In the intricately planned raid, armed officers, acting on information that guns were being stored at a Pinehurst address, arrived at The Circle in convoy and immediately sealed off the area.
A second wave of officers from the north Swindon neighbourhood policing teams then sealed the outer edges of The Circle, to make sure members of the public did not stray into the line of fire.
A police negotiator spoke to the occupant of the house, before it was thoroughly searched.
During the search, two air rifles and two replica guns were surrendered to police.
Chief Inspector Simon Dicks, leading the operation, said that, although the weapons are not illegal while kept inside the man's home, the raid had helped to make Swindon's streets safer.
The current definition of 'good law enforcement' in Britain: on the word of an 'informant'(sound familiar?) launch a heavily-armed raid on a house, seize two legal airguns and two legal replicas, then declare the 'streets safer'. Oh joy, how do they do it?
"This was absolutely not a waste of time," said Ch Insp Dicks.
"If we have got four firearms less in circulation then I can sleep happier at night.
"These guns look very real, and could cause people to be genuinely scared, and if this man's house was burgled then they could be out on the street.
Uh, dumbass? It WAS a waste of time, they WEREN'T firearms and when you start treating people like this because 'they might be burgled', then you're ALL screwed.
And for the ultimate in GFW wet dreams:
"We will seize any firearms in Swindon, unless there is a lawful purpose for people to have them."
"In this case it transpired that the guns were, in fact, lawfully possessed weapons rather than firearms.
Then why did they have to be 'surrendered to police', you sorry excuse for a cop?
"But of course air weapons and BB guns are capable of looking like real fire arms and there is a real risk if people carry them or display them in public."
Oh God, have mercy on the people of Britain, if this is considered Good Police Work.
The occupant of the house was not arrested in the operation.
Gee, how very nice of you to not arrest the poor bastard for having LEGAL objects LEGALLY in his possession. I repeat, you sorry excuse for a cop.
To refresh our memory of the ideals set out by Robert Peel for police officers, let us review:
- The basic mission for which the police exist is to prevent crime and disorder.
- The ability of the police to perform their duties is dependent upon the public approval of police actions.
- Police must secure the willing co-operation of the public in voluntary observation of the law to be able to secure and maintain the respect of the public.
- The degree of co-operation of the public that can be secured diminishes proportionately to the necessity of the use of physical force.
- Police seek and preserve public favor not by catering to public opinion, but by constantly demonstrating absolute impartial service to the law.
- Police use physical force to the extent necessary to secure observance of the law or to restore order only when the exercise of persuasion, advice, and warning is found to be insufficient.
- Police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the police are the public and the public are the police; the police being only members of the public who are paid to give full-time attention to duties which are incumbent upon every citizen in the interests of community welfare and existence.
- Police should always direct their action strictly towards their functions, and never appear to usurp the powers of the judiciary.
- The test of police efficiency is the absence of crime and disorder, not the visible evidence of police action in dealing with it.
I added the bold in #7, to emphasize the problem with the "We're cops and you're a lousy civilian" attitude we're dealing with ourselves. We've fallen a long damn way over here, too.