Thursday, February 12, 2015

The police haven't changed

Over a decade ago, in the wake of allegations of rape by senior police, the government established the Commission of Inquiry into Police Conduct. Among its findings when it reported back: the police were crap at dealing with rape cases. They ignored complaints, minimised offender's behaviour and blamed victims. After the inquiry, they promised they'd improve their behaviour, with better investigation procedures and oversight. But sadly, nothing has changed:

Police officers failed to properly investigate a sexual assault complaint by a woman with a history of mental health issues, the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) has found.

On November 11, 2012, the woman complained that she had been sexually assaulted by a security guard at a hospital where she was a patient.

IPCA chairman Sir David Carruthers said police officers who investigated the allegation took very little action and unfairly predetermined the outcome based on the complainant's mental health history.

The security guard went on to sexually assault another woman in August 2013, at which point he was also charged with sexually assaulting the woman who complained in November.

The woman only found out about the arrest through the media when the man appeared in court a month later, and it was then that she complained to the IPCA about her treatment.

So they refused to investigate a rapist, leaving them free to rape again. Now that's a better work story! Its as if that whole commission of inquiry had never happened.

So, will the officers who failed this victim be disciplined or held accountable? I think we all know the answer to that. And then we wonder why nothing ever changes, and the police go on ignoring rapists (and rapists in uniform)... the entire institution is rotten to the core and needs to be thoroughly purged to remove its toxic culture.

The full report is online here.