What appears to have happened to Andrew Mitchell could well have been a Christmas special script. The chief whip had to resign following a 60-second 'incident' in, of all places, Downing Street.
Take a police officer apparently masquerading as a member of the public, a confidential log book finding its way into the public domain, add the results of the Hillsborough Inquiry, which have resulted in thousands of serving and former police officers being investigated, and the fact that 26 out of the 43 police forces do not have a permanent chief constable, and you have a dangerous cocktail.
More than 23,000 police officers and staff are moonlighting in second jobs, with the figure soaring nearly 20% in a year, the Mail on Sunday reports.
The figures mean more than one in 10 officers in England and Wales earn a second income from non-police work, according to an investigation by the paper.
At the same time, the number of investigations into potential rule breaches has tripled, raising questions over conflicts of interest arising from second jobs.
Some officers may work in self-defence training, for example, therefore meaning police forces may be commissioning off-duty staff to carry out such work for them, the report claimed.
A total of 23 of England and Wales's 44 forces did not check to see if they were paying companies run by their own officers for work.
Public confidence in the police force has been shaken because of a "dangerous cocktail" including the "plebgate" affair and the results of the Hillsborough Inquiry, a senior Labour backbencher has said.
Keith Vaz MP, chair of the Home Affairs Select Committee, which will start an inquiry into police accountability, integrity, internal corruption and malpractice in January, said it is a "defining moment" for the service.
He called on Prime Minister David Cameron to host annual summits with senior officers and called for "a new Magna Carta" for policing.
In the Sunday Express, Mr Vaz said recent events had dented the public's confidence in the police.