does galvanise officers because we are a very tight knit family with colleagues not just locally but also nationally affected by this.”
Insp Mackaill said that he would watch with interest the outcome of the inquiry and the conclusions drawn by Greater Manchester Police and any changes in the working practices of police. He said arming more officers with tasers may be a step forward.