What qualifications do you need to work for Corrections? Well for the most part none whatsoever. Many of those working within management roles for Corrections can’t even manage their own lives let alone manage other staff. Ray and Judith make a good team, the inept and the arrogant running one of the most dysfunctional and corrupt sectors of Government this country’s tax payers have the misfortune to fund.
Meet Emily Sua, an integral part of that team who in her own words she “hates working with offenders”. So what better job for her than probation officer? Fuelled by her hate of offenders and a culture where even the language and terminology is entirely contrary to the statistics Corrections so blatantly manipulate to convince the public they are reducing reoffending, she now hangs out at national office on The Terrace, where she spends her days cultivating that hate of offenders in the Prosecution Support Team.
It is this intrenched culture of hate that is fostered from the CEO down that makes Corrections one of the most dysfunctional and ineffective of all Government departments. One need but look at the number of law suits that are currently in the system and the amount of tax payer money spent on defending the indefensible. Under the leadership of CEO Ray Smith, well perhaps leadership is not the right word because the man is as inept as those whose buttons he pushes, people such as Emily Sua get away with behaviour and dishonesty that would be unacceptable anywhere else. The blatancy of this woman is such that she loudly proclames that hate of offenders in public and thinks that this attitude will impress people. Well it might have impressed the Corrections colleague she was sharing the sentiment with at the time, but to those others within hearing had a different perspective.
It is time the likes of Emily Sua and her hate fuelled attitude was kicked in to touch. The only way that is going to happen is if the people at the top who not only encourage such attitudes but are very much a part of that culture are marooned on an island somewhere and the system is rebuilt from the top down.
Belinda Day – congratulations on being such a loser
…the award for running the worst probation office in the country.
For a considerable time advocacy and social service groups in the Wairarapa have had concerns about what is going on behind the walls of Masterton’s probation office. The actions of staff from this office in deliberatly putting misrepresenting information in written reports, is already the subject of an investigation by the Ombudsman’s office.
As with any organisation the rot starts at the top and here, at a local level at least, the responsibility must lie at the feet of mediocre service manager Belinda Day and her partner in crime Melanie Morris. Quite how an office the size of Masterton can justify having two managers is something that may forever remain a mystery. But in Corrections to reach the ranks of lower management requires no skills and you get there by virtue of longevity, no matter how bad you are at doing the job. That is most surely the case with Belinda Day. She displays a gross ignorance of everything and in a role where some degree of humanity is required she has absolutely none. Oh yes, and did we mention common sense? Belinda Day has none of these qualities.
In the most recent example of Day’s nasty, evil persona she and her colleague Melanie Morris are responsible for the persecution and harrasment of a woman recently released from incarceration, getting on with her life and doing all the right things with the right support – none of which came from Corrections. The cumulation of that harassment is likely to see Day and Morris named in litigation against the Department of Corrections, because that is what it takes to make these people accountable. Their duplicitious CEO Ray Smith day after day turns a blind eye to such failures and there is no effective complaints process, meaning that the only way to get any accountability is by way of litigation. People like Belinda Day think it is ok to use and abuse their positions to drive people to the brink of desperation and suicide. So what will it take to send a long, loud and very clear message to them that it is not ok?
Well Belinda the news is all bad, that is not acceptable behaviour and your day will come – much sooner than you think. You will be brought to account for the misery and distress you take such delight in causing people and we will see you in court very soon.
Neither Belinda Day or Melanie Morris wished to make any comment when invited to do so.
Detective John McGregor claims cops don’t lie – look in the mirror buddy!
What’s in the water in Hawke’s Bay that the place is so full of bent cops? This time it is Darryl Moore’s buddy and equally bent John McGregor. This guy claims he has never met a dishonest cop. What sort of sheltered life does he think we might have been living that anyone would swallow this line? What a short memory you must have Mr McGregor, that you have forgotten such names as Adam Dunnett the manipulative Hastings police officer who as jailed when a judge found he was a liar. Then there was the not so lively Mikayla Paul who was unable to lie her way out of an assault conviction. How could he have forgotten his good buddy Damon Davies who the Crown acknowledged had given perjured evidence? The there is the ever-increasing list of cops around the rest of the country who have been convicted on a litany of offences the core to all being that they are liars. Yet these are only the ones who got caught and there are still many more out there getting away with it on a daily basis.
Nothing like a bit of selective memory loss there John. No doubt this is a quality that he brings to the table on a daily basis and he does not need to practice bent policing any longer because it has become second nature to him.
McGregor is a great example of the double standards that police are so apt at shoving down our throats. In one breath he tries to convince us that all cops, himself included, are as honest as the day is long and in the next he is deliberately defying the law himself, safe in the knowledge that he is the police and can do what he likes. His moral compass so far off course that it is a wonder he can find his way out of bed in the mornings.
John McGregor is a product of his own ignorance and one of the best examples around of how bent cops thrive in Hawke’s Bay where it seems there is a higher ratio of corruption than any other part of the country. Unfortunately for Johnny boy he has now been named in litigation seeking $100,000 damages from the cops. These clowns need to learn that they cannot get away with home invasion hiding behind bogus search warrants and running amock. Now sit back and watch how many lies McGregor and his equally pathetic buddies trot out when they try and litigate their way out of this little hole they have dug for themselves. In typical cop fashion no doubt they will throw obscene amounts of tax payer money at defending the indefensible and trying to wear the oposition down.
Come on John, do the right thing and resign now. I am sure there is another job out there equally fitting your minimum wage skills.
Corrections National Commissioner Jeremy Lightfoot – another import with accountability issues
It is inarguable that the Department of Corrections is one of the most dysfunctional of our Government agencies and with alarming regularity we are seeing astonishing examples of this. The recent inquest in to the death of Jai Davis gave the public a rare insight in to the levels of incompetence and attitudes that dominate the ranks of Corrections staff. That any one person could have such disrespect for human life, but that the entire Department of Corrections has this attitude something that should be of deep concern to us all. All credit to Roger Brooking for not letting Corrections, police and IPCA bury this as they had wished to.
Some of what came out at that inquest was frightening. A corrections officer with 22 years experience admitting that she did not know that a medical officer was a doctor would be astonishing in any other agency but typical within Corrections. Records being falsified, staff refusing to give evidence at the inquest because they might incriminate themselves. The litany of medical and custodial incompetence goes beyond poor training and education and speaks to the core problems and attitudes that have dominated Corrections for decades. As long as the utterly biased Corrections Inspectorate is permitted to continue its existence and indulge in systemic whitewashing of legitimate complaints there will be no accountability and this sort of thing will continue to happen. Perhaps they think that killing off the inmate population is the key to reducing re-offending.
Chris “I’m as honest as the day is long” Yarwood
Those bad attitudes are not confined to the jailors and can also be found alive and well within the ranks of probation staff. Jodi Jeffry aka Jodi Watkins is but one example of someone who should not be in the job. Unable to attract or hold on to staff there has been a subtle move to import staff from the UK. In one office alone we find two examples of people with bad attitudes and Chris Yarwood, a retired detective from the UK tells everyone he meets that he is “as honest as the day is long”. Such self professed honesty is akin to second hand car dealer John who feels the need to call himself “Honest John’s Car Sales”. Yarwood is in fact as bent as they come and brings to the job of Service Manager at Napier Probation a serious attitude problem that reflects down the ranks.
Paul Grundy – epitomizes everything that’s wrong with Corrections
Working under Yarwood’s management is another UK import and British Army reject Paul Grundy. The only language Grundy knows is confrontation and disrespect. He is lazy and only does the minimum of work to keep ahead of the pack, this is reflected in some of the reports he writes. For example some months ago he wrote a brief report on an address in rural Hawke’s Bay, purporting that the property was unsuitable for electronic monitoring because there was no Vodafone signal. However when a local lawyer and technician went out to the property this claim proved to be entirely false. Another reflection of the inaccurate reports that probation staff so frequently place before the courts.
As long as the Department of Corrections is littered with such human garbage and limited intellect staff management will continue to devote a disproportionate amount of time and energy in to covering up the consequences that these staff create on an almost daily basis.
All those named in this article were invited to comment but have not done so.
Anyone who has sat in the same court room as Dompost’s Marty Sharpe and Hawke’s Bay Today’s Sam Hurley could be forgiven for wondering if they had dreamed it all when they get to read what these bastions of journalism write in their respective publications. Sharpe is so under the control of his cop mates that he will do anything to keep on side with them, even to the extent of forsaking a lead story.
At a recent trial kidnapping and blackmail trial in the Napier District Court that ran for a week, there was not a journalist to be seen. Normally a trial of this nature and magnitude would have the local journalists falling all over themselves trying to get a story in small town Napier, even if they have to embellish or change the facts to make it interesting.
What was so different about this trial? The police’s star witness was former Hawke’s Bay man Brent Willis AKA Brent Tomich AKA Alan Davidson, now in hiding in Hamilton. During the course of his evidence in this trial Willis admitted being a fraudster and a liar and pimp, yet police have never charged him with anything. Why you might well ask. Because Brent Willis is a long term police informant and his masters will do anything to protect that asset, even going so far as to bring false charges and then perjure themselves to get a conviction. Police have long been turning a blind eye to Willis activities including ripping off old people and defrauding WINZ.
Meantime you have got Detective Mike Signal the police officer in charge of the case sleeping with one of Willis’ hookers who now calls herself Shantell Parnz Khorus on Facebook but in real life is Shantell Pihama, and openly doing deals over televisions and other goodies in order to keep her on side. Yet where were our two erstwise journalists during all this? Doing the bidding of the cop mates and keeping well away.
Conversely these two bottom feeders Sharpe and Hurley will publish factually distorted and police biased articles at the bidding of police. Often these pieces of journalistic fiction are so far from the truth that the authors are the subject of public chastisement. In the cowardly fashion that each is so expert at they blame each other. Hurley’s catch phrase is “Don’t blame me, Marty told me to do it!”
Sharpe is the sort of bottom feeder who is so intent on keeping his police masters feeding him propaganda that his warped mind considers to be a good story, that he continually writes pro police drivel and expects the reading public to believe it is fact. This is the sort of person who will read other people’s bank information whilst standing at an ATM. So if you see Sharpe around town make sure he is not looking over your shoulder next time you go to the ATM.
Hurley is a wanna be journalist who, not long out of nappies, will do anything to get a story. He doesn’t care about the accuracy or the consequences of what he writes. His infantile mind seems to have convinced him that writing fiction and by so doing ruining people’s lives is the way to climb ths slippery pole.
One of Hurley’s favorite tricks is to try and support popularity for his articles by citing numbers of supporters from the Hawke’s Bay Today Facebook Page. When in reality these statistics are so utterly manipulated that they have no semblance to reality at all. Any comments posted on the Hawke’s Bay Today Facebook page that do not meet the editorial agenda are quickly deleted. In this article Hurley has manufactured a story by leading readers to believe that their Facebook page was overflowing with adverse comment, when in fact he had been deleting any posts that did not suit his purposes: “Shock At Mother’s Lenient Sentence“
Hurley replaced an equally untalented gutter journalist Anna Ferrick who left town in a hurry after she was caught with her pants down.
So when you read anything written by either of these pieces of human excrement, consider that it is unlikely to be even a semblance of the truth.
Yet another example of the out of control cops who pervade the Hawke’s Bay community has come to light in the form of Constable Wayne Stewart and Bay View’s camera shy community cop John Bruce. John Bruce is apparently so adverse to having his photo taken that he resorts to sneaking around and trying to delete from the camera photos taken of him. Sadly for John Bruce or “JB” as his colleagues like to call him, technology is smarter that this dumb as plod and the evidential photos he deleted were retrieved and are now in a safe place.
What must go down in history as one of the most laughable quotes of all times is Wayne Stewart’s claim “I am a police officer, I don’t lie”. Yet moments before making that bold statement Stewart was on the phone to his buddy John Bruce instructing him to destroy photographic and video evidence of not only his incredible stupidity, but his attempts to lie and ignore evidence. With names such as Adam Dunnett, Michael Blowers and Peter Pakau having so recently been caught lying Stewart’s claim has a hollow ring to it. Those are only the ones that have come to the public attention in the past few months and that police management have been unable to cover up for.
The concept that police officers should be permitted to make judgement calls is one that should be of concern to all of us. When idiots like Stewart come alone and refuse to even listen to both sides of any story, it makes a mockery of the myth that your average plod has the maturity and common sense to make any judgment call. In Stewart’s case, here is a man so bitter and twisted that he needs to make up the law as he goes along, having purported that it is illegal to film in a public place and trying to remove the camera using force. Despite being told on numerous occasions that it was quite legal to take video and still images in a public place, this dumb plod stood his ground and tried to bully and bluff his way out of the lie he had been so vigorously perpetuating.
Stewart is no different to any other bully, when he is stood up to he goes in to panic mode and calls for help, calling his buddy John Bruce for backup and more bullying. Upon arrival on scene and as the senior officer John Bruce kept running away every time the camera came near him. This sniveling little coward, just as big an idiot as his buddy Stewart, would not even get out of his vehicle. Nor did he have even the slightest interest in establishing any of the facts. In what can only be seen as a reflection of the police’s desire to avoid transparency and accountability, when Bruce was called to the scene the police were more concerned to broadcast a waring over the radio, that all their actions were being filmed. This preoccupied them more that establishing the facts or doing any proper policing.
Stewart – showing his best side to the camera
The public need to be aware of and stand up to bullies and liars such as Constable Wayne Stewart and Senior Constable John Bruce, who consider that their uniforms give them carte balnche to make up the law as they go along and use their position to push people around for no reason other than to satisfy their own prejudices. The Bay View community in which John Bruce works need to be particularly concerned that this thug is amongst them.
Both Constable Stewart and Senior Constable Bruce have been invited to comment.
It is inevitable that both these plods will fact private prosecution for their actions and this will be reported as it progresses through the courts.
Just when you thought that the lovely Jodi Jeffrey alias Jodi Watkins was the exception to the rule, one who has slipped through the employment vetting cracks, and that all other Department of Corrections staff are fine, upstanding individuals out there doing a tough job in a tough environment.
Mr Vincent Arbuckle CORPORATE BULLY
At least that is what Department of Corrections General Manager Corporate Services Vince Arbuckle would have us believe. Arbuckle’s belief in his staff is such that he recently wrote to Initiative and asked us to remove the articles and comments about Corrections staff and himself.
In that letter he suggests that the articles are “defamatory” and that the most appropriate way to make any wayward Corrections staff accountable is to lay a complaint with the Department itself. However history, the Courts, the Ombudsmen’s Office and the Coroner have all in recent history confirmed that the Dept of Corrections is completely incapable of dealing with their own staff or even complying with the law. The Corrections Inspectors are a joke, well it would be funny were the consequences of their biased whitewash of complaints so serious.
Indeed time again there are well documented examples of Corrections simply ignoring the overwhelming weight of evidence. This is precisely what occurred in the case of Jodi Jeffrey and in the face of such arrogant and ignorant cover ups the need arises to seek accountability elsewhere.
Katrina Casey …gone but not forgotten
Former General Manager Community Probation Services Katrina Casey was provided with all the evidence that proved without the slightest doubt that Jodi Jeffery was a liar and incapable of doing her job. Yet after what Casey purported to be a thorough investigation she concluded that Jodi Jeffery had done no wrong. An incredible conclusion that was and remains defiant of any fact or logic and demonstrates the inherent dishonesty that prevails within management.
When Vincent Arbuckle wrote to Initiative requesting the removal of those articles we offered to consider doing just this if he was prepared to re-investigate Jodi Jeffrey’s behaviour based on all the evidence against her. No surprises then that he has gone to ground and not responded. Arbuckle knows very well that any robust investigation would not produce a result that is in line with the propaganda image he wants to present of Corrections staff.
From Arbuckle’s letter:
“I strongly encourage the author responsible for these articles to consider theimpact of their actions on others before publishing future articles.”
It seems that Mr Arbuckle simply does not get it or has just lost the plot. It must be a very stressful job having to constantly cover up for staff incompetence and dishonesty.
If Corrections management had done their job properly in the first place it would not have been necessary to publish that or any other article. So readers can draw their own conclusions from the fact that Initiative has not removed any articles, nor will we be brow beaten in to doing so by Arbuckle or anyone else. That sort of bullying is unacceptable in any part of society but does serve to demonstrate the bully boy attitude of senior Corrections management.
Jodi Jeffrey’s accomplice SEAN ROBBINS
In this context then let us look at probation officer Sean Robbins. Robbins works alongside Jodi Jeffrey and claims to be an expert on electronic monitoring and the equipment used for this. However the evidence has proved Robbins to be not only technologically inept but a liar.
Robbins was party to the same false reporting and lies that Jodi Jeffrey put her name to and placed before the Courts. He deliberately misrepresented results of signal testing for electronic monitoring at a property in the Manawatu, in order to support the lies of his colleague and meet the agenda of his Corrections masters. What made it so much easier for him to get away with this is the knowledge that his managers would support and cover up even the most blatant of lies. In this instance there was even an affidavit from a lawyer who was present, that confirmed the dishonesty of both Jeffery and Robbins.
It is because of the existence of Corrections staff like Sean Robbins and Jodi Jeffrey that Initiative will continue to report on any evidence based examples of lies, corruption, incompetence, malicious behaviour or just plain stupidity. The individuals and Corrections management need to understand that when staff act in such a dishonest manner it has consequences. Up until now those consequences have been solely for the hapless victim of their corrupt mindset and behaviour. It could well be argued that the personalities of these people is such that destroying the lives of others through their lies and corruption gives them pleasure.
Now Initiative seeks to ensure that if Corrections management will not willingly bring about accountability and consequences for such staff then Initiative will do everything within the law to ensure that this occurs through other avenues. Clearly we are already having an impact because recently Corrections has started sending out letters with the results of complaints that they have whitewashed in which the author does not identify him/herself by either job title or name and the signature of the letter is (deliberately) illegible. Then there are the staff who send out emails from a generic email@example.com address and refuse to put a name to that email. At astonishing practice for any Government agency or department and one that is exclusive to Corrections. What are they afraid of?
The publication of earlier articles on corruption within the Department of Corrections has resulted in Initiative being contacted by a large number of people who have had similar experiences and as the evidence is verified their stories WILL be published.
So Ray Smith, Vincent Arbuckle, Jeremy Lightfoot and colleagues, this places you on notice that Initiative will not be bullied and you need to look seriously at how such matters are dealt with both retrospectively and in the future.
None of those within Corrections whom Initiative approached for comment offered any response.
He may have quietly skulked out of town in the wake of adverse publicity, but former District Commander Sam Hoyle’s replacement has been quick to follow in his footsteps. Early in her reign Superintendent Sandra Venables has demonstrated her own brand of double standards and selective policing.
Last month Constable Damion Davies was caught lying under oath when he gave evidence in the Napier District Court. The evidence available against Davies is overwhelming and damaging.
Nevertheless police have predictably closed ranks and refused to even accept a complaint.
That is not their decision to make and that they would do so without even considering the evidence demonstrates just how corrupt and duplicitous police are. Were it that there was no issue with the evidence Damion Davies has falsely given, police would have carried out a proper criminal investigation and based their decision on the evidence made available to and gathered by them. But no, they do not want to do this because that would mean the truth coming out and proving without doubt what we all know – that police perjure themselves in our courts on a routine basis and consider that an acceptable standard.
Exposing that lie and deny culture presents a real threat to the facade of respectability that police in this country continue struggling to portray, a perception that is rapidly slipping with 56% of the public distrusting of police.
Recently that image has been dented in spectacular fashion with Detective Inspector Grant Wormald caught lying in court and Detective Superintendent Andy Lovelock tripping over himself whilst giving evidence in the Auckland High Court last year. Is it any wonder then that when the see high ranking police getting away with it, your average intellect plod considers it acceptable to lie under oath? Damion Davies has demonstrated that this is fact and not simply theory. That he does this so readily shows that he issecure in the knowledge that if he ever does get caught out his colleagues and bosses will do whatever it takes to block any legitimate complaint and cover for his lies, even if that means making up more lies.
Wormald – another corrupt cop
Area Commander Sandra Venables has personally been made aware of Davies crime but has not only deliberately failed to ensure that the complaint is properly dealt with. She has also actively evaded any attempts to contact her about the matter. This in turn makes her guilty of conspiring to defeat justice.
It seems likely that both Davies and Venables will soon be standing beside each other in the dock facing a private criminal prosecution.
Hawke’s Bay police were invited to comment but failed to do so.
Watch this space.
6 December 2014 UPDATE: Damion Davies is no longer a detective and now back ploding the beat in uniform and trying to get promotion there. In a recent High Court appeal the Crown conceded that Davies had given “wrong evidence” under oath and the convictions that he had so eagerly secured by giving this “wrong evidence” were quashed. Sgt Malcolm Lochrie the police prosecutor in this case and serial liar Daryl Moore, are presently under investigation for conspiring to pervert justice for withholding evidence that was contrary to the police case, and indeed would have blown it out of the water from day one.
The lack of independence displayed by the Inspectors of Corrections has been a source of frustration to many almost since they came to exist. Their blatant and arrogant failure to uphold complaints is well known and demonstrated by the fact that the Inspectorate only upholds 2% of complaints. This figure is so low that it demonstrates serious flaws with the way the Inspectorate approaches its investigations and must raise alarm bells.
To describe their methodology as having any investigative basis is wrong, for if someone seeking to complain even manages to get as far as talking to an inspector, that in itself an uphill battle they can expect to face an up hill battle even getting someone to listen with an impartial ear. Fairness and impartiality are not part of the qualifications needed for the job. The mindset of the average inspector is to favour their Corrections masters at the cost of any degree of honesty or fairness. There is no evidence based manner to the way investigations are carried out and the determination is to find a way, any way, to cover up for the colleagues that these same inspectors have often previously worked, played rugby with and got drunk alongside.
Grenville Bell Don’t let the smile fool you!
One of the Department of Corrections greatest legacies was long time senior prison inspector Grenville Bell whose skills at burying complaints are legendary. He ruled the other inspectors with an iron will and had an amazing ability to “dispose” of any complaint in a manner that was favourable to his Corrections masters.
As a prison officer Bell was a well established member of the “stash and bash” brigade who hated all inmates with a passion that knew no bounds.
As an inspector he hated those whose complaints it was his responsibility to investigate and took the attitude that you never believe anything an inmate tells you. This is a mindset that resonates within Corrections to this day. His hate and disdain was openly displayed, oft with utter hostility toward anyone who dared to complain to him. His arrogance and the blatant way he displayed this attitude is perhaps a prerequisite for the job of inspector and quietly encouraged by Corrections management.
It was not uncommon for an inspector new to the job to write a report and then have that document completely trashed by Bell and rewritten to show Corrections in a better light. They soon learned to tow the line or get out.
In her investigation in to the infamous Paparua Prison “Goon Squad” Alicia Duffy QC made harsh criticisms of the Department of Corrections’ senior inspector Grenville Bell. Despite such a pitiful report card Bell continued in to role undaunted and with the same culture until his retirement. In reality they should have got rid of him long before that but the Department of Corrections has a long history of ignoring criticism and carrying on with its own agenda regardless.
There is nothing that is independent about the current Inspectors of Corrections. They have offices within the Department of Corrections, report to the Department of Corrections Chief Executive, have email addresses on the corrections.govt.nz domain and can be contacted by phoning Corrections head office.
Andy Fitzharris 40 year apprenticeship
Bell has disappeared in to retirement but his legacy of dishonesty remains.
The current Chief Inspector is Andy Fitzharris who was apprenticed to and learned his craft at Bell’s feet.
What has changed now is that Fitzharris has managed to create a regime where he and his colleague s are as inaccessible as they can possibly make themselves and it is as difficult as they can make it to complain. Listen here to the message on the inspectors 0800 line and if you are still awake at the end of it your stamina is to be admired:
A high percentage of inmates are illiterate and most inarticulate. To be confronted with a voice mail message like that would be utterly daunting and discourage many. Perhaps this is precisely what it is intended to achieve.
In Queensland , where the prison complaint system is more transparent and prisons are more open to outsiders able to help prisoners articulate their complaints, a high percentage of complaints are lodged (including online) by non-prisoners. There is consultation with prisoners on prison policy. Total complaint numbers are a fraction of those in NZ. In this country multiple complaints are received about like issues, but nothing is done to resolve them, so the complaint numbers skyrocket and thus the inspectors justify their jobs.
One of the more offensive aspects of the inspectors methodology is that no matter how damming or irresponsible the actions of Corrections staff, their report would often be tempered with a rider commending staff for some other aspect of their involvement.
A recent example shows a lack of integrity and independence. The prison inspectors were asked to investigate the failure of prison management to facilitate a lawyer visit. Very quickly the inspector investigating, Trevor Riddle, came back with a conclusion that blamed everyone but prison management for the failure. As an ex prison manager himself it seems Riddle is sympathetic to the failures of his colleagues.
Upon then being presented with evidence that prison management had lied to him, Riddle’s response is to duck for cover and refuse to address the problem. In similar fashion to the IPCA mentality Corrections inspectors will turn a blind eye to the lies of management if it will permit them to dismiss a complaint.
The Corrections Inspectorate is incapable of even a semblance of independence and even when it is demonstrated that their conclusions are flawed, they stubbornly and with incredible arrogance dig in and refuse to budge.
Could this have been prevented?
It is very likely that had they done their jobs properly and actually listened to the concerns that were repeatedly being expressed to them, last year’s riots at Spring Hill might never have happened.
Andy Fitzharris and Corrections CEO Ray Smith failed to respond to requests for comment.
Records held at Wellington’s Alexander Turnbull Library record:
A grieving father farewells his son
“Emmanuel Papadopoulos jnr died of a drug overdose”.
Three decades on those of us who were there remember it quite differently.
The Police Complaints Authority’s 40 page report published on 9 February 1990, just over a month after “Manny” Papadopoulos was strangled by policeman Paul Berry is a remarkable document and makes it one of the fastest whitewashes in the PCA’s history. What makes it so remarkable is its arrogance and blatantly pro police viewpoint that is barely suppressed.
Even if you try to read this document from a completely objective viewpoint there are some disturbing trends that remain to the forefront in today’s Independent Police Conduct Authority.
Even in the opening paragraphs of his report Sir Peter Quilliam is adopting a position sympathetic to police by describing their investigation as “thorough and meticulous”. These were unchartered waters for the PCA as it was the first investigation of its kind that the PCA had overseen. It appears that Sir Peter Quilliam was anxious to establish a position from the outset.
Witnesses who are unsympathetic to the police at the time are discredited or rubbished and there is a general emphasis on preferring the versions of the witnesses who can help clear the police. Overall the impression is that from the outset there was a determination to clear the police and that is how the “investigation” was conducted.
The PCA’s investigator was John Roberts who for the duration of his tenure with the PCA maintained a staunchly pro police viewpoint and was renowned for his ability to find in favour of police no matter how overwhelming the evidence was to the contrary.
There was a heck of a lot of background evidence that the PCA refused to look at, perhaps because it would have painted an entirely different picture. Not the least of these being that the same police officer who strangled Manny Papadopoulos had been hassling him for weeks prior to that night. This fact alone offers an alternative explanation as to why he ran away when stopped. In those days the police officer concerned was well known around Wellington as a bully and thug and so it is a reasonable possibility that Manny Papadopoulos, who was alone in the car, feared for his safety.
Consider also that back in 1989 the police did not become involved in “routine traffic stops” as this was before police merged with the MOT. New Year’s Eve morning in central Wellington and the police are going to have far more important things on their minds that “routine traffic stops”. So this is one aspect that just does not add up and has never been explained. Up until that point it is unlikely that this police officer had conducted a traffic stop in his entire career.
One of the witnesses actually says in his statement that the thought the Sargent wanted to kill Mr Papadopoulos.
Throughout his report Quilliam refers to Mr Papadopoulos as “the deceased” and seems to have forgotten that he is dealing with a human life and the consequences of that being taken.
Read the report for yourself and make your own judgments: