Warlpiri and the family of Kumanjayi Walker have called for the case against a Northern Territory police officer to be held in Alice Springs or be moved to their Country, to ensure the family and community can attend.
The location of the case against the police officer charged with the murder of the 19-year-old Warlpiri man is at the centre of an application from counsel of the accused to be heard in the Alice Springs Magistrates Court on Thursday.
The newly formed Warlpiri Parumpurru [Justice] committee, which is representing the Yuendumu community, has concerns that David Edwardson QC will apply to have the proceedings moved to Darwin due to the potential for large protests to create heightened emotion around the case and potentially influence a jury.
‘We already feel left out. As it is, moving the trial to Alice Springs, when it happened in Yuendumu, already places a heavy burden on community members," said chairperson Ned Hargraves in a written statement on Wednesday.
"We are always left out of things. Kardiya [whitefella] are always making decisions for us. Darwin is too far away from country for people to travel to and does not respect Warlpiri’s wishes."
It's not yet known what Mr Edwardson QC will argue on Thursday.
The statement said the community has planned a peaceful sit down on the Alice Springs court lawns on Thursday morning and no large protest has been organised.
"Since this tragic event happened, the Yuendumu community have respected the police officer’s right to a fair trial and the leaders and elders strongly encouraged their community and the wider community to do so as well. No-one has speculated about any evidence,'" the statement said.