There’s a risk with being patient and polite as agencies often misinterpreted as passivity. In January 2012, I wrote requesting access to an old murder case that took place in 1994 and included a standard research plan. An explanation and rationale was also made clear as to why I was writing a book to set the record straight and provide an opportunity for those affected was in the public interest.
It has a personal special interest for me as one of the most seriously injured to survive the arson attack in which approximately thirteen men were murdered. My wish is to dispense of the rubbish I have read and heard from Wikipedia to YouTube. I am also interested in those that may wish to comment about what the legacy has left for them. Naturally, I am not going to impose myself anything uncouth as the gutter media did at the time and crash into private grief. But, there may be some families that wish to be heard.
I got a response from the MPS that kindly included all my letters with confidential data still included as though I don’t know what I’ve written or my date of birth! The Freedom of Information Act Exemptions (FoIA) were cited. I exercised my right to complain/challenge this unreasonable decision and one month on my follow-up requests for an update on my complaint have been repeatedly ignored. Silence, winter, spring and summer is approaching!
The case is closed, the arsonist died in prison and it was over a decade ago so what is it that makes the MPS so obstructive? It simply is not good enough and will not do! The book title is simple – Burn.
The MPS is not improving. It remains insular and institutionally belligerent forgetting it is a public service and one as we see daily, and depressingly, in the Leveson Inquiry an institution mired in its alleged conduct with News International. Makes me recall a line from Macbeth: “ … All causes shall give way. I am in blood steeped so far that, should I wade no more …”
So what to do? if I can walk through fire I’m sure I do not need to be glued to the mediocrity of the MPS! I don’t know any media moguls so I think I will put a call out here now for documentary film-makers and make a film instead. Any film-makers do make yourselves known! A story is waiting to be told about a mass loss of life, it’s much more than about the sex venue it is about what happened to all those people afterwards who were affected. May be there may be people wishing to talk about the legacy of carnage ….