Having served in the military as well as in the emergency services (Metropolitan Police), then when I heard about this story, at first I was incensed by the mindless actions of the idiot who spat on this WW1 memorial.
I also felt thankful to my former oppos in the Met, for bringing this individual before the courts having managed to get DNA evidence from this vile individuals toxic spit.
My great grandfather, God rest his soul, was sent to fight in WW1. I have also had close family members who have fought in the Falklands and in Afghan (both former Royal Marines).
My Great Grandfather was in the battle of Ypres in 1914. He survived his time on the front line, but succumbed to the injuries which he sustained a few years after returning home.
I mention the aforementioned, in the hope of giving a bit of context in relation to what I am about to say.
Why anyone would want to spit on a memorial, having absolutely no idea as to the sacrifices and hardships endured by the brave men who were on the front-line, only goes to show just how stupid and cowardly such an individual can be.
I say coward, because that is what this individual is. I would like to see the same person try and spit on a memorial in front of a bunch of veterans.
I would never spit on a memorial – not even on the memorial of an ‘enemy’ (in the context of military service).
The buffoon who did this, by his very act, is trying to tarnish the memory of tens of thousands of brave souls who were sent off to fight in a war that they probably did not want to fight.
It’s a prime example of courage, on behalf of our fallen heroes, in the face of cowardliness.
A statement on the Metropolitan Police website said:
“A teenage boy appeared at Stratford Magistrates’ Court on Monday, 3 September accused of criminal damage after spitting on a First World War memorial in Newham.
“The 17-year-old from Ilford was given a 12 month conditional discharge and was ordered to pay £75 compensation.
“On Thursday, 10 May the 17-year-old was seen on CCTV by officers spiting on the memorial stone set in the ground at the entrance of Forest Gate Police Station in Green Street.
“Investigators extracted DNA evidence from the stone. A DNA match came back to the teenager who was arrested and charged with criminal damage on Tuesday, 14 August.
“Chief Superintendent Richard Tucker, said: “I hope that this sentence warns other against vandalism of any type. This act was particularly disrespectful against officers who selflessly gave their lives in the Great War.”
“District Judge Sims said the teenager’s actions were “not just disrespectful, but despicable”.
“The memorial stone was unveiled on 4 August 2014 to remember K Division officers who gave their lives during the Great War. The memorial details the names of 23 officers of the Metropolitan Police Service ‘K Division’, who lost their lives between 1914 and 1918.
“K Division now comprises boroughs of Barking and Dagenham, Tower Hamlets, Redbridge and Newham.
“An additional police officer is also listed; he was killed while on duty in the Silvertown Explosion of 1917 and was posthumously awarded the King’s Policing Medal by King George V.
“Four and a half thousand members and ex-members of the Metropolitan Police Service joined the Armed Forces during WW1 and WW2, of these more than 500 lost their lives on active service or through enemy action.”
Personally, I think that the coward responsible for this act of criminal damage, should have been given 500 hours of community service that should include cleaning the tombstones of those heroes who never made it home.
What this clown, whoever did this, does not realise, is that were it not for the sacrifices made by the brave men and women, who have given their lives in order to try and protect this country from the tyranny of evil, then idiots like him would probably not even be able to walk around freely in this country.
If you have an emergency services related story, video (that you have filmed) or blog (whether its light-hearted or serious), then contact our team of former emergency services personnel at:
Or us via our Facebook page @EmergencyServicesHumour
Before you go...
We need your help. As former emergency services & armed forces personnel, we pride ourselves on bringing you important, fast-moving and breaking news stories & videos which are free from the negative bias which is often directed at the emergency services & NHS by some sections of the mainstream media.
One of the reasons we started 'Emergency Services News' back in 2018 was because we became tired of reading badly informed stories about the emergency services & NHS which seemed only ever to highlight negative aspects of the job.
We want to be the unheard voice of the remarkable men and women who serve in the emergency services, NHS and armed forces. And with around 500k page views each month, we are getting there!
As income from ads, the mainstay source of income for most publishers, continues to decline; we need the help of you, our readers.
You can support emergency services news from as little as £1. It only takes a minute. Every contribution, however big or small, is vital for our future.
Please help us to continue to highlight the life-saving work of the emergency services, NHS and armed forces by becoming a supporter.