NSWCCL in the media

City Hub: ‘Scope for improvement’: LECC report outlines issues with police incident investigations

The LECC has revealed significant issues with New South Wales Police Force (NSWPF)’s current approach to conducting critical incident investigations. The 2023 review, which assessed ‘Five Years of Independent Monitoring of NSW Police Force Critical Incident Investigations, found that current processes are overly lengthy and provide little opportunity to quickly improve identified issues.

Josh Pallas: "Given what happened with Clare Nowland, we think that it’s really made it quite clear that critical incidents shouldn’t be conducted by police – those investigations – they should just go to the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission (LECC) directly, and we’re fortified in that conclusion by what the recent LECC report is saying."

"When the LECC does supervise investigations, they have currently limited access to interviews and the investigations as a whole – so we don’t have confidence in current internal police investigations."

Read more here.


The Guardian: Growing calls for parliamentary inquiry into NSW police use of force

Calls are growing for a parliamentary inquiry into use of force by New South Wales police, with justice experts saying too much focus is being placed on the actions of individual police officers rather than the “festering” systemic problem.

“It’s about time we had some accountability from high up rather than those who are part of what’s happening on the ground," Samantha Lee of the Redfern Legal Centre said. 

Josh Pallas, president of the NSW Council for Civil Liberties, said what connects these cases is a poor culture around the use of force, and a parliamentary inquiry is necessary to root out the problems.

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Daily Caller: 95-Year-Old Australian Great-Grandmother Dies After Allegedly Being Tased By Police, Officer Facing Charges

A 95-year-old great-grandmother whom police allegedly tasered earlier in May died Wednesday in an Australian hospital, officials have stated. Clare Nowland passed away May 24, around a week after the incident with police that resulting in her being tasered in the back and chest, causing her to collapse and suffer a brain bleed. 

The incident has sparked outrage throughout New South Wales, leading politicians to demand reforms in law enforcement procedures. "The refusal to release the bodycam footage protects NSW Police from public scrutiny for all the wrong reasons — the NSW community has a right to know exactly what happened when Clare Nowland was tasered so we can start to take the steps needed for change,” Sue Higginson, MLC stated.

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7NEWS:Grandmother with dementia Clare Nowland dies days after being tasered by police in NSW nursing home

Clare Nowland, the 95 year old dementia patient who was left fighting for her life after being tasered by police, has passed away. 

A statement from the police reads: 

“It is with great sadness we confirm the passing of 95-year-old Clare Nowland in Cooma tonight.”

“Mrs Nowland passed away peacefully in hospital just after 7pm this evening, surrounded by family and loved ones who have requested privacy during this sad and difficult time.

“Our thoughts and condolences remain with those who were lucky enough to know, love, and be loved by Mrs Nowland during a life she led hallmarked by family, kindness and community.”

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Mamamia: 95-year-old Clare was Tasered by police today. 15 years ago she was in the headlines for a very different reason.

In 2008, great-grandmother Clare Nowland was filmed for a feel-good segment by the ABC when she decided to go skydiving for her 80th birthday. 

This week, the now 95 year old has made headlines for a different and incredibly disturbing reason, after she was allegedly Tasered by police in an incident at her nursing home. This occured after police were called to Cooma's Yallambee Lodge after Ms Nowland, who has dementia, was found holding a steak knife

It was reported that when police tried to negotiate with Nowland, she refused to drop the knife all while approaching police "slowly" with her walking frame. 

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Network 10: 95-Year-Old Grandmother With Dementia Tasered At Nursing Home In New South Wales

Clare Nowland, a dementia patient at Cooma's Yallambee Lodge is fighting for her life after staff at her NSW nursing home called the police on Wednesday morning after she was found holding a serrated steak knife.

After the police arrived, its reported that officers were unable to get Ms Nowland to drop the knife, resulting in one officer to fire their taser at the 95 year old as she stood next to her walking frame.

NSW Council for Civil Liberties president Josh Pallas said police shouldn't be using tasers on vulnerable people experiencing dementia or a mental health crisis.

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WA Today: Use of Taser on 95-year-old could breach police procedures

An experienced police officer’s decision to deploy a Taser on a frail 95-year-old woman during an incident at an aged care home in southern NSW is likely in breach of police procedures on the use of the potentially-lethal weapon.

Clare Nowland, a dementia patient, was in a critical condition in hospital after she was hit by the Taser and fell, knocking her head, in the early hours of Wednesday morning. This occurred after she was found holding a serrated steak knife from the Yallambee Lodge kitchen. 

The Taser was discharged once by a male senior constable with 12 years experience. This incident was captured on body-cam footage that Assistant Commissioner Peter Cotter described as “confronting”. He said the video would not be released to the public.

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BBC News: Outcry as Australian police Taser 95-year-old care home resident

An elderly Australian woman with dementia is in hospital with life-threatening injuries after being Tasered by police at a care home, BBC News reports. Police was called to Cooma's Yallambee Lodge after reports that 95-year-old Clare Nowland was carrying a knife.

It was reported that Ms Nowland was struck twice - in the chest and the back - before she fell, suffering a fractured skull and a serious brain bleed. Her family are already grieving as they do not expect her to survive.

Community groups, including the NSW Council for Civil Liberties and People with Disability Australia (PwD), have criticised the police response.

For more information, read the full article


City Hub: 95 year-old woman left in critical condition after NSW Police tasered her

A 95 year-old woman has been left in a critical condition after she was allegedly tasered by police at a regional aged care facility, City Hub's Tileah Dobson reports. 

In the early hours of Wednesday morning, Clare Nowland was wandering Yallambee Lodge in Cooma prompting a call to the police. After an altercation, it was reported that police resulted to tasering Nowland after struggling to disarm her. An investigation into the matter has now been launched by the police, and that a “critical incident team will now investigate the circumstances surrounding the incident.”

President of the NSW Council for Civil Liberties, Josh Pallas has begun calling on the police to cease the use of tasers on vulnerable people “who are experiencing dementia or a mental health crisis.”

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The Guardian: Woman, 95, Tasered by officer at Cooma aged care home, approached on walking frame with a knife, police say

Grandmother Clare Nowland was approaching officers at a “slow pace” using a walking frame when they deemed it necessary to deploy a Taser, leaving her fighting for her life in hospital.

The NSW police have confirmed that that the homicide squad was investigating the incident and that the senior constable involved, who had 12 years experience, is under review and no longer working. The internal investigation will be reviewed by NSW police professional standards and monitored by the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission.

Civil liberties groups, including NSW Council for Civil Liberties demanded an external watchdog, such as the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission, manage the investigation, rather than the NSW police critical incident team.

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