The Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Bernard Hogan-Howe, is reporting to the last ordinary meeting of the Metropolitan Police Authority before it is due to be abolished in January.
This is the first (and possibly the last) time that the Authority has had the opportunity to discuss the remarks made by the Commissioner on LBC when he announced that he had asked for a review of the availability of Tasers for officers called to violent incidents like the one in which four officers were injured in Kingsbury on the 19th November. According to the Commissioner, he discussed the attack and possible responses with the Mayor and MPA Chair, Kit Malthouse AM (in a break from his paternity leave) before his scheduled LBC interview and his specific remarks were in response to a phoned-in question from a Met firearms officer.
The Commissioner pointed out that he was simply “reviewing the options” and that there would be “full discussion” before any final decisions are taken. What is not clear is how and where such discussion will take place after the MPA is abolished.
In the meantime, members of the Police Authority raised substantial concerns and issues about wider use of Tasers. At least, the Commissioner recognised that this was not an operational decision for him alone and that there needed to be wider public consultation and that ultimately the Authority would need to take a view. Of course, after 16th January, the Authority will be the Mayor and the MOPC.