THE conclusion of the inquiry into how Metropolitan police officer Wayne Couzens came to murder Sarah Everard has concluded that he should never have been a police officer in the first place, which is surely one of the most obvious conclusions of all time.

But the report goes on to say that so many of police procedures, from recruitment processes to investigative techniques right through to macho locker room culture, are wrong and failed to prevent Couzens becoming an officer and then failed to root him out as his offending continued.

It is not just Couzens. Recently we’ve heard of cases of a serving police officer in the Met, David Carrick, who was a mass rapist, and another in Greater Manchester police, Dean Dempster, who sexually assaulted a six-year-old girl while on duty. And there have been others.

Which leads to the most chilling aspect of Lady Elish Angiolini’s report.

She says: "Without a significant overhaul, there is nothing to stop another Couzens operating in plain sight.

"Now is the time for change. All those in authority in every police force in the country need to read this report and take immediate action.”

The Met police, to be fair to them, are rooting out rogue officers on an industrial scale – there are a thousand historic sexual or domestic violence allegations involving serving officers that are now being looked at and commissioner Sir Mark Rowley has said we can expect to see two or three officers facing charges every week for months to come.

Are these problems just confined to the Met, or should we expect other forces to carry out their own, similar purges? The police have to get their own house in order if they are to win back the confidence of the people, especially women who may, because of officers like Couzens, be reluctant to turn to them in their hour of need.