Showing posts with label violence. Show all posts
Showing posts with label violence. Show all posts

Friday, 22 June 2018

Liberals continue to behave badly in 2018 - Part Four


FIGHTING

Police said they were called to Naji's Charcoal Chicken & Kebabs eatery on Firth Street in Arncliffe just after seven o'clock on Monday night, following reports of a "brawl". The roast chook shop is owned by Michael Nagi, a Liberal councillor for Bayside Council.

The meeting is understood to have turned ugly after an attempt by the moderate faction, which includes Nagi, to allow into the Bayside branch a nearby area, Earlwood, which is controlled by the moderates and has never been a part of the Bayside branch.

This would have constituted what those on the right of the party would class as a "hostile takeover" of their factional control, but a resolution was never reached because the disagreement turned violent.

Police said a man believed to be aged in his forties was taken to St George Hospital and treated for minor injuries.

"Police are now attempting to piece together exactly what happened and how many people were involved," a statement read.

"They are appealing for anyone who may have vision of the incident to come forward."

The Liberal Party said it would "fully cooperate" with police, as well as make their own inquiries.

"An internal investigation will also be undertaken and disciplinary action taken against those responsible," the party said.

"The Liberal Party strongly condemns the kind of behaviour that is alleged to have occurred."

ABC News, 19 June 2018:

One witness, who did not want to be identified, described the situation as an attempted "hostile takeover" of the branch.

"Just before the meeting started, there was an altercation where some people were intimidating and swearing and pushing and shoving of the others who belonged to the meeting," he said.

"Others outside were blocked from entering the meeting."

The man said an elderly lady inside the cafe was "trampled on", and a man who tried to intervene was "ganged up on".

"They started bashing him … they took him outside and started kicking him.

"To be honest I thought he was going to die."

The man also said some people tried to film the incident, but their phones were taken and smashed.

COMPLAINTS, DEBTS AND WORKING THE SYSTEM

“Two hundred thousand Australian dollars.….that’s not a lot of money” [Liberal Sen. Lucy Gichuhi speaking about here Australian parliamentary salary package on Kenyan television in January 2018]
Daily Mail, 20 June 2018:

Embattled Liberal senator Lucy Gichuhi was taken to court seven times for failing to pay $8,359 worth of council rates and $1,372 in water bills.

Court documents obtained exclusively by Daily Mail Australia show the Kenyan-born federal MP faced legal action from City of Port Adelaide Enfield council, Whyalla City Council and the South Australian Water Corporation in 2013, 2014 and 2017.

The Turnbull Government senator, who is on a $203,000 salary, was ordered by local court magistrates to pay $9,731 in seven unpaid bills, related to two investment properties in Adelaide and one in regional Whyalla.

One unpaid council bill went to court just three weeks before she was sworn in last year as a senator, and another bill was taken to a magistrate four months after she became a member of Parliament.  

The backbencher, who owns four houses in South Australia with her husband William, had failed to pay $8,359 worth council rates and $1,372 in water bills.

On her pecuniary interest register, Senator Gichuhi declares she is the owner of investment properties in the Adelaide suburbs of Dernancourt and Gilles Plains, along with another home in the steelworks city of Whyalla.

The senator and mother-of-three, who moved to Australia from Kenya in 1999, received five arrears from the Port of Adelaide Enfield Council and one from Whyalla City Council, in areas where she owns three investment properties.

According to her Statement of Registerable Interests the senator in partnership with her husband owns 6 residential properties in South Australia and 3 properties in Kenya.

She appears to receive rental income on a number of these properties. 

The Advertiser, 21 June 2018, p.6:

Senator Gichuhi, already under pressure after spending thousands of taxpayer dollars flying her family to Canberra, was provided with staff, office space, a car, driver and entertainment by one of Kenya’s richest men. The SA senator spoke at events organised by Equity Bank and its wealthy chief executive James Mwangi.

Disclosure documents lodged earlier this year show Dr Mwangi provided Senator Gichuhi with “a car and a driver … to attend various events and functions”.

“Dr Mwangi also provided office facilities, refreshments and access to his staff to enable me to prepare speeches for Nairobi University and other functions,” the document reads.

Dr Mwangi, who is worth $230 million, invited Senator Gichuhi to speak at Equity Bank events including on January 4, where she addressed the bank’s Wings To Fly scholars….

Disclosures show Senator Gichuhi received free accommodation from another wealthy Kenyan businessman, Linus Gitahi, who she described as her “long-term friend”.

The Advertiser, 19 June 2018, p.5:

South Australian senator Lucy Gichuhi billed taxpayers more than $4500 to fly six family travellers to Canberra during the week she was sworn into Federal Parliament prompting calls for a tightening of expenses.

According to parliamentary records, Senator Gichuhi claimed three return flights from Adelaide, two from Darwin and a one-way flight from Sydney taken during the second week of May last year.

She has previously defended her decision to accept free accommodation from the High Commission of Kenya in Canberra for her family to attend her swearing-in on May 9 last year 2017, because they struggled to find accommodation.

Junkee, 19 June 2018:

Gichuhi billed taxpayers $2139 for two return flights from Darwin to Adelaide, which were used to fly family members to her birthday party in October last year. She has since agreed to pay that cost back in full, saying it was “an administrative error involving misunderstanding of travel rules”.

And while we’re on the point of corrections, it wasn’t even her 50th birthday party — Gichuhi is 55. She actually titled the birthday party her “50 plus GST” birthday, the omitted 5 years being the GST. In the speech she gave at the event, which is inexplicably available on her website, she told guests that “I have now also taught you to deduct 10 percent off your own age — if you want to!”….

Gichuhi has also come under fire for billing taxpayers around $12,000 for a number of trips to Sydney, which she listed as “electorate business”, despite her electorate actually being in South Australia.


Sunday, 25 March 2018

The American Resistance has many faces and these are just three of them (21)



Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), media release, 20 March 2018:

Washington—A federal judge today granted Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) summary judgement in its landmark case against the Federal Election Commission (FEC), the second time the Court has ruled against the FEC for dismissing CREW’s complaint against a dark money group that spent millions in federal elections.

Judge Christopher Cooper ruled in September 2016 that the FEC acted “contrary to law” by dismissing a complaint against American Action Network (AAN), which spent millions on ads without revealing its donors, finding that the FEC’s analysis “blinks reality” and returning the case to the FEC to correct its error. Nevertheless, the three Republican commissioners once again blocked action against the organization, leading Judge Cooper today to correct the commissioners on their continued failure to follow the law.

This decision will have a major impact on disclosure by dark money groups, as the FEC can no longer ignore organizations’ spending on ads that air just before an election that try to hide their political purposes behind a sham “call” for viewers to contact their representatives about legislation.

“This decision marks a major victory not just for CREW but for believers in an open and transparent political process,” CREW Executive Director Noah Bookbinder said. “We hope to see a major change in the way the FEC approaches investigations of nonprofit organizations engaged in politics.”

The case revolves around clearly political ads aired by AAN which the FEC decided were not meant to influence an election. The judge wrote in the first decision that “it blinks reality to conclude that many of the ads considered by the Commissioners in this case were not designed to influence the election or defeat of a particular candidate.” Yet the FEC still failed to act. The judge wrote in today’s decision, “The controlling Commissioners did not find that this ad (nor any others mentioning healthcare) had an election-related purpose…Seriously?”

“It’s a shame we have to keep taking the FEC to court to make it do its job,” Bookbinder said. “Unfortunately, they have given us no other choice. If they do not want to keep losing in court, they should start enforcing the law.”

Click here to read the decision

Monday, 26 February 2018

Facebook Inc remains part of the problem


Tin-eared social media giant Facebook Inc demonstrates once again that it is part of the problem and not part of the solution, as it promotes toxic gun culture at the recent Conservative Political Action Conference and fails to come to grips with its part in spreading conspiracy theories and "fake news".

Gizmondo, 25 February 2018:

Facebook has pulled a demo of Oculus Rift's VR shooter Bullet Train from the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland amid concerns over gun violence, Variety reported earlier.

It doesn't appear to have been Bullet Train's violent content that prompted the withdrawal per se, but rather that CPAC draws lots of gun rights advocates right at the same time those same National Rifle Association types are drawing a massive wave of criticism in the wake of another school massacre in Parkland, Florida this month.

A number of companies have cut ties with the NRA, like software firm Symantec, which decided to pull discounts for the pro-gun group's members this week. A running New York Times tally of others to do so includes banks, airlines, automotive rentals and services, insurance companies, and a home security company.

As the Times noted on Friday, boycott campaigns tend to fade over time but this time the pressure has built quickly, buoyed by a number of Parkland survivors speaking out on social media and leaving some corporations with no middle ground to recede to.
demo clip of Bullet Train hosted on the Oculus Rift website shows that at least one level in the game involves the player fighting through waves of "resistance forces" in a fairly generic rail station setting. It does not appear to be particularly bloody, though video of CPAC attendees using the game's motion-tracking controls in a vague pantomime of actual shooting probably did not help, either.

In a statement to Variety, Facebook virtual reality VP Hugo Barra said:

There is a standard set of experiences included in the Oculus demos we feature at public events. A few of the action games can include violence. In light of the recent events in Florida and out of respect for the victims and their families, we have removed them from this demo. We regret that we failed to do so in the first place.

Yet the optics of the Oculus Rift demo are probably not the most important issue Facebook should be worried about right now.

Facebook itself has also come under fire for the rapid spread of conspiracy theories about the Parkland shooting, which as CNN noted migrate from internet underbellies like 4chan onto mainstream social media sites via "conservative pages, alt-right personalities, nationalist blogs and far-right pundits." Posts on Facebook promoting the idiotic smear that survivors speaking out against guns were "crisis actors," i.e. some hazily defined variety of professional propagandists paid off to promote gun control, went far and wide; the social media giant repeatedly declined to discuss how it was enforcing violations of its community guidelines against offenders when asked by CNN.

Per the New York Times, it is still really, really easy to find hundreds of posts claiming the shooting was part of a "deep state" black flag operation or the like using Facebook's built-in search option, which kind of calls into question the company's sincerity:

On Facebook and Instagram, which is owned by Facebook, searches for the hashtag #crisisactor, which accused the Parkland survivors of being actors, turned up hundreds of posts perpetuating the falsehood (though some also criticised the conspiracy theory). Many of the posts had been tweaked ever so slightly -- for example, videos had been renamed #propaganda rather than #hoax -- to evade automated detection.

The spread of the theories on Facebook has also caused some in the tech media to question whether the long-maligned and ill-defined "trending" metric should be retired. Users who post conspiracy theories often rabidly engage with others promoting similar ideas, which in numerous instances means the posts are promoted right to the top of Facebook and other sites like YouTube.

Friday, 18 August 2017

The Charlottesville incidents to which US President Donald J. Trump gives tacit support - WARNING: violent and disturbing images




The Sydney Morning Herald, 16 August 2017:

He [President Trump] argued that both sides had been guilty of violence, he noted that the white supremacists indeed had a permit to protest, but the "other group" did not. He insisted that both sides had "bad people" and "very fine people" and he drew an equivalency between George Washington, who help create the United States after the American Revolutionary War that ended in 1783, and General Robert E. Lee, who led the secessionist armies that killed more American troops than any other foe in the defence of slavery nearly a century later.

The political and media response afterwards was immediate and shocked. Again Republican leaders were forced to come out to rebuke and distance themselves from their ostensible leader. In a long Twitter statement Marco Rubio declared, "Mr President, you can't allow #WhiteSupremacists to share only part of blame. They support idea which cost nation & world so much pain."


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I suspect that the reaction to "Unite The Right Rally" marches in Charlottesville is not what Neo-Nazi, Klu Klux Klan and other hate groups were expecting

From 11 to 12 August 2017 extreme right wing groups gathered in Charlottesville, Virginia USA to participate in a two-day rally. Counter protesters also gathered over that same time period.

By the evening of 12 August two police officers and one counter protester were dead and at least twenty counter protesters were wounded.

Unite The Right march participant……

"We are stepping off the Internet in a big way. For instance last night at the Torch Log there were hundreds and hundreds of us. People realised they are not atomised individuals, they are part of a larger whole. Because we have been spreading our memes, we have been organising on the Internet and now they are coming out and now as you can see today we greatly outnumbered the anti-white, anti-American filth and at some point we will have enough power that we will clear them from the streets forever. That which is degenerate in white countries will be removed. We are starting to slowly unveil a little bit of our power level – you ain't seen nothin yet." [Robert "Azzmador" Ray, feature writer at The Daily Stormer, video, 12 August 2017]

Reaction to the white supremacist violence……
Facebook has banned the Facebook and Instagram accounts of a white nationalist who attended the rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, that ended in deadly violence.
Facebook spokeswoman Ruchika Budhraja told the Associated Press on Wednesday that the profile pages of Christopher Cantwell have been removed as well as a page connected to his podcast..

As of 14 August 2017, Daily Caller —  a conservative web site with a twin nonprofit organization — has scrubbed its site of articles by Jason Kessler, the white supremacist who was an organizer of a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia the weekend before. 

GoDaddy – the internet domain registrar and web hosting service – and Google cancelled the Daily Stormer's domain name registration on Sunday, saying they prohibit clients from using their sites to incite violence. The Daily Stormer helped organise the violent neo-Nazi gathering in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Saturday at which a civil rights activist died.

On Twitter, the Daily Stormer's feed is no longer visible; instead, the page on Wednesday afternoon reflects its account has been "suspended." A spokesperson for Twitter said the company could not comment on individual users, but added: "The Twitter Rules prohibit violent threats, harassment, hateful conduct, and multiple account abuse, and we will take action on accounts violating those policies."

Earlier today, Cloudflare terminated the account of the Daily Stormer. We've stopped proxying their traffic and stopped answering DNS requests for their sites. We've taken measures to ensure that they cannot sign up for Cloudflare's services ever again.

US companies are blocking hate groups from key services such as payments, cyber security defences and social media sites after the violence in Charlottesville, despite questions over the consequences for freedom of speech. Leading payment and credit card groups MasterCard, American Express, Discover Financial Services and Visa have joined Silicon Valley companies Twitter and Cloudflare to become the latest corporations to try to block neo-Nazis' access to funds and the internet. Several of the payments companies added they did not ban the use of their services because the customers expressed offensive views — but because they violated their terms of service or incited violence.

Most leaders on the councils thought Trump's statement on Monday, in which he condemned the hate groups by name, was sufficient. But they were furious and disgusted with Trump's follow-up remarks on Tuesday, according to the offices of two CEOs.
By Tuesday night, at least nine members decided to drop out individually, and reached out to Schwarzman, who then proposed dismantling the council entirely.
A dozen members of that strategy and policy council participated in a conference call Wednesday, during which they all agreed to dissolve the group, the people close to the decision said. Schwarzman then notified the White House. And after that, Trump tweeted that he was "ending both" advisory councils. The business leaders had expected that Trump would portray the developments as his own decision, the sources said

#BREAKING: #Cville car suspect, #UniteTheRight rally organizer, & alt-right leaders face $3M lawsuit from 2 ppl injured in car attack

RELATED POST


Sunday, 13 August 2017

The United States of America under Trump - the ugly picture. Part Two


The Time

The 203rd to 206th day of the Trump Regime

The Place

Charlottesville, Virginia, USA

The Events

White supremacists rallies with unarmed counter protesters on the sidelines

The Images




Charlottesville, Virginia (CNN) One person was killed and 19 were hurt when a speeding car slammed into a throng of counterprotesters in Charlottesville, where a "Unite the Right" rally of white nationalist and other right-wing groups had been scheduled take place, the city tweeted on its verified account.

Note: All images found on Twitter

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Australian Human Rights Commission 2017, "Change The Course: National report on sexual assault and sexual harassment at Australian universities


Change The Course: National Report On Sexual Assault and Sexual Harassment At Australian Univerities, 2017:
Executive summary
At the request of Australia’s 39 universities, the Australian Human Rights Commission has conducted a national, independent survey of university students to gain greater insight into the nature, prevalence and reporting of sexual assault and sexual harassment at Australian universities.
The National university student survey on sexual assault and sexual harassment (the National Survey) also examined the effectiveness of university services and policies that address sexual assault and sexual harassment on campus.
The request to conduct this survey follows decades of advocacy on the topic of sexual assault and sexual harassment at universities both within Australia and overseas.
The National Survey is the first of its kind and the first attempt to examine in detail the scale and the nature of the problem in Australia.
This work builds on the Commission’s extensive experience leading projects of this nature, including the Review into the Treatment of Women in the Australian Defence Force and conducting national workplace sexual harassment surveys for the past 12 years.
The National Survey measured the experiences of over 30,000 students across all 39 universities and collected information about:
* prevalence of sexual assault and sexual harassment among Australian university students in 2015 and 2016
* characteristics of people who experienced sexual assault and sexual harassment
* characteristics of perpetrators of sexual assault and sexual harassment
* settings where students experienced sexual assault and sexual harassment at university
* reporting of sexual assault and sexual harassment, and
* students’ recommendations for change.
In addition to the quantitative data gathered via the National Survey, a vast amount of qualitative data was gathered through written submissions. The Commission accepted written submissions from 23 August 2016 to 2 December 2016 and received 1849 submissions in total.
This report outlines the findings of the National Survey, provides an analysis of the qualitative information received through the submissions, and makes recommendations for areas of action and reform.
Warning: This report contains detailed accounts of sexual assault and sexual harassment, including personal accounts from survivors, which some readers may find distressing.


Monday, 26 June 2017

Instead of addressing the root causes of homelessness in NSW the Berejiklian Government allows this to occur


It doesn’t matter what political stripe the NSW government of the day is - the issue of homelessness is rarely addressed in a positive fashion.

One only has to consult the National Library of Australia and Trove digital newspaper records to see that homelessness and Sydney have gone hand in hand since the city was established. As has the threat of violence towards those without a roof over their heads.

In February1890 a physical count of homeless people sleeping rough in the city occurred and 127 year later a count still occurs.

In February 1890 the count stood at 472 rough sleepers and by February 2017 the homeless count on the night was 433 rough sleepers, with another 489 people in crisis/temporary accommodation* and 28 people of no fixed address in hospital.

In the last fifty years to date in Sydney, the usual first response considered when the number of homeless people become highly visible is to force these people out of the inner city area to become the problem of other suburbs and different councils.

These clearances often only come to the notice of the general public during the lead up to high profile events such as state visits or when Sydney hosted the Olympics in 2000.

This time it was the turn of the Berejiklian Coalition Government and The City of Sydney Council to attempt to scatter the homeless from the inner-city by using NSW Police as their all too willing pit bulls.

Note the swift jabs by the male police officer at about 0:06-0:07 mins into this video

Facebook:
Now if this sweep of Sydney streets runs true to form an official spokesperson will say that the homeless have been offered alternative accommodation and many have refused.

This is officialese for handing out the contact details of overworked and under-resourced homeless services. 

The most easily accessible being the night refuges which are frequently only marginally safer than sleeping rough for the most vulnerable of those on the streets and which can offer little more than temporary night accommodation on a first-come-first-served basis. 
While other crisis/temporary accommodation offered through Dept of Housing/FaCS can be for as little as 2-5 days in a budget motel, caravan park or similar.

The current waiting list for permanent social housing in the Sydney metropolitan area is generally between 5 to 10+ years.

Well done, Sydney! Home to a heavy-handed, often violent police force, a city administration without a heart and a cruelly indifferent state government.

Note

There were 16 crisis accommodation hostels with a minimum of 414 beds operating in the City of Sydney local government area in February 2017.

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

Trump supporter's call to "kill the globalists" at CNN


Wednesday, 12 April 2017

President Trump failed to stop yet another lawsuit




On 1 March 1 2016 Donald Trump held a campaign rally at the Kentucky International Convention Center in Louisville, Kentucky. What occurred at this campaign rally led to the United States District Court Western District Of Kentucky Louisville Division hearing KASHIYA NWANGUMA, et al., Plaintiffs, v. DONALD J. TRUMP, et al., Defendants (Civil Action No. 3:16-cv-247-DJH), which resulted in this 22 page Memorandum Opinion And Order.

AP News, 1 April 2017:

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) -- A federal judge has rejected President Donald Trump's free speech defense against a lawsuit accusing him of inciting violence against protesters at a campaign rally.

Trump's lawyers sought to dismiss the lawsuit by three protesters who say they were roughed up by his supporters at a March 1, 2016 rally in Louisville, Kentucky. They argued that Trump didn't intend for his supporters to use force.

Two women and a man say they were shoved and punched by audience members at Trump's command. Much of it was captured on video and widely broadcast during the campaign, showing Trump pointing at the protesters and repeating "get them out."

Judge David J. Hale in Louisville ruled Friday that the suit against Trump, his campaign and three of his supporters can proceed. Hale found ample facts supporting allegations that the protesters' injuries were a "direct and proximate result" of Trump's actions, and noted that the Supreme Court has ruled out constitutional protections for speech that incites violence.

"It is plausible that Trump's direction to 'get 'em out of here' advocated the use of force," the judge wrote. "It was an order, an instruction, a command."

Plaintiffs Kashiya Nwanguma, Molly Shah and Henry Brousseau allege that they were physically attacked by several members of the audience, including Matthew Heimbach, Alvin Bamberger and an unnamed defendant they have yet to be able to identify.

Bamberger later apologized to the Korean War Veterans Association, whose uniform he wore at the rally. He wrote that he "physically pushed a young woman down the aisle toward the exit" after "Trump kept saying 'get them out, get them out," according to the lawsuit.

Heimbach, for his part, sought to dismiss the lawsuit's discussion of his association with a white nationalist group and of statements he made about how Trump could advance the group's interests. The judge declined, saying such information could be important context when determining punitive damages.

The judge also declined to remove allegations that Nwanguma, an African-American, was the victim of racial, ethnic and sexist slurs from the crowd at the rally. This context may support the plaintiffs' claims of negligence and incitement by Trump and his campaign, the judge said.

Thursday, 27 October 2016

Policing in Australia sometimes seems like a tale of violence, sexually predatory behaviour and racially motivated assault - not on the part of street criminals but on the part of police themselves


The Age, 23 October 2016:

More than a third of all Victoria Police officers who appealed dismissals or demotions in the past two years were disciplined because of predatory behaviour towards women, including family violence victims, colleagues, and women who were vulnerable or in care.

A senior constable was found to have preyed on five women, one officer exposed himself to staff, a 44-year-old had a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl, and several officers, including a Police Academy trainer at graduation celebrations, vulgarly propositioned women.

Almost exactly two years ago, former Chief Commissioner Ken Lay confronted troubling attitudes towards women within Victoria Police head-on when he announced a Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission independent review into the force.

But an analysis of Police Registration and Services Board review hearings shows the extent of this culture in stark detail.

The board hears the appeals of those who are disciplined by the internal police investigation unit, Professional Standards Command.

Unless an officer appeals to the board, or is charged with a criminal offence, details of the behaviour which led to their dismissal is rarely made public.

The board started publishing its decisions in 2014.

Police Registration and Services Board review decisions can be found here.

Some recent examples……

Taking advantage of a vulnerable female
DECISION The Board acknowledges the strong work record of the Applicant, his lack of any malicious intent and accepts that he would be unlikely to engage in such conduct in the future. However, a consideration of all of the factors set out above, especially the public interest in maintaining community confidence in Victoria Police, weighs strongly in favour of dismissal. Vulnerable members of the public must be able to seek help from the police force without any risk that they will be vulnerable to further harm from those entrusted to protect them. Having considered all the material and the submissions made, and after having regard to the public interest and the interests of the Applicant, the Board is not satisfied that the Inquiry Officer’s decision to dismiss the Applicant was harsh, unjust or unreasonable. Accordingly, the decision to dismiss the Applicant stands. The Board publishes these reasons for decision pursuant to Section 154A, subject to the redaction of the material in Appendix 1. The Board directs that the material in Appendix 1 not be published or communicated beyond the parties and their representatives. For the Board, all members concurring.

Making unwelcome sexual advances to a female public servant and publicly exposure himself
DECISION Having considered all the material and the submissions made, and after having regard to the public interest and the interests of the Applicant, the Board is not satisfied that the Inquiry Officer’s decision to dismiss the Applicant was harsh, unjust or unreasonable. Accordingly, the decision to dismiss the Applicant stands. Pursuant to the provisions of s.154A of the Act the Board proposes to publish these reasons. For the Board, all members concurring

Assault of a member of the public
DECISION Having considered all the material and the submissions made, and after having regard to the public interest and the interests of the Applicant, the Board is not satisfied that the Inquiry Officer’s decision to dismiss the Applicant was harsh, unjust or unreasonable. Accordingly, the decision to dismiss the Applicant stands. Pursuant to the provisions of s.154A of the Act these Reasons for Decision are to be published. For the Board, all members concurring.

Just in case anyone is under the impression that police conduct is of a higher standard in New South Wales because we see fewer published misconduct reports, I remind readers that on 7 March 2013 New Matilda reported:

In just the past few years we have seen case after case with compelling prima facie evidence of police brutality and excessive use of police force. However not a single case has resulted in a police officer being either demoted or dismissed, let alone charged with assault or another criminal offence. It is worthwhile at this point recalling just some of the incidents that have sparked community unrest in the past few years.

In November 2009 police were called to the home of Adam Salter by his dad. Salter was mentally ill and harming himself with a sharp knife in the kitchen. It was a frightening and dangerous incident. The most senior officer on site called out "Taser! Taser! Taser!" before shooting Salter dead with her glock pistol. What looked like a terrible tragedy and mistake was internally investigated by police. That police investigation cleared police of wrongdoing and the officers involved were in fact promoted.

When the coroner reviewed the matter (pdf) she found much of what the police had alleged was "simply not true", other parts were "almost entirely wrong", "a failure and a disgrace". The Salter’s family lawyer described it as "a whitewash" and "a cover up". Since then the Police involved have been the subject of an Ombudsman review and a Police Integrity review. Years have passed and no-one has been held to account for the tragedy.

In February 2011 Bugmy, an Indigenous man, was at his grandmother’s home in Wilcannia. When police entered he was holding a knife. His partner took that off him. He knelt on the ground with his shirt off and his hands behind his back. When he wouldn’t lay face down on the floor, police tasered him multiple times.

A magistrate found this unreasonable and excessive use of force. An internal taser review by police cleared the officers of any wrong doing. You can see the disturbing footage yourself and make up your own mind. Despite criticism from the Ombudsman, no disciplinary action has been taken against the police involved.

In January 2011 Cory Baker, a young Indigenous man, was taken to the Ballina Police Station where he said he was seriously assaulted by a group of police. An internal police investigation and report was produced. The police investigation cleared police and concluded that Baker had assaulted them.

At trial, deeply disturbing CCTV footage of the police viciously assaulting Baker was eventually produced as a result of an order by a local magistrate. The charges against Baker were dropped. These events are only now being investigated by the Police Integrity Commission. It has now come to light that a senior officer told at least one junior officer what to write in his statement for the internal investigation. That version was blatantly false. Again no disciplinary action has been taken against the officers.

In March last year a young Brazilian man, Roberto Curti, died after being handcuffed face down on the ground and repeatedly capsicum sprayed and tasered by police. Again, an internal police review produced no recommendations for any disciplinary action by the police involved. The Coroner found the attempted arrest of Roberto involved "ungoverned, excessive police use of force." The Coroner found numerous police gave untruthful accounts (pdf) of what occurred on the night.

Curti’s case was the subject of a further critical finding by the Ombudsman. The Ombudsman’s report found (pdf) that the internal police investigation was procedurally flawed, failed to consider the lawfulness of the police actions and failed to properly analyse the police use of force. To date not one officer has been charged or disciplined as a result of Curti’s death.
Just this week a further disturbing case has emerged of a police officer at the Mardi Gras throwing 18-year old Jamie Jackson to the ground on Oxford Street and then roughly placing a foot on his back. The young man appears dazed and bleeding as a result of the force with which he struck the pavement. Jackson says he was just crossing the road and did not deserve to be assaulted.

The police have said that they are holding an internal inquiry into the incident that will establish the truth of what happened. Increasingly no one believes this. As the short summary above shows, there are exceptionally good reasons to doubt the capacity of police investigating police to get to the truth in these cases.

There is an inherent conflict of interest whenever we have police investigating themselves. This cannot be resolved until NSW has a single independent police review body which is sufficiently resourced and has its own officers undertake all critical incident reviews.

While on 11 September 2013 SBS News reported:

Corey Barker, 24, was taken into custody in January 2011 after attempting to help two friends in an aggressive street confrontation with police in Ballina. Details about his arrest have emerged in a damning Police Integrity Commission (PIC) report, tabled in parliament on Tuesday.

It found officers slammed Mr Barker into a bin and a chair before swinging him into a machine. He was then forced to the ground before being kicked in the head and kneed in the side.
"The police treatment of Barker can fairly be described as violent," the report said.

Mr Barker was handcuffed and dragged along the floor on his stomach by his arms to a cell where he was left in handcuffs for more than 90 minutes. "This method would have been acutely painful and was brutal," the PIC said.

It found constables David Hill, Lee Walmsley, Ryan Eckersley and Luke Mewing used excessive force against Mr Barker.

They were also found to have lied about the arrest, along with Senior Constable Mark Woolven and former sergeant Robert McCubben, who was medically discharged from the force last December.

The matter came before the PIC after Mr Barker fronted the courts in 2011 charged with the assault of Const Hill.

All six officers gave evidence Mr Barker punched Const Hill in the face while being walked from a holding cage to a cell.

But the assault case was thrown out after CCTV footage - at first thought to have been damaged - showed Mr Barker had in fact been the victim of a police attack. Police were ordered to pay his legal costs.

Commissioner Bruce James has recommended all six officers engaged in misconduct and should be considered for prosecution under the Crimes Act.

Then there is this from Sydney Criminal Lawyers on 22 June 2015:

Police brutality is not just limited to fatal shootings. We recently wrote a blog about 16-year-old Aboriginal girl Melissa Dunn who was arrested by police for resisting arrest and hindering police. CCTV footage of the incident showed police officers brutally tackling the girl outside a McDonald’s restaurant in Sydney’s CBD, before her head hit the gutter and she was rendered unconscious.
A children’s court magistrate later found Melissa ‘not guilty’ of the charges and criticised police for using an ‘inordinate amount of force’ during her arrest. Melissa tragically ended her life just three days after her trial ended.

We also reported on the highly-publicised case of the young, slightly-built young man who was slammed to the ground during the Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras by a heavily-built police officer. It seems that this brazen officer was undeterred by the presence of several members of the public, some of whom were filming the incident. The list goes on.

Such cases indicate that issues of police brutality and excessive force are a cause for concern in Australia, despite consecutive attempts to reform the law and redress these injustices.

Later that same year ABC News reported this curious fact on 24 September:

Internal investigations into deaths and serious injuries during police operations have not resulted in disciplinary action against any officer.

The figures, tabled in NSW Parliament, reveal that between January 2013 and August this year, 62 critical incidents were investigated by police.

Two adverse findings were recorded against a police officer in one case, with the officer given counselling. No disciplinary action was recorded against police in any of the 62 cases.

The figures were provided by the Government in response to questions on notice put by Greens MP David Shoebridge.

It will be interesting to see if the new NSW Law Enforcement Conduct Commission (LECC) due to become fully operational in 2017 will even make a dent in entrenched police culture in this state.

Those NSW police officers who perform their duties diligently, with compassion and goodwill must sometimes wonder when senior commanders are finally going to get their act together and weed out those violent and predatory individuals they must rub shoulders with in the force.

UPDATE

On 21 December 2016 Senior Constables David Hill and Mark Woolven, Constables Ryan Charles Eckersley and Luke Christopher Mewing, Probationary Constable Lee David Walmsley and Sergeant Robert Campbell McCubben were acquitted in the NSW District Court of assaulting Cory Baker at Ballina Police Station in 2013.


In June 2016 Sergeant Sheree Bissett, Sergeant Emily Metcalfe, Senior Constable Leah Wilson and Constable Aaron Abela were acquitted of perjury in the NSW District Court in relation to the shooting death of mentally ill man Adam Salter in the family home in 2009.