For years and years coppers have fantasised about being able to switch off motor vehicles’ engines remotely. This idea first appeared during WWII in the form of a (non-existent) ‘engine-stopping ray’, and has been going ever since.
Now it is possible owing to engine management systems. All the fuzz have to do is persuade car manufacturers to incorporate radio hardware and backdoored software and it’s easy. Point the aerial from the police helicopter, transmit the no-longer-secret code, and watch the target coast to a standstill.
So why is Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, archplod of the Smoke, wittering on about ‘slowing down the vehicle in front‘ [my italics] of the target?
Could it be that he supposes that ‘criminals’ will already have disabled the engine-stopping-ray receivers on their own cars?
Does he intend to ‘slow down’ one unsuspecting member of the public after another, thus to act as expendable barricades, as the ‘criminals’ ram their coasting (and possibly now also brakeless) cars out of their way?
How many of us does he propose to sacrifice thus in order to avoid being sued by his own increasingly Bolshie staff?
Will he simply demand more tax to pay off all the inevitable compensation claims, or will he blackmail a politician into giving his goons total immunity from the law?
Will police helicopter crews use surveillance equipment to check whether the target car’s occupants are wearing burkas – and therefore obviously more likely to be ‘victims’ of ‘Islamophobia’ than terrorists – before letting fly?
How will this method address the old IRA tactic of packing a bicycle frame with PHE?
Will Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe please try to get on with his job as defined by Sir Robert Peel, rather than by Darth Vader?