Check out these coppers, life is sooo funny, hahaha I’m a copper I would treat my dad the same NOT. Bloody disgrace the way they treated this unwell human being in need of medical care…Such heroes make us so bloody NOT PROUD
CCTV released of dying man Gong Ling Tang outside Dandenong police station
The Victorian Coroners Court has decided to release police surveillance vision of a drunk man who died after being left by officers outside Dandenong Police Station.
The footage shows Gong Ling Tang, 53, unable to walk as officers lead him outside in May 2010.
The police involved tried to prevent the footage from being released, but the coroner ruled it was in the public’s interest.
Tang’s family has been desperately fighting to have the footage released to show how his dignity was never respected.
Mandarin interpreter Yu Lipski was working at the Dandenong police station the night Tang died.
It was her phone call to Fairfax Radio two weeks later which blew the whistle on the police and triggered a coronial inquiry.
Ms Lipski says she has always had enormous respect for police but she says that night their behaviour was atrocious.
Jane Dickson, president of Liberty Victoria, praised Ms Lipski for her efforts to protect Tang and report the incident at her workplace.
“She has my greatest admiration, I think it must have been extraordinarily difficult to have acted so courageously,” she said.
“Both in the way in which she sought to protect the unfortunate deceased man [and] to then to reveal the circumstances in which she was required to act as an actual interpreter to bring them [the police officers] forward publicly.
“That’s whistle-blowing in its truest sense.”
Tang ‘crawled like a dog with blood in his mouth’
Earlier in the day on May 12, 2010, Tang’s wife called police to report her husband was at the house drunk and in breach of an apprehended violence order.
He was arrested and sent to the lock up at Dandenong Police Station to dry out.
The police did not know Tang was suffering from cirrhosis of the liver and was bleeding internally. As the night wore on his organs began to shut down. He was in agony.
Ms Lipski saw him rolling on the floor of the cell which was stained by blood and urine. She knew he was in trouble.
She says Tang said he needed a shower and that he needed to go to the hospital, but the police did nothing.
Tang was eventually released and was seen crawling out of his cell on his hands and knees, unable to walk.
Ms Lipski said he was subjected to ridicule by the police all night.
“The officer yelled at him, ‘get out and get up, I saw him crawling out of that cell door like a dog with blood in his mouth,” Ms Lipski said.
“He couldn’t move, he was trying to make some sound, he was disoriented, you could tell he was in pain.
“I could see a human suffering right in front of my eyes. I felt very sad.”
Tang was then dragged out of the station by two female police and left by a roller door in a garage. Clutching his stomach, Tang repeatedly pressed an intercom button.
After several minutes two officers returned. One grabbed him by the scruff of the neck and pushed him outside into the rain.
Ms Lipski retrieved an umbrella for Tang as he lay dying in the rain. She also fetched water for him to drink while the police looked on.
Eventually an ambulance arrived to collect Tang at 9:00pm but by then he was in multiple organ failure.
Taken to intensive care, he died at Dandenong Hospital at 11:30 the next morning.
We let him down, we let his family down: police commissioner
The coronial inquest was told Tang died from advance chronic liver disease and gastro-intestinal bleeding. Contributing factors included hypothermia, bordering on severe.
Five police officers, all women, dealt with Tang that night and declined to give evidence.
One officer cited mental distress while another said she risked being prosecuted for manslaughter.
Asked if Tang was treated humanely, the Sergeant in Charge Megan Whitehead said: “I thought he was treated the same way as anyone we get in here”.
Victoria Police Deputy Commissioner Tim Cartwright apologised to Tang’s family.
“We fell well short of the standards expected in terms of both the care we showed and the respect and dignity we provided,” he said.
“We missed many opportunities to get medical assistance for Mr Tang.
“I find his treatment deeply distressing, we should have done better for Ling Tang.
“We let him down, we let his family down and we let the community down.”
Ms Dixon says what happened to Tang could still happen again.
“Liberty Victoria’s not confident that these sorts of events won’t happen again,” she said. “Police are being expected to act as jailers.
“The numbers of people in custody has increased so dramatically in recent times. It’s very difficult to be confident that there won’t be further cases of dehumanising treatment.”
Coroner Iain West has reserved his decision.
Court shown footage of drunk man who died after being left outside police station
Victoria’s Coroners Court has been shown police surveillance vision of a drunk man who died after being left outside the Dandenong police station.
The footage shows Gong Ling Tang, 53, staggering and unable to walk as officers lead him to a roller door on the night of May 12, 2010.
Intoxicated and disoriented, Mr Tang then stumbles about the exit, but does not leave, and instead repeatedly presses an intercom button.
After several minutes, the two officers return to push him outside at about 8pm.
Another camera shows him lying in the rain outside the roller door, apparently clutching his stomach.
Two police officers and a Chinese interpreter come to check on him and an ambulance is called for at 8.13pm.
The inquest into his death has previously heard that Mr Tang had earlier complained of abdominal pain and asked to go to hospital.
An ambulance arrived shortly before 9pm after police made a second call for help.
Mr Tang died at the Dandenong Hospital of a gastrointestinal haemorrhage the following day.
He had been arrested earlier in the night for breaching an intervention order by visiting his wife at her home in Oakleigh in Melbourne’s south-east.
Mr Tang was drunk and had soiled himself.
The inquest continues.
A CORONER has slammed the conduct of police who ignored repeated pleas for help from a man who collapsed and died soon after being released from the Dandenong drunk tank.
Ling Gong Tang, 53 crawled from the Dandenong police station in May 2010 before collapsing after spending four hours in the cells for being drunk in a public place.
Whilst in custody, Mr Tang, who suffered acute liver disease, made repeated requests for medical assistance and had solied himself – which some police considered “a bit of a joke”.
His release was captured on CCTV, with one witness telling the inquest she “saw him crawl on his hands and knees, like a dog”.
“The vision is extraordinary. No police offered or felt compelled to offer Mr Tang any assistance,” State Coroner Iain West said.
After attempting to return to the police station Mr Tang was refused entry.
“He is eventually pushed out into the cold night, in bare feet and in a shocking state, with blood escaping from his mouth,” Mr West found.
When police called an ambulance, it took 40 minutes to arrive because Mr Tang’s condition was described as “non-urgent”.
When paramedics eventually arrived, they found Mr Tang sopping wet because he had been lying unprotected in the rain.
Although the coroner ruled Mr Tang died from acute liver disease, he found hypothermia played a contributing role.
“Mr Tang’s exposure to the elements outside the police station contributed to the development of that hypothermia,” Mr West said.
Each of the officers involved in Mr Tang’s care have denied responsibility.
“The five primary police officers who were involved in the care or who had contact with Mr Tang have expressed little or no responsibility for any of the decisions.’’
The five members have already been subject of internal disciplinary proceedings.
One member has been sacked over Mr Tang’s death, another demoted and two others have been placed on good behaviour bonds and ordered to undertake “courageous conversation” courses.
Three were also disciplined with “renumeration impact”.
Mr West criticised the police’s own investigation, and recommended all internal interviews with members be recorded and observed by an independent, legally-trained person appointed by the Department of Justice.
Chief Commissioner Ken Lay has already apologised to Mr Tang’s family, conceding police failed to treat him with dignity and respect.
In a further response to the ruling, Acting Commissioner Jack Blayney said it he had the deepest regret about what happened to Mr Tang, offering his condolences to his family.
He admitted that because of police treatement, Mr Tang was not afforded the dignity he deserved.
Mr Blayney said Victoria Police were considering the recommendations given by the Coroner.
Improvements had already been made to their police, Spt Balyney said, and police had a duty of care to those in custody.
He said he did not want to make it a gender issue, but acknowledged that those involved who had been disciplined were female officers.
“I don’t believe this is a gender issue,” Spt Blayney said.
He said he knew nothing of any payment to Mr Tang’s family.
Coroner releases CCTV video of Gong Ling Tang
November 22, 2013
A coroner has released CCTV video taken inside and outside a police station of a man who died hours after being released from custody.
The video shows Gong Ling Tang crawling out of his cell after being freed and being led out of Dandenong police station, barefoot, by police before he is seen lying in a puddle of water.
Deputy state coroner Iain West said on Friday there was no compelling reason not to lift a suppression order on the video, recorded on May 12, 2010, because it was in the public interest and because Mr Tang’s death was effectively a death in custody.
Mr Tang, 53, was arrested for public drunkenness and for a suspected breach of an intervention order. He spent four and a half hours in a police cell, during which he complained of abdominal pain and asked to be taken to hospital.
Mr West said the CCTV video was the best evidence of how Mr Tang was treated in custody and the public was entitled to see it.
He said the police treatment Mr Tang received before he died was one of the reasons an inquest was held. He said the video effectively spoke for the five police officers who were not compelled to give evidence at the inquest.
Mr Tang’s family supported applications by media to have the video released. Genna Angelowitsch, a lawyer representing the family, welcomed the release of the footage.
“The family are grateful that the tragic final hours of their husband and father have been revealed,” Ms Angelowitsch said.
“The police who were there did not give evidence but the CCTV footage shows their actions.”
Mr Tang was found by paramedics lying in a puddle and with his clothes drenched. He died in hospital the next day from a gastrointestinal haemorrhage caused by liver disease, the inquest heard. He also had diabetes and was an alcoholic. Hypothermia was one of six factors that contributed to his death, the Coroners Court heard.
The CCTV video , which was played to the court during the inquest, shows Mr Tang lying on his back in a police cell and rolling from side to side. When he crawls out of the cell police watch from the corridor.
The video also shows the Chinese national struggling to stand while outside the station.
After the inquest, media, including Fairfax Media, applied for Mr West to raise a suppression order on the video in the public interest and to ensure the open administration of justice.
Mr West said it was appropriate after the inquest to release the video, as doing so would not have any bearing on the findings he would make.
Mr West accepted a submission from a barrister representing Victoria Police that Mr Tang’s dignity and reputation could be harmed if the video was made public.
He said the video showed Mr Tang in a dishevelled, intoxicated and unwell state and that he appeared extremely vulnerable. He said it was for these reasons the CCTV vision was such crucial evidence, because it showed the level of care police should have applied, but did not.
Mr West accepted the vision was confronting and possibly distressing, but rejected a submission from barristers representing some of the police officers at the station that day that the footage would inflame rather than inform the public.
He said he accepted media companies would act responsibly when publishing the footage, and dismissed concerns the footage would be sensationalised or shown out of context.
After he made his ruling, a barrister representing two of the police officers who dealt with Mr Tang applied to have the officers’ names suppressed because they were still serving officers and the “nature of the activity depicted” might “arouse strong emotions”.
But Mr West dismissed the application because the officers had already been named in media reports and photographed outside court.
During the inquest Victoria Police apologised to Mr Tang’s family and friends and admitted he did not receive the respect, dignity and protection he deserved.
Mr Tang’s nephew, Tommy Luong, said the family had welcomed the apology and were not waiting to hear what findings Mr West passed.
Mr Luong said Mr Tang’s wife and daughter were still distraught at his death and the way he was treated.
Ms Angelowitsch said the family was also grateful towards interpreter Yu Shu Lipski, who stayed with Mr Tang while an ambulance called and had given evidence during the inquest.
Ms Lipski said she was shocked and saddened by the way police treated Mr Tang, and had ridiculed him while in custody. She said one officer had laughed herself to tears when told Mr Tang had soiled himself.
Victoria Police also apologised to Ms Lipski for what she had witnessed.
Four officers – Megan Whitehead, Kaye Price, Kate Griffiths and Fiona Jones – were interviewed by police in relation to Mr Tang’s death, but were never disciplined. The Director of Public Prosecutions never pursued criminal charges.
Mr West said he would release his findings at a later date.