It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


What Good Are The Police? - Fiona Pilkington Story

page: 1
<<   2 >>

log in


posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 03:19 PM
I came across this yesterday in the local - Las Vegas - newspaper and was thoroughly disgusted. Why do we even have cops if they can't protect you from young hooligans?

The story. Those of you across the pond probably are familiar with this but I'll rehash it for those who haven't heard it. I'd like to point out that I know little of how things work over there, being as I live far away, on another continent and in another country. This story has saddened me, though, and I feel the discussion of why we need the police is at the heart of this. If they will not help those in need then why are they even there?

Police and council officials have already been attacked for failing to stop the gang taunting Miss Pilkington and her disabled daughter Francecca Hardwick, 18.

The inquest heard that yobs taunted Miss Pilkington and heaped abuse on her daughter, who had a mental age of four.

They trampled the family's hedge, hurled stones and eggs at the windows, shoved dog excrement and fireworks through the letterbox, screamed obscenities and threatened Miss Pilkington's dyslexic son Anthony with a knife.

Yet despite receiving 33 desperate 999 calls in ten years, police dismissed Miss Pilkington as 'over-reacting' and classed her as 'low priority'. Unable to bear the torment any more, she decided death was her only escape, and she killed herself and her daughter by setting fire to their car near their home in Barwell, Leicestershire, in October 2007.

Towards the end, Fiona’s mother moved in with the family to offer support and make her daughter feel safer.

It really has come to something when it falls to a 72-year-old woman to try to give a family some security.

Mrs Cassell, who now cares for her 19-year-old grandson Anthony, told the inquest: ‘One of the youths came to the house and said: “We can do anything we like to you and you can’t do anything about it”.’

And he was absolutely right. The yobs persecuted Fiona’s family because they could.

A friend of Miss Pilkington said: ‘The youths were so evil towards her. They could see Frankie’s disability and that Fiona was vulnerable herself. They recognised it and exploited it. They didn’t give a damn.’

Miss Pilkington’s diary, read to the court, revealed how she sat in the dark in her lounge until 2.30am willing the yobs outside to move on. She knew better than to call the police at weekends because they were usually ‘busy elsewhere’ and she was ‘low priority’.

Low priority? What does it take to get the cops to respond? They took the elder child, at knife point, and locked him in a shed. They continually taunted this family, to the point of shoving feces in their mail slot. How much does it take for the police to respond? Let's see their response. Obviously, at the time, TEN YEARS OF TIME, they did nothing to prevent this harassment - harassment being a nice way of putting it.

Fiona Pilkington police chief Matt Baggott fails to apologise

The police officer who was in charge of the force that failed to protect a mother who went on to kill herself and her daughter today failed to apologise over the case.

Chief Constable Matt Baggott ran Leicestershire Constabulary during the period Fiona Pilkington and her family endured a campaign of violence, bullying and harassment that drove her to despair.


The Independent Police Complaints Commission has launched an investigation into the case but today Chief Constable Baggott, now head of the Police Service of Northern Ireland, stopped short of saying sorry.

In a statement on the case he commented: "There are regrets and deep sadness that vulnerable people suffered so it is wrong to say that no one cares.

“Police are there to protect people and we are all saddened that the needs of an individual family were not picked up against the backdrop of the huge demands placed on the police every day.

“This tragic case also highlights the complexities involved in cooperation and the sharing of information between different agencies so there are lessons to be learned and they will be learnt and taken forward."

"complexities involved in cooperation and the sharing of information between different agencies "!?!?!? Are you kidding me? How many places did they live? How many police agencies need to be involved in this? This was just a gang of young hooligans, doing whatever they wanted to whomever they wanted, keeping this little neighborhood in a state of fear. They were left to do this because no one showed up to do anything.

We have learned that one of the families at the centre of this profoundly upsetting story are the Simmonses, who live a few doors from the home Fiona shared with her two children.

There are four brothers, Ross, 20, Alex, 16, Mitchel, 15, and Charlie, 12, who live with their parents, Steven and Suzanne Simmons, in a semi-detached council house.

The three eldest have been identified to the Mail by a parish councillor as being among those seen outside the Pilkington house.

Another neighbour, a professional woman, told us she saw Alex outside the house on the night Fiona and Frankie died.

He is said to be the ringleader.

Last week, Ron Grantham, community safety manager at Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council, told the inquest into the deaths that there was one family ‘still causing trouble to this day’, whom the council had tried unsuccessfully to evict.

Court records seen by the Mail reveal he was referring to Steven and Suzanne Simmons.

According to a friend of Fiona, Alex Simmons’s reaction when he heard the news of the double tragedy, was this: ‘Oh, she thinks she’s Guy Fawkes, she’s torched herself and her daughter.’

This week, the Mail interviewed the Simmons family at home.

The family have two pet polecats. One is called S**tbreak (presumably after one of the characters in the gross-out movie comedy American Pie), the other apparently has no name.

During our interview, Alex sits on the floor of the living room pulling the unnamed polecat by the tail, munching crisps.

His mother warns us not to accept Alex’s offer to ‘cuddle’ the creature because it bites.

He is small and frail and wears his mousy hair in a ponytail.
Alex Simmons

Alex Simmons on his bike

He looks younger than his 16 years, but there is the unmistakable stamp of ‘attitude’ written across his face.

Beneath a cluttered mantelpiece is the fireplace, which the family uses as a wastebin.

Today it is overflowing with empty packets of Walker’s crisps.

Half-drunk bottles of Strongbow cider are littered around the room. The centrepiece is the ubiquitous widescreen TV.


Their parents just don’t care. Alex’s mother is always drinking, and so is Steven.

‘He can be violent, especially when he’s drunk. He has told me to “keep my ****ing mouth shut” or I’ll have his fist through it.’

Alex has boasted he has twice been expelled from school for ‘fighting with teachers’

So, we have what seems to be drunken parents who don't seem to be able to control their gangster children. Surprise, surprise. One child seems to be terrorizing their pet, shades of a serial killer in the making. Everyone in the neighborhood knows of these people, yet the cops did nothing. Not only did Fiona cll the police numerous times, but the neighbors and even a parish counselor tried to help. To no avail.


EDIT" Caught a spelling error.

[edit on 9/30/2009 by TheLoony]

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 03:34 PM

Leicestershire police apparently failed to ‘link’ the 33 serious complaints made by Fiona over ten years, but how can that possibly be so? Do they not have a computer system, or even a paper filing system?

A friend of Fiona’s, a Barwell parish councillor who asks to remain anonymous, says the situation was hopeless.

‘We tried our best to stop what was going on, but got no support from the authorities whatsoever,’ says the woman.

‘Some of us contacted the police and council ourselves, but our pleas fell on deaf ears.

‘Fiona rang me two days before she died. She said they were outside her house again, and would I come and help her. She said she could take no more. ‘I went round there. The road was full of that rabble. They were urinating and throwing eggs and stones at her house and pushing dog excrement through the letterbox.

‘I can’t repeat the horrendous things I heard that night. I confronted them and they said them to me, too.

‘Fiona phoned the police and they said “We’ll get somebody out tomorrow”, but nobody came.’

But nobody came. Why do we pay them with our tax dollars if they can't respond, in ten years, to this families plight? She torched their car to end this abuse. How despondent does one have to be to kill themselves and their child?

Of course, now that this has come to light, it's being used for political gain.

Later, Gordon Brown will put it at the centre of his own last-gasp political fightback as he insists he is the right person to lead Labour into the next election.

Right. At least, sadly too late, the jury is getting the facts and making some correct rulings in this matter.

Delivering a rare ‘narrative verdict’, the jury answered a series of nine questions posed by the coroner.

The four men and four women concluded that Miss Pilkington, 37, started the fire, decided to end her life and unlawfully killed her daughter.

Crucially, they also said ‘Yes’ to the question: ‘Did the response of the police to calls made to them by Fiona Pilkington and her family contribute to the decision made by Fiona Pilkington on October 23, 2007, to act as she did?’ adding: ‘Calls were not linked or prioritised.’

When asked: ‘Did the response of the Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council to complaints made to them by the deceased contribute to the decision made by Fiona Pilkington to act as she did?’ they said: ‘Yes,’ adding: ‘Prior to February 2007, actions to control anti-social behaviour were not evident.’

Too late to help them.

And lastly, this little tidbit.

A brilliant and important observation appears in the latest column by Mary Dejevsky in the Indy. She’s writing about the horrors of the Fiona Pilkington case, in which a mother killed herself and her daughter after years of harassment from her feral teenage neighbours. Disgracefully, the police paid virtually no attention to her pleas for help, in the process providing proof of how far removed policing in Britain now is from its core job. That should to catch criminals so effectively that it puts off other potential criminals. But Dejevsky rightly identifies the failure of Asbos (Anti-Social Behaviour Orders) as central to this crisis of policing. New Labour introduced them in order to show how seriously it took the kind of low-level crime which blights neighbourhoods, and particularly poor neighbourhoods. But the effect - it’s those old “unintended consequences of progress” again - has been the opposite to that intended. Instead, it has trivialised such behaviour to the extent that Asbo culture is endlessly laughed at on television rather than being treated seriously.

“There were, Alan Johnson said yesterday, “no excuses”. Quite so. But his specific criticisms and remedies should not go without challenge. First, there is the matter of anti-social behaviour. Mr Johnson said the agencies were wrong to regard such anti-social behaviour as the Pilkington’s experienced as “low-level crime”. But what, pray, does the description “anti-social behaviour” denote? By separating this sort of persistent petty crime from “real” crime, the Government has invited the police to treat it differently. And this was surely the purpose. The Blair government correctly identified this sort of persistent and neglected offending as something voters were worried about, especially in deprived areas. But the effect of classifying it as “anti-social behaviour” and slapping “Asbos” on offenders was that it was no longer treated as a crime. It was a nuisance to be tackled by cut-price “community” officers, not the fully paid-up variety. Mr Johnson regrets that perhaps ministers “coasted” on anti-social behaviour. But this is a direct consequence of separating it from crime.”

Over here, as we all recently saw, we have jackbooted thugs using LRAD and tear gas on students to help "protect" the G20 summit. These were police officers, doing unconstitutional acts against American citizens. They are supposed to "protect and serve", IIRC. Yet they were doing nothing of the kind.

AND WE PAY THEIR SALARIES!!!! What are we paying for? Harassment, tear gas, arrests - snatching college kids right off the street - and when one does finally, actually, need their help. they can't be btoher to show up until eight days later, as in the case of the knife incident with Fiona's child Anthony. Eight days later? Are you freaking kidding me?

I'm sick. Truly, I am sickened by all this. I know it's not the same to equate the U.K. to the U.S., but it's happening everywhere. It's the New World Order for you, guys and gals.

Better get used to it.

And don't call the cops if you need help.

Sources:[/ url]


EDIT: Tried to fix that last link but I'm not sure what's wrong with it. Copy/past it if you need to. Sorry. Also fixed a spelling error.

[edit on 9/30/2009 by TheLoony]

[edit on 9/30/2009 by TheLoony]

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 03:39 PM
its like this all over the counntry they are useless. the really dont give a damm.

they say now only to call 999 if you life is in danger. otherwise they wont even react.(scource local paper)

even then you have to wait for up to an hour.

[edit on 30-9-2009 by MR BOB]

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 04:14 PM
Sounds like those kids are a cancer in humanity that needs to be cut out. The poor woman would probably have gotten better results if she told the cops that the kids were downloading copyrighted music for free. Then the corporate police would have been all over them.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 04:34 PM
If you brits had enjoyed the rights Americans do with our 2nd amendment this would have been averted long ago. When you lose the ability to protect yourself and your family you have no-one but the police to rely on. It's plain to see how well that arrangement worked. I feel horrible for this woman and her children. What a sad statement that yobs (what are yobs, btw?) could terrorize someone to the point of suicide. Since you got rid of guns you should have gotten rid of alcohol at the same time. At least then nobody could claim they were drunk and didnt remember what they were doing.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 04:45 PM
In the US the courts have consistently ruled the police have no obligation to protect us.

Guess the cops over there are still pretending they're there to protect you?

The sooner they admit their uselessness the sooner you can start taking care of yourselves.

I believe many PD's have actually taken the "To Protect and Serve" quotes off of their cruisers.

Chief Wiggam said it best when asked by Marge "I thought you said the law was powerless to help me." He replied, "The law is powerless to help you but not to punish you."

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 05:09 PM
reply to post by thisguyrighthere

I believe many PD's have actually taken the "To Protect and Serve" quotes off of their cruisers.

I can't find a visual evidence but I believe the cop cars in South Park used to say "To Protect And Annoy", which I always thought was somewhat fitting.

Truthfully, I have no use for the "little piggies" - quote used in honor of the recent Beatles remasters. They can go to that special ring of hell reserved for bankers and politicians. It's is obvious to me that they don't work for us, they work against us.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 05:52 PM

Originally posted by thisguyrighthere
In the US the courts have consistently ruled the police have no obligation to protect us.

Guess the cops over there are still pretending they're there to protect you?

When seconds count the police are minutes away.

Sadly the Brits are completely defenseless. At least here in the US (for now) some of us can still defend ourselves.

Here another anecdote I like: I'd rather be tried by twelve than carried by six.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 08:46 PM
Well I definetly agree. And in Detroit if you call 911 chances are they are not coming to help you. My dad lives in Detroit and he was working on a house because he was a contruction worker. He was walking to the store and a bunch of kids kept messing with him and telling him they were going to get a gun and shoot him and followed him all the way to the store. Dad felt threatened so he called 911 and about an hour passed they still hadnt come, so he called back and they said they were on there way, and of couse, 3 hours pass, still didnt come. What are detroiters paying for if the cops dont want to get off there lazy butts.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 08:46 PM
Well I definetly agree. And in Detroit if you call 911 chances are they are not coming to help you. My dad lives in Detroit and he was working on a house because he was a contruction worker. He was walking to the store and a bunch of kids kept messing with him and telling him they were going to get a gun and shoot him and followed him all the way to the store. Dad felt threatened so he called 911 and about an hour passed they still hadnt come, so he called back and they said they were on there way, and of couse, 3 hours pass, still didnt come. What are detroiters paying for if the cops dont want to get off there lazy butts.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 08:46 PM
Yes, totally sad that this woman had no means of protecting herself from thugs like these kids. I'd bet one look down the barrel of a gun would have stopped this right quick. This story has really gotten me irked, and sad for this woman. Irked that there was nothing she could do to stop it, no help from the police at all. As it said in one of the links, they showed up eight days after her son was locked up at knife point for "a chat", it said?

A chat? Really, you have got to be Effin kidding me!!!!

I'm glad I don't have children as this is the world we have created for them. WE have let this crap happen by letting the cops become the criminals. They would get no call from me even if I were in deep trouble by a real criminal. I don't own a gun so protecting myself would have to come down to other things, if I had a chance, but I would NOT call the police. Useless thugs, IMO.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 09:00 PM
What a sad truth. The police protect the corporations and the wealthy, for the rest of us they come after the fact to take a report (if you're lucky) in many cities they don't even do that anymore.

If someone shoplifts from a big box store (corporation) they'll be there pretty quick to make an arrest. If someone robs the house down the street and the police are called while it's still in progress, you're lucky if they show up an hour later and even then it will only be to taze the homeowner.

The public is not the priority, the corporations are. The sooner we all learn that the better off we'll be.

Edit to add
They're also paid to fine the working class through writing as many tickets as they can to bring more money in for big government.

[edit on 30-9-2009 by Sundancer]

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 09:10 PM
reply to post by TheLoony

Yeah. The Las Vegas police I am willing to bet are corrupt, that is if you are not on the strip. (The strip is the main metro area of Vegas, with all the casinos and flashing lights you see on the movies.)

My dad comes from there, and with his description I am surprised that these kids didn't end up getting shot up by a .44 Magnum.

It's a higher crime area anyways. Not a place I'd want to live. My brother wanted to go there to be a cop if the military didn't work out for him since they have much lower standards to join the police force.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 09:18 PM
reply to post by TheLoony

It's too bad nobody helped the woman.

Personally if it happened to my family. I'd be stepping outside, and I'd load my AK infront of them and say "Hey lets go out into the desert and have a talk!"

And I could feel very safe knowing the fact that the police won't be responding to their calls.

It may seem harsh, but I think a proper way to deter thugs is to put a gun to their head, and let them know that they bother you a second time and they'll be getting a trip to the morgue.

There's been plenty of times in Las Vegas when thugs, and robbers got gunned down. Usually people get cheered on for killing these guys, since the crime is very bad down there.

I had a friend in Vegas.. he basically told me gun shots down the street when he got his mail was a daily thing, it didn't bother him.

posted on Sep, 30 2009 @ 10:52 PM
Criminals in Las Vegas have to be nuts.
That town has more licensed full auto weapons in the hands of people that live in town then any other city in the US.
Plus its legal to carry a loaded gun in your car and you do not need a permit.
Add to that many towns in nevada have cops and district attorneys that have said they will not charge any homeowner that shoots a burglar.
Plus the large number of security officers from the casinos that have CCWs and carry off the job all the time.
But best is if you have a CCW from AR, AZ, FL, ID, IN, KS, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, MT, OK, SD, TN, TX, UT, you can carry in nevada.
And if you are from Calif you can get a CCW from Nevada and carry in Nevada and AK*, AR, AZ, FL, ID, IN, KS, KY, LA, MI, MN, MO, MT, OK, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT*
So it is not even safe to do crimes against tourist
And yes when i was working as a mine superintendent in Calif i had a Nevada CCW because i transported gold bars to the refiner in Nevada about every two months. I also went to the VA hospital in Reno. And most of the gun shows.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 12:06 AM
reply to post by ANNED

I agree. They do have to be nuts.

My dad told me a story. While he was living in Las Vegas.. someone was trying to pick the lock on the door. (I think more than 25 years ago.)

He grabbed his .357 and said "I'm coming out, take what you want. Just please don't hurt me. " He walked out and pointed it at the guy and said "Yes, these are magnums." The man then turned and ran.

[edit on 1-10-2009 by Miraj]

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 12:20 AM
reply to post by Miraj

The story is in England, not Las Vegas, so I'm not sure what you are going on about.

Anyway, speaking of Vegas and what you wrote, this place is no better nor worse than any other city. I'll walk down any street in this town, unarmed, and have no fear of anything happening to me. I don't own a gun and never have. I was born here, late sixties and lived here until I left in 2001. Thirty plus years and I never needed a gun. I don't know who you are talking to but as far as violence goes, there are many worse places to live. I just moved back here from Phoenix(unfortunately for me but that's not the topic, I just hate it here and there are no jobs) and it's worse down there once you consider it's the kidnapping capitol of the country - it's a immigration thing. From what I understand, places like Philly and New Orleans are much, much worse.

Cops suck everywhere, hell go look up Sheriff Joe in Phoenix, he basically breaks the constitution just by waking up and going to work. He's THAT bad. I wouldn't call the cops no matter where I lived. I cannot trust any of them. I do understand that some might complain that I am stereotyping them, lumping the bad apples with the good. I do not know of a good cop. There is no way I would trust them, in any city, state or nation.

They are bad all over, they are there to protect the interests of the corporation and not the people.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 12:30 AM
reply to post by ANNED

Criminals in Las Vegas have to be nuts.

I just moved back and have lost touch with everyone I knew BITD, which is a good thing as they all sucked. But in all my years here, like I said above, up to '01, I knew few people with guns. Less than 50% of the people I knew here had guns. Most people are just like in any other town, they go to work, they come home and live their lives with their kids and spouses. Or they go to wrok then spend their evening getting tosastted in the bars, which never close.

I would be more worried of getting hit by a drunk driver than getting shot. Heck, I've had more knives pulled on me here than guns, which only happened once and I'm unsure if the guy was serious. I got in my car and left, nothing happened. Once some freaked out dude on L.V. Blvd(not the Strip part) wearing a suit with a American flag tie pulled a screwdriver on me. I just walked around him and kept on going. I think he was off his rocker.

It really is wild, the misconceptions of this town. Yes, things happen but no more or less than any "regular" city in America, as far as I know.

Anyway, now that I've dealt with this, can we get back to the story, please? Again, this happened in England, NOT Las Vegas.

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 09:44 AM
reply to post by TheLoony

Ah well damn, anyone that read my posts can ignore them.

See, I read: Local - Las Vegas.

And assumed it was a story from las vegas but being printed in the UK.

edit: I guess it was the opposite?

[edit on 1-10-2009 by Miraj]

[edit on 1-10-2009 by Miraj]

posted on Oct, 1 2009 @ 05:27 PM
reply to post by TheLoony

Anyways, on the stunning revelation that this is in the UK and NOT Las Vegas (Really, sorry about this Loony. My bad)

This makes it a lot worse, IMO. I always hear from British people how the police are always there to protect you.

See, here in the US, I kind of expect that they probably won't be there to help you out in the moments that you do need them.

But there in the UK? They don't have the capability to deal with large crowds of "yobs" on their own.

IMO, situations like this are when guns become invaluable tools. As terrible as some europeans think they are, when you have a bunch of violent kids outside threatening your defense-less, handicapped family, they would be happy to have one.

Granted, I would ultimately just use my wits over the mobs to deal with them if I had to. But that would probably result in me ending up going to jail.

But really, what good ARE the police if they are your only viable line of defense and they can't show up?

top topics

<<   2 >>

log in