Howard League for Penal Reform chief executive Frances Crook says the Home Secretary missed an opportunity with her speech at the Police Federation annual conference.
She told ITV News: "I think the Home Secretary's speech was a bit of a missed opportunity. She gave them a sop of mandatory life sentences for the killing of a police officer, which I think is a nonsense because people who kill a police officer will spend almost all their life in prison anyway.
At the same time, she spent a large part of her speech criticising them for all sorts of failures, which is a missed opportunity to give them some encouragement for a complicated job they do, dealing with a whole range of social, economic...mental health issues, as well as crime fighting.
"And I think she failed to understand that."