Quoth the BBC, in a story getting high profile coverage by all the papers:
Three unarmed officers saw Derrick Bird during his shooting rampage but were unable to stop him, police say.
Hint of... something, there? I'm not sure why this is as newsworthy as the prominent headlines suggest. Unarmed coppers had gun pointed at them and since none of them knew Kung Fu and how to throw ninja stars further and faster than shotgun pellets can travel, allowed a heinous killer to get away.
Unarmed cops are constrained in what they can do, which as I've always understood it is how a cop-wary British society likes it. I don't think that's a bad thing, just that if you don't want to give 'em guns, stop bitching when they're ineffective against really dangerous people.
Then to be fair, I don't think most Britons would be bitching, and a cynical me just thinks that the papers are desperate to keep the killing-spree souffle as puffed up as possible.