Coroners Act In the matter of Coronial Findings and Recommendation into the Death of Mr Owen King pursuant to section 46B dated 3 December 2003
Tabled paper 1290
Tabled Papers for 9th Assembly 2001 - 2005; Tabled Papers; ParliamentNT
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know, what this is going to mean for their future. So it has a huge impact on - And (transcript p .73) THE CORONER: But youd rather see them go to a 24 hour sobering up shelters, wouldnt you, than the police cells? I would, together with proper medical assessments. And (transcript p .80) Youve heard a bit about DASA, are you aware of how many beds DASA has in Alice Springs? --- DASA has 30 beds. I dont know what the mix is for male and female but its got 30 beds. And whats your view about the adequacy of that number of beds for the population of Alice Springs? --- Well simple maths, theres not enough because if there were enough there wouldnt be protective custodys that should be at DASA that are in the watch-house. Have you - I think - reviewed the figures between summer and winter in terms of people that end up in the watch-house because DASA is unable or full? Theres two issues there. The first is that some people should not be in the-care of DASA so obviously we have to keep those in our custody. I cant give you a breakdown on that. But over the last 18 months our records indicate that there were 5192 people taken into police protective custody at the watch-house. 5226 for other reasons of custody, whether it be offences, assaults, remands or whatever. Thats 10,418 people. Thats an average of 19 custody events for a 24 hour period at Alice Springs. The figures do differ from summer to winter. I am advised by members of the watch-house here at Alice Springs, Your Worship, that between 40 - 60 people can be regularly taken into custody on a 24 hour period in the summer months, and this is around 10 to 20 during winter months. But it is not unusual when DASA is closed, for example, on a Sunday and Monday, even in winter, to have up to 40 people in the watch- house. We have taken a snapshot from the records on IJIS for a 24 hour period. Now on a Thursday on 16 January this year, a summer day, 58 people were taken into police custody; 30 of those were under the provisions of section 128. On a Sunday, on 6 July, a winter day and the day that DASA was closed, 23 18