Thursday, September 25, 2008
Cops hide bashing tapes
Sergeant fights release of cell assault case video
A police sergeant acquitted of assaulting a prisoner in a cell wants to block the release of video footage shown to the jury.
News media outlets are seeking more than eight hours of footage filmed at the Whakatane police station where Rawiri Falwasser, 20, was badly injured while in custody on Labour Day in 2006. Mr Falwasser has said he feared for his life after being struck with batons and pepper-sprayed. He suffered gashes in his head and arm over an eight-hour period. In June, closed-circuit television tapes of the incident were played to a Tauranga District Court jury that acquitted Sergeant Keith Parsons, 51; Sergeant Earle Busby, 46; Senior Constable Bruce Laing, 53; and Constable John Mills, 39, of nine charges of assaulting Mr Falwasser. His mother, Kihi Falwasser, was not at yesterday's court hearing but said the family wanted the tapes to be released to media: "People need to see it themselves to form their own opinion of what happened inside the cell."
Of all the things that have really surprised me this year one was the Jury letting these 4 cops walk after they bashed the living shit out of Rawiri Falwasser in a Police cell on tape, Christ knows how the Jury came to it’s conclusion but I want to see the tape, as a member of the public and as a taxpayer I want to see how our brave boys in blue deal with one man in the cells, don’t you want to see for yourself if their level of violence was acceptable, isn’t it important now that a benchmark for violence within holding cells has been established that the rest of the public should see what that level of violence is? Shouldn’t we all get to see what is the new standard of treatment cops dish out when it isn’t Police 10-7? The Police claim that it isn’t fair because the media wouldn’t play the full 8 hours before the final beat down by the 4 cops, Alt Tv has no problems playing all 8 hours, just give me the tape. Perhaps we could edit the tape as the basis of a new Police recruitment advert ‘get better work stories’?