Damn cops in Sydney have become a bit flighty haven’t they? Whether or not the recent shootings in Sydney have brought about some sort of zero tolerance or not is to be debated but this is not on…
One of the biggest talking points was video footage of the allegedly stolen vehicle’s front-seat passenger, aged 17, being pulled from the vehicle and punched. The lads were aboriginal, and that has also come into the debate. Much more to come on this.
ONE THING though, we can NO longer have cops investigating cops any more when these issues come along.Too many cover-ups over the years.We need truly independent Investigators…
Anger grows over police shooting of joyriding juveniles
Lisa Davies, Josephine Tovey, Nick Ralston
April 24, 2012
Witnesses film police after shooting
Video footage taken by witnesses appear to show Kings Cross police holding teenagers to the ground after six males drove a stolen car off the road.
THE Police Minister, Mike Gallacher, has thrown his support behind two constables who shot joyriding juveniles at 4am on Saturday in Kings Cross, as debate raged about police procedure and the plight of the youths.
Senior police met the families of the two injured youths and Aboriginal community leaders yesterday amid calls for an independent inquiry to examine the police actions.
One of the biggest talking points was video footage of the allegedly stolen vehicle’s front-seat passenger, aged 17, being pulled from the vehicle and punched.
The Aboriginal elder Mick Mundine said the video was ”horrifying” but Assistant Police Commissioner Mark Murdoch said the footage recorded only a small part of what happened.
”Let’s just be a little bit calm, a little bit more restrained and see what our investigation [determines],” Mr Murdoch said.
A critical incident investigation is under way, overseen by the NSW Ombudsman. But police refused to comment on whether the investigation report would be made public.
The Deputy Opposition Leader, Linda Burney, who is Aboriginal, said the fundamental question was about how a 14-year-old came to be driving through Kings Cross with five others at that time of day.
She said glaring social problems such as poverty and homelessness were behind the issue, but also parental and community responsibility – or lack thereof.
”I’m desperately worried about the future of young Aboriginal people who are disconnected from the school system, disconnected from their culture.”
The incident was recorded on CCTV and by dozens of people on mobile phones. It has been the topic of much debate on news and social networking sites.
Sarah Roberts and Tanya Donaldson were among the crowd in Kings Cross when the Honda Civic did more than just ruin their night.
Ms Roberts, 29, was pinned under the car after it mounted the kerb and hit both women as it was driven along the pavement. Ms Donaldson rolled off the front of the car.
Two constables patrolling the area on foot were instantly in pursuit, firing two bullets through the windscreen to prevent the car moving any further. A senior police source who asked not to be named said the decision to fire was not made lightly and was done because ”they were about to drive over her”.
Three days after the accident the constables remain shocked that Ms Roberts was not killed, and that no one else was seriously injured.
There were calls for a fully independent investigation but Mr Gallacher said he was confident the process would be autonomous. ”We have full faith in the critical investigation team and the NSW Police Force,” his spokesman said.
However, the Greens MP David Shoebridge said it was ”not good enough to have police investigating police in cases where there are serious questions about the police use of firearms and violence”.
Mr Shoebridge, who will address a rally at Parliament House today which is expected to protest against the police actions, has referred the matter to the Police Integrity Commission.
He has also argued that NSW needs a special body, such as the Independent Police Complaints Commission in Britain, to investigate cases involving police where someone has died or been seriously injured.
Three youths aged 13, 14 and 16 – as well as Matthew Dalton, 24 – were arrested at the scene and have been charged with travelling in a stolen car.
The 14-year-old driver was in a serious but stable condition in St Vincent’s Hospital last night. The 17-year-old front seat passenger was still in intensive care but listed as stable.
Mr Murdoch said the officers’ actions should be judged in the context of the intense situation with which they were dealing.
”Of course emotions are going to be high,” he said.
”Adrenalin is going to be pumping. Very, very difficult in those circumstances to control one’s emotions. However, that’s not … an excuse for police not to behave professionally and appropriately. Difficult, yes. Excuses, no.”
Mr Murdoch dismissed comments that police should have shot at the car’s tyres instead of the windscreen.”Police don’t shoot at tyres,” he said. ”We have significant responsibilities in the use of firearms. One of them is not shooting at tyres.”
On Saturday police said the six males were from Redfern but yesterday they updated the information to say they were from western Sydney, where the car was allegedly stolen.