Cops to be investigated
THREE police attached to the Richmond local area command may face the Supreme Court on contempt charges in relation to evidence they gave against a man who was allegedly bashed by police at Ballina.
The conduct of senior constables Hill and Eckersley and constable Walmsley in relation to the alleged bashing of former Ballina man Corey Barker will be referred to the Police Integrity Commission.
The Police Integrity Commission will then investigate the matter to see whether charges will be laid against the police involved.
In his written judgment in which he awarded costs of $30,864.31 to Mr Barker's legal counsel, solicitor Vince Boss, Magistrate David Heilpern was scathing of the conduct of police.
"This court cannot stand by and allow the administration of justice to be debased by the in-court conduct of police officers giving palpably false evidence in such a contemptuous manner," he said.
"I am satisfied on balance that the officer has lied on oath about this issue in an effort to mislead the court."
During proceedings the police prosecutor alleged that Mr Barker punched senior constable Hill in the nose which sparked the alleged assault.
But the alleged punch was not captured on CCTV.
Mr Barker had been arrested after coming to the aid of two friends who were having a domestic dispute on Tamar St on January 14 last year.
When police got involved and threw one of his friends to the ground, Mr Barker began filming the actions of police on his mobile phone.
He was then arrested and taken to Ballina police station where the assault is alleged to have occurred.
CCTV footage of the alleged assault at Ballina police station showed police ram the 21-year-old's head into a wall before he was forced to the floor, kicked, punched by five police and had his hand stomped on.
Magistrate Heilpern adjourned the matter until August 9 to allow Hill, Eckersley and Walmsley to be heard as to whether they should be referred to the Supreme Court on an allegation of contempt.
Mr Boss said the public deserved the right to feel confident that the NSW Police service has zero tolerance of what he called 'thugs in uniform' and zero tolerance towards people who would cover up for them.