An assault on a police woman in Mathoura this week was witnessed by others who could have stepped in, according to a NSW police inspector.By Ivy Wise
Three onlookers who stood by as a lone police woman was assaulted in Mathoura have been labelled a disgrace by a top NSW cop.
Deniliquin police Inspector Peter Hayes said the 35-year-old officer was in the process of arresting an 18-year-old woman on suspicion of driving under the influence of a prohibited drug on Wednesday when an altercation started between her 60-year-old father and the officer.
‘‘They (officers) work in these small communities and the onlookers just stood by,’’ he said.
‘‘Even if they yelled out, asking if she was okay, but that wasn’t the case. Some of them were big blokes who could have easily over-powered the man.
‘‘It was fairly disgusting. Ordinary, really.’’
Insp. Hayes said the ‘‘scuffle’’ continued for 20 minutes until back-up arrived.
It occurred at 1.45pm at the intersection of Morris and Livingstone streets.
Insp. Hayes said the officer radio-called Deniliquin police, who contacted Murray Shire Council to get their staff to intervene until they could get there.
‘‘Two council staff assisted in removing the man,’’ he said.
Insp. Hayes said the officer and the man had scratches and were bleeding from their arms, but suffered no serious injuries.
‘‘The father was arrested and taken to Deniliquin police where he was interviewed,’’ he said.
The daughter, who was in the back of the police van during the incident, was arrested and taken to Deniliquin hospital to undergo a urine and blood sample for examination.
Insp. Hayes said no charges had been laid and the investigation was continuing.
The officer finished her shift after the incident, but Insp. Hayes said she was ‘‘back on deck’’.
He said the fact no-one offered to help was a disgrace, considering the officer was a well-known and respected community member.
‘‘This officer gives a lot of her own time to the community,’’ he said.
‘‘When you’re working in a single unit and (this happens), that’s very ordinary.’’
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