The NT Independent’s reporting of the Constable Zach Rolfe case is a prime example of why you should support this local, independent online newspaper, if you can.
The NT Independent didn’t have the resources to report daily on the trial while it was running. The town was full of reporters and news outlets from around the country, and there was news everywhere, every day.
However once the trial ended, and the peak of interest by interstate media in the days following had subsided, the NT Independent started to publish the hard stories from behind the scenes. The important details that you have a right to know. The important details that certain people don’t want you to know. Just think what you would not know about this case if it wasn’t for the NT Independent?
Who else was going to tell you Police Commissioner Jamie Chalker referred Zach Rolfe to the ICAC prior to him being charged with Murder?
Who else was going to tell you the Director of Public Prosecutions took no longer than 90 minutes to recommend a murder charge based on an unfinished brief?
Who else was going to tell you Police Commissioner Jamie Chalker and other executives gave instructions for Constable Zach Rolfe to be charged in Darwin if any charges were to proceed?
Who else was going to tell you NT Police Commissioner Jamie Chalker met with senior police executives just minutes before detectives investigating the death of Kumanjayi Walker were ordered to arrest and charge Constable Zach Rolfe with murder, despite claiming otherwise?
Who else was going to tell you about the five instances of documented evidence showing the commissioner’s involvement across all four days following the Yuendumu shooting, contradicting Mr Chalker’s claim he was not involved in the process to charge?
Who else was going to tell you the top cop in charge of overseeing complaints about NT Police investigations had warned officers building the murder case that their use of force “expert” was “not suitable” to provide evidence due to a “conflict of interest”?
Who else was going to tell you Senior NT Police figures told police media manager Rob Cross to craft a media strategy around the call to arrest Constable Zach Rolfe just minutes after his boss Commissioner Jamie Chalker left an executive meeting in November 2019?
Who else was going to tell you Independent Commissioner Against Corruption Michael Riches has not ruled out Chief Minister Michael Gunner as a witness in the ICAC investigation into allegations of political interference in the charging of Constable Rolfe?
Then there is the question of why the police paid an American “independent expert” close to $100,000 of taxpayer money for a report that was critical of Zach Rolfe’s actions but that had been altered on different occasions after “suggestions” from a senior officer. His testimony was used to commit Rolfe for a murder trial but was scrapped when the trial approached for mysterious reasons.
And who else was going to report that the ICAC’s office did not in fact provide independent oversight of the police criminal investigation, despite the ICAC inspector claiming it would back in 2019?
You can read all these stories for free here
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