• A NSW police officer is seen holding 18-year-old Patrick Little around the neck in a headlock on the night of his assault. (CCTV)Source: CCTV
Footage shows Senior Constable Jeames Iain Murray slamming an 18-year-old Indigenous man's head into a wall and then picking him up and slinging him at a cell door.
Douglas Smith

17 Feb 2021 - 4:32 PM  UPDATED 17 Feb 2021 - 4:42 PM

A New South Wales police officer who picked up and flung an Indigenous teen into a cell door at the Goulburn police station, has successfully appealed an assault conviction and $3500 fine in court yesterday. 

In early 2019, Senior Constable Jeames Iain Murray was captured on the police station's closed circuit camera slamming the head of then 18-year-old Indigenous man Patrick Little's into a wall, then picking him up and slinging him at a cell door.

On Wednesday, Mr Little’s mother, Wiradjuri woman Belinda Little, told NITV News that her family are in disbelief that Senior Constable Murray’s conviction was overturned.  

“We’re shocked, sad and worried,” said Ms Little.

“What happened, what just happened, how did he get off that [charge]?

“It’s shown us that police get to do anything and they get away with it.”


Ms Little said her son has been traumatised since the incident occurred and has been seeking support for his mental health to cope. 

“To be honest, right now, he’s seeing the mental health worker to try and figure out how he’s feeling and what he’s gonna do,” she said. 

On the night of the arrest, Ms Little said she was concerned for her son’s physical health at the time because he also suffered from epileptic seizures, but was told by officers when she called that her son was in good hands.   

In court on Tuesday, Judge Mark Williams found that there was a "significant quantity of evidence" that the victim had resisted, and "appropriate force" was used by Mr Murray.

palawa man and Aboriginal Advisor to Amnesty International, Rodney Dillon, told NITV News he was “disgusted” with how the officer treated Mr Patrick.

“If he had hit that corner, we would have had another Black death in custody,” said Mr Dillon on Wednesday. 

“The way that bloke drove him with no compassion for that boy at all, just drove him straight into it and then bumbled him inside. 

“He didn’t check to see any injuries, he just smashed him back inside and closed the door on him.

“A vulnerable young boy, he needed support and help, not being smashed around like that, that’s just bad behaviour, that’s what you expect to happen in another country, not in our country."

Charges were first brought against Senior Constable Murray after an internal investigation by NSW Police. 

Mr Murray pleaded not guilty to two counts of assault and maintained throughout the hearing that his actions were lawful and appropriate. 

He said that while the footage did not look good, it only showed one side of the story and that Mr Little resisted and acted violently. 

Mr Murray continued to work aas an officer for NSW Police at the Goulburn Police Station on "restricted duties" following the 2019 assault and throughout the court proceedings.

Ms Little said she is now looking for other avenues on how to take the matter further. 

“I’m stuck at the moment but I’m going to ask around where I can go further and I want to speak to the police prosecution on the day that it got turned over.”

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