Former police chief blasts PM's "mind-boggling, thoughtless" choice to put military on the streets

23 September 2020, 11:10 | Updated: 23 September 2020, 11:15

By Fiona Jones

Former chief constable Andy Hayman lambasts the Prime Minister's mind-boggling and ill-thought decision to put troops on the streets to enforce restrictions.

Boris Johnson announced a series of tough new coronavirus measures on Tuesday and said the military could be deployed in England to help police officers with enforcement.

Nick confronted Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab over these measures and Mr Raab clarified, "The point is they will backfill and provide extra capacity where the police need it so that it frees the police up to do the frontline work that's important for them."

Former Metropolitan Police Assistant Commissioner and Norfolk Chief Constable Andy Hayman said to Nick, "What the hell is going on?

"This is ill-thought through, the consequences of it have not been thought through...There's a complete lack of consultation with people who've got to make it happen on the street."

Mr Hayman pointed out that the police is an individual body that is not thwarted by political interference, "So for someone in the PM's position, who has got experience of the Mayor of London - so was head of the Metropolitan Police politically - to say the things he did yesterday which then had to be corrected by Number absolutely mind-boggling."

Former police chief blasts PM&squot;s "mind-boggling, thoughtless" choice to put military on the streets
Former police chief blasts PM's "mind-boggling, thoughtless" choice to put military on the streets. Picture: LBC/PA

Mr Hayman said he would like to remind the Prime Minister that he has operational independence and is policing by the consent of the community.

"Whilst he might want an outcome and the outcome is compliance with the rules, he doesn't tell me how I'm going to do it and he does not tell me to put troops on the street or into back office positions.

"The notion that he's going to provide troops to help us out in the back office is bonkers," Mr Hayman said, pointing out that the only people in the back office are civilian support colleagues.

Nick quoted Lord John Stevens, who said the move to use military would be "dangerous" as it sends the message that "the police have lost the streets", with which Mr Hayman agreed.

In the past the military have been used as an "operational imperative" and it is a "very big decision," Mr Hayman told LBC.

He made abundantly clear that what the Prime Minister is asking "is not the function of the troops" and instead police chiefs want clarity and not a "decision off the hoof."

"He's trying to be a strong leader but he's not thought through the operational consequences," Mr Hayman said.

Watch the full interview above.

More Nick Ferrari

See more More Nick Ferrari

Ian Maxwell was speaking to LBC's Nick Ferrari

Watch in full: Nick Ferrari speaks to Ghislaine Maxwell's brother ahead of trial

The sex trafficking trial of Ghislaine Maxwell is set to begin in New York today

Ghislaine Maxwell’s brother says Prince Andrew was 'cancelled' on 'dubious grounds'

The UK wants to step up cooperation with France, a minister has said.

'Not just a British problem': UK ready to send ground support to France, minister says

Dominic Raab has dismissed claims Boris Johnson has been the subject of a number of no confidence letters

Raab dismisses PM no confidence letters as 'tittle tattle' as party rating plummets

Dominic Raab defended Harper's Law

Raab: Harper’s Law isn’t blurring lines between murder and manslaughter

The uncle of Dawn Ashworth says Pitchfork should have been handed a whole life sentence

Uncle of Pitchfork victim says Parole Board put kids 'at risk' by releasing killer

The Education Secretary refused to be drawn on the subject of Priti Patel

Education Secretary refuses to grade Priti Patel's performance over migrants

Nadhim Zahawi told LBC the new law was the forward in dealing with the migrant crisis.

Migrant crisis: New law must 'close the loophole, break the business model', Zahawi says

The Education Secretary was speaking on LBC's Call the Cabinet

Nadhim Zahawi: Anti-vax protesters should be 'nowhere near' schools

Nadhim Zahawi spoke to Nick Ferrari on LBC this morning

Zahawi hails UK jab rollout, saying Covid pandemic can shrink

Call The Cabinet | Watch live on Monday from 9am

Call The Cabinet with Nadhim Zahawi | Watch Again

Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber's Cinderella will raise money for women all over the world.

Lloyd Webber's Cinderella gala to raise money to empower female refugees around the world

Caller with home on proposed HS2 route 'absolutely delighted' it's axed

Caller with home on proposed HS2 route 'absolutely delighted' it's axed

PC John Murray spoke to Nick Ferrari

'I will get them': Former cop vows to find out who fired gun that killed WPC Yvonne Fletcher

Lord Andrew Lloyd Webber joins Nick Ferrari

Andrew Lloyd Webber joins Nick Ferrari | Watch again

Nick Ferrari interviews Azeem Rafiq

Watch in full: Nick Ferrari interviews Azeem Rafiq