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Image for Bashed at Mardi Gras: Police assault claims

Bashed at Mardi Gras: Policeassault claims

Note: This story was updated with video footage at 10pm on 5 March. Our follow-up story looks at reactions to the footage – read it here.


Information about two incidents of alleged police brutality have emerged from Oxford Street on Saturday night, a short time after this year’s Sydney Mardi Gras Parade ended.

Leading gay activist Bryn Hutchinson has alleged that he was kicked and stomped on after he attempted to cross the road. A number of witnesses have backed up his story, while Sydney MP Alex Greenwich says he is aware of the alleged police assault and will be following it up.

An extra 1,000 police were stationed in the CBD for the night’s festivities, with many of the officers called from outer suburban and regional commands.

Same Same has also been contacted by witnesses to another alleged police assault in the same vicinity on the night, with claims that a young Mardi Gras attendee was punched and left bleeding after his head was smashed against concrete after he had already been handcuffed by police officers.

A witness at the scene with her two teenaged sisters says the violent actions of the officers involved left her younger siblings seriously traumatised.

“They were crying while the police bashed the boy’s head into the cement,” she said. “It was horrible, disgusting behaviour.”

Another witness adds: “They picked him up by the throat and slammed him into the ground with his head hitting the ground that hard it sounded like a bowling ball hitting the ground,” she said. “This was while he was in handcuffs.”

WARNING: This video contains graphic images of physical violence. Viewer discretion is advised.


Meanwhile, Bryn Hutchinson (pictured below), who until last month was co-convener for Community Action Against Homophobia – the group that organises and holds large regular marriage equality rallies in central Sydney – has told Same Same that about 11.25pm on Saturday he was unexpectedly set upon by up to five police officers from Parramatta Local Command as he crossed the Oxford Street near the intersection of Crown Street.

Hutchinson, 32, was with his partner, his sister and her friend when they decided to leave a Taylor Square hotel just after 11pm. Hutchinson, who is soon to commence studies for his PhD at the University of Sydney in the field of Bioethics, says he was not drunk or disorderly, or offensive or rude in any way, when the incident occurred.

“I had a few drinks but I certainly didn’t break the law,” he said.

“I had begun crossing the road and was just about at the middle when a police officer approached me and told me not to cross the road.

“Usually Oxford Street is open to foot traffic at that stage of the Parade. There was no signage or barriers, no marking tape.”

“I was hogtied and then they pushed my face into the concrete.”

The Mardi Gras Parade info page states: “Once crossing points are closed, you will not be able to cross the parade route until the parade ends at approximately 10:30pm.”

Hutchinson, who stands at 169cm and weighs only 65 kgs, said after a brief conversation with the police officer during which he said he was simply crossing the road he decided to continue to the other side.

“I can’t remember if he said anything more, but basically it was a verbal interchange and there was no physical contact. Then I was grabbed from behind by several police officers and then thrown onto the ground on my back. Then another police officer was leaning over me and threatening to charge me. I don’t know what he wanted to charge me with. I just kept saying I wanted to simply cross the road.

“They then turned me onto my front and pressed my face into the road, held me tightly by putting my arms behind my back and then folded my legs up. That’s when a number of police officers kicked me. There was approximately three. I couldn’t see them all but witnesses have told me since that there was up to five of them.

“I was hogtied and then they pushed my face into the concrete,” he adds.

“They were applying weight onto my back and I couldn’t breathe properly. I said I can’t breathe properly, and one of the officers said, ‘If you can talk, you can breathe’. I wasn’t resisting any sort of police intervention but I was really struggling to breathe. They didn’t stop applying the pressure and they had also kicked me.”

“I was still face down on the road when they handcuffed me,” he continues. “They put the cuffs on too tight, and have caused my wrists and hands to swell up and bruise. I screamed out, ‘You have the cuffs on too hard’. I also shouted very loudly, ‘What are you charging me with?’ Basically to get attention from the crowd as I was being beaten up by police.”

Hutchinson was then pulled up and pushed to a waiting police vehicle near the Colombian Hotel before being transported to Surry Hills Police Station where he was charged with assaulting police while in the back of the police wagon.

“They asked me for my ID and wallet which I didn’t have, but they confiscated my phone,” he claims. “I kept asking them what they are charging me with, and then one of the officers, Sergeant Ludlin from Parramatta Police, said he was charging me with assaulting police. He said, ‘You put your leg around me, don’t you remember that?’

“I don’t have any memory of putting my legs around any officers but if I did I would imagine it was a reflex when the others were pushing me back. He was in front of me. I would like to see some footage of the incident.

“It was excessive force. If they are charging me with assault police I find it bizarre they didn’t charge me with failure to comply with police directions or resisting arrest. I think they decided to charge me as they realised they had taken things too far by kicking me and are maybe trying to intimidate me.”

EYEWITNESS REPORTS

An onlooker, Tim Mayers, who contacted Same Same about the incident, said that while the confrontation didn’t seem to be homophobic in nature, the police reaction certainly seemed brutal and unnecessary.

“This didn’t seem like a gay bashing, but it was because the guy wasn’t cooperating with police they used force … and then it was out of control,” he said.

“I definitely 100 per cent saw the kick and stomp. Everyone sort of gasped.”

Another witness who contacted Same Same but did not wish to be named said at first she assumed police were simply helping a drunk person get across the road.

“I thought he was drunk, but I was making an assumption as it appeared that his weight was being held by the two officers on each of his arms. I looked away and when I looked back I saw four to five cops seemingly pinning him down on the road. I just assumed he had started hitting them but still thought that it was a bit excessive to have that many cops for one guy,” the witness said.

“Then I saw the man had his leg wrapped around one of the cop’s legs and wouldn’t let go so the cop hit or punched the guy’s leg a couple times before stomping his own foot on the ground in an attempt to get the guy to let go. Then one of the other cops did something that made the guy let go. Then all I could see was this huddle of cops around or over the guy who was still on the ground. They still seemed to be pinning him down.

“It was horrible, disgusting behaviour.”

“I can’t say I saw the cops bashing the guy apart from the hits to the leg but I did think that four or more cops for one guy – even if he was drunk and violent or not – seemed a bit excessive.”

Same Same has been informed by both the Colombian Hotel and the City of Sydney that their CCTV cameras did not capture the incident as they were trained either at the footpath or at the wrong angle.

“Our security team have reviewed the footage and can not see any incident on our cameras,” a City of Sydney spokesperson said.

“The City’s CCTV cameras are not designed to monitor road traffic as they are more focused on the footpaths.”

Sydney Independent MP Alex Greenwich adds that he has also been informed of other incidents allegedly involving police on the night, including revellers who were forced to undergo total strip searches at the Mardi Gras after-party at the Entertainment Quarter. Police ended up charging 96 people with drug possession after the Drug Dog Squad and officers from Surry Hills Police searched about 200 people at the event.

“The situation involving Bryn as described to me is very concerning and I will be looking into this further,” he says.

“I have known Bryn for a number of years and he is a person who has always been diplomatic and worked co-operatively with police in his role with Community Action Against Homophobia putting on regular marriage equality rallies for the past few years.”

Surry Hills Police Commander Anthony Crandell tells Same Same he’ll be attempting to gain CCTV recordings and other footage of the incident to verify exactly what occurred when Hutchinson attempted to cross Oxford Street.

“I am aware of this matter and we are treating it very seriously,” he said. “As it is before the courts, I am precluded from giving too much information at this stage, but I will definitely be attempting to ascertain all the facts around this incident.”


Are you a witness? We welcome further information via email – Matt@team.samesame.com.au.

You can also contact ACON’s Anti-Violence Project on (02) 9206 2116 or Freecall 1800 063 060.

If anything in this story has triggered negative feelings or you just want to talk to someone about it, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.

Social

Comments

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crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 5th Mar, 2013

absolutely over the top.
But, as someone else also mentioned, Mr Hutchinson was intentionally ignoring what a police officer had said to him.
I was a volunteer at Mardi Gras a few years ago and was abused constantly for telling people not to cross the road. I was pushed by several "revellers" to get me out of the way. So let's not pretend that people are giving any greater respect to police that ask the same of them.

The video was a little disturbing. But who knows what happened before the video started. And... deservedly or not, everyone in that video was also ignoring police instructions and getting in the way. I don't say this gives the right for police to be brutal. But... every person has a breaking point. All the haters wouldn't last half a week in their job.

that small boy no matter 'if' had ignored the police request should not be handled that way. Even after being handcuffed and held down by a officer 3 times his size and surrounded by others he continued to treat him like a ragged doll. People like you make me sick defending this officer. get stuffed!

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 5th Mar, 2013



the clean up is always quick

vinegar tits

vinegar tits said on the 5th Mar, 2013

theres actually been reports that when the camera goes to the blood on the ground and you see the kid lift a leg up he actually went to kick the cop.. so.. u be the judge i guess. from the camera angle, i guess it is possible that he took a kick.. and u can hear a thud from a kick..
excessive force? yeah, ok, probably.
quick response to the kid kicking another officer.. yeah that too..
both parties are in the wrong to be honest.

if someone threw my head on the floor like that I would probably be kicking too! :eek:

MrAsh

MrAsh said on the 5th Mar, 2013



It hasn't been this quick before.

arnavoni

arnavoni said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Alex Greenwich MP has responded with an official statement on his FB page https://www.facebook.com/alexgreenwich

paulcant78

paulcant78 said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Why didnt they open the road. It was so hard to get my mother across the road to walk to central station. Usually after the parade they open the streets so people can get out but this year i witnessed so many police forcefully pushing people off (the closed) roads onto extremely crowded footpaths, meaning sometimes you couldnt move or leave.
Was this a tactic to start a crowd flairing up and give rise to police taking action and therefor taking harsher stances in future mardi gras? I dont know. But i do know it was strange they didnt open up the roads this year and purely from a crowd point of view (people trying to leave the area) this should be investigated.

Marko

Marko said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Sounds like a cluster fuck of a situation. We don't know what the man in the video did to gain the attention of the authorities in the first place, so I won't be making my mind up on that just yet. In the Hutchinson case, I think others have said it, he should have obeyed the officer's directive instead of continuing to walk across the road. A minor inconvenience of finding a designated crossing or waiting till they opened the road could have spared him a shit storm of drama.

ammonite

ammonite said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Thanks for putting the video up.


That's awful. Still I don't believe it actually proves much. Filming started after the initial claimed head bang into the ground, and then the second time he was thrown to ground the camera was focused on the blood on the ground, and you can't see what the person being arrested did or may have done in the proceeding few seconds. so it's technically possible he could have tried to attack the policeman. something happens at 0:56, there is a noise, the cameraman appears to be bumped, a man yells out, and a woman yells out his name, then by 1:00 he is on the ground.
Later you see I think the same woman telling him to calm down and she either says 'just don't hurt him ok' or ' just don't hurt them ok' - can anyone tell? and possibly 'don't kick just please...' All of which sounds like possibly she is telling him to stop resisting arrest - I wonder if he could have kicked the officer at 0:56?

It may be worth noting that this almost fits a pattern I have personally noticed in the filming by some groups of extrem-ish activists in protests. - Someone will film someone else being arrested, pan the camera away, which I believe sometimes is the signal for that arrested person to resist or assault the officer, and the camerman will pan back just in time to miss this possible assault on the officer, and film the officer subduing the person, and then claim on the internet that it is evidence of unprovoked excessive force.
I don't actually think that is what is happening here, but the convenient or in this case probably inconvenient camera timing always makes me suspicious and skeptical. and I imagine it will certainly be a problem when trying to get any action taken against this officer.

However even if he did kick the officer, the way he threw him to the ground - that was extremely excessive right? Surely it's not what they are supposed to do in that situation? There is a cry of horror from the crowd who did see what was not filmed. There are many of emotional witnesses repeating the same story. It would be hard to fake or exaggerate such a reaction at an event like Mardi Gras I would think?

I'm also really disturbed by how the police keep asking them to turn the camera off. It was said in the same way by two or more officers, which made me wonder if they are possibly trained to say it that specific way. - To say it in an authoritative manor so that the average person, unaware of their rights with regards to filming in public would not realise it was a personal request that they can refuse, and not an official police order that ignoring would result in their arrest. Luckily these people were aware of their rights, and they were compliant with the legitimate police requests such as when the officer asked them to step back.

ammonite

ammonite said on the 5th Mar, 2013

@paulcant78 was your mother alright?

david_margeaux

david_margeaux said on the 5th Mar, 2013

The video has been shared 15,000 times on Facebook so far...

paulcant78

paulcant78 said on the 5th Mar, 2013

No harm came to me or my mother, but it made it extremely difficult to get out. As it was we had to cross i guess "illegaly" to the other side of the road.
I did however see many police pushing people and pulling people over the barracades clear of the road AFTER the parade had long finished. What took so long to open the road to pedestrians. You dont see this kind of thing on New Years Eve for example.

Also, in relation to whether or not the kid kicked police as the camera moved away is not clear, and even if he did why wouldnt he have already been placed in a seating position on the ground where he could not hurt himself or the officers. Even during an arrest police have a duty of care, and by not placing the arrested youth in a position where he could not hurt himself or others after being cuffed is breach of that duty.
I have seen police in bondi junction mall driving a Paddy wagon (slowly) and hit a small child no less older than 2 and knocked him to the ground.
The parents did not speak english, the police did not radio it it and they did not call an ambulance to check on the kid whos undeveloped skull had first hit the vehicle then the pavement. I of course stepped in and made them call an ambulance. However they still did not radio it in. I have friends in poice and incident involving a vehicle striking people or property must be reported to the Duty Manager BEFORE leaving the scene and preferably immediately. So i called the duty manager and informed him of the incident. If it wasnt for me the asian parents would not have known their rights and the officers would not have been investigated. I dont believe the officers did anything wrong while driving the vehicle, but why did they then not take the correct and appropriate actions After the incident???
We have to keep them accountable whilst still allowing them to fulfill their duties.

paulcant78

paulcant78 said on the 5th Mar, 2013



No harm came to me or my mother, but it made it extremely difficult to get out. As it was we had to cross i guess "illegaly" to the other side of the road.
I did however see many police pushing people and pulling people over the barracades clear of the road AFTER the parade had long finished. What took so long to open the road to pedestrians. You dont see this kind of thing on New Years Eve for example.

Also, in relation to whether or not the kid kicked police as the camera moved away is not clear, and even if he did why wouldnt he have already been placed in a seating position on the ground where he could not hurt himself or the officers. Even during an arrest police have a duty of care, and by not placing the arrested youth in a position where he could not hurt himself or others after being cuffed is breach of that duty.
I have seen police in bondi junction mall driving a Paddy wagon (slowly) and hit a small child no less older than 2 and knocked him to the ground.
The parents did not speak english, the police did not radio it it and they did not call an ambulance to check on the kid whos undeveloped skull had first hit the vehicle then the pavement. I of course stepped in and made them call an ambulance. However they still did not radio it in. I have friends in poice and incident involving a vehicle striking people or property must be reported to the Duty Manager BEFORE leaving the scene and preferably immediately. So i called the duty manager and informed him of the incident. If it wasnt for me the asian parents would not have known their rights and the officers would not have been investigated. I dont believe the officers did anything wrong while driving the vehicle, but why did they then not take the correct and appropriate actions After the incident???
We have to keep them accountable whilst still allowing them to fulfill their duties.

Marko

Marko said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Why hasn't a complaint been made against the police? Are you Aussies too gutless? Looks like it.

Face it - you Aussie gays are gutless cowards. You don't have the courage to make a complaint against the police. Also, wasn't a Brazilian tourist tazered to death in Sydney a few months ago?

Did the police manage to get away with that too?

Complaints have been made and I'm sure the correct investigations will be made in due course.

I don't see how the fact that we're aussies has anything to do with anyone being gutless or cowards.. Where do you come from that your people are so tough, they know how to 'ferciously' tell on the police?

Sep77

Sep77 said on the 5th Mar, 2013

There are many times when bad people do things to good people, yet those good people are quiet or nobodies or easily forgotten. Then there are times when bad people, who have done many bad things to good people who are quiet and silent and easily forgotten, do things to good people might look quiet and silent and easily forgotten but are in fact well known and decent and respected and believable, and the bad people get what they deserve. I wonder if we have seen that in this instance.

Sep77

Sep77 said on the 5th Mar, 2013



I agree, it does not look like homophobia, and let us pray that it not be, but what will be hard to prove now is that this did not happen, and moreover that it was not an outright excessive display of police misconduct by a few individuals. I would hope that our community – because this was our party and a supposed safe space, free from heterosexual aggression – accept nothing less than a full and impartial explanation as to why these men were so brutally assaulted.

vinegar tits

vinegar tits said on the 5th Mar, 2013

http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/allegations-of-police-brutality-at-mardi-gras-20130305-2fjmv.html

Sep77

Sep77 said on the 5th Mar, 2013


The video was a little disturbing. But who knows what happened before the video started. And... deservedly or not, everyone in that video was also ignoring police instructions and getting in the way. I don't say this gives the right for police to be brutal. But... every person has a breaking point. All the haters wouldn't last half a week in their job.

Rationally, yes, we must consider that something had happened, but we must also look at the facts that, in the video, the aggressor was a lamb compared to several police who were lions, and there is no justification for the very visible grabbing, throwing, and dehumanising behaviour filmed.
The police could have told the bystanders to jump through a flaming hoop, but that does not mean that they had to do it. Filming is not illegal when out in public on a public street without restriction.
Haters? What a pathetic, useless word. Don't use it. Haters! C'mon, give us some respect. For a start, it is highly unintellectual to assume that someone disagreeing with your viewpoint is thus equivalent to hatred, an emotion that one should only accuse others of having in the most extreme circumstance. What you are saying is that people who might well have been victims of or subjected to police brutality or inappropriate behaviour - which, I can tell you, is beyond terrifying: knowing that you are entirely vulnerable - are thus mere 'haters', devoid of rational thinking, reduced to primal human instincts. Let's keep it intelligent.

willtoddhero

willtoddhero said on the 5th Mar, 2013

i literally am on verge of tears. this is disgusting it makes me feel sick. the one night of the year we hit the streets to celebrate love and the right to live... someone is treated like his life is worth nothing, they should be reprimanded.... he could of been seriously injured, and the way he speaks to the camera man "step back for your safety and mine" - i would gladly call him a monster...

i lose faith in mankind more when i see those who have not had to stand up for their right to live, and be loved, have no value for either. its appalling.

when the second guy says.... "I said I can't breathe properly, and one of the officers said, 'If you can talk, you can breathe' "

this is Not always true, you can talk whilst being asphyxiated and strangled. either the police officers are badly educated or they are just being downright stupid. The need to kick and stomp on people is worse than play ground bullying. it is sickening...

We as a nation do not stand up for violence - so why allow police officers to dish it out like spoilt tantrum chucking children. i understand you are probably frustrated, and you dont like being talked back to ,...but if you can not handle a situation where the person of issue has made no voilent motions - you need to be retrained or consider a desk job, you have no right to agress on them - or physically attack them. just because there is potential of having power over someone does not entitle you to use it

This does not seem to me like a particular gay related crime, but it is definitely an abuse of power and acts of heinous violence.

i used to believe police officers were kind and stood up for the good... i have seen many times in my life this is not true, i have been assualted and been met with no compassion or attempt at empathy by some of them... there are good and bad police officers, and the bad ones need to be dealt with... or rejobbed.

knowing that those images of rolemodels we see as kids, are far from consistantly true ... i would not let my future children look up to someone simply because of an office, especially when there is proof such horrible officers as this article brings light to are being given badges and being treated with honours they do not deserve.

the corruption is disgusting.

david_margeaux

david_margeaux said on the 5th Mar, 2013

The video has been shared more than 20,000 times in less than 3 hours on Facebook. The community is angrier than I have seen in many years, and justifiably so. This cannot continue. Its time for the Premier to address our concerns.

Barrin

Barrin said on the 5th Mar, 2013

.... Also, wasn't a Brazilian tourist tazered to death in Sydney a few months ago?

Did the police manage to get away with that too?

There was an inquest last year. I don't know if the Coroner's recommendation to discipline the officers has been carried out.

The New South Wales coroner has handed down damning findings against police who acted "like schoolboys in Lord of the Flies" as they tasered a Brazilian student in Sydney's CBD earlier this year.

Roberto Laudisio Curti died after police fired Tasers at him 14 times - seven of them within 51 seconds - following a chase in the early hours of March 18.

Handing down her findings today, coroner Mary Jerram said the actions of police were reckless and excessive, and constituted an abuse of police power.

And she strongly recommended that disciplinary action be taken against five officers involved in the fatal confrontation.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-11-14/coroner-hands-down-findings-in-curti-inquest/4370892

USTourist

USTourist said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Sydney Mardi Gras was on my bucket list, but it's being scratched off even as I write this. I've been to Sydney, seen it, been there, don't need to see the Mardi Gras.

paulcant78

paulcant78 said on the 5th Mar, 2013

The story has just hit mainstream media.
Sydney Morning Herald and Newcastle Herald have published the story.

david_margeaux

david_margeaux said on the 5th Mar, 2013

1241 comments and counting so far on the video on YouTube. I can't remember an issue that got our community so angry. Time to march on NSW Parliament House. Lets say Thursday evening/night?

pioneer_to_the_falls

pioneer_to_the_falls said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Made it to news.com.au:

http://www.news.com.au/breaking-news/national/nsw-police-accused-of-mardi-gras-brutality/story-e6frfku9-1226591164037

Peter_72

Peter_72 said on the 5th Mar, 2013

0:58 shocking... Slamming a handcuffed, defenceless man's head into the pavement is criminal behaviour. I really hope this psycho (the police officer in question) gets sacked before he seriously hurts or kills someone who's only "crime" was to cross a street at the wrong time.

MrAsh

MrAsh said on the 5th Mar, 2013

There was an inquest last year. I don't know if the Coroner's recommendation to discipline the officers has been carried out.



http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-11-14/coroner-hands-down-findings-in-curti-inquest/4370892

The thing I find interesting is that due to the unethical and unnecessary actions of the NSW police, Roberto Curti has been made by the media to look like a complete angel, when in fact he was a naughty boy. If the police handled the Curti situation correctly we wouldn't be seeing Curti portrayed by the media as an angelic victim and would have seen Curti face the proper course of justice for his anti-social behaviour.

liamt

liamt said on the 5th Mar, 2013

i have never seen so many police in such a small area of the city, it was actually one of the first things i noticed at Mardi Gra.. There are always festivals & concerts etc that attract ALOT more bad behaviour than mardi gra (you only have to look on your friends list to see the shit that goes on at those things), yet the police force feels that it is necessary to send in hundreds of their troops for a night that sends a message of love & harmony. WHAT A JOKE!!

Starworshipper

Starworshipper said on the 5th Mar, 2013

This is unbelievably wrong. Imagine the amount of post traumatic stress the victim will have to endure because of one asshole policeman! I also think the elephant in the room here is whether or not this is a homophobic bashing. Personally, I can't see why it wouldn't be. I hope the victim is able to sue the police officer or something... although he probably won't be able to 'cause it's a police officer. F*cking bullsh*t.

KiriR

KiriR said on the 5th Mar, 2013

Fucking brutal ... absolutely disgusted! That footage traumatised me, I can't imagine what it was like for Bryn!

Looking at the size of the guy, he had no chance against that big disgusting brute who seemed to be getting his rocks off, smashing him into the pavement! If that's the law? We're all in deep shit! Homophobic? Yep probably, what else would you call it?? They gave themselves away when they beat up a little guy with handcuffs!

WOW, what is the world coming too??? I hope ppl get involved and start making a big noise over this, it has to change and that's the only way to do it. :(

AureliaAurita

AureliaAurita said on the 5th Mar, 2013

So what are we gonna do about it?

Someone said let's march on THURSDAY NIGHT.

I say YES.

stoppolicebashings

stoppolicebashings said on the 5th Mar, 2013

i think not much has changed since 1990 and the police should be so accountable for police brutality. A good friend of mine was assualted in 1990 consequences brain damage.. dont give up fighting for justice . i live with the fallout from police brutality and it changed to course of my life.. now im a carer instead of following my dreams.. it such a sad situation.. peoples lives are just as real as the policeperson.. imagine if this happened to them.

Jiong

Jiong said on the 5th Mar, 2013

So according to an ABC report ("Outrage over Mardi Gras arrest", 6 March, 2013 8:03AM AEDT. pls google it as I can't post links), this poor kid is "charged with assaulting police, resisting arrest and using offensive language". Oh, so you've done alright officer? Then why did you threaten the reporter and try to stop him from filming the brutality? Their fear of media/public scrutiny should discredit whatever they may have to say.

zebra23

zebra23 said on the 5th Mar, 2013

The Sydney Mardi Gras is trash. It's a parade which promotes narcissism and vanity rather than gay rights. It's more about indulgence and permissiveness than it is about gay rights. It should be scrapped.

There's also the horrible hyper-commercial feel to it. As a parade, it's become a money-making scheme. It's been hijacked by the corporates. Shame on Sydney's gay community for allowing this to happen.


Mardi Gras also promotes tolerance and shame on you mate for condoning Police violence, if that's all you can contribute.

Asherbella

Asherbella said on the 5th Mar, 2013

This is a case of police using unreasonable force on a young gay man of slight build who doesn't seem to have done anything wrong. He was body slammed to the ground and stood on. There's going to be an internal police inquiry but I don't think that will result in much. I hope the police officer in question gets some sort of disciplinary action or gets stood down for an indeterminate length of time. Further training required for this police officer.

I normally respect the police and their commitment to serving and protecting the community - but this guy has gone too far. The teenage gay boy here is a victim of police brutality. It's as simple as that. Outrageous.

flounder

flounder said on the 6th Mar, 2013

I think everyone needs to take a giant chill pill. FFS how many people were out that night, this is one isolated incident.

If the police overreacted theyll be dealt with, theres so much publicity around this ONE incident that they wouldnt dare sweep this under the fucking carpet.

Overcrowding and confinded spaces are always a recipe for trouble, seems this is what needs to be seriously looked at too.

Barrin

Barrin said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Read the local news reports Flounder, there was more than one incident. The police contributed to the overcrowding and confined places by not letting people onto the street after the parade. It's a tradition that all the marshalls tag on to the end of the parade and the crowd then also follows. Why was this policy changed? It just confuses people which leads to frustration and anger.
Also, on the Star Observer someone comments that the Leather Pride group were told to cover their arses or they'd be charged with obscenity. Feels like we're back in the 70s!

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013


Was this a tactic to start a crowd flairing up and give rise to police taking action and therefor taking harsher stances in future mardi gras?

Jesus, any more loopy conpiracy theories? Next they are going to get the blame for bringing down the WTC towers

Swiftnissty

Swiftnissty said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Not sure if its been posted yet but:
http://www.communityrun.org/petitions/stop-police-brutality-at-mardi-gras?clickemail=1&t=dXNlcmlkPTEwNzg5MDgsZW1haWxpZD0xMzQ5

A petition about the incident.

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Its pretty shocking in that video watching that poor young lad being body-slammed by the police like that. If that was me being body-slammed in by the police in that situation, as pissed as id be with the police for doing it in the first place, it be just as pissed at the nit-wit bystanders who inflamed and escalated the situation and frayed tensions even further by abusing the police. Part of that body-slam seemed to belong to those bystanders who were abusing the police

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013

The greatest injustice done to this poor kid, who appears to have been assaulted by police, might not be the fact that he was assaulted, but that he is now facing possible conviction to charges that may inhibit future career prospects/overseas travel/ect, and im sure that where his priorities have now turned to

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 6th Mar, 2013

poor little 18yr old Jamie was no threat. the officer could see he was distressed after they handcuffed him and knocked his head into the cement and punched him. They should have sat him down and told him why he was being arrested and gave their names. not continue to throw him around like a rag doll and punch him and choke him and stand on him . DISGUSTING. I have been hearing many reports of police brutality, misconduct, verbal abuse and swearing, and illegal searches. If you had been there and saw the type of riot squad thugs you wouldn't have felt safe. they weren't there to protect but to keep in line and intimidate

now they have bogus charges against him to protect themselves. he assaulted them? oh please! :eek:

A protest march has been organised for friday by CAAH. Perhaps now is the time to start getting back to our roots!

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 6th Mar, 2013

http://www.starobserver.com.au/news/local-news/new-south-wales-news/2013/03/05/mardi-gras-police-assault-allegations/99376

zebra23

zebra23 said on the 6th Mar, 2013

http://www.starobserver.com.au/news/local-news/new-south-wales-news/2013/03/05/mardi-gras-police-assault-allegations/99376


'Andrew*, another 32-year old Sydney gay man whose name has been changed, alleges he was assaulted by plain clothes police officers outside the Mardigrasland afterparty at the Hordern Pavilion at around 11pm on Saturday night.

Speaking to the Star Observer on condition of anonymity, Andrew alleges that he was “lunged at” by four or five plain clothes officers while eating a stick of chewing gum, slammed against a wall and choked around the neck for almost a minute while being ordered to ‘spit it out’ before being let go and handcuffed.

“They choked me to the point where I was only semi-conscious. I just couldn’t breathe, it was like I was drowning,” he said.

Andrew alleges that he was strip-searched in a police van and the officers suggested taking him to hospital to have his stomach pumped. When his interrogators realised he had not taken any drugs, they then accused Andrew of assaulting police.

“They kept telling me that assault of an officer was a much worse offence, and how I should have just admitted to possession and taking drugs. I think they were trying to intimidate me into giving a drug confession.”

Andrew claims the officers then attempted to infer that he was violent and unstable for the benefit of the interview’s tape recording.

“One of them kept rubbing his chin like I’d hit him, and they kept asking me if I was calm even though I had been calm and cooperative the entire time I was being interrogated.”

While Andrew was not formally charged, officers said he would receive a court summons in the mail.'


So all you precious puritans on here that say 'if you're not carrying anything you have nothing to worry about'.....bullshit! Please don't grace these forums with your naive crap any more.

Virgindirk

Virgindirk said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Do certain NSW police officers need anger managment training????

Yes big crowds and confined spaces can spark trouble but arn't the police there to diffuse trouble not create it???

From the pics and footage ive seen I'd doubt 18y.o Jamie could have done much physical damage to either officer so I don't understand why they they gave him such severe treatment. In sydney there are constant reports of drive by shootings, armed robberies, gangland wars etc etc but instead of chasing after the big crims, these officers chose to pick on a young 18y.o Mardi Gras reveller who posed no real threat to the community.

Go Figure.

Tigerland

Tigerland said on the 6th Mar, 2013

What's with all the f*cking fake profiles suddenly popping up in this thread? :mad:

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 6th Mar, 2013



this has really angered the entire community - I am not surprised there are many first time posters commenting on this.

Virgindirk

Virgindirk said on the 6th Mar, 2013



What are you on about????

Mine is certainly not fake, and most of the posters in this thread don't appear to be either.

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 6th Mar, 2013

protest march starting at taylor square 6pm Friday going to surry hills police station. If you are upset please join the march organised by Community Action Against Homophobia.

facebook : https://www.facebook.com/events/616731265020510/

Tigerland

Tigerland said on the 6th Mar, 2013

What are you on about????

Mine is certainly not fake, and most of the posters in this thread don't appear to be either.

Never said yours was Miss Paranoia, scroll back and see all the other "new profiles" that have suddenly materialised out of nowhere.

Virgindirk

Virgindirk said on the 6th Mar, 2013



if you wanna talk fake profiles i suggest to check out Mr Van der Bourgh and is loan facilities thread.

Marko

Marko said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Perhaps I can shed some light on this Tiger, when the Same Same story went live, it wasn't long after momentum was growing on FB about this video, many were posting the SS story on the comments boxes of Alex Greenwich, GMRA etc, as well as it appearing on SS's own FB page. I am starting to think that this has become a trial by media before all the facts are even heard.

Barrin

Barrin said on the 6th Mar, 2013


I am starting to think that this has become a trial by media before all the facts are even heard.

But of the facts we have there is a worrying pattern: three gay guys (two of them reported as being slightly built) none of them charged with drug or alcohol offences yet all of them subject to excessive violence. I hope these are the only three.

Marko

Marko said on the 6th Mar, 2013



I haven't heard about this third incident yet, but of the first two covered in this story, one we know was disobeying a police directive and continued walking across the street even though he was told not too, so was detained because of it. The other we don't know why in the first place he came to the attention of the authorities, so making an emotional judgement of the situation based upon the video which doesn't show the entire event, as well as the detainee's build isn't warranted untill all the facts are known.

marzattax2001

marzattax2001 said on the 6th Mar, 2013

This appears to be similar the the tragic case of the Brazilian student. Police over reacting. In this case we do not have the excuse of suspected robbery. Much of this type of behaviour is engendered by paranoia on the part of police as much as pack attack mentality. It is most unfortunate to have taken place as relationships between the police and community have improved. The officers involved in both incidents came from out of town which may have something to do with it. I can't see much to excuse though.

tiff878

tiff878 said on the 6th Mar, 2013

People have been saying that at around 57 secs that Jamie kicks out at someone/something....
I watched that part several times to see if this is correct.
I can see why some people say he kicks someone/something, but I'm assuming that is because of the noise you hear & coz you see his leg elevated as he's coming back.....
I'm questioning whether he was just walking away & the noise you hear is the cops hand slapping him as he grabs him before throwing him to the ground & the leg being up is the body's natural balancing response when being pulled back.
I too may be wrong. Wish there was another angle of this whole incident or that a few more witnesses would speak up about what actually happened leading up to the police brutality.

ammonite

ammonite said on the 6th Mar, 2013

^there's also the friend possibly telling him 'don't kick'

Milieu

Milieu said on the 6th Mar, 2013

I am shocked and appalled. I hope that justice prevails - though in this case I have my doubts.

mark_

mark_ said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Jaskson was sober in tonight's TV interview where he admitted his memory of "mucking around" was "hazy" and he's certainly throwing punches in this video

http://video.news.com.au/2340853617/Mardi-Gras-incident

And just how did he get that giant scar on his chin?

hesterd

hesterd said on the 6th Mar, 2013

I dunno... I think it's a little unneeded at this point to cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war as it were. The circumstances leading up to the incident where the victim was thrown to the ground with such force is unknown.

Not to defend the police over the victim (or vice-versa), but with nothing but circumstantial evidence to work on it is unfair, both to the Police and to the victim to make a snap decision either way. *Shrugs* There will be an inquest in to the matter. If at that point the officers involved were found to be using excessive force, that is the point for the flurry of (polite) rage and righteous indignation to flow.

The complaint has been made, it has been responded to and action has been taken to determine the validity of the complaint. Until then there isn't much that can or should be done to ensure an unbiased hearing of the matter.

My $0.02 on the matter. Take it how you want it.

Slider

Slider said on the 6th Mar, 2013

We don't see reports of excessive Police violence at other large public events so how else are we to see this as nothing but deep seated institutionalized homophobia.

The video speaks for itself. The actions of the police in this instance are inexcusable.

But what is anyone going to do about it?


trina2004

trina2004 said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Jaskson was sober in tonight's TV interview where he admitted his memory of "mucking around" was "hazy" and he's certainly throwing punches in this video

http://video.news.com.au/2340853617/Mardi-Gras-incident

And just how did he get that giant scar on his chin?

Why is he on the ground in the first place?
Was he lying there and the police went over and grabbed him?
Did they knock him over?

What does a scar have to do with anything?

Mama Catastrophe

Mama Catastrophe said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Well your ol Mama thinks we should stay away from branding this as a homophobic attack - simply because we don't know for sure that it was. Without any proof we just speculating and playing the Homophobic Card on a hunch is ridiculous. Incidents like this are nothing new and certainly aren't limited to GLBTIQ events. Re the actual treatment of this boy - well Mama prolly thinks he was a little intoxicated and maybe gave the copper a bit of lip - however that doesn't excuse the way that copper threw him around. It wouldn't matter what this kid did to bring him to the attention of the police and even if he did lash out at the police in either anger or just fear, the police should be trained to deal with it without that sort of overly violent behaviour. Once he was cuffed he should have just been sat on the ground until he calmed down enough to take him into custody or questioned and released.

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 6th Mar, 2013

the police need to be held to a higher standard. this cops behaviour was stupid, dangerous and excessive

ithinkitmightb

ithinkitmightb said on the 6th Mar, 2013

He's not exactly innocent, he actually did throw a punch at one of the cops, here the vid: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sFwkVRZWemk.
While yeah the cops had no right to tie him up and then hit him, they went way too far, he's not exactly innocent either

danduck

danduck said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Personally I think we should get as many People as possible to donate money to this guy to get a team of lawyers to get the police involved charged and imprisoned. What a disgusting display of humanity.

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013



Taking away another family's son through imprisonment, just to satify your reactionary blood-lust, isnt exactly humanity at its finest either

danduck

danduck said on the 6th Mar, 2013

No it's called basic law. You make someone suffer then you suffer the consequences

mikeymikeymikey

mikeymikeymikey said on the 6th Mar, 2013

alex greenwich is self serving. his input is a distraction. the poor fellow in the vid is a different story and I hope the law (hmmmm) serves him properly. What a disgraceful show.

bigbadbubba

bigbadbubba said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Appalling remember this

you tube /watch?v=1ljYNgLnpxM

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013



Hardly. That particular policeman used excessive force, and now you are prescribing excessive force (of the law) be used against him, by wanting him imprisioned - you're baying for blood, thats leagues away from basic law

danduck

danduck said on the 6th Mar, 2013

I don't want blood because I don't condone violence. I want justice. Are you saying it is ok for people to go around abusing people with no consequence? I'm confused with your post. Anyway everyone has many mixed opinions. This is just mine.

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013



Look we are on the same side here, but the reality is, no one is, as of yet, is in full command of all the facts. Taking that into account, i think its a little silly (and an example of excessive force) to demand that the police officer involved be jailed. There are move than two levels of punishment you know. There isnt just going to prison, and not got to prison, and nothing in between. Just do what everyone in that vicinity of the incident didnt do that night, and draw a calm breath

cookie82

cookie82 said on the 6th Mar, 2013

how is special training for police going to better deal with people who identify as gay? Surely we have moved forward from the idea of 'training to deal with gays 101?' Doesnt the gay community just want to be treated equally? A special training course only reinforces that we require some special treatment.

danduck

danduck said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Fair call. I have yoga tonight so I will breath deeply and regroup my thoughts. Thanks for the honest opinion. You make a good point :-)

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013

I like the concept of potentially funding this lads legal defence though. I think that is a little more practical than angry protests at taylors square

danduck

danduck said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Perhaps. Next time I'm in Brisvegas I'll shout u a beer ;-)

wysi

wysi said on the 6th Mar, 2013

he's been charged with a crime and the police will use that as reason for their action.

ammonite

ammonite said on the 6th Mar, 2013

you can see him hit or try to hit a police man in the other video

local_warming

local_warming said on the 6th Mar, 2013



O i need to update that. Ive moved back to sydney now

danduck

danduck said on the 6th Mar, 2013

Haha. All good mate. Take care

MrAsh

MrAsh said on the 6th Mar, 2013



He's got a public profile now some lawyer will surely represent him gratis or at a discounted rate. I'm more interested about the other people allegedly involved in incidents with the police during this years Mardi Gras. What's happening to them?

wysi

wysi said on the 6th Mar, 2013



i wonder if youd show him same level of support if he were an old ugly thin gay man?

str82gay

str82gay said on the 6th Mar, 2013

I personally believe that mardi gras has become a rather "joyless" event.

It has, like so much else of our lives become so sanitized. All I saw this year was orderly people lining the streets watching the parade - no raunchiness, very little drunkeness and not a great of revelry.

The huge police presence felt menacing, the roads were blocked off for at least 2 hours following the parade with pedestrians unable to cross Oxford street anywhere, and for no apparent reason. And then footage appears showing the apparent heavy handedness of the police towards some individuals. And of course, there was the obligatory sniffer dogs and searches for people going on to the party which is a great buzz kill whichever way you look at it.

We appear to have forgotten that mardi-gras was born out of the need to protest our gay rights and civil treatment, and the essence of this parade certainly now appears long forgotten.

The mardi gras has died. Long live the mardi gras.

mark_

mark_ said on the 6th Mar, 2013

^
I think you're making a reference to the declaration The King is dead. Long live the King! where there's an automatic transfer of sovereignty from a dying monarch to their replacement monarch.

I think Sydney's 'mardi gras monarch' should just pass away.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_King_is_dead._Long_live_the_King.

flounder

flounder said on the 6th Mar, 2013

There should be more dramas like this, never seen so many peeps stick their heads up in one go. :eek:

local_warming

local_warming said on the 7th Mar, 2013



Let me know next time you get beaten up and i'll tell you

Simoneybabe

Simoneybabe said on the 7th Mar, 2013



Basic law provides for a jail term. Why should other people be jailed for assault and police not? There's no deterrent there, which is what the police need; part of the problem with police violence recurring is that the judges and magistrates tend to let them off and find the charge "not sustained". The judges and magistrates are rich and insulated from the real world, and as long as the cops protect their wealth they support them, and are happy for the police to protect their rich priveleged position by attacking the everyday citizens, especially the poor and minority groups.

I'm surprised at the number of posters who are siding with the police, against the overwhelming evidence.
Maybe they are rich old queens who as long as the cops do their bidding, which they will because they are rich, don't care what the cops do to the rest of the community.

I marched in one mardi gras and I carried a placard that read "stop police violence".
The cops were getting quite aggressive about it.
I was the only one in that parade that was protesting; everyone else was just putting on a spectacle for the straights or companies using it as a chance for some advertising exposure.
But I bet if in relation to these bashings people get together and propose a float dedicated to stopping police violence and transphobia and homophobia, the mardi gras board will not let you march in the parade.
Don't want to tarnish the new image of the parade, or upset the sponsors.
A lack of solidarity there.

If you want to know what the cops get up to on a regular basis then read beatproject; cops letting german shepherd dogs off the leash to chase men at beats, stopping one guy in his car and telling him to remove a marriage equality sticker from his car window as he found it "offensive", and stuff like that.

MyBoyFreindIsGay

MyBoyFreindIsGay said on the 7th Mar, 2013

Seems the young 18 year old chap had his share of alcoholic beverages for the evening.

Simoneybabe

Simoneybabe said on the 7th Mar, 2013



"It's pretty funny watching a sooky lil Jew crying in the gutter coz the big bad SS man beat him up...."

BrianNZ

BrianNZ said on the 8th Mar, 2013

/watch?v=nT0zHS--mJI

Interesting lead up to the video. Jamie assaulted a female stranger, was apprehended by the police, and reacted violently. He was really letting the police have it by kicking them with those heavy boots and punching them. I am not supprised when he was slammed to the ground for getting another kick in. Of course the video being shown round the world only shows Jamie pleading his innocence and the police reaction to his earlier outburst. Pays to have all the facts before judging. I didn't do anything is bullsh*t. Unfortunately scenes like this makes it hard when brutality is used as we think it is just a further case of video recorded purposely to show police in a bad light. Jamie, you fought the police and they fought back, you were wrong.

Marko

Marko said on the 8th Mar, 2013

/watch?v=nT0zHS--mJI

Interesting lead up to the video. Jamie assaulted a female stranger, was apprehended by the police, and reacted violently. He was really letting the police have it by kicking them with those heavy boots and punching them. I am not supprised when he was slammed to the ground for getting another kick in. Of course the video being shown round the world only shows Jamie pleading his innocence and the police reaction to his earlier outburst. Pays to have all the facts before judging. I didn't do anything is bullsh*t. Unfortunately scenes like this makes it hard when brutality is used as we think it is just a further case of video recorded purposely to show police in a bad light. Jamie, you fought the police and they fought back, you were wrong.

+1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WHPcnhDmprM

mark_

mark_ said on the 8th Mar, 2013



:p Yes, I got 30 more 'likes' in just one week.

I hope all these newbies stick around so SS can get more advertising revenue.

local_warming

local_warming said on the 8th Mar, 2013

When i logged onto grindr this afternoon (go on, admit it, you all did as well) there was a pop-up ad from grindr saying that lord mayor of sydney, clover moore, was requesting that anyone who witnessed the incident that night, to contact the member for sydney, alex greenwich, to pass on your information

MrAsh

MrAsh said on the 8th Mar, 2013



That would have been a cock blocker. :eek:

MrAsh

MrAsh said on the 8th Mar, 2013

:p Yes, I got 30 more 'likes' in just one week.

I hope all these newbies stick around so SS can get more advertising revenue.

And a few of them were from me. :cool:

mark_

mark_ said on the 8th Mar, 2013

^ and I was hoping I'd see you at the rally tonight.

We saw a few minor celebrities amongst the crowd of discontents. :p

MrAsh

MrAsh said on the 8th Mar, 2013

^ and I was hoping I'd see you at the rally tonight.

We saw a few minor celebrities amongst the crowd of discontents. :p

I was working back!

crazzymikey

crazzymikey said on the 9th Mar, 2013

[URL="https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=f2ozYn_5p94"]https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=f2ozYn_5p94

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