CCTV shows Ms Dhu’s final days before custody death

Staff reportersThe West Australian
CCTV shows Ms Dhu’s final days before custody death
Camera IconCCTV shows Ms Dhu’s final days before custody death

WA coroner Ros Fogliani agreed today to release CCTV footage of Ms Dhu’s last days before her death in custody.

The first clip shows Ms Dhu being walked into the South Hedland Police Station charge room. She can be heard moaning and clutching her sides as an officer returns to the area behind the desk.

VideoCCTV footage of Ms Dhu's time at South Hedland Police Station. WARNING: Footage may be distressing.

The officer tells her a vehicle has been called to take her to hospital. She adds that because Ms Dhu is under arrest on a warrant she will have to go with her. Ms Dhu continues to cry out.

The officer tells her the vehicle will arrive in five minutes and then hands her some water, advising her to take small sips and take deep breaths.

Ms Dhu continues to moan and then tries to stand, grabbing a holding cell to steady herself as the officer looks on.

Another officer appears and says to Ms Dhu “You’re not helping yourself”, describing the way she is sitting hunched over, and then suggests she put her legs down: “Try to straighten up and see how it feels.”

Ms Dhu continues to complain “It hurts”. She is lead out into a garage where she walks along the wall to steady herself.

An officer opens the rear of the 4WD while another walks behind her. She can be seen unsteady on her feet and leaning to one side, then clearly struggling to climb into the vehicle as three officers look on.

The 4WD returns half an hour later and it appears she is still in pain.

She follows slowly behind an officer, still leaning to her right and is later seen again walking out of her cell, almost doubled over.

Ms Dhu is later seen laying in her cell, with coffee spilt on the floor. The officer grabs her hand to help her up. When she lets go Ms Dhu falls back, hitting her head on the ground.

The officer again grabs her arm and again tries to pull her up before laying her back down. Three officers are now in the cell but walk out as Ms Dhu is seen throwing her arms about while laying down.

The officers return and drag her out, first under her arms and then by the wrists.

She is then seen in the corridor, with one officer holding her arms and another her legs as they carry her.

A limp Ms Dhu is shown been loaded into the rear of a 4WD.

Below is CCTV vision and a transcript of conversations in the charge room of the police station between 10.17am and 12.19pm on August 4, 2014.

VideoCoroner releases CCTV footage after inquest into the death of Ms Dhu in custody.

10.17am

Constable Christopher Matier to a detainee in charge room: “Has she been screaming all night?”

Detainee: “Yeah.”

Constable Matier: “...think she is trying to get out.”

Detainee: “She’s really in pain.”

Constable Matier: “Yeah.”

10.28am

Sergeant Rick Bond to Constable Matier: “That would be the third time she’s been to hospital. She is fit to be held.”

10.31am

Constable Matier to Sergeant Bond: “She’s poured coffee all over the floor and everything.”

12.18pm

Sergeant Bond (as he is about to enter the charge room) to Dion Ruffin: “I’m too busy now taking your missus to the hospital to do you lunch.”

Sergeant Bond (in charge room) to female police officer: “She can’t feel her body, her whole body is numb, she can’t sit up, she can’t feel her legs... you name it.”

12.19pm

Sergeant Bond to a detainee in charge room: “You take drugs? Cause I’ll go and show you something, that’s what happens when you take drugs. You end up like this woman in here. Good deterrent not to take drugs.”

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