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Documents show NSW police changed their minds over Porter investigation

By TBS Newsbot

CW: This piece discusses sexual violence and suicide.

According to released documents, the South Australian police asked their colleagues in NSW to take a statement regarding the alleged sexual assault involving Christian Porter; one that the NSW police refused.

Additionally, it seems that they made this decision without speaking to the alleged victim.

MP David Shoebridge, who filed a motion to release the documents, said that the NSW police “made two separate decisions to delay taking a statement, neither of which appears to have had a valid basis.”

As Paul Karp of The Guardian noted, the documents “also show the NSW police rejected a request from Porter’s accuser to take her statement via Skype and alternatives were not pursued because the alleged victim seemed ‘resigned’ to Covid-19 interruptions to travel delaying it until September.”

As the documents state, in February 2020, the alleged victim was in Sydney, meeting with her legal representatives. At “short notice”, the NSW offered her to make a formal statement. She instead opted for the police to visit her at home, so she could have a support person with her.

According to the documents, on March 10, NSW detectives made an application to visit her in Adelaide.

Per the documents published by The Guardian, the application was supported by the co-ordinator of the child abuse and sex crimes squad who said that it “involves a very high-profile and a detailed statement is required … there are circumstances relating to this victim that in my view requires 2X investigators present,” he said.

On March 13, the application was rejected, as the deputy commissioner of investigations and counter-terrorism claimed there was “insufficient detail … to justify why this travel cannot be deferred in accordance with … restricting interstate travel to operational necessity.”

The alleged victim took her life in June of 2020.

In March, the NSW police prosecutors determined, seemingly very quickly and without questioning Porter, that they would not be proceeding with any more investigations – let alone criminal charges. As far as they were concerned, the matter is now closed.

In March, Emeritus Professor of Law, Rick Sarre, explained how the NSW police were able to make such a ruling so quickly. He wrote:

“… why do NSW police have the final determination and how could they move so quickly? Well, the alleged victim was South Australian and the alleged perpetrator was Western Australian, but the assault was alleged to have taken place in NSW. Hence, it fell to that state’s police to make an investigation and consider their options.

“At the early stages of any investigation, police are the “gatekeepers” for decisions that might lead to a prosecution. The guidelines used by police prosecutors are straightforward: they decide whether the evidence is capable of leading to a successful conviction and whether it is in the public interest for a prosecution to proceed.

“They do not, and cannot, go on “fishing” expeditions. They cannot launch a prosecution hoping something will emerge down the track that might lead to the conviction of the accused.

“In this case, we can assume the police decided the fact the complainant was deceased (and could not give evidence) and that the alleged offence happened more than three decades ago provided too little evidence to go on. In their statement, the police used the term “admissible evidence”. By that, one can assume, they meant any hearsay evidence that was not capable of being corroborated could not be taken into account.”

Sarre also noted that:

“… it may seem to many that the idea of deciding not to proceed without questioning the alleged perpetrator was a little odd, but the discretion attached to pre-trial decision-making is broad.

“It is important to note that the inability of a complainant to give evidence for any reason (including death) is not the end of the matter. I know of no jurisdiction in Australia where a prosecution will be abandoned solely on the lack of a complainant’s testimony.

“That was not always the case. In days gone by, once a complainant withdrew his or her complaint, a prosecution was inevitably withdrawn.

“The rules of evidence have also been reformed to make it easier for prosecutors to lead at trial with evidence of the propensity of an accused to commit offences of a sexual nature. Nevertheless, the chances of a prosecution in a sexual offence case leading to a conviction remain slim.

“As criminologist Kathleen Daly pointed out a decade ago, of 100 complaints recorded by the police in Australia at that time, only 28% proceeded past the police to prosecution, 20% were finally prosecuted at trial, and only 11.5% resulted in convictions to any sexual offence. It would not be too much different now.”

In the time since the allegations came to light, Porter has launched a defamation case against the ABC and has been reshuffled out of the attorney general’s portfolio.

Despite the above, the South Australian coroner could consider that the alleged sexual assault could be part of an inquest into the woman’s death, but they’ve not yet made a decision.

This article was originally published on The Big Smoke.

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17 comments

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  1. Harry Lime

    Did Fauxmo have a quiet word with Mick Fullerbullshit over the garbage bins?Just a thought.

  2. John Hanna

    Harry Lime, funny you should say thet, I had the same thought.

  3. Josephus

    Seems the nsw police are morally implicated in this once brilliant and friendly woman’s suicide . Shame on them , could have interviewed her via zoom or phone couldn’t they? When will perhaps complicit barriers to human rights and justice ever end? Where is our Bill of Rights?

  4. Jack sprat

    Mick Fuller the clique cop well acquainted with the line ” move along move along nothing to see here “

  5. Kenneth A Robinson

    Seems a bit suspect and am wondering if the alleged perpetrator had not been a prominent politician would it have been treated differently, I feel that this matter should be investigated further to clear up any doubts, maybe the SA Coroner will shed some light on this?

  6. DrakeN

    Shades of the Luna Park fires case, Jack?

  7. Jon Chesterson

    NSW Deputy Commissioner, if not the Commissioner, Minister for Police and/or Attorney General for NSW all in the employ of the Liberals (no government to see here) would have rest their right knee on this one. Can’t tell me in such a case on such flimsy excuses not to acquire a statement has any defensible argument behind it. Rather a hush word with the Federal Attorney General himself at the time, the alleged perpetrator or hurriedly all hushed up without it, and this got utterly quashed in the Liberal’s political interests and misogyny. ‘Not in the public interest’ to prosecute, my Aunt Molly Pimpernel. So corrupt you could mow down a laud of Scottish Jacobites and half the Australian population before the cockatoo crowed thrice and still have time for a beer at PointsBet Stadium and not get caught with your pants down in public before the clock strikes midnight.

  8. Harry Lime

    Very good Jon,my regards to Aunt Molly.Meanwhile in the Senate inquiry,Christine Holgate is measuring the Liar up for a new arsehole.Is that the dam wall I hear creaking?

  9. New England Cocky

    It appears that NSW Police, possibly under direction from Hell$lingers Cult member Police Commisisoner Mick Fuller at the request of Scummo, are playing their traditional role of Mr Fix-it for the politically indisposed.

    This then raises the question asked by Malcolm Turnbull, “”Who killed Katharine Thornton?”

  10. skip

    Oh yeah the Gladys’ Mikeee Fulller boy. Good liddle oink oink . . . good powtaw boy . . .

    The New South Wales police commissioner, Mick Fuller, says he was “disappointed” by the conduct of officers who strip-searched a 16-year-old girl at a music festival in 2018 but has again stood by the use of the controversial police power.

    Fuller has taken the unusual step of publicly advocating for the use of strip-search powers in the wake of high-profile criticism, saying in a separate interview on Monday that young people should have “a little bit of fear” of police and that questioning “the legitimacy of policing” had “a negative impact on public safety”

    The New South Wales police performed strip-searches on more than 100 girls in the last three years, including two 12-year-olds.

    https://www.theguardian.com/australia-news/2019/nov/06/revealed-nsw-police-strip-searched-more-than-100-girls-including-12-year-olds

  11. Wam

    The protection of their own is a necessity for the line of work of the police. The few, in my circle of friends and relatives, I know have Dobermans or Rottweilers with a narrow range of friends and visiting venues.
    They all come with the baggage of family police history.
    One schoolfriend of my son, asked her dad to respect my son’s views. But neither of us got an invite to a fishing trip.
    When such behaviour is a natural pattern of life it is easy to extend such protection to favoured people in high places but tough luck if your profile doesn’t fit ‘the friend’ category.
    The LNP attorney general of Aust is free from attack but a Skype interview may have forced the unwanted investigation?

  12. Williambtm

    It pleases me to read NEC’s comment and each of the excellent comments published that concern this latest revelation.
    In my mind, it discloses what had likely been set into play before the “Bernard Collaery & witness K tyrant” had publicly begged his innocence to allegations so heinous and reprehensible to have been committed by so abhorrent & untrustworthy the individual.

    Criminal conduct does not restrict itself to the population of the proletariat in this nation.
    The more elevated & privileged the stature accorded to an individual, the greater the propensity for those that have set themselves to rule over all, are temptingly inclined to meddle with the rules of justice equally applicable to their conspiring selves.

  13. Terence Mills

    Seems that the NSW police were as hasty in not pursuing this complaint as they were in refusing to investigate the forged documents issue involving Angus Taylor.

    In both cases the police declined to even interview the respective ministers…………………….!

  14. Max Gross

    Who drove the woman to suicide?

  15. New England Cocky

    @wam: The ”protection of their own” is entrenched deeply within the system. Consider this real fife situation from Armidale NSW.

    Police are called to a domestic situation that becomes heated and results in the arrest of a woman, who is transported to Armidale Police Station, where she is assaulted by one of the attending officers, a Highway Patrolman with 28 years experience, in front of the Station CCTV cameras.

    The woman sued the Police and settled out of Court for an agreed sum. The Highway Patrolman and the Station Commander were allowed to resign to protect their 28 years and 30 years respectively superannuation payments.

    Then in Australian politics we have …..

  16. Williambtm

    Max, your question has introduced a new and valuable perspective into the CP allegation scandal.

    The alleged date and time underlying the alleged criminal act of rape are known, then that the alleged perpetrator is known,…though not yet introduced into this shocking case matter has been the choice of weaponry employed… that had verily premeditated the ominous, compelling desire for victim K to end her life.

    There comes a time in the minds of many persons whose lives and minds have been left teetering on the brink of the abyss…often due to the cause and effect of their being endlessly waiting for the closure of a serious legalistic matter.

    E.G.be it a matter of their frequently deferred compensatory monies.. agreed to some 12 months earlier.

    (A favored ploy by Banks and Insurance companies, and occasionally the courts of law in this country.)

    I have worded this probable-cause abomination… as “unconscionable premeditated psychological abstraction.”
    See an example below.

    We will get in touch with you in the next fourteen days or so, Mrs. housewife; we would like to settle your claim for your due compensation. Notwithstanding that some 18 months had already elapsed since the first announced closure to this matter.

    This psychological abstraction ruse, or be it emotional abuse, had been employed by the which Bank, in which they had been found guilty, of fraud, forgery, and the proffering of deceptive financial advice… that was knowingly against the best interests of their clients.
    Cunningly settled out of court.

    The sudden belief… that all is lost, I have become a mental wreck; I can no longer endure this punishing affliction to continue with my life as there seems no end to the mental tortures I have undergone these past years.

    Meanwhile, not yet examined is the use of psychologic bafflements and or call it abstractive purposes, being played out at that crucial time that may verily have been the premeditated cause for victim K to pass from this torturing world into a hoped-for, more welcoming another.
    The cold cause of ‘death by suicide’… was known by all and everyone.

    The readers are now asked to contemplate; is this means of “psychological abstraction” up for consideration to be the chosen sightless weapon… perhaps even to include the malice aforethought… as now mentioned herein… that had brought about the highly emotional charged tragic suicide death of this hapless innocent victim K?

    I am suddenly aware of the tears welling up from my eyes in having finished the preparation of this comment…

  17. Josephus

    The NSW police must be investigated for not phoning or zooming Kate to get her testimony ; their behaviour drove her to suicide probably. And, since when does death stop a case? Do murderers escape as the victim is dead and cannot give evidence? Seems the police do not protect the people but rather drop a case as soon as that person is in government or in the Parliament. Democracy is a figleaf.

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