This article titled “Trump UK visit: police to mobilise in numbers not seen since 2011 riots” was written by Vikram Dodd Police and crime correspondent, for The Guardian on Monday 9th July 2018 05.00 UTC
Police are planning the biggest mobilisation of officers since the 2011 riots as thousands of people in the UK prepare to protest against the arrival this week of Donald Trump.
Thousands of officers will be moving across the country to contain demonstrations against the US president,who arrives on Thursday and will visit London, Windsor and Scotland during the two-day trip.
One chief constable said the resources that had been asked for were on the scale required “if London was burning down”. Firearms officers, armed counter-terrorism units, public order officers and dog handlers are being deployed for the visit.
Police chiefs said the initial numbers being asked for by the National Police Coordination Centre (NPoCC) were too high and that they fought to cut them.
Several chiefs told the Guardian they were concerned the demands to send personnel to protect Trump added to the pressure to find enough officers to keep their own areas sufficiently safe.
One said: “The more we send there, the less we have for our areas. With the hot weather, if anything kicks off, we are struggling. They cut the officers in the urban areas [biggest forces] and now they need them.”
The original planning was for 6,000 officers, deployed within about 300 police support units, which would comprise one inspector, three sergeants and 18 to 20 constables.
It is understood that about 4,000 officers will be mobilised, to support colleagues in the areas Trump is visiting, and that some forces in other regions have restricted leave so their officers can make up the numbers.
The Police Federation has already acknowledged said that the president’s visit will put “unquestionable pressure” on UK police forces.
Officers will be deployed from areas Trump is not visiting, including Greater Manchester and other forces in the north-west, the north-east, West Midlands, east Midlands and the south-west.
The 43 police forces in England and Wales are supposed to support big surges in demand in other forces through “mutual aid” agreements. One chief constable said: “They are the highest ever requests for mutual aid I have ever seen.
“More mutual aid is being asked for than the [London 2012] Olympics, than for the terrorist attacks last year. I’ve never seen mutual aid requests like this Every force is sending their maximum and above.
“£5m [nationally] is the direct cost. You then have the cost of cancelled rest days. If I cancel a rest day to send an officer, that cost will be covered by the local force.”
Part of the challenge for police is that the president’s itinerary for the UK visit has not been finalised and the policing plans have to remain “fluid”.
Trump will arrive on Air Force1 One at Stansted airport. He will visit London, the prime minister’s country residence in Buckinghamshire as well as Windsor Castle. He will also go to Scotland, where police say their bill could run into millions of pounds.
One chief constable said: “There is concern nationally about how we will keep the show on the road.” Anotheradded: “These are eye-watering numbers. It’s a bit rich for the government to demand this when all they’ve done is cut our numbers since 2010.”
The government reduced police funding by 18% when Theresa May was home secretary in 2010, leading to a reduction of 20,000 officers over the intervening years.
In a statement, the National Police Chiefs’ Council, which houses the NPoCC, said: “UK forces are currently planning a major national policing operation to support the forthcoming visit of US President Donald Trump.
“The NPoCC is in discussions with forces about how the resource requirements of this massive operation will be met. Operational plans are still being determined and we are confident that forces will continue to maintain local policing services.”
guardian.co.uk © Guardian News & Media Limited 2010
All Charges Against Jussie Smollett Dropped
CHICAGO (AP) — Attorneys for “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett say charges alleging he lied to police about an attack have been dropped.
Smollett’s attorneys Tina Glandian and Patricia Brown Holmes said in a Tuesday morning statement that Smollett’s record “has been wiped clean.” Smollett was indicted on 16 felony counts related to making a false report that he was attacked by two men who shouted racial and homophobic slurs.
A spokeswoman for Cook County prosecutors didn’t immediately respond to messages requesting comment.
Police and prosecutors have said the black and gay actor falsely reported to authorities that he was attacked Jan. 29 in downtown Chicago because he was unhappy with his pay on the Fox show and to promote his career.
The prosecutor who made the surprise decision to drop charges against Empire star Jussie Smollett for allegedly making false assault claims said the dropped and expunged charges are not an indication of the actor’s innocence.
“We didn’t exonerate him,” Joe Magats, the top assistant to Cook County State Attorney Kim Foxx, said in a statement tweeted out by New York Times correspondent Julie Bosman.
The prosecutor said he “saw no problems with the police investigation or the evidence against Smollett,” Bosman tweeted, adding that the actor’s charges were dropped “in return for his agreement to do community service” and for the forfeiture of “his bond to the city of Chicago.”
“We work to prioritize violent crime and the drivers of violent crime,” Magats said. “Public safety is our number one priority. I don’t see Jussie Smollett as a threat to public safety.”
“We stand behind the investigation, we stand behind the decision to charge him and we stand behind the charges in the case,” the prosecutor said. “The mere fact that it was disposed of in an alternative manner does not mean that there were any problems or infirmities in the case or the evidence.”
Magats’ statement contrasts claims made by Smollett’s lawyers, who said the dropped and expunged charges were not part of a deal and that the actor would not be doing any additional community service.
This is a breaking news story. Please check back for updates.
US Chief Justice John Roberts Rejects Bid To Halt Trump Bump Stock Ban
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. Chief Justice John Roberts on Tuesday rejected a bid by gun rights activists to put on hold President Donald Trump’s administration’s ban on “bump stock” gun attachments that enable semi-automatic weapons to be fired rapidly.
Justice Sonia Sotomayor has not yet acted on another similar request.
The ban goes into effect on Tuesday but lower courts have yet to rule on an appeals brought by gun rights activists. An appeals court in Washington already has said that the ban will not go into effect in relation to the specific people and groups involved in that case.
Gun Rights Groups Ask Supreme Court To Halt Trump Bump Stock Ban
WASHINGTON (AP) — Gun rights groups are asking the Supreme Court to stop the Trump administration from beginning to enforce its ban on bump stock devices, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire like machine guns.
The groups asked the court Monday to get involved in the issue and keep the government from beginning to enforce the ban for now. The ban set to go into effect Tuesday has put the Trump administration in the unusual position of arguing against gun rights groups. It’s unclear how quickly the court will act.
President Donald Trump said last year that the government would move to ban bump stocks. The action followed a 2017 shooting in Las Vegas in which a gunman attached bump stocks to assault-style rifles he used to shoot concertgoers. Fifty-eight people were killed.
Developing…this will be updated.
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