Saturday, December 12, 2015

Cop accused of using excessive force loses court battle over forced station transfer

A Surfers Paradise police officer with 28 complaints against him who has been stood down over allegations of excessive force has lost a court battle over being forcibly transferred. Senior Constable Nathan Irwin has been the subject of 28 complaints and 68 allegations over the past nine years, many relating to the use of excessive force.

In March, Sen-Constable Irwin was told he was being “temporarily redeployed” to Coomera and was not to attend the Surfers Paradise Police Station unless under senior supervision. Acting Assistant Commissioner Stephen Hollands wrote to Sen-Constable Irwin again in April asking him if he would prefer to be transferred to Southport or Nerang.

Sen-Constable Irwin objected to being moved from Surfers Paradise and with backing from the Queensland Police Union, took the case to the Supreme Court.

Court documents show Assistant Commissioner Hollands wrote that since 2007 there had been an “adverse pattern of behaviour” involving Sen-Constable Irwin. He said there had been 28 complaints and 68 allegations since 2007, “most notable with respect to matters involving assaults/excessive force”.

“Irrespective of the possible causes, the preceding allegations are indications that your level of professionalism is below that expected of a Senior Constable of Police in the Queensland Police Service. “Removing you from your current workplace will enable you to work in an environment where the frequency of confrontation with members of the public is less likely.”

Barrister Peter Davis QC argued the court should rule the transfer was invalid because it would be for the purpose of disciplining him for misconduct.

This week Justice Philip McMurdo dismissed Sen-Constable Irwin’s application and found the purpose of the transfer was “one of risk management”.

“The factual preconditions for the exercise of disciplinary powers do not exist because there has not yet been a conclusion of misconduct,” Justice McMurdo said. “He (the Acting Commissioner) has not sought or indicated that he will seek any disciplinary sanction.”

Sen-Constable Irwin has been the arresting officer in a number of high-profile cases of alleged police brutality, including that of youth worker Ray Currier, who suffered brain damage after his arrest.

The QPU said the transfer was based on complaints that had not been proven.



Mrs Accountable said...

This is more Evidence of the Double standards of Ian Leavers and the Police Union. This officer is guilty of nearly 30 cases of excessive force and the police union is STILL backing him.
A case I am very familiar with:- with a definite conflict of interest I saw the Police Union do a deal with the solicitor who was paid by the union (union fees) to represent the officer transferred on trumped up charges. After telling the officer "if he nodded his nut he would be looked after" by the service, the same solicitor then said, "to the officers credit he did not nod his nut", because he did not see it. The solicitor then appeared to change his opinion when the parents paid for his advice: "The officer should have been given some benefit of the doubt, some natural justice" "It would be acceptable to have the opinion that the officer had told the truth". "It was unfortunate, he didn't deserve to be treated like this".
This solicitor was at that time head of the law society. QCAT retired high court judge just happened to agree with the solicitor being paid by the police union supposedly to represent the police officer BUT at the same time do what the police union wanted done. To justify the transfer. NO support or HONEST representation of the real and honest facts by LEAVERS or the union.
Not just the cops who are corrupt.

Mrs Accountable said...

"Complaints that had not been proven" QPU said. What an absolute joke.
If the QPU wanted to they would have the usual internal investigation with untested, undocumented evidence that would in their opinion prove the complaints were justified.
The only thing this statement says is that the QPU DOES NOT WANT to string this officer up.
It means that THE BOYS CLUB of QPU and maybe even QPS is protecting the officer guilty of excessive force towards the public.
Thing hard and long before you give your blessing to your son or daughter becoming a police officer.

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