Police needs to re-build trust with the victims of crime

CROYDON COMMENTARY: Charity founder TRACEY FORD, pictured left, on how her family has been denied justice for more than a decade, since the shooting of her teenaged son, Andre, at Streatham ice rink, a murder for which no one has ever been charged

For me and my family, the unanswered question is why, 10 years after my son Andre was shot, was an inquest called?

The inquest was held last week, and to add insult to injury, it was going to happen without our knowledge.

We had a registered cause of death when we were given a death certificate after Andre died. I know nothing about who calls an inquest, why and if there is a time limit. No one in the court service or the police explained this to us.

To have an inquest nearly 11 years after my son’s death was mystifying.

As I said earlier this week, for me and my family, the inquest was like re-living the murder again.

What more do we as families have to endure to get justice for our children?

Frayed relationships will continue to exist between the police and local communities when murders remain unsolved and the police show lack of duty and care to bereaved families.

There is a Victims Commissioner and there has been strategy after strategy intended to bridge the gaps in policing.

Yet since the MacPherson Report, nothing has changed, in case after case. How are we to get justice for our children when nothing is being done to hold the police accountable for the way in which families are treated?

No amount of “sorrys” are going to repair the damage being caused.

Only more personal action in how murder cases are handled and the protocols followed that lead to convictions of murderers will help to rebuild the police’s relationships in local communities.

  • Following her son’s death in 2007, Tracey Ford established The JAGS Foundation, a charity which aims to reduce levels of youth-on-youth crime, particularly violent crime, and to help and support those families affected by such crime

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
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