17.5 C
Byron Shire
June 21, 2021

Police officer denied anonymity in youth assault case

Latest News

Travel declaration required for travellers entering Queensland

Queensland Health says that all travellers from a state or territory with a declared COVID-19 hotspot (currently Victoria and from 1am Saturday, June 19 also New South Wales) are required to complete a Queensland Border Declaration Pass prior to entry.

Other News

Elders call out pro-Dunoon Dam campaign sign as racist

Widjabul Wia-bal elders have called out a sign depicting sail boats and titled 'Widjabal Sailing Club’ that has appeared in Dunoon village recently as part of the pro-Dunoon Dam campaign as racist.

You Can Close Your Eyes

There is a beautiful James Taylor song (‘You Can Close Your Eyes’) that commences with the words; Oh, the sun is surely sinking down, But the moon is slowly rising. 

History as she is wrote

It seems that I may have touched a nerve in my attempt to give some background to Byron Greens...

‘Technically no longer human’ – can mRNA COVID-19 vaccines meld with your DNA?

It’s becoming increasingly common to see social media posts claiming that the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, which include those made by Pfizer and Moderna, could alter a person’s DNA.

Pro rail groups join to rally on Thursday

Four local groups have banded together and will host a rally calling for urgent consultation on the removal of the train tracks on the Murwillumbah to Crabbes Creek rail corridor.

New case of COVID-19 in Brisbane

Queensland has recorded one new case of COVID-19 in the community yesterday, with contact tracing underway after an international cabin crew member tested positive.

Mia Armitage

A police officer accused of assaulting a 16-year-old in Byron Bay nearly two years ago has lost his bid for anonymity in the case.

Senior Constable Michial Luke Greenhalgh, 38, is alleged to have assaulted the boy as part of an arrest in Lateen Lane some time between two and three o’clock in the morning on January 11, 2018.

Operation Tambora, led by the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission (LECC), examined the actions of all four policemen involved in the arrest and ended with a recommendation for the Department of Public Prosecutions to consider charging one of the officers with assault.

Until this week, the policeman was entitled to anonymity in media, but on Monday afternoon Magistrate Karen Stafford refused a request by his legal defence for suppression of his name throughout the local court case.

Thirty-eight-year-old Sen-Constable Greenhalgh is now based in Lismore, after a transfer from Byron Bay police station, and didn’t appear in court on Monday.

But his wife still works as a senior constable at Byron Bay police station, and bears the same last name as her accused husband.

The court heard she had endured abusive comments and phone calls since the LECC inquiry into the Lateen Lane arrest.

Her husband’s defence said she wore a name badge at work and answered the phone with her last name without reference to her gender.

One person had asked if the officer was ‘still bashing fourteen-year-olds’.

The police defence argued the woman shouldn’t be ‘banished’ from her usual workplace and Byron Bay via a transfer for protection, and a suppression order was necessary to avoid a case of ‘mistaken identity’.

Solicitor Sally McPherson said Byron Bay Chief Inspector Matt Kehoe had reported an ‘escalation of intimidation’ towards the woman, whose first name Echonetdaily has decided not to publish.

The senior constable, by name of Greenhalgh, and still working from Byron Bay station wasn’t present at the Lateen Lane arrest and has no known criminal charges or misconduct allegations against her.

But Magistrate Stafford referred to a previous Court of Criminal Appeal case and said she wasn’t satisfied, given the verbal attacks had happened even before publication of the accused’s name that a suppression order would change the situation.

‘Is the situation because she’s in Byron Bay rather than married to him?’ she asked in the lead-up to her decision, ‘are there no other ways we can ensure safety?’ 

Workplace safety 

The magistrate acknowledged Inspector Kehoe was prepared to carry out a workplace safety risk assessment for the woman under his supervision, but noted it would likely take weeks.

‘The issue isn’t whether police should have to put up with that behaviour in the workplace,’ Magistrate Stafford told the court.

She ordered the matter to appear before the court again on February 3.

After court, Byron Bay youth advocate and Schoolies Hub coordinator Niqui Yazdi, who was present in the courtroom, told Bay FM’s Community Newsroom that more police training is needed when dealing with young people.  

She also said she wanted to see a more consistent police presence at Schoolies.

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.


  1. Well !
    Though I’m not surprised by the fact that athough. at least FOUR were recorded during the abuse of this child.
    What is Sen-Constable Greenhalgh (Lismore) doing still on the public payroll as this is a cut and dry case … captured in all it’s glory on video? What about being a danger to the public? It seems that there is more concern that Mrs Greenhalgh has had her feelings hurt!
    cheers G”)

  2. Finally, the days of accountability are here for Byron Bay Police.With the advent of cameras at everybody’s fingertips,they must surely realise that excessive violence, let along thuggery, can never be acceptable in their job. I am a 57yr young human trying to be,& their violence has affected the course of my life.Glad to see the worm has turned.Maybe now they can focus on the positive aspects of their job ie -protecting the public & saving lives.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

‘Technically no longer human’ – can mRNA COVID-19 vaccines meld with your DNA?

It’s becoming increasingly common to see social media posts claiming that the mRNA COVID-19 vaccines, which include those made by Pfizer and Moderna, could alter a person’s DNA.

Lantern parade and fiery finish a blast

With just under 5,000 people including performers, workers, schools and volunteers, the 2021 Lismore Lantern Parade and accompanying festival was a sold-out event celebrating light.

Art headed for the bin after Lismore competition

Making rubbish look great is the outcome of a resent art competition in Lismore – Indigenous art, koalas, rainbows, bats and lorikeets all feature in artwork that will soon be printed onto new bins in Carrington Street.

Locals to fight back with a series about the REAL Byron Bay

News that Netflix was planning to film a vacuous docudrama in Byron Bay brought a collective snort of derision across the Shire.