Right, moving away from this morning’s news about the illegally poisoned white-tailed eagle in Sussex, we’re back on the poisoned white-tailed eagle found dead in Dorset (it’s hard to keep up, I know).
This afternoon, Dorset Police & Crime Commissioner (PCC) David Sidwick, and Dorset Police Chief Constable Scott Chilton, have both published statements in response to all the media attention brought to their doors by the failure of Dorset Police to fully investigate the circumstances of the poisoned eagle found dead on a shooting estate after it had ingested 7 x the lethal dose of a toxic rodenticide.
Here is what has appeared on the PCC’s website:
I’m sorry to say that I don’t see anything here other than a damage limitation exercise and an attempt to close down the public and media scrutiny to which both the police and the PCC’s office have been subjected (and rightly so, in my opinion).
It’s meaningless to talk about how ‘Dorset police continues to take any and all potential wildlife offences seriously and will act to prevent and detect offences wherever possible‘ when the investigation into the poisoned eagle was ended so abruptly and prematurely.
Why was the multi-agency search of the estate, planned for by Dorset Police’s award-winning wildlife crime officer, Claire Dinsdale, called off at the last minute? There still hasn’t been an explanation for that and neither of these two statements comes close to addressing it.
And why was that award-winning wildlife crime officer, Claire Dinsdale, removed from her post as wildlife crime lead?
And why was the word ‘wildlife’ removed from the title of the Rural Crime team if the team is still tackling wildlife crime?
There’s still more to come out in the public domain about this poisoned eagle case. Legal restrictions prevent me from publishing it right now but I’m hopeful that within a few weeks I’ll be able to do so once the wheels of justice have turned a bit further. And once this information is out, the public will be even more angry than they already are about the premature closing of the investigation. And I reckon Dorset Police know that. The PCC might not be aware of it but rest assured, he soon will be.
Meanwhile, this morning I finally received a response to my Freedom of Information request from the Dorset PCC’s office. I’ll be blogging about that very soon.