UK College of Policing allows alarming opportunity to accept psychic assistance

What in the Sam Hell is this bullshit from the UK College of Policing? Where do they get the foundation? Taxpayers may not be pleased.

Police officers searching for missing people should not rule out the help of psychics, according to suggested guidelines for the profession.

The person’s methods should be asked for and whether they have any “accredited successes,” says a consultation document from the College of Policing, which is the official source of professional practice on police work.

Source: Psychics’ help finding missing people should not be ruled out, police officers told – Telegraph

The College of Policing is a professional body for the police in England and Wales. This revised document meant to instruct the police on best investigation techniques released this week, is quite clear that cases like missing persons attract psychics and that can be a distraction. People may be at it for financial gain. But they leave the door open to psychics as a valid line of inquiry if they can prove past success.

“The person’s methods should be asked for, including the circumstances in which they received the information and any accredited successes.”

“Accredited successes” means having a proven record of helping police. As we’ve seen REPEATEDLY, self-styled psychics will claim hits but the truth is they provided nothing that anyone else could not have also provided. They just take a lot of credit post hoc. Finally, in the piece, the Missing People charity state what we already know, psychics don’t actually help.

“Research based on interviews with the families of missing people conducted by the charity shows that no interviewees reported significant findings or comfort from the experience of consulting psychics or mediums.”

The piece from the Telegraph is unclear and confusing as well as suggesting some rather disturbing wastes of time for police investigators. Psychics don’t solve crimes, good investigation and pursuit of valid lines of evidence does. Though, many people still mistakenly believe that psychics are a valid means of information, there are exactly NO verified cases of psychics in the US or the UK being instrumental in solving cases.


It’s a shame psychic crime fighting doesn’t work

Some detectives say psychics offer information, yet nothing is documented

Not one psychic lead has helped in crime solving, unless you believe

Myra is still missing – so is evidence that psychics help to solve crimes – JREF

  19 comments for “UK College of Policing allows alarming opportunity to accept psychic assistance

  1. Tom
    August 30, 2015 at 2:57 AM

    Sadly, The Telegraph is no longer a reliable news source, these days we see it crossing Daily Mail territory heading for never never land!

  2. Rich
    August 30, 2015 at 4:48 AM

    I instinctively don’t like it but I can understand the police having to treat information from a ‘psychic’ source with the same seriousness as any other information. Not because of the psychic abilities (throw in some more quotation marks there) but because of the possibility that the informant may actually be connected to the case or knows people involved – who would want to be the police officer who ignored the information about a body’s location because someone with actual knowledge phoned it in under the guise of a ‘psychic’ experience?

    Now this is probably a very remote possibility, sure, and it does mean that psychics get more attention than they deserve and get to waste a lot of police time, but I can understand why a police force would at least consider following it up. Perhaps more so in the case of an anonymous tip-off rather than “I saw something in a dream about that murder in Australia.”

    The part about looking at a psychic’s previous success is the disturbing aspect suggests that the police take at the possibility of a psychic’s track record seriously. And *that* would be ludicrous.

  3. Bill T.
    August 30, 2015 at 5:03 AM

    Information from any source/subject-matter-expert has to be vetted. If I were to present myself as a forensics expert I would expect to be required to present credentials. Information from a psychic should have the same requirements: training and other evidence of competence, track record of having provided valuable information, … . Of course, one would be able to guess my estimate of how many people would be able to provide such credentials.

  4. Mandy
    August 30, 2015 at 6:06 AM

    There are some “psychics” out there that are exceptional at reading people and collating information. I think they are money scamming freaks, but there would be the occasional remote possibility that they will manage to pass on information that the police may not have realised yet. Police would treat their information the same as any anonymous tip off. They would weigh up the information and investigate it. But they need to remove the word from the text. It just gives it credibility and they should never be given credibility.

  5. One Eyed Jack
    August 30, 2015 at 6:48 AM

    because of the possibility that the informant may actually be connected to the case or knows people involved …

    I disagree.

    Would the police also be obligated to spend time investigating a lead by a person claiming to have received the information during an astral projection journey to the Betelegeuse system? “Yes officer. I recently traveled by astral projection to the star system, Beteleqeuse, where I consulted with wise and all knowing alien, Xantar…” Any true lead where the informant is concerned about anonymity can submit that information anonymously. There is no need to pretend to be psychic unless you are seeking fame.

    Psychics are given attention by police because there is a significant portion of the population that believe psychics have real powers. No police chief wants to be the one that rejected a psychic’s help at the moment when they get a lucky hit. The fear of public blow back is what motivates them. That and the simple fact police are people. A non-zero number will actually believe in psychic powers.

  6. One Eyed Jack
    August 30, 2015 at 6:59 AM

    It is an unfortunate consequence of the term “cold reading” that even skeptics believe psychics are good at “reading” people. Cold reading is the art of leading and manipulating a conversation to generate hits. It involves knowledge of frequencies in populations, social tendencies, and human nature. It does not involve any exceptional talent at actually reading people. I would gladly place the best of psychics up against the best police investigators and see who is better at reading people.

    Reading people and cold reading are not the same. Leave police investigations to trained investigators.

  7. August 30, 2015 at 8:35 AM

    Here is Chief Inspector Reginald Smith attempting to locate a missing child on a map of Britain.

  8. jockmcdock
    August 30, 2015 at 10:39 AM

    Would cold reading be relevant here? The subject of interest is a missing person, not someone who is standing in front of a psychic/cold reader.

  9. Blargh
    August 30, 2015 at 3:08 PM

    That is precisely the point.

  10. Rich
    August 30, 2015 at 4:44 PM

    Oh, I agree with you; I think any time a psychic wades into a criminal case they have *nothing whatsoever* to offer and are delusional and/or seeking self-publicity. A psychic just *can’t* offer anything useful via psychic methods. Police giving psychics attention because they’re psychics is a ludicrous idea.

    My point was really a consideration of an admittedly fairly tiny possibility; that a person with knowledge of a crime, who didn’t want to be involved, might claim they got their knowledge through means other than being the kidnapper’s brother-in-law, or whatever.

    In the case of the Betelgeuse scenario, or people getting ‘feelings’ looking at pictures in the newspaper (“she’s near water…”), then yes, I quite agree, bollocks to them.

  11. Tony
    August 31, 2015 at 12:45 PM

    From The Telegraph’s Wikipedia entry:

    In June 2014, The Telegraph was criticised by [satirical current events magazine] Private Eye for its policy of replacing experienced journalists and news managers with less-experienced staff and search engine optimisers. On 10 September 2014, the Telegraph Media Group advertised in the Daily Telegraph for a new Head of Interactive Journalism stating candidates should “have demonstrable interest in news and journalism (previous newsroom experience is not needed however)”.

  12. August 31, 2015 at 12:49 PM

    Just what the police in the midst of a missing person case need – to be diverted into accessing if a given psychic has any accredited successes. They’d need a James Randi type division to handle that. But don’t psychics sometimes get involved through family of the missing person? That’s another issue because police must maintain a relationship with the family.

  13. September 2, 2015 at 1:19 PM

    Why involve psychics in police investigations when their track record is so poor?

  14. September 2, 2015 at 5:36 PM

    A bit more information in this piece. Still, it’s not doing a good service ultimately to allow psychics in the mix. End it.

    U.K. Police Advise Officers: ‘Don’t Discount Psychics And Witches In Investigations’ – The Daily Beast

  15. Bill
    September 2, 2015 at 5:45 PM

    The spiritualist Tom Ruffles has posted your entry on this on the Society for Psychical Research facebook which has drawn criticisms from paranormal believers.

    Hayley Stevens who pretends to be a skeptic is also backing the paranormalists, she’s written a response to you on her website entitled “The Police Should Use Psychics? Let’s All Freak Out!”.

  16. September 2, 2015 at 5:49 PM

    Yes, I am aware of that. I responded to the FB page. Ms Stevens makes a habit out of criticizing DN. I no longer read her site. I’m not in agreement with their views. I’ve stated why quite clearly, I think. Any regular reader of the site will understand my position.

  17. Nigel Bennet
    September 2, 2015 at 8:00 PM

    “Hayley Stevens who pretends to be a skeptic”

    I have been saying that for years, she is a bandwagon skeptic, she saw a chance to be more than a seller of theatre tickets or comestibles, and went for it…all on the back of other peoples’ effort. I got sick with her regurgitating other peoples’ work, and getting her facts wrong.

    I remember on Righteous Indignation podcast where she criticised a UK psychic for using the ‘entertainment use only’ disclaimer, and proving how dumb she was by not actually knowing that, in the UK, all such ‘paranormal’ activities have to be advertised ‘for entertainment purposes only’ by law; psychics can get a fine of many thousands for not saying this.

    I gave up reading her ‘skeptical’ blog when she jumped on another bandwagon when Sally Morgan was found allegedly using an earpiece on stage smdh

    As for psychics and the cops, the two should only ever meet when they are being investigated for fraudulent activities. I can understand a cop reaching stalemate and using any ‘lead’ can demonstrate they are at least trying to solve the crime…but the case histories show, one by one, that psychics don’t solve crimes or even mysteries. One of my areas of research is the disappearance of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan in 1937, and even all the way back then they had psychics telling them where she was; her husband George Putnam even invested a lot on money following psychic hunches. Although, I do understand that Earhart herself thought she was psychic, so perhaps this lead George Putnam to believe in the woo-woo…

  18. September 2, 2015 at 9:28 PM

    Yes, we are aware of ms. Stevens post. She loves to attack us (especially Sharon) whenever she can find an excuse to do so. But our stance on the matter of psychics and police stand until there is sufficient evidence that psychics actually do help solve cases. Of which there currently is pretty much none. It’s a waste of money and police efforts.

  19. September 2, 2015 at 9:53 PM

    I understand your views on this. But please know I do not want to make this into a commentary about another site. So, if you would please refrain from such comments here, that is much appreciated.

Comments are closed.