The father of an indigenous teenager who had his legs kicked from beneath him before being slammed to the ground by a police officer said he was deeply angered by the incident.
The 16-year-old told a cop he would ‘crack him in the f**king jaw, bro’, following a verbal altercation at Eddie Ward Park in Surry Hills, Sydney about 5pm on Monday.
In response, the officer handcuffed him and kicked his legs from underneath him at the same time, sending the boy tumbling face first into the concrete footpath below.
The teen’s distraught father, who wished not to be named, told The Project he was initially annoyed at his son’s language, before his anger turned to the officer’s reaction.
‘The first reaction is anger, you know, seeing my boy do that,’ he said on Wednesday night.
The teen’s distraught father (right), who wished not to be named, told The Project he was initially annoyed at his son’s language, before his anger turned to the officer’s reaction. Pictured with human rights lawyer George Newhouse
Footage shows the officer, who was patrolling in Surry Hills in Sydney at the time, swipe the feet from underneath the man during the arrest (left). While on the ground, the young man appeared to struggle to manoeuvre his arms behind his back and was wailing (right)
‘Hitting the ground, you know, with the police foot-sweeping him. Yeah, a lot of anger… but the thing is, it’s not new.
‘It’s happened to our young people all the time. But this here, it really hit home, because that was my son, and we’re just looking for what justice can be done for my boy.’
The father dismissed NSW Police Minister David Elliot’s claims the teenager’s language was ‘horrifying’.
‘Whatever he has said and whatever he has done doesn’t justify the action of that policeman,’ he said.
The father also responded to NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller’s remarks that the cop, who had an otherwise clean record, had ‘a bad day’.
‘For us as Aboriginal people, everyday of the week, everyday of the year is always a bad day for us,’ he said.
‘If he had a bad day, well we cop it everyday… With our relationship with the police – there’s always going to be a bad day.’
The man said his son ‘wasn’t doing so good’ following the incident.
‘There’s bruises on his face and on his legs, but there’s also chipped teeth,’ he said, adding that the family will continue to take him to the doctor ‘for his mental health’.
The boy’s family and other members of his legal team took a knee during a press conference on Wednesday to pay respects to other people who they believe had been unfairly targeted
The 16-year-old’s mother, father and older sister fronted a press conference on Wednesday where they revealed they would take legal action if an internal police inquiry doesn’t result in charges against the officer
He called for a ‘change in the institutional system’ to combat police brutality and racism.
Earlier today in a press conference calling for an internal police inquiry, the father said the footage took him back to his own childhood, where he claims he was often targeted by authorities.
‘My son experienced this and I experienced this in my life as a young 17 or 19-year-old,’ he said. ‘But them days, we didn’t have what we have today.’
The boy, who suffered chipped teeth and bruises across his body during the altercation, ‘wants to do things that other white kids do, but there is no opportunity,’ his father said.
Instead, according to his family, he is made to feel like he is in a ‘prison made up of the whole world’.
The teen’s family told the conference they would take legal action if an internal police inquiry doesn’t result in charges against the officer.
‘As Aboriginal people, we experience extra obligation to answer to people. Who we are, where we’re going, what we’re doing even when we’re just walking along,’ his mother said.
Following his arrest, the family claim he was taken to holding cells before being transferred to St Vincent’s Hospital via ambulance, where he spent the night waiting for results from x-rays to his shoulder, knee and elbow.
A 16-year-old boy suffered a chipped tooth and bruising all over his body after he was thrown to the ground by a police officer
His older sister told media that watching the footage for the first time was ‘chilling.’
‘We’re all feeling anger that we can’t express and sadness that we live in a society where that is normal,’ she said.
The teen was released without charge following his arrest and taken to St Vincent’s Hospital for treatment.
His sister said the boy was distraught and his teeth were chipped during the ordeal.
‘When he came back home later that night, he was shaken up,’ she said.
‘He was very sore this morning and he was distraught. Teenagers, they’re lippy, but you don’t just abuse children because they’re lippy.’
According to his family, he is made to feel like he is in a ‘prison made up of the whole world’
Family member of Aboriginal boy allegedly assaulted by a NSW cop is seen with NSW Greens MP David Shoebridge at Parliament House on Wednesday
On Tuesday, police revealed they had stood down the officer involved in the arrest after Daily Mail Australia published the confronting video.
Police suspended the officer involved pending an investigation from the Professional Standards Command, and held meetings with the community and local elders about the investigation.
But the family are calling for an external investigation into the actions of the officer, and want to be informed about the consequences for the other cops who witnessed the arrest.
Human rights lawyer George Newhouse for the National Justice Project on Wednesday confirmed the family would pursue private prosecution if the officer is not charged with assault.
While rare, the spokesman said the family had every right to commence private legal proceedings to have charges laid if police fail to do so.
NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller (pictured) on Wednesday admitted there were ‘other ways’ the officer could have dealt with the matter, other than the leg sweep
Police are conducting an internal investigation into the officer’s approach to the arrest, and placed him on restricted duties for the duration of the investigation.
Earlier on Wednesday, NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller on Wednesday admitted there were ‘other ways’ the officer could have dealt with the matter, other than the leg sweep.
Mr Fuller said the officer in question had worked in the force for three-and-a-half years and had no record of complaints, and likely regretted the way he arrested the teen.
‘This is a case of two things – is it reasonable for someone to swear and threaten a police officer? And then, is the force the officer used reasonable?’ Mr Fuller told 2GB Radio.
‘I don’t know what happened before in terms of the lead-up but there was probably other ways the officer could have dealt with that matter, no doubt.
‘I totally accept that officers need to show restraint.’
Footage of the arrest was captured on a mobile phone and posted on social media.
A bystander can be heard yelling: ‘You just slammed him on his face. He’s in pain.’
‘He has a bruised shoulder, cuts and grazing to his knee, face and elbow and chipped teeth,’ a relative said
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