Generally speaking, police stations are secure places. Access in and out is controlled, and actions within are closely monitored—by the police who work there, for one.
In Great Britain, a surveillance state so out of control with cameras that it’s difficult to breathe without a recording of the act becoming available, one would presume very little goes on inside a police station that would elude the attention of the police. But somehow, a brace of cannabis plants—seized during a raid and held as evidence—is among the items stolen from a police station in Liverpool, one of the country’s major metropolitan areas.
And police say they don’t have the foggiest idea what became of the plants, which were kept “safe” in an evidence locker area—or who might have done it.
The brazen 2015 theft came to light following a public-records request inquiring for a list of goods stolen from police. As the Liverpool Echo reported, police have lost bicycles, Apple electronic devices including iPhones and iPads, and even had a police hat stolen from inside a station to go along with the missing bags of marijuana and cannabis plants.
This doesn’t generally happen, as one salient observer noted.
“It’s usually cops who go round nicking people not being nicked from,” an unnamed individual told the UK Sun. “So exactly how this opportunistic thief managed to walk out of a cop shop carrying several cannabis plants without being spotted is anyone’s guess.”
A spokesman for Liverpool police confirmed to the Echo that visitors to police stations are “generally” accompanied by cops, and that items—like weed—kept as evidence is usually kept in “secure lockable storage facilities.”
This doesn’t reflect well on police, who either let someone waltz in and out carrying a big bag of weed, or are victims of an obvious inside job, which would make them very typical among police forces across the world.
Like everywhere else in the UK, Liverpool isn’t quite sure what to do about marijuana.
Cannabis possession can be punished with nothing more than a judge’s warning, but sales and cultivation are crimes. The underground cannabis trade is worth close to 7 billion pounds—which includes the “Amsterdam-style” underground cannabis cafes set up by risk-averse, self-styled marijuana freedom fighters.
Then again, Liverpool police are so overwhelmed with raiding cannabis farms that they’ve openly appealed to the public to snitch on friends and neighbors to help out. Until Prime Minister Theresa May listens to reason and changes national policy, the evidence locker won’t stay empty for long.