About “super recognisers”. Coppers who can identify someone from mere fragments of visual evidence:
The Super-recogniser Unit is based on the third floor of a grey stone police building in Lambeth in south London. It is the only unit of its kind in the world. It was set up in May 2015, and moved from Scotland Yard in July; the charts showing the criminals they have identified and cases they are currently working on are still to be unpacked. The team consists of six officers – five men and one woman. Snook is usually at her desk by eight in the morning. “We are all quite driven,” she says. “We would much rather sit there and try to find these people than go home – we’re a bit sad really.” Alongside the super-recognisers working full-time in the unit, there are around 150 working in police departments across London. (Smith wanted Collins to join the unit, but his borough refused to release him: he was too valuable.)
What’s so interesting about this is that there’re two ways of doing this. Have these specific talent people in a central organisation.
Or have bobbies on the beat who actually know their area and the people in it. Guess which system we used to have and which one we have now?
Sure, specialisation and division of labour. But that still rubs both ways, doesn’t it?