Is Cleveland police the most inept or corrupt in the UK? The force that gave us Ray Mallon this week had a former officer clearing his name after himself being wrongfully arrested and convicted, (or “framed” in the colloquial). It cost the taxpayers nearly a million in a payout to him, yet not a single officer was disciplined as no-one was found guilty of misconduct. Surely these two rulings cannot both be true?

Although it could be said that the force is lead from the top given that both the Chief and deputy Chief constables are on suspension since last year (paid naturally) under investigation for corruption, although he still manages to do his best to keep local restaurants going with his expenses.

The culture appears pervasive. In 2010 Cleveland had the highest numbers of police officers suspended in the North despite having a third of the total officers of Northumbria. The majority allowed to resign or leave the force, ensuring that no criminal record of their behaviour follows them, and of course they keep the tax payer funded pensions.

With a reputation in the gutter, only making it harder for the good officers to do difficult jobs perhaps the time has come for it to be wound up and run from North Yorkshire or Durham? Sometimes it’s the barrel that makes the apples rotten, especially when so many seem to go bad…

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