RICHARD LITTLEJOHN: I’ve heard of the Flying Squad – but this is ridiculous! Chris Packham is reported for ‘bird sniffing’
When Home Secretary Sue Ellen Braverman decided to instruct the police to investigate every crime, no matter how minor, I can’t imagine that bird sniffing was what she had in mind.
Burglaries, stolen cars, bike thefts, obviously. But bird sniffing?
I wasn’t even aware that bird sniffing was a thing, let alone a crime.
Yet we learned yesterday, as Sue Ellen was making her big announcement, that Hampshire police have opened an inquiry into allegations that the BBC’s resident wildlife botherer Chris Packham unlawfully sniffed a trio of goshawk chicks on live television.
He even promoted it on his social media feed, writing: ‘Tonight on the One Show I get up close and personal with some New Forest Goshawks.’
We learned yesterday, as Sue Ellen was making her big announcement, that Hampshire police have opened an inquiry into allegations that the BBC’s resident wildlife botherer Chris Packham unlawfully sniffed a trio of goshawk chicks on live television (File Photo)
Home Secretary Suella Braverman during a visit to Greater Manchester Police HQ in Manchester, as part of an announcement on police ‘pursuing all reasonable lines of inquiry to solve more crime’
Millions of viewers saw him sniffing a chick to experience its ‘characteristic scent or perfume’.
One outraged bird lover reacted to the incident in the same way as others have become incensed over that Spanish football official snogging a women’s World Cup winner.
Apparently, you need a licence to sniff birds of prey. Who knew? Hampshire police confirmed: ‘We received a report on July 2 relating to an alleged offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 and it is currently being reviewed by our Countrywatch team.’
Countrywatch? Isn’t that the BBC nature programme, which always seems to feature badgers blinking into hidden cameras?
Do the police have a dedicated team of specialist officers sitting around watching TV on the off chance that they might catch Packham sneaking up behind a sparrowhawk and copping a furtive whiff?
It wouldn’t surprise me in the least. After all, the Old Bill seem to spend much of their time trawling the internet for ‘inappropriate’ comments which can then be prosecuted as ‘hate speech’.
And this is what Sue Ellen’s up against as she tries to get the police to do their job properly. Most forces would much rather concentrate on pursuing fashionable hate crimes than nicking burglars, shoplifters and car thieves.
So-called ‘minor’ offences have effectively been decriminalised through lack of interest on the part of the constabulary. But woe betide anyone suspected of committing a crime against wokery.
Millions of viewers saw him sniffing a chick to experience its ‘characteristic scent or perfume’. Filthy beast! (File Photo)
Take the case of Conservative councillor Anthony Stevens, from Wellingborough, Northants, who had his collar felt for retweeting a video criticising the way the cops treated a Christian street preacher.
Back in 2019, in North London, a police officer was filmed snatching a bible from the hands of Oluwole Ilesanmi after he was accused of, you guessed, Islamophobia. Mr Ilesanmi was later awarded £2,500 for wrongful arrest.
Mr Stevens, 50, said he had only retweeted the video as ‘disturbing evidence of religious discrimination in law enforcement.’ He also posted support for a fellow councillor, King Lawal, who was ‘cancelled’ for expressing his opposition to gay Pride marches, which offend his Christian beliefs.
Mr Lawal, the only black councillor in Northants, was suspended by his local Tory group after writing: ‘Pride is not a virtue, it’s a sin.’ Whether you agree with him or not, he’s entitled to his opinion. Mr Stevens also retweeted a petition calling for Mr Lawal to be reinstated, saying: ‘If you value free speech please sign and share.’
For his alleged sins, Mr Stevens was arrested at his home and taken into custody, where he was held for nine hours and interrogated about the posts on his social media account, which has a grand total of 76 followers. Officers asked him why he supported the petition, as if it was any of their damn business.
Conservative councillor Anthony Stevens, from Wellingborough, Northants, had his collar felt for retweeting a video criticising the way the cops treated a Christian street preacher. Pictured: Cllrs Stevens (left) handing over funds to Wellingborough Boxing Club as part of a fundraising effort
Northants police said: ‘A 50-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of distributing written material to stir up racial hatred.’ Mr Stevens has been released on bail, pending further investigation.
This is yet another example of police overstepping the mark to demonstrate their woke credentials. Sue Ellen should call in the Chief Constable of Northants today and demand to know what the hell they think they were playing at in this case.
It’s not only free speech under attack everywhere, it’s sincerely held traditional Christian beliefs. Can you imagine the police snatching a Koran from the hands of an Islamic preacher or arresting a devout Muslim for posting online that homosexuality is a sin? Precisely.
As for Chris Packham, which is where we came in, how long before he’s hauled in for questioning? Much as I’d like to see this irritating Just Stop Oil and Extinction Rebellion fanatic led away in handcuffs, there’s no justification for this ridiculous waste of police time.
Mind you, ever since they missed out on Jimmy Savile, they do love nicking celebs. No doubt Packham can expect a mob-handed, dawn raid from the Bird Sniffing Squad any day now, probably with a helicopter whirring overhead.
(I’ve heard of the Flying Squad but this is ridiculous . . .)
And if they can charge him, who’s next? It can only be a matter of time before Plod launches a full-scale Operation Midland-style inquiry into ‘historic’ crimes of a similar nature.
I hate to think what the late, great David Bellamy got up to while he was creeping around in the undergrowth? And David Attenborough would be well advised to keep his lawyer on speed dial.
He gets far too close to birds for my liking. Who knows whether or not he sneaks a quick, illicit whiff of penguin musk when the cameras stop rolling.
Mind how you go.
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