26.01.2022

For one precinct – up to 10 thousand people. Police revelations

The Novosibirsk police announced a shortage of personnel and a shortage of 400 employees. Former law enforcement officers talk about lack of people and resources

For several weeks, discussions around the murder of 23-year-old Vera Pekhteleva in Kemerovo have not subsided. Recently, our colleagues from NGS42.RU published a transcript of calls from the duty station. On the recordings, you can hear how Mikhail Balashov, a policeman who is now accused of negligence due to the murder of a girl, persuades employees of different units to select people so that they go to the call.

From 3 a.m. to 7 a.m. the police tried to find at least someone who could go to the signal about a fight in an apartment and a screaming woman on Leningradskaya – until the young man beat his ex-girlfriend Vera to death. The police could not go to the call for various reasons: lack of outfits, shortage, lack of gasoline.

We talked with former and current employees of the Novosibirsk Ministry of Internal Affairs about the situation in the police, the shortage of people and resources, and whether a repetition of a similar situation in our city is possible.

In mid-January 2020, 23-year-old Vera Pekhteleva came to the apartment of ex-boyfriend Vladislav Kanyus to pick up her things. At night, neighbors heard cries for help and started calling the 112 service. They made at least 7 calls with a request to send a squad to the police. But no one came to the call. As a result, the neighbors, together with Vladislav’s brother, broke down the door. Faith was already dead.

Who will save the Novosibirsk people? The Ministry of Internal Affairs has a shortage of 400 people

Our police really lacks personnel. In February, at a session of the City Council, the head of the Russian MIA Administration for Novosibirsk, Yuri Gorchakov, while reporting for 2020, mentioned this problem. The general shortage in the city is about 400 people, of which 300 people are missing in the patrol service. According to Gorchakov, this is “the biggest shortage in this service.”

The main reasons for the shortage in the teaching staff were the low salary – 27-30 thousand rubles and the lack of official housing. According to Yuri Gorchakov, most often young people from the region, after the army, who do not have their own apartment, go to serve in the teaching staff, so more than half of the already small salary goes to rent.

– Accordingly, they are leaving for mom, dad, so a large shortage has increased. As soon as we resolve the issue of housing, we will immediately close the problem of shortage in this service. This is the service that works on the street, – said the chief of police.

There are not enough district police officers either. Now there are 450 of them in the city, while the workload for each inspector is two times higher than the norm – from 6 to 10 thousand people. However, it is possible to increase the number of some structure only through the redistribution of personnel.

– According to our administrative documents, the state of Novosibirsk is a little over four thousand people. From this staffing table, I have the right to make proposals to the higher management about changing the staff structure, that is, there are 400 precinct officers, I can make a proposal to have them done by 500, but these 100 people can only be recruited from myself. This is to reduce the criminal investigation, to shorten the investigation, inquiry and to appoint district inspectors. Accordingly, here I will have nothing to say why the cases were not investigated, the murder was not solved, and so on. If there are any requests from the Council of Deputies, then the answer will come exactly the same, that increase by redistributing the staffing, – explained Yuri Gorchakov at the session of the City Council.

At the same time, according to the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs for Novosibirsk, in 2020 the police completely renewed the vehicle fleet, therefore, “the working conditions are good today”:

– Only the load remains, the load is very large, unfortunately, we will not get rid of it. We have heard the figure that 4430 crimes have been reported in our country, and they all need to be processed. The workload is very large, the states will not increase us.

What do the police say?

Current police officers are reluctant to talk about problems in the system: when preparing this article, we interviewed more than 30 people, only a few people agreed to talk. One of the interlocutors of the NGS said that “the Ministry of Internal Affairs has already broken through the bottom long ago,” but refused to speak in more detail, even anonymously – for fear of dismissal.

Attention: the names of the people with whom the NGS journalist spoke have been changed.

Andrey, a former employee of the Ministry of Internal Affairs. Now works in a private security company

– At the moment I am engaged in the security business, and we are faced with this quite often. Situations vary, but often the police have to wait long enough. If our rapid response team arrives on call and we detain someone at the facilities, we have no right to deliver them to the regional department. We call the police and wait. The wait is always quite long, at least 1.5–2 hours.

After various reforms took place, the transfer of units from the police to the Russian Guard, the duty units were left with a very limited resource in order to respond appropriately and as soon as possible. Previously, the traffic police and the patrol cars of the non-departmental guard worked in the same direction with the regional departments, which later moved to the Russian Guard. In fact, they performed all these functions: delivering detainees, responding to signals that require immediate intervention.

Now the police station on duty is left with only what is in the regional department. And there is a very limited resource. As a rule, this is one car on duty, a team of an investigator on duty, a dog handler, as a rule, is there, well, and one of the representatives of the criminal investigation department. If the regional department is small, like the Central one, then there are all these specialists in a single copy. I don’t know how many people come to shift if the area is large. Imagine, if the department is at one end of the district, and the call is at the other, then how long will an ordinary car go there?

Is a repetition of such a situation as in Kemerovo and Novosibirsk possible? It is very possible. Such a story is likely in any city. Because this is a problem for the entire department, a consequence of its reformation. You cannot reform yourself. If two generals sit and reform, then whom are they reforming first of all? Those below. We have a huge superstructure, a whole bunch of directorates and headquarters, now there are twice as many of them than, say, in the Soviet Union. Twice as many buildings, premises, services, and the number of people who work “on the ground” has decreased by 50%, or even more.

Our Rosgvardia was formed two years ago, the traffic police were removed from the regional departments even earlier. Accordingly, only PPS-nicknames remain there, who are also short of 30-40% of the personnel, because people simply do not go there to work. So an approximate picture emerges.

They do not go to work because of low salaries, conditions, in total. The attractiveness of the profession is very low. A person, firstly, works irregularly, because he has to go out on his own shifts and on strangers. Secondly, the salary of the rank and file is about 30 thousand rubles. At the same time, they have constant stress, danger to life and health. Imagine roughly who goes there to work and how long he will last.

Returning to these two policemen who are now on trial: I believe they are only to blame for being afraid to go further on command. They had to contact a higher structure: if it was a regional department, then they had to contact the city duty unit and demand that they provide assistance.

All calls are given priority. If a person calls, it is not clear what may actually be happening there. When someone stole, figuratively speaking, clothes from a rope – that’s one question. If it is said that there are indications that murder or bodily harm is being done, that is another matter. Such things are a priority. On the other hand, there is still the problem that no policeman likes to ride on corpses. This is a huge responsibility and a huge amount of work that they then have to carry out: various reports, scribbling …

– When asked about the shortage of gasoline:

In any organization there is a limit, in ours too. There is a norm of fuels and lubricants that stands out. We have a private organization, the driver can refuel at his own expense, report and receive his money. And I’m not sure about the police. They refuel with cards at certain gas stations: they come in the presence of the company commander, he refuel them, he has all the cards. They just drive in, put the gun in the tank, and that’s it. There is hardly anyone else to single out more. On duty they give, for example, 20 liters, if you rolled them out, then in order to get the next one, you need to contact the accounting department or to the authorities. You yourself understand that the driver or the rank and file does not need this – there is no gasoline, no trips, which means that it sits more calmly.

Olga, a former precinct

– I retired in August 2018. Of the 20 years of service, 11 worked as a district police officer. I cannot say that during my service the police did not go to any calls, as far as possible, all requests were processed, even calls from people with obvious mental disabilities who call just like that. Anyway, they left, took an explanation from neighbors or assessed the possibility of sending a person for treatment. Nobody deliberately ignored the calls.

Another thing is due to the lack of personnel in the evening and at night. 1-2 crews of the PPS in the area physically cannot be in time for all applications, therefore, calls about the violation of the peace and quiet of citizens may be considered last. For example: neighbors are listening to music loudly, young people are making noise on the street. First, they leave for applications, where there is a threat to human life and health, but one crew cannot be in time for 2-3 applications at the same time from different parts of the region. Also, the crew cannot go to the request if there is a person in the car who needs to be taken to the duty station. Before going to the application, they must either deliver a person or transfer him to another crew.

For all fights, the crew immediately leaves according to the message of the duty officer, just, I repeat, if there are several of them, then in order of priority. It is very difficult to attract additional forces when they are not available. The duty officer himself does not have the right to leave the duty unit, therefore he works with the number of personnel who went on his shift.

A repetition of such a situation is possible anywhere, not only in Novosibirsk. There is a shortage of personnel. If in the central part of the city the situation is more or less stable, then on the outskirts it is much more deplorable: the teaching staff does not have enough employees, the salary of a private is about 25-27 thousand rubles. The district police officer has a huge amount of paperwork and does not have time to walk around the site with preventive conversations. You can stand in the queue for housing for years, I, having three children, with retirement have not yet received payment for the purchase of housing, the queue is huge. Young people on such conditions – with social guarantees only on paper – are not very eager to join the ranks of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, especially to work “on the ground”.

Recently, no questions have arisen regarding the provision of gasoline with me. I myself drove a company car from 2016 to 2018, working in the Novosibirsk region. There were no such problems that there was no opportunity to refuel or refuel the car at their own expense. It was necessary to repair it when the necessary spare parts were not in the fleet, but it was a minor repair. As it is now – I will not say, I only know that our patrol cars used to have a daily limit of 20 liters.

Maybe it depends on each specific leader in the department and division. Because there are leaders who are not afraid to demand full provision of the material and technical base, and there are people who do not care. They can only demand from subordinates without worrying as much as possible.

Anastasia, current employee, works in the field

– Using the example of the department in which I am on duty, I can say with complete confidence that our employees are 100% ready for all calls. For calls, so to speak, “urgent”, similar to the tragic incident in Kemerovo, immediately sent the outfit of the duty unit and the district police officer.

In the city, as far as I know, the situation is somewhat worse. A large shortage and a huge workload make themselves felt, but, nevertheless, the staff of the teaching staff also immediately go to family conflicts and scandals.

In the regions of the region, especially remote ones, there is no such shortage as in the city. Although, for example, we have only one outer outfit – this is the traffic police. Each unit does its job, therefore, calls are mainly served by district police officers, each of whom is assigned a car. They, of course, break down, it happens that the precinct policemen repair vehicles at their own expense, but this is, rather, an exception to the rule.

Dmitry, current employee

– I’ll be brief. In Novosibirsk, such a situation is unlikely. Our city is big, they take work much more seriously, and in such situations they will always find someone to send.

The priority of the crime “in hot pursuit”: knife wounds – there are severe wounds with the detention of all those involved in the scene, but more often a simple “household”; unconscious citizens – to exclude the possibility of a corpse. Applications like “neighbors are making noise”, “music at night” are the latest in priority. At the sign of the “fight of roommates” the priority is also high, in order to exclude serious consequences, to nip right in the bud.

For me, as well as for you, it remains a mystery why the duty officer, although he tried to find someone to call, did not solve the situation in the first hour of the application. Again, the response to the application depends on the correct submission by the applicants. It is possible that the applicants (neighbors) for a long time summoned them simply under the pretext of “neighbors ‘noise” or “neighbors’ conflict”. We will no longer know the whole truth.

But there is always a shortage of personnel. Unfortunately, it cannot be corrected in the near future. At a minimum, the issue of monetary allowance is also very relevant.

Victoria, former investigator

– I worked as an investigator, so I can’t tell all the nuances of the service in the duty unit. But my personal opinion is this: the initiated case against the person on duty is not entirely fair, so to speak. It is a fact that there are sorely lack of company cars and employees. It happened that the “crooks” – the so-called suspects and accused – had to be taken to investigative actions and examinations in their own car. At the same time, without the accompaniment of operas.

This is a very multifaceted problem, but, again, each department of the city has its own bosses and their own “rules”. So, for example, working in Kirovskoye and Leninskoye is considered very difficult, difficult. But in Soviet and Central, the situation is better.

Anna, a police officer on maternity leave

– I listened to the audio recording of the negotiations of the Kemerovo police officers and I can say that the actions of the officer on duty were correct. All groups work for him, he is trying to overlap with other divisions, but, as you can hear, the person in charge of maintaining public order himself refused him. And the traffic police and non-departmental ones are not obliged to provide assistance, only on a voluntary basis, since everyone is asked for their work, and not for helping a friend.

Gasoline is also an eternal trouble: the limit for a day, a limit for a month. We had a case when an employee, being at the address alone at night, asked for help, there was a threat to his health. They asked for help from other units after 1.5 hours, when the employee coped with it himself and, thank God, was not injured.

This situation could happen in any department. And our region is no exception due to staff reductions. If the group left for the departure to one settlement of the district, and something happens in another, then, unfortunately, the group does not arrive at the time prescribed by law, but in order, since there are not enough employees and cars.

And one more thing: you yourself understand, when they say about a brawl in an area where you cannot get help, it is at least dangerous to send one employee, we have a different time now. Unfortunately, the police do not have the same authority that they enjoyed eight years ago. Therefore, there is an individual approach to each application.

Oksana, acting police officer

– All calls must be processed in turn. But all this can be delayed, since there are very few cars, especially at night. If earlier, before redundancies, 4–5 crews of patrol stations plus guards worked at night, now there are 1–2 of them. The guards were assigned to the Russian Guard, and they help the units on duty whenever possible, very rarely. They have their own job. People are sorely lacking, especially those who are responsible for security and order.

There were several reductions, and who was cut? Of course, the so-called “earth”. And people are outraged that many employees are working at rallies for Navalny. A lot, because everyone is expelled to such events, including “cabinet workers”, lieutenant colonels, colonels.

There has always been a tension with gasoline. It happens that they will give an application to leave to go, and the driver will first go to the gas station, because they give little gasoline. Sometimes they refuel for their own money, cars are also repaired for their own.

There are, of course, priority calls. There is a lot of fight: neighbors make noise and the like. They will definitely come, but on a first come, first served basis. And if there are no cars, then the person on duty will call and look, like the one in Kemerovo. The poor man will get hit that he did not react to the fight.

A repetition of this situation in our country, I think, is possible. Now, at first, everyone will try to come quickly, so that without resonance, and then they will forget again. If they start calling and saying: “There is a fight here,” and there is an application for robbery, and there will be one car, then they will go to the robbery. I am very offended that because of the layoffs on the “ground”, it is precisely those employees on whose shoulders the maintenance of order rests who suffer. There are few of them, and they are people.

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