What do police mistakes on sexual assault statistics and reaction to a climate demonstration tell us?

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It’s been a week full of mistakes for the police. Firstly, the police admitted a big mistake in their sexual crime statistics by tabulating a single suspect of assaulting his wife 141 times. Each assault was recorded as a single person. The latest bungle came when the Helsinki police admitted it failed to correctly assess the security threat at by the Elokapina climate demonstration, according to Yle News

In the latest fumble, the police overreacted to the presence of demonstrators and escorted President Sauli Niinistö, ministers, and other officials to exit the building through alternative routes.

Faces turned red when President Ninnistö was quoted as saying in Helsingin Sanomat that he was not directed to follow a different exit from the government palace.

“I was not shown another exit than the one that I have always used,” he said. “I never use the main door [to enter the building].”


Helsinki Police tweets: “Hey, just like Deputy Police Chief Kopperoinen said, we are reviewing our policies with respect to the demonstration. The police must act in an impartial and reliable manner. No one should be left with the impression that the police are on but the law.” Source: Twitter

What do the two situations reveal about the police?

For one, there are a lot of opinionated opinions in the police service that must affect their work and remain impartial.

The most conservative public servants in Finland is the police and their actions show it quite explicitly.

A poll revealed in 2016 that 25.1% of the police polled voted for the National Coalition Party (NCP) and 24.4% for the Perussuomalaiset (PS)*. The PS and NCP parties are the most anti-immigration parties in parliament.