THE wheels of justice grind slowly, it is sometimes said. They certainly do in North Yorkshire.
An irate judge has torn into police for delays in bringing cases to court. District judge Adrian Lower allowed a convicted drink driver caught driving while disqualified to walk free from York magistrates court because it took police almost six months to summons her to court. Had she been summonsed earlier, she would have been jailed, the judge said.
He then gave another woman who had admitted assault an absolute discharge – again because her case had been delayed by police.
It is not the first time Judge Lower has criticised the police for delays. In July he gave a shoplifter a softer sentence and let a burglar and a disqualified driver go with absolute discharges after they were summonsed to court months after their offences.
Police pledged then to review procedures with the CPS and learn lessons. We hope they do, and quickly. It is wholly unacceptable that criminals are being treated more leniently just because of delays in the way cases are brought.