"Good Police Work"

This is exactly the sort of thing that drives me crazy about the Boston Police Department -- not the part about arresting the wrong guy, which is going to happen sometimes, but claiming to have done a great job, rather than admitting when they didn't. And they wonder why the credibility of the force is so low?

To recap: in the rare (less than one in ten) instance that they made an arrest in a shooting, they nabbed an innocent guy whose alibi could have been checked with a simple phone call within the department. Instead, the guy was booked, held overnight, and arraigned before the prosecutor checked and discovered that the guy was telling the truth when he said he was in the B3 police station when the shooting occurred.

It's not a huge disgrace or anything, but it's nothing to be proud of, either. Mistakes were made, you might say.

But instead of admitting that, or at least keeping an embarrassed silence, the commissioner (or his spokesperson, depending on which daily you read) came out boasting that this was an example of "good police work," in which "our internal systems worked very well," and "Most importantly, the officers disclosed exculpatory evidence immediately to stop the prosecution."

Those laudatory quotes apparently refer to the fact that, when the prosecutor asked whether the suspect had been at the station Saturday night, the cops didn't lie.

Is this really how low we're setting the bar these days? Gold stars any time the force doesn't actively obstruct justice?

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