It has taken the Met Police four years to offer a five-letter word in apology for the death of Ian Tomlinson during the G20 protests in 2008.
But the way in which they chose to say sorry on last night’s news programmes lacked credibility. A senior officer, recorded on a Met Police video, read out a heavily scripted message which carried little conviction.
It is a robotic performance, delivered in a style which suggested that the officer was reading from an autocue, or had learned the words by heart.
The impression was of the Met going through a token performance. The lack of commitment did little to suggest sympathy for the Tomlinson family.
Presumably the Met were unwilling to put anyone up for interview because their defence for such a long-delayed apology was paper-thin. But for the Met’s communications chiefs to be happy with a statement which carried as much human feeling as a speak-your-weight machine will simply reinforce the views of those who regard the force as out-of-touch and arrogant.