19.6 C
Byron Shire
May 12, 2021

Police to face hearing over eight-year-old boy locked in paddywagon

Latest News

How much do you know about koalas?

How well do you know your koala facts? Test your knowledge at the June 2 Koala Hard Quiz in Mullumbimby.

Other News

Plans to increase building heights in Byron CBD may be shelved

Byron Council’s controversial plan to increase building height limits on a block in the centre of Byron Bay looks set to be abandoned at this week’s planning meeting.

Global predicament

Dudley Leggett – Director of Sustainability Research Institute, Suffolk Park Phillip Frazer’s article, (Echo 6 January) is an excellent summary of...

Upside down river

Tim Harrington, Lennox Head Letter contributor Richard White (letters 21/4/21) quite correctly identifies the Richmond River as an ‘upside down river’...

Government fails to support dying at home in Northern Rivers

Approaching the subject of dying is always tricky, often awkward, and never easy. But when you are faced with caring for someone at the end of their life, it helps if you can find support from people who have already navigated the path.

Interview with Nick Sergi, producer of the Byron Music Festival

Nick Sergi, producer of the Byron Music Festival talks to The Echo.

Deep listening and housing ideas under Mullum’s fig trees for Renew Fest

Around a hundred presenters, musicians, other artists and community activators plus a bumper crowd of punters all came together under the fig trees at the Mullumbimby Showground over the weekend for Renew Fest 2021.

Two police officers face court today after allegedly leaving a child in a police wagon.  (file pic)
Two police officers face court today after allegedly leaving a child in a police wagon. (file pic)

Two police officers who have pleaded not guilty to allegedly leaving an eight-year-old Aboriginal boy locked in the back of a police paddy wagon at Coraki for up to three hours last April will face a hearing today.

When Mundhra Williams and his cousins were allegedly throwing rocks and eggs at a car at the Coraki sewage treatment plant on April 13, police were called.

His cousins were taken home by police, but when the officer found out Mundhra’s mother Jane was at work, he returned to Coraki police station and allegedly left the eight-year-old locked in the back of the paddy wagon.

While Mundhra was locked in the police vehicle, his mother was told he had been picked up by police, and began frantically trying to find out where her son was.

Meanwhile, the officer who picked up Mundhra was called to a job at Evans Head and allegedly left him locked in the police vehicle, which was parked in the driveway of the police station.

After Mundhra was released, he was examined by paramedics and found to be unharmed.

Ms Williams complained to police about how he was treated and an investigation was launched, which was overseen by the NSW Ombudsman.

The story quickly gained national media attention and was published in everything from seniors newspapers to trucking magazines.

It even made news in the United Kingdom, where it was published online by the Daily Mail.

Following the investigation, the two police involved, senior constables Michael John Writer, 44, and Brian Michael Quinn, 33, were charged on October 13, and placed on restricted work duties.

‘Did neglect to carry out his lawful duty as a police officer, namely, by failing to take proper care and exercise due diligence in respect of an Aboriginal juvenile in custody,’ court documents for both men stated.

When they both appeared in Lismore Local Court on January 17 and entered not guilty pleas to both charges, Magistrate David Heilpern adjourned the matters for hearing on June 22 and 23.

Mr Heilpern noted on the court papers ‘remote room required’ which is a room separate from the court where witnesses can give evidence via videolink.

The maximum penalty for leaving a child unattended and locked in a car is a $22,000 fine.

The charge of police officer neglect/refuse/not carry out any lawful order carries a maximum penalty of 20 penalty units.

Each penalty unit is equivalent to a $110 fine.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Tweed residents facing rate rise in 2021/2022 financial year

Tweed residents are invited to provide feedback on their council's budget, revenue policy and fees and charges, as Tweed Council prepares to finalise its delivery program and operational plan for the next financial year.

Exotic and hybrid

Dailan Pugh, Byron Bay I was shocked to see the abundant exotic and hybrid plantings at Byron’s new bus interchange. As Byron Council used to have...

Locals call for automatic revocation of speeding fines on Hinterland Way in first half of April

When local man Nathan Hicks saw posts on Facebook about locals who had received fines they believed were incorrect he decided to look into challenging his own fine. 

Ageism alive and well

Margaret Boshier, St Ives I have been spending time in the ocean since before I could walk; I grew up at the beach; I have...