In the centre of the London police crest is the key to a cellblock.
First and foremost, “the key represents the trust between our citizens and the police service,” the description on the police website says.
Below the crest is the London police’s official motto: “Deeds not words.”
If a cell key represents public trust, what, then, to make of an assault on a woman in the cells — the detention unit — at London police headquarters in 2016?
If deeds are more important than words, what to make of the actions of Sgt. Peter Paquette, who assaulted her?
What to make of deeds of the other officers, who held her down and said nothing during the assault, and after in their official statements?
What to make of the words the officers used to have the woman charged, and keep themselves out of trouble?
London police have no written procedures on how to report misconduct by colleagues, because officers shouldn’t need written instructions to do the right thing.
It’s also worth noting that whatever culture shifts have occurred, they weren’t large enough for either the other officers involved in this case, or the police department, to publicly acknowledge their role or publicly apologize to the victim. The victim says none of the other officers apologized directly to her.