Under revised professional standards released last week, detectives investigating missing persons have been told to consider consulting people that have claim to have supernatural abilities.
When a loved one goes missing, why waste money on expensive technologies like CCTV cameras, satellites, global positioning systems when you can simply consult ‘a psychic’?
On the subject of staring into crystal balls and those with extrasensory perception (ESP), a spokesman for the College of Policing told the Independent: “if they have a proven record of helping police in the past, then that should be taken into account”.
The draft ‘Authorised Professional Practice’ document offers some helpful advice to our policemen and women when engaging with self-described psychics and mediums such as “the motive of the individual should always be ascertained, especially where financial gain is included.” Presumably there is also a section that covers the dangers of buying ‘magic beans’ from the market and that the ‘wallet inspector’ is not a real thing.
The document also, rather oddly warns against psychics becoming “a distraction to the overall investigation and search strategy unless it can be verified.” Let me help you there, it can’t be verified – because there is no such thing as psychics.
A spokesperson for the Missing People charity tried to be a bit more polite about the whole thing, saying: “As a non-judgemental organisation, we respect the fact that some families of missing people will want to try every avenue in order to find a loved one. Research based on interviews with the families of missing people conducted by the charity shows that no interviewees reported significant findings or comfort from the experience of consulting a psychics or mediums.”