The Met had little choice but to second Commander Paddick, given the allegations against him. We hope the investigating officer will complete his inquiries as quickly and as thoroughly as possible.
When that inquiry is complete, return Brian Paddick to his post in Lambeth. No other outcome is acceptable.
Brian Paddick is not the Messiah. If he does not return, the sky won’t fall in, the sun will continue to rise over Ruskin Park and settle over Clapham Common.
A unique opportunity for the Met, and the people of Lambeth, will have been wasted. Here is a policeman who has already engaged with the community he serves but who now has their manifest support. Paddick’s detractors attacked a policeman and a borough in one breath - they made him one of us.
Lambeth would lose its “breath of fresh air” and with it the chance of a new start for policing in the borough. The only winners would be criminals.
A clear signal would go out. That, for all the rhetoric, a grubby, homophobic witchhunt can still pay off.
And perhaps the biggest issue of all. One that goes beyond an individual policeman and a particular London borough.
If Brian Paddick were not returned to Lambeth, then the Met and the MPA will have capitulated to media bullies.
Like all bullies, they’ll be back. Next time it may be a college principal, or the head of a hospital, maybe another policeman. Public servants should be hired and fired on their ability and their delivery, not on the dictat of newspapers
Lambeth wants him back