Open Letter to the Chief Constable Dave JONES of North Yorkshire Police
- following the revocation of all civic honours awarded to predatory paedophile Peter JACONELLI, Real Whitby contributor NIGEL WARD writes to the Chief Constable of North Yorkshire Police, DAVE JONES.
Chief Constable Dave JONES – North Yorkshire Police
IN THE PUBLIC INTEREST
You are aware, I know, of the part that Real Whitby has played in the laying bare of information relating to the predatory paedophile Peter JACONELLI. The Motion to strip Peter JACONELLI [Con.] carried by Scarborough Borough Council on Monday 12th May 2014 has provided closure – inasmuch as closure can ever be achieved – to the more public aspects of the affair. Since then, eleven further allegations – including allegations of rape – have materialised.
For the victims – private individuals, many of whom have carried their projected guilt and self-blame for decades – there remains an unanswered question:
How could it be possible that genuine complaints to the authorities have been side-lined and subverted until now?
How can it be that, at the time of writing, neither former Councillor Geoff EVANS nor Trevor HARRINGTON (who first went public with allegations against Peter JACONELLI) has received any notification from the North Yorkshire Police – nor from Scarborough Borough Council – that their allegations have now been fully vindicated and JACONELLI rightly stripped of his civic honours, having been found to have merited referral to the Crown Prosecution Services with a view to prosecution had he been alive today? Could I ask you, please, to attend to that personally?
I applaud the instigation of Operation Hibiscus. It has been my pleasure to liaise with Detective Superintendent Steve SMITH, who impressed me as a man who takes great professional pride in the diligence and integrity of his extremely onerous duty – one that stands to unearth some bitter pills for the Force ( and the Council) to swallow.
Standing, as I do, in the perhaps unenviable position of go-between, I am repeatedly confronted by the same stumbling block; my sources all ask the same question:
How could it be possible that genuine complaints to the authorities have been side-lined and subverted as recently as a little over a year ago, and perhaps since?
The essence of the matter is this: there have been too many cases redolent of the acrid aroma of cover-up. I refer to events on the national stage; SAVILE, SMITH, and others, that appear to have been so well-protected that I would be a fool to mention all of the names in print. The sad truth is that the victims do not trust the Police.
Those two above-mentioned names are, of course, firmly rooted in Scarborough’s ‘Bottom End’. Much has been written on the subject of the arguably too-close relationship between Police Forces and Councils. In Scarborough, this perception is magnified many fold by the unique circumstance that the present Leader of the Council, Councillor Tom FOX [Con.] (himself a ‘Bottom Ender’), was formerly a Police Officer heading up, at one time or another, both the Scarborough and Whitby Police Stations.
Without even considering the articles (and readers’ comments) on the Real Whitby Magazine website, a few hours at the computer perusing the web-pages of several Scarborough and Whitby oriented FaceBook groups will suffice to demonstrate that which I know from personal experience – namely, that virtually every schoolkid (and most parents) in the Borough of Scarborough shared a common knowledge of JACONELLI’s modus operandi and close association with Jimmy SAVILE, John DUNN and others associated with SAVILE’s ‘Scarborough Team’, in and around the old town – the ‘Bottom End’, between Foreshore Road and St Sepulchre Street.
So the crisis in confidence in the Police at a national level has an added dimension here in the Borough of Scarborough. People are asking these questions now:
- If the Scarborough Police DID NOT KNOW of these things, was it because they were deaf, dumb and blind – they simply were NOT DOING THEIR JOBS?
- If the Police DID KNOW of these things, but did nothing, why were they NOT DOING THEIR JOBS?
These questions leave the North Yorkshire Police in a classic Batesonian double bind – damned either way.
Both questions deserve an answer, and if the victims – and the public – are to regain any semblance of confidence in the North Yorkshire Police, answers must be forthcoming. Credible answers. Compelling answers. True answers. It will not suffice to learn that Officers – either in recognition of their own failure or their own complicity – have elected to take early retirement, allowing them to enjoy the fruits of a full pension ‘entitlement’, free from further scrutiny.
But the second of these questions is, by far, the most disturbing. Did Scarborough Police Officers do nothing because influence was brought to bear from further up the chain of command? (“Drop this, lad, if you know what’s good for you”, “Handle this right, son, and your career path stands to move straight into the fast lane”).
Was it a question of money? Often, coercion comes down to the money. Or blackmail.
Was it a matter of complicity? Opportunities to indulge similar vile predilections?
Some of the witnesses are now speaking, in convincing detail, of a ‘commercial’ side to the Scarborough paedophile-ring; child prostitution, child pornographic photographs and videos. So perhaps it was a question of money. Perhaps it was complicity. Perhaps it was both.
But the single greatest impediment to a recovery of the public trust is easy to identify. Fresh-faced young bobbies in (say) 1970 may have risen to some substantial rank in the course of a thirty-plus year career with the North Yorkshire Police. Where are they now?
When I wrote to congratulate you, an ‘outsider’ from another Force, on your appointment as Chief Constable of the North Yorkshire Police, I cautioned you against placing too much credence in all you might hear from you immediate colleagues about the Real Whitby investigations. Now that our allegations against Peter JACONELLI have been totally vindicated, I hope you will give fresh consideration to that advice.
The public perception of the extraordinary hostility evinced towards Real Whitby by our ‘authorities’ is now escalating into overt suspicion. Why, do you imagine, has Scarborough Borough Council offered no thanks for our assistance – or apologies to the victims? Why is Scarborough Borough Council hunkered down, cringing at every new revelation?
Two of our most important North Yorkshire institutions would appear to actively resent the Real Whitby contribution. Only the Private Eye – that thorn in the side of establishment corruption – has published an acknowledgement of society’s debt to Real Whitby. Why?
Loyalty is a powerful human emotion, Dave. It is the glue that binds people together in the face of great adversity. But it takes many forms. And sometimes it is misplaced.
Neither BBC Look North nor the Scarborough News (mysteriously, the links to their website coverage are ‘dead’ – both videos have since been removed from the respective web-sites) covered a most extraordinary manifestation of misplaced loyalty at the Town Hall last Monday 12th May 2014. Perhaps it has escaped your attention. Certainly, the public has had no opportunity, until now, to consider it.
Following Councillor Mike WARD’s carefully measured words, Councillor Bill CHATT (who previously, remember, had supported the erection of a Jimmy SAVILE statue in Scarborough – after SAVILE’s crimes became public) rose to address Council in the following impassioned terms:
“Thank you, Mister Mayor. I was in t-t-two minds whether to a-a-actually stand up, then I thought, “No. I should!” I’m absolutely appalled by what Peter Jaconelli h-h-has been accused of but I’m absolutely appalled for his victims. But ….he was my ward Councillor he gave me my first job. When I was at Woodlands, I … er … Westwood, I used to walk along there and actually work for three hours in his shop. I saw how many people came to that shop and he gave support to. He was my ward Councillor for many years and I know the people up there went to him and got help, support, and in some cases even financial help to support them himself. I cannot detract from the fact that’s what’s gone on and I … I don’t even want to do that. But I really feel strongly about this and I will not be voting for it, because whatever happened, he worked damned hard as a Borough and ward Councillor, and I will not be voting for it.”
During the course of my investigations, many have told me the same story; Peter JACONELLI was a caring and generous friend to the people he served. But let us not forget that his serial abuse of his position of trust was criminal in the extreme. How could Councillor Bill CHATT fail to grasp that simple fact?
The Borough Council and the North Yorkshire Police share a duty of care to protect the public – and most especially, the young – from predatory criminals. This cast of mind – this misplaced loyalty – that moved Councillor Bill CHATT to defend Peter JACONELLI and Jimmy SAVILE, is symptomatic of a culture that has allowed SAVILE, JACONELLI and others (who will, in due course, be named – and shamed – on Real Whitby) licence to offend with impunity.
This same culture must ultimately share the blame for the abuse of children, the prostitution of children and the pornographic exploitation of children that is only now coming to light.
Commendably, North Yorkshire Police has arrested (and successfully convicted) a number of paedophiles in Scarborough in recent years; Alan FISHER, Kevin GAMBLE, Robert SMITH, Duncan BYRNE, James NORMINGTON, Steven BISHOP (who evaded justice by committing suicide), and Eric COATES – the son of former North Yorkshire County Councillor Raymond COATES – who evaded justice on grounds of ill-health).
It is this last name that brings me to the topic that I attempted to raise with you at the ‘Time to Talk’ public forum at the Stephen Joseph Theatre in Scarborough, on 24th October 2014.
I asked you, “Are we all equal under the law, Dave?”.
There are so many cases now that suggest that two levels of justice operate in our area; one, as it is applied to the common man (or woman), and another – reserved for those who enjoy a special status contingent upon their positions in public life.
- The Chair of the Police & Crime Panel, County Councillor Carl LES [Con.], exposed by Real Whitby and the BBC ‘Inside Out’ documentary over-claiming his Mileage Allowances simply repaid a sample over-claim of £34 – and thereby evaded prosecution.
- The former Chair of the North York National Park Authority Planning Committee, (then) Scarborough Borough Councillor Tim LAWN [Con.], was also exposed by Real Whitby (and the Private Eye). He resigned – and thereby evaded a diligent investigation of his mineral-rich land dealings that, by rights, should also have led to prosecution.
- Most flagrant of all is the case of the former County Councillor and former Chair of the now defunct North Yorkshire Police Authority, now Councillor Mrs Jane KENYON-MILLER [Con.] (Portfolio Holder for Finance, Procurement & Legal Services at Scarborough Borough Council), whose financial history reads like the script for ‘Houdini meets the Godfather’; the incorporation of Belvedere Computers Inc and subsequent flight from California, the vanished grant-funding for the United Reform Church; the spurious benefit claims, the company theft of Agricultural Fencing & Groundwork Supplies Ltd and the subsequent strategic liquidation of Dales Timber Ltd; the ‘annexation’ of Whitby Regatta, and other cases as yet unpublicised.
These are just a few of the matters that have been deftly occluded by the Councils and the Police.
All equal under the law, Dave?
Should the public be so gullible as to believe that if a member of the public – ‘the common man’ – deliberately drove his car at Luke SEAVERS (a ‘known trouble-maker’), then punched him in the face, as Sgt Colin PHIPPS did (if the evidence of the CCTV camera is to be taken at face value), he would be acquitted – as Sgt PHIPPS was acquitted?
Luke SEAVERS claims that he was told he would be charged with assault and threats to kill against the Police for the incident, but within 24 hours all that had vanished – no doubt, in the face of that CCTV evidence. (“I don’t know why I bothered coming to court”, said Luke SEAVERS).
And these alleged threats by the Police bear a disturbing resemblance to the historical allegations of Police brutality causing actual bodily harm (victim’s mouth ripped open with a cell key – “keep your mouth shut”), and perverting the course of justice, posted by one ‘malcolm’ on Real Whitby on 29th November 2013, against a PC CLARKE and a PC THOMPSON, and (then) Inspector Tom FOX, respectively.
Having made enquiries at the Borough Council in December 2013, I was informed by Scarborough Borough Council’s Director of Legal & Democratic Services Lisa DIXON (Councillor Jane KENYON-MILLER’s counterpart), on 7th February 2014, that the matter had “been referred to the Police’s Professional Standards Department [sic] - the body that Police & Crime Commissioner Julia MULLIGAN [Con.] has publicly castigated as being “not fit for purpose”.
All equal under the law, Dave?
Small wonder that public confidence in the Police has all but evaporated.
So I am hoping that you will do what your overseer, the Police & Crime Commissioner, has signally failed to do, these past eighteen months – offer me the courtesy of a substantive response, for publication on Real Whitby.
I hope to hear that alleged criminality on the part of elected and paid public servants will henceforth be rigorously investigated by your Officers, in accordance with their Constable’s Oath of Office – without fear or favour – and that, where the evidence against them is compelling, reports will be passed to the Crown Prosecution Services, prosecutions will follow, and if guilty, they will be convicted and sentenced as would any member of the public – all equal under the law.
I hope that you will do this, Dave. And I hope that you will do it before the media frenzy erupts over fresh historical allegations now emerging against another former Mayor of the Borough of Scarborough . . .
Yours, with kind regards,